Choosing the best eCommerce software for your online store can be a difficult decision. Most users turn to a hosted platform as it is much easier to work with and maintain. Advanced and more technical users tend to go with self-hosted solutions for due to more flexibility and options. As a long time eCommerce developer, I tend to set my clients up on a hosted shopping cart solution.
The Importance of Ecommerce Software
The best eCommerce software will help users create, launch, and maintain an online store. Most of the best solutions will put your store in front of millions of online shoppers. This is where the option of choosing a hosted or self-hosted solution comes in play. While hosted solutions are much easier to work with, self-hosted platforms have more flexibility and are geared towards advanced users. Generally, a hosted shopping cart solution is more ideal to the majority of online stores.
Furthermore, eCommerce software is important because it allows store owners to run a smooth and efficient online store. Best eCommerce software solutions will offer you the features and tools you need to run an online store. Fortunately, hosted platforms do not need a separate hosting plan, as everything is included with your monthly plan.
What to Look for in the Best Ecommerce Software?
With a little guidance and research, choosing the right platform does not have to be a headache. I see the best results (as do my clients), by following the simple criteria below:
- Pricing: The fact is, we all want the best for less. The best eCommerce software will not be cheap, but should be decently priced. Most importantly, you have tons of options, so shop around and do not overpay.
- Features: Researching the platform features is a must. First, you should see which features you will need now and in the future. Crossing out the platforms that do not have enough features will definitely narrow down your choices.
- Bandwidth: Honestly, the best eCommerce software will have unlimited bandwidth with one of their plans, if not all. Having unlimited bandwidth is great as you do not have to worry about upgrading plans or reaching your monthly bandwidth limits. Remember, with bandwidth limits, comes overage fees. Generally, going over your bandwidth limits comes at a hefty overage fee. These fees range from $0 to $12 for most solutions. Shopping carts like BigCommerce and Shopify offer unlimited bandwidth on all of their plans.
- Transaction Fees: Believe it or not, some shopping carts are still charging pesky transaction fees. Try to avoid them, if possible. Carts like BigCommerce, Shopify, Volusion, and 3dcart do not charge transaction fees.
- Ease of Use and Assistance: Most importantly, make sure the platform is easy for you to use and manage. If it is not, be sure that it has a solid support team, in case you run into trouble.
What are Some Best Ecommerce Software Solutions?
Typically, the answer to this question will rely heavily on the criteria above. Not only will the best eCommerce software cover all of the points above, it will enable you to get additional features in their app stores. To avoid headaches and hours of research, I developed a list of the best shopping carts (YES, they are in order, starting from the best):
- Magento Go
Note: All of the solutions above are hosted shopping cart solutions.
Best Ecommerce Software Solutions: Final Thoughts
Choosing the best eCommerce software will put you ahead of the competition as you will have the right tools to run a successful online store. Most of the clients have the most success using BigCommerce, Shopify, and Volusion. That should not be surprising, as the three solutions are extremely popular and have great reputations. Lastly, you can find a good comparison on the best eCommerce software.
What shopping cart do you have the most success with? Do you prefer a hosted or self-hosted eCommerce solution?