Guide to E-commerce Website Builders
Start Selling Online with E-commerce Website Builders
You’re ready to open your online store and exploring the various options out there. We can help you choose a platform that suits your design and technical needs as an eCommerce professional. From drag & drop to back-end coding and CRM features, we analyzed and tried a variety of platforms.
Your E-commerce site needs to be designed to maximize selling potential. Whether this means a range of payment options, product listings, or shopping carts, make sure you find the Website Builder that will get you the most functional online store for you at the most reasonable price
Best website builders for online store (e-commerce)
WIX.com E-commerce Website Builder Review
2. Webs E-commerce Website Builder Review
3. Weebly E-commerce Website Builder Review
4. Squarespace E-commerce Website Builder Review
5. Moonfruit E-commerce Website Builder Review
6. Jimbo E-commerce Website Builder Review
7. GoDaddy E-commerce Website Builder Review
8. Yola E-commerce Website Builder Review
9. Cubender E-commerce Website Builder Review
E-commerce Website Builders Setup
After signing up, it’s important for your builder to guide you through the first steps of getting to know their interface. Many will throw you straight into the template picking section while others will layout a menu of steps.
You should easily be able to start using your store in terms of setting up your business, adding products and collections and even some basic design elements.
At Wix it’s a straight forward front-editing process of entering your template, clicking a demo product and replacing it with your own. From a drop down list, you can access the dashboard of your store:
Big Commerce and Shopify have tours that enable you to start choosing a theme and adding your products. They are less obvious than Wix in this case. You do need a couple of tutorials to get through the first setup process, even more so with WooCommerce and Volusion.
E-commerce Website Builders Drag & Drop VS Back-End Editing
Drag and drop or back-end editing both have advantages that can improve your site on a design or functional level. The drag & drop is perhaps the most straight forward editing format as you simply click and edit what you see on your screen in addition to being able to drag any text box, image or element to any location on the editor.
Front-end editing involves a section by section editing approach where the editor simply allows you to change specific elements of the theme such as the header text, background color without any dragging things around.
Volusion contains both a front-end editor that allows for some section by section editing and a CSS or HTML editor. You do need some technical skills and knowledge to setup your online store in this case.
The same and more can be said for WooCommerce, which acts as a plugin for WordPress or a downloadable extension to start live editing HTML code or offline editing. You can tell from the UX of their services that techies would use their platform more than DIY beginners.
As for Big Commerce and Shopify, they can be grouped together since they have a similar editor in terms of a side column setting :
These editors are a good hybrid between HTML or CSS editing and a drag & drop editor. You don’t have the freedom to customize every single detail, yet you can customize each important aspect of a theme from the sidebar.
Wix on the other hand will allow you to edit each element from from the product title font to the background and borders of a product window. It simply depends what is important to you as a shop owner or how deep you want to delve into design.
E-commerce Website Builders Marketing & Analytics
Marketing tools, insights and data are huge benefit to your store. The more you know about your sales and your customers, the more you can grow as a business. Most platforms tend to give basic tools or they supported huge data giants like Google analytics with code and plugins.
Wix tends to do the latter. They allow you to insert a pixel which picks up on your general user information behavior and background. You can also check conversions based on the amount of users that arrived on the thank you page when a transaction is completed.
Shopify and BigCommerce have a pretty comprehensive analytics stemming from the basic order information, to purchase funnel and abandoned cart information.
For our techy builders, there’s a very wide range of features to keep track of customers and their purchase journey, including a POS (point of sale) system in Volusion.
Add to that the ability to process recurring orders, incorporate a CRM system and even sell on Facebook, eBay and Amazon. Again, not super user friendly but loaded with features and capabilities. Their reports include ROI tracking and search term tracking.
E-commerce Website Builders SEO
SEO or search engine optimization is quite the rabbit hole. It starts with on-page SEO steps to more complex content strategy and code. Your site would need both on-site and in-store SEO. Meaning adding the necessary H1 titles and description that fit your main page and similarly the same treatment to your store page.
All platforms supports these basics, but their guides and instructions on how to do so clearly differ. Not only should they offer the right SEO features, they need to be able to hold your hand throughout the process.
As you may have guessed, the more techy builders (Volusion , WooCommerce) have less guides on SEO as they focus on tutorials regarding how to code the store for SEO purposes.
E-commerce Website Builders Support
Volusion’s support was pretty reasonable and for our trial were assigned a specific person to handle any of concerns which is a big plus. WooCommerce showered me with tutorials on how to download their extension yet their support is limited for non-paying customers with an expected turn around rate of 5 business days per ticket.
Bigommerce and Shopify have chat, phone and ticket options which is great. Wix do not jump to the chat or phone support options as quickly but they do have a huge library of topics to go through. Most of the time I did get a step-by-step guide for a range issues from domain connection to seo tips. If you do need to open a ticket you simply need to go through a form first. If you are VIP customer, their response time is one hour.