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15+ Best Ecommerce CMS Comparison

Feb 12, 2020

3514 Dasha M.

15+ Best Ecommerce CMS Comparison

In this article, we consider characteristics of the most popular ecommerce CMS and compare them. We discuss key technical features, advantages and disadvantages, available versions and pricing. Read on and get insights on which CMS to choose for your website.

A content management system (CMS) is a special software which allows merchants to create content on their ecommerce websites, publish and modify it if necessary. It is possible to add different types of content, including text, images, GIFs and videos, and admin users can manage it without any advanced technical skills.

A standard CMS contains two core apps that work side by side: a content management application (CMA) that helps users handle content, and a backend content delivery application (CDA) that brings the data into CMA, stores and displays it correctly.

Looking for a CMS platform, you might be overwhelmed with the variety. It is important to take into account the default features and opportunities to customize them in future. Moreover, the choice hugely depends on your budget and scale of the business. In order to protect you from launching your business on an unsuitable platform, we have created a list of the top ecommerce CMS with their pros and cons.

Magento 2
PrestaShop
Shopware
Shopify
Salesforce
SAP Commerce Cloud
OpenCart
BigCommerce
3DCart
Drupal
Volusion
Squarespace
WooCommerce
Zen Cart
Joomla
OsCommerce

Magento 2

Magento Open Source: Key features

  • Responsive themes and intuitive user interface (UI), enhanced site and catalog management options, easy product and catalog browsing;
  • One-page checkout, guest checkout, saved shopping cart and multiple payment gateways;
  • Integrated shipping rates from UPS, UPS XML, FedEx, USPS and DHL;
  • Extensive order management instruments, international support and comprehensive customer service;
  •  Advanced analytics, SEO and marketing tools.

Magento Commerce: Key features (compared to Magento Open Source)

Magento Commerce is a paid edition of Magento that provides some extra features, including the following:

    • More personalized shopping experience and audience segmentation;
    • Dynamic rule-based product relations, instant purchases, content staging and preview options;
    • Drag-and-drop visual merchandising;
    • Magento Business Intelligence;
    • Integrated B2B functionality with such tools as custom catalogs and price lists, company accounts, company credit and quotes.

Advantages & Disadvantages of Magento

Advantages

  1. Magento 2 is extremely flexible and customizable along with deep functionality and security both for store owners and buyers.
  2. As your business grows, the website’s functionality can be extended as well due to high scalability of the platform.
  3. A large community of users can always provide the necessary assistance.
  4. Magento 2 functionality can be enhanced with a great number of available integrations.

Disadvantages

  1. Magento 2 is complex and heavy, so it is not suitable for beginners.
  2. Often the professional help is needed and it may take more development hours to develop a feature (compared to some other platforms). Due to the complexity, the developer rates may also be higher than with other solutions.
  3. If you decide to switch from Magento 1 to Magento 2, it will be pricey. Not all the modules and themes can be migrated directly.

Top brands using Magento

Ford, Christian Louboutin, Landrover, Monin, Ahmad Tea, Helly Hansen, Liverpool, Sigma Beauty, Vizio, Nestle Nespresso, Björn Borg, Jaguar, Cox & Cox, Olympus, Barbour.

Pricing & Versions

The Magento Adobe company does not charge fees for downloading the Magento Open Source platform. However, you have to pay for professional Magento development. The prices vary in different regions, the hourly rate goes from $25 to $149 per hour.

Magento Commerce is solution which costs from $22,000/year.

 

magento

PrestaShop

PrestaShop open source solution has powerful features yet it is easy to use. Having been initially created in Paris, it is mostly popular in France now.

Features

  • PrestaShop is available in 60 different languages and is used by 300,000 shops worldwide.
  • A rich variety of themes and 5,000+ modules are available at the PrestaShop marketplace;
  • The platform provides easy product management options and the ability to configure payment and shipping methods, content and navigation on the website.
  • Advanced SEO and marketing instruments;
  • Easy order management, checkout configuration and customers’ groups.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  1. PrestaShop possesses a user-friendly backend interface and does not require additional technical knowledge to run the website and monitor payments, so it fits well for startups or medium-sized online stores.
  2. As the platform supports multiple currencies and languages, localization is simple.
  3. Payment transactions are secured by processing through SSL protocol system.

Disadvantages

  1. The scalability is limited, so Prestashop is mostly used in small and medium stores.
  2. Another drawback is basic design, which is often considered to be unattractive.
  3. There is no professional support team.

Top brands using PrestaShop

Danone, Monsieur Chaussure, Papier Tigre, Foot Shop, Maniac-Auto, Bobbies, Charuca, Kumulus Vape, Freshly Cosmetics, Le Chocolat des Français.

Pricing & Versions

PrestaShop is free to download, but professional development will add extra costs. As it is an open source solution, you have to pay for web hosting and a domain name of your shop. If you decide to enrich the functionality of your store and buy modules and themes, it also will bring you additional expenses.

prestashop

Shopware

Shopware is popular in the European countries, especially in Germany. It is suitable for both B2B and B2C models available both on premises and as a cloud solution.

Features

  • Shopware is an ecommerce CMS known for its scalability and stable operation on all types of devices.
  • With powerful PWA and API, sellers can connect with clients across multiple channels and devices.
  • The platform offers integrations with various sales channels (Facebook, Instagram, etc.).
  • Thanks to extensive marketing options, users can assign a campaign to definite target groups, as well as specify a group or an individual seller and set fixed price and discounts on shipping costs.
  • It has reliable SEO tools and advanced media management integrated.
  • With Plugin Manager, it is possible to manage extensions in an easier way
  • Payment gateways include PayPal, Klarna, credit cards options. Shopware is multilingual and provides access to 100+ currencies and 200+ markets all over the world.
  • Professional edition is enhanced with such features as customisable products, extensive sales channels and manufacturer support.
  • Enterprise edition is enriched with a B2B suite for complex business models, unlimited staging environments and individual and developer support.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • The combination of advanced technologies and design, thanks to which the platform offers a user-friendly backend and structured front-end. There are over 1,500 free and paid themes and templates available at the marketplace.
  • Shopware offers both cloud and on-premise solutions and relatively easy management tools to supervise the shop.
  • Users can choose the pricing plans suitable for them and reach out to a large Shopware community for advice if needed.

Disadvantages

  • The platform itself is quite expensive, and if the users decide to enhance the functionality with additional social media features, it will result in more costs.
  • There are Shopware competitors like Magento which offer a wider selection of plugins.
  • With its strong focus on German market, the majority of the Shopware community is located in the DACH region, and, as a result, it is rarely used in other countries and most of the materials and guides are in German.

Top brands using Shopware

Philips, Discovery Channel, Mars, M&Ms, Euronics, Dorothee Schumacher, Bruno Banani, Chio, Aston Martin, Mywalit, Borussia Dortmund, Jägermeister and Haribo.

Pricing & Versions

  1. Starter edition is a basic free cloud option;
  2. Community is another free edition;
  3. Professional edition costs €199.00 per month.
  4. Enterprise edition is the most expensive option, the exact price is provided upon request.

Shopify

Shopify is a hosted ecommerce platform that helps online merchants to set up and manage an entire store easily.

Features

  • Shopify is known for its simplicity, as the users do not have a lot of control over the appearance and functionality, but for a newbie seller it is a nice option to start an online business.
  • The platform offers blogging instruments, customer ratings, several payment gateways, updates and traffic analytics to manage the store.
  • Shopify is mobile responsive and has fast-loading pages.
  • The platform has over 100 different payment methods, including PayPal and CryptoCurrency, unlimited products, a number of app integrations and a SEO guide.
  • Technical support is available 24/7 through live chat, email, phone, and even Twitter.
  • Various sales channels dependent on the country provide the possibility to sell on online marketplaces and social media.
  • There are lots of extensions, themes and third-party Shopify apps with additional features for online shops.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantage

  • The most significant advantage of Shopify is its simplicity along with extensive features that are logically structured and can be implemented by users who do not possess in-depth technical knowledge.
  • Thanks to responsive design and high scalability it is possible to create shops for both small and large businesses.

Disadvantages

  • Among the frequently listed disadvantages of the platform you can find the absence of standard multilingual features, so if store owners decide to sell worldwide, they have to use additional apps.
  • Shop Pay is not available all over the globe, and an extra fee is charged whenever another payment gateway is used to complete the transaction .

Top brands using Shopify

General Electric, Amnesty International, CrossFit, Tesla Motors, Encyclopaedia Britannica, Foo Fighters, GitHub, Bulletproof, The Economist, Heinz, Penguin Books, Harper Collins, BBC, Red Bull, Jeffree Star Cosmetics, David Beckham Eyewear, Victoria Beckham.

Pricing

  • Basic Shopify offers a standard set of tools for $29 per month which is suitable for new businesses.
  • Shopify per $79 is usually chosen by growing businesses with 1 retail store.
  • Shopify Advanced will cost $299 monthly, suitable for merchants with 2 retail stores.

 

shopify

Salesforce

Salesforce helps unite marketing, service, sales, analytics, commerce and employees into a single CRM.

 

 

Key features

  • The platform integrates smoothly with existing data and systems if you used to operate another platform and uses artificial intelligence.
  • It is highly scalable and secure.
  • For better marketing, Salesforce uses targeted and personalized messaging with the data from multiple sources and devices.
  • Reports and dashboards offer a real-time state of the business and provide valuable insights.
  • B2B and B2C buying experiences can be unified through connection of commerce channels.
  • Every customer gets email, social, phone, and live chat support.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  1. Salesforce provides trustworthy reporting, improved automated messages, proactive service and streamlined collaboration through a record of conversations, interactions, needs, notes, and contact details.
  2. It is cloud-deployed and has rich customization capabilities.

Disadvantages

  1. If you decide to add more products, it will lead to higher expenses.
  2. One of the most significant drawbacks is that Salesforce has data storage limits.
  3. Every Salesforce edition has certain limitations, for example the restricted number of validation rules or custom fields created per object or file shares.

Top brands using Salesforce

Spotify, Amazon Web Services, U.S. Bank, Toyota, Macy’s, T-Mobile, Aldo, The New York Post, American Express, Canon, The American Red Cross, L’Oréal Americas, and The Hershey Company.

Pricing & Versions

  • Sales Essentials Edition is a CRM suitable for up to 5 users and costs $25/per user/per month.
  • Professional Edition is suitable for a team of any size for $75/per user/per month.
  • A deeply customizable Enterprise Edition costs $150/per user/per month.
  • Unlimited Edition with no limitations and support costs $300/per user/per month.

SAP Commerce Cloud (former SAP Hybris Commerce)

SAP Commerce Cloud (former SAP Hybris Commerce) is an omnichannel platform for B2B, B2C and combined B2B2C businesses.

 

Key features

  • With lots of integrated capabilities, high efficiency and optimized business processes, the platform provides omnichannel commerce, customer support and optimized search.
  • SAP Commerce offers cloud accelerators that help grow in certain sector such as B2B, B2C, financial services, telecommunication and media industry, travel industry or public sector.
  • The platform offers out of the box modules that enhance product content and customer experience with the help of personalized recommendations, promotional campaigns, marketing strategies and storefront customization.
  • Order management is improved with flexible sourcing to optimize shipments and order versioning for better visibility of order statuses. Global scalability allows the merchants to be present on multiple sites and support different languages and currencies.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • The platform is suitable for any business domain with industry specific prebuilt accelerators and is often considered to be one of the most reliable solutions due to its cloud nature.
  • SAP Commerce is praised for its data management power, marketing and analytics tools. Internationalization and extensible architecture allows businesses to expand globally.

Disadvantages

  • The users often complain that the platform is over-complicated, with a number of steps for actions that should be one step.
  • The platform can not be customized by non-coders, but the active user community is not large in comparison with other platforms.

Top brands using SAP Commerce Cloud

Faberlic, Henkel, Bosch, GE Capital, Americas, Deutsche Post, Unilever, Groupe Casino, Centrica, Schindler.

Pricing & Versions

There are 2 versions available:

  • Standard edition is for online commerce businesses;
  • Professional edition is suitable for omnichannel commerce.

The initial cost is about $54,000 annually. The definite cost of the license is calculated from the number of cores and components and is provided upon request.

sap

OpenCart

OpenCart is an open-source platform that is free to install.

Key features

  • Open Cart is a fairly light platform and requires add-ons for better functionality.
  • With a user-friendly administrator dashboard, you can get overview of total orders, sales, customers, sales analytics and people online.
  • Unlimited number of categories, products and manufacturers is allowed.
  • The platform lets you set user privileges and separate access for users and groups of users.
  • OpenCart offers 20+ payment gateways, 8+ shipping methods and free documentation.
  • Technical support is provided via email, phone, live support, training and tickets.
  • It can be integrated with the majority of popular shipping methods such as USPS, Australia Post, Royal Mail, FedEx, UPS, etc.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • OpenCart is affordable enough for all business scales.
  • Quite easy installation and configuration compared to other solutions.
  • It is user-friendly and customizable enough for most businesses.
  • It uses an MVC module which is easy to learn.

Disadvantages

  • The platform has a steep learning curve and limited inbuilt features.
  • It is often considered to be too lightweight. Many add-ons are required to enhance the limited default functionality.
  • It can be buggy and different add-ons are often incompatible when installed together.
  • The checkout process is slow.

Top brands using OpenCart

Shore Lines, British Red Cross (Gift Shop), Missy Empire, Missy Empire, Arrowfile, Kleshna, Marmalade (Asset Store), Everbuild.

Pricing & Versions

OpenCart is an open source platform and can be downloaded for free, but merchants have to pay for web hosting, a domain name, SSL certificate, extensions. The price for OpenCart extensions starts from 20$.

 

opencart

 

BigCommerce

BigCommerce provides extensive instruments such as various payment methods integration, reliable hosting, advanced marketing and security tools.

Key features

  • You can integrate different sales channels such as Amazon, eBay, Google Shopping, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.
  • Physical Stores options like Square, ShopKeep and Springboard Retail can be integrated as well.
  • There is an abandoned cart feature that sends automated emails to website visitors who didn’t complete the checkout and left without a purchase.
  • More than 40 pre-installed payment gateways are available to use in 100 countries, including PayPal, Amazon Pay and Apple Pay, Square, Adyen, Stripe, Authorize.net, Klarna and credit card payments powered by Braintree.
  • Sellers can easily create ads banners, personalized discounts and exclusive coupons to promote their shops with targeted marketing.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • BigCommerce offers an integrated knowledge base on how to manage an online shop.
  • Easy design and intuitive built-in features allow adding and deleting products, managing inventory, payments, analytics and orders.
  • Integrated marketing potential includes such tools as Google Shopping, eBay store integration, Google Ads ad generator and SEO friendly setup.
  • Competent support team is always ready to help via email and phone if the clients need any professional advice.

Disadvantages

  • Free themes are too similar to each other, the number of typefaces in them is very limited and they are difficult to edit.
  • In regards to shipping, no discounts are offered on any pricing plan.
  • The built-in blog doesn’t facilitate RSS feeds.
  • Annual online sales are limited, and if sellers exceed them, there is a need to upgrade to a more pricey plan.

Top brands using BigCommerce

Pandora, Skullcandy, EZPZ, Rollie Nation, Natori, Camelbak, tmbr, YETI, Ben & Jerry’s, San Lorenzo, The Bearded Chap, Kelty, Native Union.

Pricing & Versions

There are 3 available pricing plans for BigCommerce:

  • Standard Plan allows you to create a decent store with basic ecommerce features. It costs $29.95/per month.
  • Plus Plan has additional marketing tools to grow your online business, such as abandoned cart saver, persistent cart and stored credit cards. The lisence costs $79.95/month.
  • Pro Plan is enhanced with Google customer reviews and Custom product filtering. It is available at $299.95/month.
  • Enterprise plan has the most advanced characteristics such as unlimited API calls, customer reviews, express routing, priority support, API support, and customer success management. It is the most expensive one, the pricing is available upon request.

 

bigcommerce

3DCart

3DCart is one of the oldest ecommerce platforms launched in 1997. It is a good choice for sellers who aspire to get into the online market quickly.

Key features

  • 3DCart’s functionality is versatile enough to leverage multiple ecommerce business models.
  • The platform applies no transaction fees, has fast load time, and unlimited product listings.
  • It offers basic SEO tools, abandoned cart emails, coupons, subscription, recurring billing and cross-selling options.
  • The platform provides ratings and reviews, as well as a wide selection of payment gateways including PayPal and Amazon checkout.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • The 15-day free trial allows you to experience the platform before upgrading to one of the four available plans.
  • It has SEO features for Google, Bing and Yahoo and social media integrations (Facebook, YouTube and Twitter) that help drive more traffic to your store and promote its visibility.
  • Large selection of mobile responsive templates and themes.
  • There are extensive built-in marketing tools, unlimited storage, absence of transaction fees and variety of checkout options.
  • Experienced users consider the interface to be user-friendly.

Disadvantages

  • The number of free templates is limited and most of them have plain visuals.
  • The only out of the box multi-channel selling feature is Facebook sync, so if you decide to integrate Amazon or eBay, you will have to pay extra money.
  • It is not an easy solution for newbie merchants and it can be challenging for them to navigate and master it.

Top brands using 3DCart

Sturdy Built Online, Unicus Decor, Outfitter Satellite, Water Polo Gear, PMF Suspension, Beverly Hills Orchids, Under The Carolina Moon.

Pricing & Versions

There are 4 pricing plans available:

  • 3DCart Startup plan is an affordable choice for a new business, sufficient for building a decent online store. It costs $19/month.
  • 3DCart Basic plan is suitable for businesses that aspire to branch out to eBay and Amazon and manage more customers with a built-in CRM. The price is $29/month.
  • 3DCart Plus has a complete marketing suite with even more features including email newsletters, a loyalty rewards program, abandoned cart saver, gift registries and targeted social media advertising. It is available at $79/month.
  • 3DCart Pro is an ecommerce automation solution with automation rules, email autoresponders, pre-order functionality, and autoship subscription system. It costs $229/month.

 

3adcart

Drupal

Drupal is a CMS with a powerful content management framework focused on user-friendliness.

Key features

  • Drupal allows high-quality content presentation and implementing new ways to make data structures, build APIs and add multilingual capabilities.
  • The platform uses a new flexible, fast, and secure theming engine called Twig.
  • All the built-in themes are mobile responsive and adapt easily to different screen sizes.
  • There are pre-installed translations in the admin interface.
  • It is also possible to create pages with language-based views filtering and block visibility.
  • Drupal 8 version has improved loading speed, menu handling routines and theme function adjustment.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • The localization is quite easy.
  • Drupal has plugins, content, and cache as a set of APIs to support the developers in creating the customized application.
  • High personalization level allows the platform to cater for the customers’ needs better. It is easy to scale, has multiple themes and is SEO-friendly.
  • User community is large and can provide valuable advice.

Disadvantages

  • Users sometimes complain about excessive memory consumption of the platform.
  • It is a complex flexible solution and it can be hard to master if users do not have advanced technical skills.
  • New versions of the platform introduce drastic changes, for example, Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 have huge differences from a developer’s point of view.
  • It is considered to be a drawback as the product updates are better perceived by the users if they are improved gradually.
  • Besides, new versions have not many built-in modules.

Top brands using Drupal

General Electric Company, Cobra Electronics, Tesla Motors, Whole Foods, Timex, Nokia, McDonald’s Australia, Nasdaq, BAC Credomatic, Voya Financial, Charles Schwab, Webster Bank, Harvard University, University of Chicago, The Economist.

Pricing & Versions

Drupal is free to download, but professional development is required. The cost to implement and customize the Drupal website can vary between $15,000 to $100,000 depending on the scale of the project and developer hourly rate.

 

drupal commerce

Volusion

Volusion is an all-in-one ecommerce solution that was created in 1999 and became one of the first ecommerce software.

Key features

 

  • Modern version has customizable responsive themes that adapt to any device.
  • UX is enhanced with a number of navigation styles, intuitive Easy Editor tool and advanced search tools. There is also product display customization, recurring pricing, drop shipping integration and tax rate calculator.
  • Advanced SEO tools, ROI tracking and admin social management facilitate your business growth and promotion. Gift cards, discounts and deal of the day options help merchants to attract new customers and retain their loyalty.

Advantages & Disadvantages

 

Advantages

 

  • Volusion has an intuitive dashboard and is easy to use thanks to built-in education and professional services.
  • The clients often praise its customer support, speed and security.

Disadvantages

 

  • Costs can get way too high, as to the monthly fee, you have to add platform transaction fees, credit card fees, price for add-ons and themes and support costs.
  • Volusion lacks an advanced content management and built-in blog.
  • Developer community is really limited and is no rival to more popular platforms like Magento or Shopify.

Top brands using Volusion

 

Intel, 3M and Slickwraps, MSLGROUP, DECIDE CONSULTING, Zimmerman Advertising LLC, CSC, Dogstuff, Michigan State University, Niagara Faucets, Toni&Guy, Windsor Circle.

Pricing & Versions

 

  • Personal plan has basic functions such as 100 products available, online support, secure checkout, built-in SEO tools and social media integrations. It costs costs $29/month.
  • Professional plan is enhanced with additional features such as 5,000 products, ratings and reviews, newsletters, abandoned cart reports, phone orders and CRM. It is available at $79/month.
  • Business plan has unlimited number of products and such features as Amazon and eBay Integrations, API Access + Batch Order Processing, Deal of the Day and Customer Loyalty Plan, Dedicated Success Team, 3rd Party Shipping Calculated Rates, Advanced Report Builder and 3rd Party Gateways. It costs $299/month.
  • Prime Plan has all the features of Business plan + Unlimited staff accounts and VIP support. The fee is is calculated upon request.

 

volusion

Squarespace

Key features

  • Shopware is a hosted solution and runs on its own servers.
  • It has a user-friendly shopping cart system, the ability to sell an unlimited number of products including physical goods, digital goods, services and subscriptions, a 0% transaction fee, automatic abandoned cart recovery, gift cards and discount codes, point-of-sale functionality available for the US customers.
  • Users can choose from around 115 fully responsive templates and add Unsplash royalty free image library.
  • You can configure a template according to your taste, add cool video backgrounds and use a logo designing app.
  • Easy content management allows adding images, text, forms and videos.
  • It is easy to integrate social media points like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram to the online store. Unlike other platforms, it is possible to create many blogs on Squarespace.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • Among major advantages of Squarespace you can find appealing modern design and reliable web support.
  • The pricing is comparatively low.
  • Decent analytic tools help to track traffic.
  • It is easy to make edits and updates on the website and customize the web pages.

Disadvantages

  • The platform is not a suitable tool for large online stores.
  • Although most plans allow sellers to create an unlimited number of pages, there is no proper navigation system to organize them.
  • Squarespace doesn’t facilitate multi-currency transactions.
  • Automatic tax calculations can be carried out in the US only.
  • Stripe and Paypal are the only payment gateways available.
  • Point-of-sale functionality is currently limited to the USA, only iPhones are supported.
  • In regards to dropshipping, it is limited only to Printful.

Top brands using Squarespace

New Inc, A+I, Fighting Eel, Darren Booth, Wired, Bandsintown, The Hatch Institute, The Chicks, Alder, Robbie Shackelford, Lucia Balcazar, Werbewelt.

Pricing & Versions

  • Personal plan has such features as unlimited bandwidth and storage, 2 contributors, SSL security, SEO features for site visibility, 24/7 customer support and some Squarespace extensions are available by default. It costs $16 per month.
  • Business plan is enhanced with unlimited number of contributors, premium integrations and blocks, advanced website analytics, promotional pop-ups and banners and fully integrated ecommerce. It is available for $26 per month.
  • Basic Commerce plan has such features as customer accounts, limited availability labels and powerful ecommerce analytics and merchandising tools. It costs $30 per month.
  • Advanced Commerce is enriched with abandoned cart recovery, advanced shipping, discounts and commerce APIs. It costs $46 per month.

 

squarespace

WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a free ecommerce plugin for the WordPress – the most popular CMS in the world. However, to start your online shop, you need to find your own hosting.

Key features

  • The platform is easily adaptable and user-friendly.
  • The novice merchants can learn how to manage online stores quickly.
  • WooCommerce websites can be customized and enhanced with more than 325 paid extensions and dozens of paid and free themes.
  • It is easily integrated with Google Analytics to track and report website traffic and measure your advertising ROI.
  • The platform includes basic security features and SSL support for website protection.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • As the most well-known CMS, WordPress has a large community of users and extensive documentation.
  • It is quite easy to handle and users with basic WordPress knowledge can cope with it.

Disadvantages

  • Although it is an open source platform and it is free to create a store, shop owners have to pay extra money for web hosting. And if your business is large and you choose advanced hosting packages, it can become really pricey.
  • The themes and extensions are quite expensive, along with the necessity to obtain your own SSL certificate.
  • The platform is not much scalable and secure compared to some other solutions.

Top brands using WooCommerce

All Blacks Official Store, Aeropress, Orange Guitar Amps, Weber South Africa, Awesome Inventions, The Spectator Magazine Shop, WorthPoint, Blue Star Coffee, Forage & Graze, Björk Enterprise, South African Rugby Shop, Downtown Vision Inc., Six Flags Great Escape Lodge.

WooCommerce is a free plugin, but you have care about the following details:

  • First, you have to get a WordPress site developed where you will install the WooCommerce plugin.
  • Then, you have to choose a host for your store and buy a plan. Average hosting is around $120 per year.
  • The next cost is registering a domain, or site name, it is usually about $15 per year for one domain.
  • Then, if you decide to get a paid theme, it will cost $20 – 100 per year.
  • Out of the box, WooCommerce provides options for flat rate shipping, free shipping, or local pickup. If you decide to add advanced shipping extensions, it will cost up to $108 per year on average, and payment gateway extensions will cost: 2.9% + .30 cents per sale plus a monthly fee of $0 – $30 per month on average.
  • Online merchants can’t forget about customer communication which is up to $348 per year, SEO optimization for up to $79 per year and security for about $300 per year to run a successful ecommerce store.
  • If you hire a Woocommerce developer to make further enhancements of a website, it will lead to more costs.

 

woocommerce

ZenCart

Zen Cart is an open source ecommerce solution.

Key features

  • The platform allows easy website editing and marketing features such as discounts and coupons, gift certificates, featured products, newsletters and product notifications.
  • Customers can use one of several payment gateways: Square, Payeezy, PayMeSecure, Beanstream, PayPal Business Account, PayPal Express Checkout, Authorize.Net or install third-party integration.
  • Zen Cart doesn’t offer 14/7 customer support, but users can find answers to their questions on active Zen Cart’s forums and tutorials.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • Zen Cart is free to download, is quite customizable and has an active user community.
  • Thanks to rich multi currency and multilingual features shop owners can sell their goods internationally.

Disadvantages

  • The users express dissatisfaction with the outdated UI and often find it difficult to handle the platform.
  • Not only the coding part is complex, but the admin navigation is far from perfect as well.
  • Although frequent updates are released, if you decide to upgrade your platform, there is a risk that all the custom features will get lost.
  • Besides, there is a lack of proper customer support and SEO tools.
  • If you decide to run multiple extensions, it may be difficult to ensure their smooth coherent work.

Top brands using Zen cart

Wesley Mission, Infinity Technology, Inc., BeneCard PBF, CAREER CLUB, VERSA PRODUCTS, INC., KnownHost, Epigentek, Webkeon Technologies, Akra Tech, Mind Digital Group.

Pricing & Versions

Zen Cart is an open source software which can be downloaded for free, while plugins and themes are available separately. For example, the prices for themes are usually about $50.

The merchants also have to pay for web hosting, a domain name and SSL certificate. Extra expenses may happen if you need to hire a professional developer or designer, or to buy extra add-ons and third-party templates.

 

zencart

Joomla

Joomla is a cloud web-based SaaS.

Key features

  • Thanks to a simplified system of articles the content management is an easy task.
  • There are multiple user groups with different levels of permissions to access, edit, publish and administrate content.
  • Joomla supports multiple authentication protocols, including LDAP, OpenID, and Gmail.
  • The Media Manager assists in handling media and Contact Manager helps find the right persons and their contact details.
  • Merchants can set up banners with Banner Manage for promotion purposes.
  • Search feature helps guide users to the most popular items and offer search statistics to the online shop admin.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • Joomla has an extensive knowledge base, FAQ forum and a large community of users.
  • Technical support is provided via email or phone.
  • It has powerful SEO tools available out of the box, unified configuration, mobile-friendly admin area and front-end templates.

Disadvantages

  • Some customers are not content with limited customization opportunities.
  • There are compatibility problems between the installed plugins.

Top brands using Joomla

IKEA, Lipton Ice Tea, LINUX, The Fashion Spot, Holiday Inn, The Hill, Guggenheim, Monaco Yacht Show, PragueClassicConcerts, Nintendo.

Pricing & Versions

Users can create online stores on Joomla for free, if they are hosted on their own servers or on a Joomla subdomain. If you choose a domain name, get a hosting provider, care about design and maintenance, the total pricing will start from $700 per month.

OsCommerce

OsCommerce is a robust ecommerce platform which provides free tools to build a self-hosted online store.

Key features

  • It is suitable for small, medium businesses and large enterprises.
  • The platform possesses advanced customization options, order processing and inventory management, reporting and analytics tools that help learn more about your audience, tax handling and accounting. There is catalogue management for unlimited products with lots of product categories available.
  • If you have coding skills, you can adjust the platform according to your taste.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Advantages

  • OsCommerce allows sellers to set up a store for free, and then extend and customize the experience however they choose.
  • The platform is considered to be a cost effective solution, but you should take into account the necessity to handle your own hosting, site updates and maintenance.
  • Open-source nature leads to website scalability so you can grow your online business.
  • OsCommerce can support a number of international stores thanks to multi currency and multi language features.

Disadvantages

  • Users report that the platform is sometimes prone to errors and often requires additional back-end work.
  • There is no inbuilt way to protect the administration area of osCommerce with a password.
  • OsCommerce is not template-driven, so changing the look of the website is not easy.

Top brands using OsCommerce

BLUE CHIP MARKETING WORLDWIDE, LLC., Column Technologies, Inc., Vocantas, Inc., Social Security Administration, Bay-Bay Water LLC, New Directions Aromatics, Dynamic Racing Transmissions, NoGOV Shop, Neocarbon, Sirius Sunlight Glass Studio, Vigorous Innovations.

Pricing & Versions

OsCommerce is an open-source ecommerce platform that can be downloaded for free. You will need to find a hosting plan and pay a monthly or yearly cost for it. You’ll also need a domain name for your online store, install necessary third-party add-ons, provide security and maintenance.

 

os commerce

Conclusion

There is a wide selection of ecommerce platforms that can help start your online business. Each platform has its advantages and disadvantages that should be taken into account while making up your mind. To pick up the best option for you, it is important to analyze your business, define your preferences and compare all the possible solutions regarding both price and technical functionality. You can always consult a professional developer to choose the perfect solution for you.

Do you need professional help to make a final decision? Contact the BelVG team and we will help you find the best CMS for ecommerce.

Andrey Dubina

Partner With Us

Looking for a partner to grow your business? We are the right company to bring your webstore to success. Talk to Andrey

3 Comments

  1. Thanks for the great information! With the advent of e-commerce, the buying process has become much easier by reducing time and costs. However, given the ever-growing needs of users and companies’ plans to expand their capabilities, it would be better to find alternative sales options, or at least adapt existing ones. Thus, it is important to apply the right technology in your ecommerce applications.

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