Shopify is an amazing platform when it comes to eCommerce, but it's not the only one. Many other platforms offer similar services and advanced features when compared to Shopify. These platforms may be better suited to your needs, so you should consider them before going all-in and choosing an eCommerce platform.
In this post, we’ll review eight of the most popular Shopify like websites out there right now (in no particular order). Let's get into it.
8 Great Shopify Like Websites To Consider
Before we get started with these Shopify like sites, keep in mind that this list is not exhaustive. With that said, let’s dive deep into this list.
Wix is a website builder that has become very popular in the last few years and is a great Shopify alternative - and for good reason. Wix focuses on websites built from templates. This means they have a lot of pre-made designs available for you to choose from, including many specific to eCommerce.
You can use Wix to build your entire site or just create an online eCommerce store with it, but either way, you get all the features you'd expect like SEO capabilities, custom domain names, analytics, and more.
One big benefit of Wix is that it's free for basic usage for as long as you want, so you can try before you buy and see what you think without spending a cent. In addition, their paid plans are quite cheap when considering that one is able to run a fully-fledged business from one location.
After that, prices are as follows:
BigCommerce is another eCommerce platform/website builder. It's a little different from Wix in that it focuses on being able to build your own online store from scratch - so you can use this for more complex sites. You can completely customize your store to look the way you want it to.
The quality of your site's design is much more important with BigCommerce as it offers a lot of customization options and lets you create a design unique to your business, which may be something you need if you're going after a specific clientele or market.
With BigCommerce, you have a 15-day trial to get started and then, they have 4 plans available for your specific needs.
The plans are as follows:
If you want to drive more traffic, convert more sales, manage your store and get the right services and support for your needs, BigCommerce is definitely one to check out.
Shift4Shop allows you to create the ideal website for your firm and start selling your goods or services online in just a few simple steps. With the platform, you can handle wholesale and retail. It allows for full inventory control, accounting, customer management, and more.
Their website builder is definitely on the intuitive side and allows you to get started fast designing an eCommerce store you can call yours. With that said, they also have advanced features available if that’s more your thing. In addition, there is the option of accessing their team of highly knowledgeable designers for that customized look that you’re after.
With this platform, you can set up your payment gateway seamlessly and securely, which will allow you to accept PayPal payments. With their PCI-compliant platform, you can rest assured that client data is always in safe hands. Customer data is managed automatically, with all their content protected behind a secure firewall.
You can also connect your eCommerce store with Facebook, Amazon, eBay, and other social media channels to ensure that you reach your customers wherever they are at.
With prices that are lower than their competitors’ (and starting at $17.10 per month paid annually), Shift4Shop might be an ideal platform for both beginners and advanced eCommerce businesses to start and scale with.
WooCommerce is a free eCommerce plugin that you can add to your WordPress site. It makes it easy to set up an online store on your website, and, because of its popularity, many free themes for WordPress are built with WooCommerce in mind so the design is a natural fit.
As a standalone platform, WooCommerce doesn't offer much - however, it does integrate nicely with any WordPress website thanks to it being a plugin. This means you get all of the benefits of having a customizable WordPress website but still have access to all of the great e-commerce features like analytics and security (to name just two).
If you're building your entire business around WordPress then this may be perfect for you as setting up shop will be extremely quick and easy.
Woocommerce is very popular so there are a lot of people out there offering services and expertise around it (if you want to hire someone for this purpose).
What you need to consider with WooCommerce is that despite it being a free plugin, the costs might increase significantly the more premium extensions you make use of.
The good news is that with so many extensions already out there, finding one that fits your specific needs shouldn’t be much of an issue.
One of the best features of Volusion is that it allows you to create a fully branded website that looks unique to your business. With responsive themes that look amazing on both mobile and desktop, your customers will be able to access your products and buy what they need from any device they’re on.
Volusion makes it easy to deal with recurring subscriptions, so consider this solution if subscriptions are a part of your eCommerce business.
Another great feature that many people love is their in-built CRM. This allows you to manage sales tickets as soon as they arise and have them taken care of by the right department. This means that having disorganization in your online business (when dealing with customers) becomes a thing of the past.
In terms of pricing, Volusion is pretty in line with other competitors in its space. Their entry-level package starts at $26.10 per month while their highest-tiered package is priced at $269.10 per month (based on annual payments). There is also another package for those that are generating more than $500 gross merchandise value per year in their business. You’ll need to book a demo to learn more about this plan named Prime.
Creating a Square Online store is so easy you'll be selling online in no time. The interface is intuitive and has been designed for ease of use. If you currently have a brick-and-mortar business that you want to convert to an online one, then Square Online might be your best bet.
A Square Online store is perfect for small business owners that don't have a massive marketing budget to spend on an online eCommerce website - they can just get started and start earning money without having to deal with awkward technical stuff.
You also have access to Google Analytics integration which means that you can see both live data and historical data that shows exactly what's happening on your site. This allows you to make decisions about how your website is performing and what can be done to improve it.
With its user-friendly software, Square Online could be the right choice if you want a straight to the point eCommerce website builder with no complications.
When it comes to pricing, you can run an online store with their free plan (without paying a monthly fee), however, you will then be paying more per transaction.
If you want more eCommerce features and lower transaction fees, then you should consider going with one of the three paid plans available. These are:
Artists and makers tend to love BigCartel because it's so well built for their needs. Opening an online store and selling created merchandise is made easy with this eCommerce platform.
Whether you produce t-shirts, art, prints, jewelry, or anything in between, BigCartel can help you when targeting an international audience.
Start off by choosing a free theme and then customize it as necessary. You can also code specific updates (or hire a developer) to help you create something that’s just right for your business needs.
With various tools to manage your online store, check analytics, and understand the stats that matter, it’s never been simpler for creatives to focus on their business and have a system that just works running in the background.
Free for up to 5 products, you won’t even need a credit card to get started.
If you need more than that, then there are two paid plans available for you to choose from. Their web hosting allows you to have up to 50 products, whilst the other can host up to 500 products. The cost is $9.99 per month and $19.99 per month respectively.
Top Reasons To Consider Shopify Like Sites
Even though Shopify is great at what it does, it’s not always perfect. Let’s have a look at some of the top reasons why people tend to stop using Shopify and instead consider its competitors.
1. Shopify Payments Don’t Work For You
Shopify Payments is Shopify’s native payment platform. Some people just don’t like the idea of using another company's software, especially when they know that there are more than enough other providers on the market.
You can always use external third-party payment processors with Shopify but the transaction fees when using these can add up significantly over time.
2. You’re Not Satisfied With The SEO Features That Shopify Offers
Shopify is not exactly the easiest platform to work with from an SEO point of view. You won't be able to make custom changes as easily as you can with other platforms - at least not without some professional guidance and understanding of code, etc.
SEO for eCommerce is a complex and constantly changing area - you will need an SEO expert who is familiar with Shopify if you want to succeed in this area. For most eCommerce businesses, this is not a viable solution. This means that having an eCommerce solution that is more SEO-friendly out of the box is a major plus.
3. Cataloging Your Inventory Has Become A Nightmare Using Shopify
If you have a large complex catalog it might become difficult to create a product page for each of the items in your catalog. Sometimes, you even have a lot of different variations for each item - variations that make things even more complicated. In this case, then Shopify might not be the best choice for you.
If you want to make it work with Shopify, it could mean that you’ll have to install a 3rd party app onto your site which will cost more time and money because these apps are generally less user-friendly than the platform itself. Integrating third-party apps with Shopify can be a painful process and is usually more time-consuming than it needs to be.
For busy people running a business, dealing with such integrations might be the last thing they want to do.
4. Looking For A Solution That Offers More In Terms Of Marketing Features
If you're looking for something that focuses heavily on the marketing side and gives you everything you need to spread the word about your business from one single location, then Shopify isn't always the best choice.
The good news is there are plenty of other options out there that offer an integrated marketing solution for your business.
5. Not Looking To Spend That Much Money On eCommerce Software
If you don't run a large business and aren't planning to expand anytime soon, then Shopify can become very expensive. The monthly fees are high and the transaction fees (if you want to use a 3rd party payment processor) can be costly as well.
In comparison, some of the other options in the above list are far more affordable and will give you everything that you need from an eCommerce software solution. Just make sure to do your research first before signing up with any company because some of them also have hidden monthly fees.
Understanding what you’re getting yourself into before doing so is key.
6. You’re Just Not Happy With Shopify
If you've tried Shopify before and just aren't happy with the results, then it's probably worth looking at some other options.
Some people have reported being able to get what they want out of Shopify but others are less impressed - I'd recommend doing your research on this if you think it might be an issue for you.
Features You Should Consider On Your Next Ecommerce Platform
When making a final decision on an eCommerce platform, keep in mind the following features. They are some of the most important ones to consider before pulling the trigger.
1. Multiple Payment Options
The best eCommerce software should have a variety of payment gateways, including PayPal and other major credit cards.
The payment gateway is basically what enables people to purchase things on your online store - so not only will this part of the platform be integral in giving your business credibility, but it will also be responsible for bringing in revenue if users choose to shop with you instead of someone else.
Users should be able to make purchases without filling out forms or without entering their full details each time - this is where the use of tokens can come in handy for businesses.
Always look for a payment gateway that has SSL encryption because this is how you'll know that all information being sent across the internet is secure and unable to be intercepted by hackers or individuals without authority.
The more payment options you have, the more chances you'll convert leads into sales - which is ultimately what every business wants.
2. Flexible Shipping Options
You should be able to manage your shipping rates for customers based on what specific items they are purchasing and where they are located etc - this could mean that if certain products need to be sent via express mail because of their weight or size, then the platform should allow you to do this without any problems.
Having flexible shipping options is a big deal and one of the things you need to think seriously about.
3. The Ability To Use Customized Web Pages
Having this option will enable you to create custom pages for your products - whether it's for product details, customer reviews, or anything else similar. This will give you maximum control over how your online store looks.
Being able to customize the pages like this means that customers are going to remain on your site longer and are more likely to convert into sales, bringing in more money for your business.
4. The Ability To Manage Multiple Online Stores
If you're planning on setting up an eCommerce website to sell various types of products, then having the ability to manage multiple stores is something that you should look for.
Nowadays most eCommerce platforms have this option available but if not, then it's worth looking at some of the other options on this list because they will be able to give you what you need.
Finding an eCommerce solution where you can replicate a working online store will save you tons of time and headaches. By doing the initial work once and then cloning an entire store for additional products you want to sell, you will be able to get the best ROI for your time and investment.
5. Shipping Labels
Not all e-commerce platforms offer shipping label integration with popular shipping carriers such as USPS, FedEx, and UPS, etc. If your platform doesn't provide this type of feature or integration - think about finding one that does. This can save a lot of time and hassle when trying to manage your business online.
6. The Ability To Use Gift Cards As Payment Methods
This isn't always offered by every single platform out there so if you're specifically looking for this option to be available then make sure that you find a platform that has it. The gift card feature is ideal for businesses who are looking to do some extra advertising or run different types of promotions.
Using gift cards is a great way to make use of word of mouth to get more sales.
7. A Good Customer Support Team
Whenever you run into any sort of problem when using an eCommerce platform, the last thing you want to do is spend hours trying to figure out how to fix the issue yourself or navigating through confusing menus.
Even worse, this can also lead to more problems down the line if left unresolved instead of getting professional help from the appropriate department.
Having a great support team will benefit your business over time because they'll be able to deal with any issues straight away - giving you the chance to get on with other things.
8. A Proper Shopping Cart Feature
Shopping carts can either come as an integrated feature or be part of a ticketing system. This depends on the scope of your eCommerce business.
The first type is the usual shopping cart which allows people to add all of the desired products into one place without having to search for them again or worry about additional clicks.
The second version is more like an email or quote request system - wherein someone can choose to contact you through your store and ask for a quote instead of going ahead and buying anything themselves.
Different eCommerce software providers offer different pricing according to the type of shopping cart you need on your site so this is something else that's worth looking at before deciding on an eCommerce solution for your business.
9. Ability To Custom Code/Integrate
Some people have a very specific business type in mind and so might need to have certain features added to their website that will allow it to function more efficiently.
Although this isn't super common, it can still happen from time to time. In this case, you'll need an eCommerce software provider that allows you to create custom code as well as gives you the ability to integrate your website with other third-party services as well.
10. Ability To Do Dropshipping
Dropshipping is where the supplier handles the entire shipping process on your behalf - making it easier for you to sell the products or services without worrying about inventory. Many businesses require a lot of effort when it comes to getting packages shipped off throughout the world - a dropshipping business eliminates these issues.
This is a great time saver for pretty much anyone who's trying to run an eCommerce business because it takes away the hassle of dealing with inventory and shipping of individual orders.The best way to find out if the provider you're looking at supports dropshipping would be to ask one of their sales representatives or check on their website - if they do, this information should be somewhere in plain sight. If you’d like to know more about the dropshipping model, check out this article on dropshipping for high ticket items.
11. A Built-In Marketing Feature
This isn't something that everyone will necessarily need, but any platform worth its salt will give you some sort of additional tools when it comes down to promoting your goods online to get more traffic flowing through your site. This will ultimately increase revenue over time by making sure that people are aware of your business and the solutions it provides.
12. Multi-Currency Support
As more people get online, businesses are starting to expand their horizons by offering international buying opportunities for customers who happen to live elsewhere around the world. Due to this, multi-currency support has become an important aspect of any business that's trying to sell items online.
Multi-currency means that you'll be able to deal with payments made in different currencies - saving you time when it comes down to money conversions and also making it easier for global buyers using their credit cards to buy stuff online.When becoming a reseller, you want that many of the processes are automated, and dealing with multiple currencies should be one of them.
13. Social Media Integration
Pretty much everyone wants their business to be able to go viral and attract as many people as possible - this is where social media comes into the picture by making it easier for you to increase your customer base over time.
Most eCommerce software providers will have some sort of social media integration tool built-in, allowing you to share updates about new products or special offers on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc.
14. SEO Features
As more businesses start selling items through their website, search optimization has become an important part of the process as far as online success goes. Many eCommerce software providers will include SEO features that will help you to better optimize your website and attract more visitors.
If this is not directly built into the system, the top eCommerce platforms will usually have a marketplace where you can buy additional tools to help with your SEO efforts and get more website visitors organically.
If you’d like to learn more about SEO and how to get organic traffic to your website, here’s information on how to rank on the first page of Amazon. While not everything will apply to the various eCommerce platforms described above, there are many points that you can take from this guide and apply to whichever platform you go with.
It will also be a good reference guide to go through when deciding on various platforms for their SEO capabilities.
15. Ability To Switch Themes/Overall Design
Each person who starts an online business generally has a design in mind when it comes to how they want their store to look. This is why having the ability to completely change your theme or overall website design - so that everything matches up nicely - is an important part of any online eCommerce website.
If the provider only allows for limited customizing of your site's appearance, it might not be such a great idea to sign up with them because at some point in the future you might end up needing to change your company's branding.
In that case, you would either have to start over from scratch or migrate to another eCommerce platform that supports changes in branding and design. Both of these solutions are not ideal and should be avoided if possible.
In conclusion, Shopify is indeed one of the best eCommerce websites out there. However, there are a lot of Shopify-like websites that you should consider making use of.
These eCommerce solutions might provide you with a different approach when it comes to running your business on the internet, but at the end of the day, you'll have a full-fledged eCommerce website that's ready to make sales and is technologically equipped with all the tools necessary for you to succeed online.
We hope that the above article has given you a better understanding of what Shopify like websites can do and that you'll be able to find the software that's just right for your company.For further reading, check out our article on how to find manufacturers for your eCommerce business, our guide on the best self-employed jobs and our direct comparison on Wix vs. Weebly for more Shopify-like comparisons.
You can also read my article on how to sell on Instgram with Shopify for more information about these two platforms.