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BigCommerce v/s Shopify – Which is the Best Choice?


In the ever-evolving landscape of eCommerce, the selection of the right platform emerges as a critical factor for achieving success in the digital marketplace. Among the plethora of options available, BigCommerce and Shopify emerge as two powerful contenders, each offering a robust set of features and functionalities to cater to the diverse needs of online businesses. As businesses increasingly leverage the potential of eCommerce to reach global audiences, the choice between BigCommerce and Shopify becomes a pivotal decision. Both platforms have established themselves as reliable, user-friendly solutions, each with its unique strengths. Whether it’s the intuitive interface of Shopify or the advanced customisation options of BigCommerce, these platforms play a central role in shaping the online shopping experience for businesses of all sizes. The competition between BigCommerce and Shopify underscores the significance of a well-suited eCommerce platform in navigating the complexities of the digital marketplace and achieving sustained success.

In this comparison blog, we will dissect the strengths and weaknesses of both BigCommerce and Shopify, helping you make an informed decision for your eCommerce website.

But first,

What is an eCommerce Platform?

An eCommerce platform is a digital framework or software solution that facilitates the creation, management, and operation of online stores. Serving as the backbone of online retail, an eCommerce platform enables businesses to showcase and sell their products or services on the internet. These platforms offer a wide array of essential features, including website design templates, inventory management, payment processing, and security protocols, allowing merchants to establish a virtual storefront and conduct transactions seamlessly. Moreover, eCommerce platforms often integrate with various tools and services, such as marketing, analytics, and customer relationship management (CRM) systems, enhancing the overall functionality and efficiency of online businesses. By providing a centralised and user-friendly environment, eCommerce platforms empower entrepreneurs and established retailers alike to establish a robust online presence and capitalise on the vast opportunities presented by the digital marketplace.

Key Features of a Perfect eCommerce Platform

A good eCommerce platform is characterised by a robust set of features that collectively contribute to the efficiency, functionality, and success of an online store.

Here are some key features to consider:

  • User-Friendly Interface: An intuitive and easy-to-navigate interface is essential for both merchants and customers, ensuring a seamless and enjoyable shopping experience.
  • Mobile Responsiveness: With the increasing use of mobile devices, a good eCommerce platform must be responsive, providing a consistent and optimised experience across various screen sizes.
  • Secure Payment Options: Support for secure and diverse payment methods is crucial to instil trust in customers. SSL certificates and compliance with payment industry standards contribute to a secure transaction environment.
  • Inventory Management: Efficient tools for managing product listings, tracking inventory levels, and updating stock in real-time help prevent overselling and streamline order fulfilment processes.
  • Scalability: The platform should be scalable to accommodate the growth of the business. It should handle an increasing number of products, traffic, and transactions without compromising performance.
  • SEO-Friendly Capabilities: Built-in SEO features, such as customisable URLs, Meta tags, and sitemaps, contribute to better search engine visibility, helping attract organic traffic to the online store.
  • Flexible Customisation: A good eCommerce platform allows for easy customisation of the website’s design, layout, and branding, ensuring a unique and professional appearance that aligns with the business’s identity.
  • Multi-Channel Selling: Integration with various sales channels, including social media and marketplaces, expands the reach of the online store and helps in reaching a broader audience.
  • Analytics and Reporting: Robust analytics tools provide insights into customer behaviour, sales performance, and overall website metrics, aiding merchants in making informed decisions and optimising their strategies.
  • Responsive Customer Support: Access to reliable customer support is crucial for addressing issues promptly. Live chat, email, and phone support contribute to a positive customer experience.
  • Security Measures: Advanced security features, such as secure sockets layer (SSL) encryption, regular security updates, and compliance with industry standards, safeguard customer data and build trust.
  • Integration Capabilities: Seamless integration with third-party apps, plugins, and tools for marketing, accounting, and CRM enhances the overall functionality of the eCommerce platform.

BigCommerce: An Overview

BigCommerce is an eCommerce platform that provides businesses with the tools and features needed to create and operate online stores. It enables merchants to set up, manage, and optimise their digital storefronts, offering a range of features for inventory management, payment processing, marketing, and more.

History and Origin

BigCommerce was founded in 2009 by Australians Eddie Machaalani and Mitchell Harper. The company originated from a desire to simplify the eCommerce process for businesses of all sizes. Eddie and Mitchell aimed to create a platform that would empower entrepreneurs and established retailers alike to build and grow their online presence efficiently.

The founders had prior experience in the eCommerce industry, having developed an earlier platform named Interspire Shopping Cart. Building on this experience, they launched BigCommerce as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution, providing a cloud-based platform that eliminates the need for merchants to worry about hosting, maintenance, and technical complexities.

Since its inception, BigCommerce has undergone significant growth and evolution. The platform has attracted a diverse user base, ranging from small startups to large enterprises, across various industries. It has expanded its feature set, integration capabilities, and global reach, establishing itself as a competitive player in the eCommerce platform market.

BigCommerce went public in 2020 with its initial public offering (IPO) on the Nasdaq stock exchange under the symbol “BIGC.” The IPO marked a milestone in the company’s journey, reflecting its success and positioning in the eCommerce industry.

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Shopify: An Overview

Shopify is a leading eCommerce platform that allows businesses to create and manage online stores. It offers a range of tools and features for website design, product management, payment processing, and more, making it accessible for entrepreneurs and established retailers to establish a digital presence.

History and Origin

Shopify was founded in 2006 by Tobias Lütke, Daniel Weinand, and Scott Lake in Ottawa, Canada. The platform originated from the founders’ dissatisfaction with existing eCommerce solutions available when they were attempting to open an online store for snowboarding equipment.

Tobias Lütke, who had a background in computer programming, decided to build a platform that would provide a more user-friendly and customisable experience for merchants. Along with his co-founders, they developed an eCommerce platform that focused on simplicity, scalability, and ease of use.

The platform officially launched in 2006, and its user-friendly interface quickly gained popularity among small businesses and entrepreneurs. Over the years, Shopify continued to evolve and expand its capabilities, introducing new features, themes, and integrations to meet the changing needs of the eCommerce landscape.

In 2013, Shopify went public with its initial public offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “SHOP.” The IPO marked a significant milestone for the company, reflecting its success and growth in the eCommerce market.

Since its founding, Shopify has become a global eCommerce powerhouse, serving businesses of all sizes in various industries. Its user-friendly approach, extensive app ecosystem, and commitment to innovation have contributed to its widespread adoption as a go-to platform for individuals and companies looking to establish and grow their online businesses.

BigCommerce v/s Shopify: A Comparison

BigCommerce and Shopify are two prominent eCommerce platforms, each offering a range of features to help businesses establish and manage online stores.

Ease of Use

  • Shopify: Known for its user-friendly interface, Shopify excels in simplicity. Its intuitive drag-and-drop editor makes it easy for beginners to set up and manage their online stores without requiring extensive technical expertise.
  • BigCommerce: While feature-rich, some users find BigCommerce’s interface slightly more complex. However, it offers advanced customisation options, providing greater control over the website’s appearance for users with coding skills.

Design and Customisation

  • Shopify: Boasting a vast library of themes and an intuitive customisation interface, Shopify enables users to create visually appealing and unique online stores effortlessly.
  • BigCommerce: Though it has fewer themes, BigCommerce compensates with advanced customisation capabilities, making it an excellent choice for those who want more control over the design aspects.

Features and Functionality

  • Shopify: Renowned for its extensive app store, Shopify provides a wide range of plugins and extensions for inventory management, payment gateways, marketing, and other functionalities.
  • BigCommerce: BigCommerce offers a robust set of built-in features, reducing reliance on third-party apps. It includes advanced SEO tools, multi-channel selling, and comprehensive analytics, minimising the need for additional plugins.

Pricing

  • Shopify: Shopify offers various pricing plans, catering to businesses of different sizes. While it may seem costlier, the ease of use and feature-rich environment often justify the expense.
  • BigCommerce: Positioned as a scalable solution, BigCommerce offers transparent pricing. It may be more cost-effective for growing businesses, as it doesn’t charge transaction fees on sales.

Scalability

  • Shopify: Known for its scalability, Shopify accommodates the needs of small businesses and large enterprises alike. The platform’s reliability and performance make it a preferred choice for businesses with varying scales.
  • BigCommerce: Designed with scalability in mind, BigCommerce offers plans that can grow alongside a business. It caters to the demands of expanding eCommerce operations with

Support and Community

  • Shopify: Shopify provides 24/7 customer support and has a large community of users, making it easy to find help and resources.
  • BigCommerce: Similarly, BigCommerce offers 24/7 support and a supportive community, ensuring that users can get assistance when needed.

Wrapping Up,

In the battle of BigCommerce v/s Shopify, the ideal choice depends on your specific needs and preferences. Shopify excels in user-friendliness and design customisation, making it perfect for beginners and small businesses. On the other hand, BigCommerce stands out with advanced features, transparency in pricing, and scalability, making it a compelling option for growing businesses. Evaluate your priorities and business requirements carefully to determine which eCommerce platform aligns best with your goals.

Should you require more assistance in choosing the right eCommerce platform for your business, then contact us at 18th DigiTech today!