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If you’re a business owner in today’s world, you need an eCommerce presence if you want to survive in today’s business climate.

As online sales have grown year over year, a variety of eCommerce platforms have emerged. Researching the largest and most widely used eCommerce platforms can be a difficult and exhausting process.

Understanding each platform can help business owners find the best solution for their needs. The summaries below touch upon the pros and cons of many of these popular platforms. Knowledge is power, so educating yourself before making a decision is an excellent strategy.

WooCommerce

woocommerce

WooCommerce is by far the most popular eCommerce platform. It accounts for nearly 30% of all online stores, and for good reason. There are a variety of features and benefits that every business owner should consider when launching their online store.

It has a setup wizard that walks you through the process, step-by-step. It can manage the sales of digital products, physical products, subscription services, and more. Woocommerce also comes with a complete payment software bundle that allows a variety of payment options to the consumer. If those options aren’t enough, you can plug in a few more.

COST:
  • Free
PROS:
  • You can list an unlimited number of products
  • It has a mobile app to manage your store on the go
  • Most eCommerce theses are built around WooCommerce
  • Integrates easily with the most common Payment Gateways
  • Many extensions have been created to solve problems by developers
CONS:
  • Using too many additional plugins can slow it down
  • Can take some time to learn

Ecwid

ecwid

Another great choice for your eCommerce store is Ecwid. It’s less well-known than WooCommerce but has lots of features that make a great online store. Though similar in design to WooCommerce, it can be used on other platforms besides WordPress. It has four different plans available, each one with more features than the previous one.

It has a seamless integration into WordPress sites, as well as many other sites. It’s also mobile-responsive and looks great on any device. It has the ability to connect your store to your social media to allow your customers to shop from wherever they are browsing.

COST:
  • Free, with paid tier upgrades
PROS:
  • Social media integration
  • Mobile-friendly including mobile payment options
  • Language detection in 45 different languages
  • Packed with features including coupon creation and abandoned cart recovery emails
CONS:
  • Free plan only allows 10 products

WP Easy Pay

wp easy pay

WordPress Easy Pay is a simple way to integrate payments into your website from any page. It has a customizable form that allows you to make the payment screen look and feel on-theme with the rest of your site. You can also choose which pieces of information you want to collect from your customers and which ones you want to exclude.

It has a feature called the Tabular Products Feature that allows you to include thumbnails, descriptions, and prices of various products. Your customers can literally just check the box next to each product they want to purchase and then make their payment. It’s integrated with the Square sandbox so you can link to your Square account seamlessly.

COST:
  •  Free, with paid tiers available
PROS:
  • It’s easy to use with most WordPress eCommerce themes
  • It can be added to any page or post to make it easy for readers to buy
  • “Transaction ID” confirmation emails to both the user and the admin
  • Offers easy integration to QuickBooks and other marketing software
CONS:
  • Lacks design since it’s more of a payment service than an online storefront.

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WP EasyCart

One of the best features of the WP EasyCart system is the ability to sell basically anything. It offers the ability to sell physical goods, digital products, memberships or subscriptions, gift cards, ebooks, video content, and more. It even allows you to accept donations, which makes it great for non-profit organizations.

This platform is an all-in-one WordPress platform that can integrate with your WordPress site and is super easy to set up. Unlike WooCommerce that requires addon plugins, WP Easy It’s fully mobile-responsive and has a nice suite of admin tools. It is also 100% customizable, so regardless of your payment gateway, store layout, or other needs, it’s got you covered.

COST:
  •  Free, with paid tiers available
PROS:
  • It has tons of storefront options to choose from
  • 100% customizable with many built-in features
  • Product page allows for many options for loading items
  • Order Management allows for bulk or single order options
CONS:
  • Transaction fee for free plan

WP eCommerce

This platform is more robust than WP Easy Pay and has some great features. With no operational fees, it’s significantly cheaper than WooCommerce making this a great choice for new websites. Used by over 30,000 eCommerce stores, it’s one of the most versatile open-source eCommerce platforms.

WP eCommerce offers easy product management and sales reporting. Integration is easy into most major payment gateways including PayPal and Stripe. WP eCommerce also offers plugin expert techs for hire to help with any part of the integration or operation of the website.

COST:
  • Free
PROS:
  • Integrates seamlessly with many WordPress themes
  • Integration into multiple payment options available
  • It has a variety of shipping options including rates for many shipping services
CONS:
  • Not for Developers due to limited ability to edit code

Stripe

Stripe is a payment gateway and not an eCommerce platform, meaning you can use it to accept payments from your customers, but you can’t build your storefront with it. You can integrate Stripe with tons of different eCommerce platforms and it has a variety of add-ons to fit your needs. It can handle both brick-and-mortar and online stores.

Stripe operates on per-transaction pricing, meaning you will know exactly what you’re going to pay on each transaction. It can accept global payments and has a full security system to protect both your customers and your business. It also offers excellent financial reporting and 24/7 tech support.

COST:
  • Free
PROS:
  • Comprehensive security strategy
  • 24/7 tech support
  • Customizable with simple integrations
  • Can accept cards, digital wallets, ACH payments, Apple Pay, and more
CONS:
  • It’s only a payment gateway, so you’ll still need an online storefront

PayPal

Unknown to most users, PayPal actually has three different types of accounts: personal, business and enterprise. For your business, you will obviously want to check into the business and enterprise accounts. It’s a well-known brand that gives your customers the comfort of knowing they can pay from any account or card they want because it’s connected to their PayPal account.

PayPal allows to you accept payments from your website, phone, email invoice, and a variety of other ways. It accepts 100 different currencies and is available all around the world. This allows you to take global payments easily, which can help your business grow faster.

COST:
  • Free
PROS:
  • It’s a well-known brand with many customers already having accounts
  • Customizable fraud-protection and security tools
  • Make and accept payments with the same platform
CONS:
  • It does not offer an online storefront. 

PrestaShop

PrestaShop began as a school project by a student in Paris and it soon became a full-fledged business. Designed as an eCommerce platform, users have the ability to set up and scale the solution. If you prefer to stand out or do something totally different, it can handle your own customization.

This platform has a ton of available themes that are organized by industry. The different payment modules allow you to choose which features you need for your business and what types of payments to accept and how you want to secure your store.

COST:
  • Free
PROS:
  • Most plugins are preloaded
  • It has more than 10,000 combinations of themes, styles, and add-ons
  • It can integrate with some of the most popular payment gateways
CONS:
  • Many of the most popular features fee-based add-ons, rather than part of the free platform

Shift4Shop

This is one of the original eCommerce platforms on the internet, formerly known as 3dcart. With over 20 years of experience in the business, Shift4Shop has a great advantage over some of the bigger eCommerce services. This has allowed them to become a powerful name in the eCommerce platform and website builder category.

Shift4Shop is easy to use and offers some very simple themes to customize your business. Marketing is made easier with easy SEO and email marketing integrations to build newsletters and other outreach programs.  eCommerce is made easy with the integrated payment gateway and payment processing provided by Shift4.

COST:
  • Free
PROS:
  • Unlimited Products with simple inventory management
  • Many Freemium Themes
  • 24/7 Customer Support
CONS:
  • Free tier has additional fees for payment processing

Easy Digital Downloads

As the name suggests, this platform was specifically designed for selling digital products online. You can certainly sell physical products by purchasing some of the extensions, but that’s not the focus of the platform. It has 4 different account levels and pricing is based on what your needs are as a business.

Easy Digital Downloads offers free support to all of its merchants and has plenty of information online for troubleshooting, as well. It can integrate with several different payment platforms and has an extension for affiliate programs. It also offers simple reporting functions for you to keep tabs on your customers and your products.

COST:
  • Free for base plugin
PROS:
  • Specializes in digital products
  • Offers numerous extensions to increase functionality
  • Tech support available for paid accounts
CONS:
  • Most extensions and add-ons have a cost to use

Conclusion

If you’re looking for an eCommerce platform for your WordPress store, there are many different options available today. Researching each of the available solutions will help business owners determine the best platform to use to build their online business.  While some offer more robust features or even more well-known than others, that doesn’t mean they’re the best solution for each business.  Taking the time to understand what is available for WordPress eCommerce stores and weighing that against your store’s needs will help you make the best choice when developing your website.

wordpress support plans

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