In this digital age, creating an eCommerce website offers numerous benefits. It allows businesses to expand their target market, increase discoverability, and boost revenue. With so many eCommerce platforms available, choosing the right one to create your online store can be a daunting task. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the 10 best eCommerce platforms for creating an online store in 2023.
Best eCommerce Platforms: A Quick Overview
Before we dive into the details, let’s take a quick look at the most popular eCommerce platforms discussed in this article:
|eCommerce Platform||Best for||SaaS/Open-source||Pricing||Transaction fees|
|Hostinger Website Builder||Small to medium businesses||SaaS||$2.99/month||None|
|WooCommerce||All business types||Open-source||Free||Depends on the payment gateway|
|PrestaShop||All business types||Open-source||Free||None|
|BigCommerce||Medium to large businesses||SaaS||$29-299/month||None, but there’s an annual sales threshold|
|OpenCart||Small to medium businesses||Open-source||Free||Depends on the payment gateway|
|Adobe Commerce||Large businesses||Neither, although some features are deployed as SaaS||Custom pricing||Depends on the payment gateway|
|Shift4Shop||US-based businesses||SaaS||Free, as long as at least $500/month is processed via its Shift4 payment system||None|
|Big Cartel||Small to medium businesses, artists||SaaS||Free-$19.99/month||Depends on the payment gateway|
|Volusion||Medium to large businesses, dropshippers||SaaS||$35-299/month||0.35-1.25% for third-party gateways|
Now, let’s dive into the details of each eCommerce platform and explore their features, pricing, and pros and cons.
Hostinger Website Builder – AI-Powered Site Builder for Small to Medium-Sized Businesses
Hostinger Website Builder is a user-friendly drag-and-drop site builder that allows people to create a website in minutes without any coding experience. It is perfect for small to medium-sized businesses looking for an easy and quick way to start an online store.
This platform offers two simple ways to create a website. Users can choose from over 100 fully-customizable, designer-made, and responsive website templates. Alternatively, they can let AI create a fully-designed website for them, complete with custom images, text, and alt text.
Along with the website builder, Hostinger offers AI-powered tools like the AI Logo Maker and AI Writer. The AI Logo Maker can create a logo in seconds, while the AI Writer can generate custom website copy for the site.
Hostinger Website Builder provides a comprehensive eCommerce management suite with an intuitive interface. Users can easily manage inventory and orders, sell up to 500 products without transaction fees, and support over 20 payment options worldwide.
The platform also offers various third-party integrations to enhance the site’s capabilities. For example, users can integrate Google Analytics to track website performance and Messenger Live Chat for easy customer contact.
Hostinger provides 24/7 assistance via live chat or email, along with written tutorials and helpful videos on their Hostinger Academy YouTube channel.
Pricing and Plans
Hostinger offers the Hostinger AI Website Builder bundled with hosting at $2.99/month. This plan includes a free domain, free custom emails, eCommerce features, marketing integrations, and unlimited bandwidth. The site builder is also included with all Hostinger web hosting plans by default.
- Beginner-friendly: Users without coding or web design experience can easily create a website in minutes.
- AI-powered: The platform offers numerous AI tools, including AI Logo Maker and AI Writer, to assist with website-building tasks.
- Built-in search engine optimization (SEO) tools: Hostinger Website Builder includes various SEO tools like meta titles and descriptions, sitemap, and image alt text to improve search engine rankings.
- Limited number of integrations: Although the builder has many built-in features, it only supports a few third-party integrations.
Hostinger Website Builder is an excellent option for beginners and small to medium-sized business owners looking for a quick and effortless way to create an online store. Its AI-powered tools and built-in SEO features make it easy to build a professional website and start selling online.
WooCommerce – Great eCommerce Store Plugin for WordPress
WooCommerce is an open-source eCommerce solution available as a WordPress plugin. It is the most popular platform in the eCommerce space, with over 12% of all online stores worldwide using it.
This plugin allows users to add essential online store functionality to an existing WordPress website. Once installed and activated, users can control their online shop directly from the WordPress dashboard.
WooCommerce provides various eCommerce features, including inventory management and payment processing. Users can expand its functionality with hundreds of extensions, including store management, shipping, and marketing tools.
One of the advantages of WooCommerce is its compatibility with the extensive official and third-party theme catalog of WordPress. Users can choose from a wide range of WordPress themes to customize the design of their online store.
WooCommerce offers live chat support for its premium extensions and provides online guides and support forums for users to seek advice and assistance.
Pricing and Plans
WooCommerce is free to download and install. However, users need a domain name, hosting service, and a WordPress site to use it.
Hostinger’s WooCommerce hosting plans include a free SSL certificate, a free domain name, and up to 100 domain-based email addresses.
Additional costs may include paid customization options like extensions and themes. The WooCommerce Extensions Store offers many add-ons, ranging from free to premium extensions costing up to $299/year. Premium WordPress themes listed on third-party websites can cost around $30-400/year.
- Wide range of WordPress themes: WooCommerce integrates seamlessly with WordPress, making it compatible with the extensive official and third-party theme catalog.
- Additional eCommerce functionality: Users can add more eCommerce features to their online store using WooCommerce extensions and WordPress plugins.
- Large online community: WooCommerce has a large community that can help solve any issues related to eCommerce store management.
- Requires multiple extensions: WooCommerce does not come with many features by default, so users need to manually add them.
WooCommerce is one of the best eCommerce solutions due to its versatility. Combining it with WooCommerce extensions, WordPress plugins, and themes allows users to turn their existing WordPress site into a customizable and feature-rich online store.
PrestaShop – Advanced Open-Source eCommerce Platform
PrestaShop Basic Edition is a free, open-source eCommerce solution. Users only need to purchase a PrestaShop hosting plan and install the eCommerce software on their hosting account to get started.
The platform offers various features, including a product management system, multiple payment processors, and customizable checkouts.
PrestaShop provides a suite of modules called PrestaShop Essentials to boost sales and conversions. These modules include PrestaShop Checkout, Marketing, Paylater, Social, and Metrics.
PrestaShop Checkout and Paylater help facilitate secure and personalized payments, while PrestaShop Marketing and Social boost brand visibility by syncing product catalogs to Google, Facebook, and Instagram.
PrestaShop Metrics provides an overview of sales data and store performance using Google Analytics synchronization.
The PrestaShop Add-Ons Marketplace offers more modules and website templates for customization.
Another unique feature of this eCommerce platform is PrestaShop Experts. It connects merchants with trusted parties who can help handle specific business functions like design or content management.
PrestaShop provides official documentation, a Help Center, and a paid technical support plan for users to seek assistance.
Pricing and Plans
PrestaShop’s software is free to install. Users only need to purchase a hosting plan and a domain. Additional costs may include paid templates and modules.
The platform also offers fully-managed hosting, PrestaShop Hosting, with prices ranging from € 250-650/month. Some features include larger resource pools, 24/7 hosting support, and daily or hourly data backups.
- Advanced product management: Users can easily create product categories, set minimum purchase quantities, and customize notifications for out-of-stock products.
- Customizable products: Customers can select product variations and upload files for personalization.
- Comprehensive checkout options: Users can design a one-page checkout and simplify the account creation process to minimize cart abandonment rates.
- Limited free add-ons: Additional templates and modules may increase setup costs.
- Manual exchange rate: Users need to create a cron job to enable automatic exchange rate updates.
- Limited technical support: Dedicated support is available for purchase, starting at $272.
PrestaShop is one of the best eCommerce solutions offering customizable products. It is a great option for eCommerce stores with advanced product management and checkout options.
Shopify – Complete eCommerce Site Builder
Shopify is a popular eCommerce website builder that allows users to create their own online store within minutes using its intuitive drag-and-drop builder and pre-made templates.
The platform offers many useful features, including abandoned cart recovery, which allows store owners to send emails to customers and encourage them to complete their purchases.
Another noteworthy feature of Shopify is its fraud analysis, which identifies potentially fraudulent orders paid with credit cards, reducing the risk of chargebacks.
Shopify is compatible with over 100 payment solutions, although additional transaction fees may apply depending on the plan. Customers in eligible locations can use Shopify Payments to avoid these fees.
The platform provides 24/7 phone support, live chat, and email, making it ideal for beginners and self-managed store owners.
Pricing and Plans
Shopify offers three pricing plans: Basic, Advanced, and Plus. The Basic plan costs $29/month when billed yearly, the Advanced plan costs $299/month, and the Plus plan starts at $2,000/month. A three-day free trial is available.
The Basic and Advanced plans are suitable for small to medium-sized businesses, while Plus is designed for high-volume businesses and supports a headless solution.
Shopify also offers a Starter plan for $5/month, allowing users to create customizable product links for sharing on social media or messaging apps.
- Dedicated customer support: Shopify provides 24/7 support through various channels.
- Built-in abandoned cart recovery: This feature helps drive conversions and is available on all plans.
- Fraud analysis: Shopify’s fraud analysis helps prevent chargebacks by identifying potentially fraudulent transactions.
- Additional transaction fees: Third-party payment gateways and card payments may incur transaction fees.
- Few free templates: Shopify’s theme store has limited free options, and third-party themes may come at an additional cost.
Shopify is an ideal eCommerce platform for small to large businesses looking to sell online. Its user-friendly interface, wide selection of templates, and support for third-party integrations make it a popular choice among online store owners.
BigCommerce – Best eCommerce Solution for Medium to Large Businesses
BigCommerce is a reliable SaaS eCommerce website builder for medium to large businesses, including B2B companies and wholesalers.
One of its standout features is omnichannel selling, which allows users to connect their eCommerce store to various marketplaces while managing inventory in one place.
This popular eCommerce platform offers customer segmentation based on background and online shopping habits, providing a personalized shopping experience with item recommendations and promotions.
BigCommerce also supports social media integration and SEO tools to drive more traffic to websites and improve search engine rankings.
The platform also supports headless commerce, allowing users to manage their online shop while content and visuals are handled by a content management system (CMS).
Pricing and Plans
BigCommerce offers three main pricing plans: Standard, Plus, and Pro. Prices range from $29-299/month. The platform does not charge transaction fees but has an annual sales threshold. Exceeding this amount requires upgrading the plan.
BigCommerce offers plenty of features by default, and users can add more functionality through the BigCommerce Marketplace.
- Multi-channel selling: Users can manage their inventory across multiple platforms.
- Unlimited staff accounts: Set specific permissions for each team member.
- No transaction fees: No additional fees for using third-party payment gateways.
- Personalized shopping experience: Customer segmentation tailors the experience to shopping habits.
- Headless commerce support: Allows businesses to make site changes without compromising eCommerce infrastructure.
- Annual sales limit: Users may need to upgrade their plan if they exceed the sales threshold.
- Steep learning curve: Advanced tools may not be suitable for beginners.
BigCommerce is a great eCommerce platform for large-scale businesses, offering advanced eCommerce analytics tools and bulk order management. Small businesses may find better options elsewhere due to the higher cost of the basic plan compared to competitors.
OpenCart – Best for International Selling
OpenCart is an open-source self-hosted eCommerce software with many built-in tools. Its intuitive dashboard provides all the data needed to track store performance, including total order volume and sales analytics.
This eCommerce platform uses a module system for customization, allowing users to create an online store even without coding experience.
OpenCart stands out from other self-hosted solutions with its advanced built-in features, including a multi-store admin, unlimited products, product filtering, and marketing analytics. Other platforms often require extensions for these features.
The multi-store feature allows users to manage multiple stores from one interface, with different settings, prices, and themes.
OpenCart also has a built-in affiliate system with different rates for each partner. It supports 36 payment methods, including PayPal, bank transfers, and cheques.
This eCommerce platform offers multiple currency and language options by default, while other platforms require plugins for this functionality.
Pricing and Plans
OpenCart is free to download and use. Users only need web hosting and a domain name to get started. Premium extensions start at $20.
OpenCart also offers a premium eCommerce solution called OpenCart Cloud, hosted on Amazon Web Services. Prices range from $59-199/month, with a seven-day free trial.
- Guest checkout: Customers can shop without creating an account.
- Advanced built-in options: Many features are included, reducing the need for additional extensions.
- Multiple currencies and language support: Great for attracting a global audience.
- No drag-and-drop functionality: Store design customization is limited to OpenCart’s module system.
- No built-in SEO features: Additional extensions are required to optimize the online store for search engines.
With many advanced features, OpenCart is an effective eCommerce solution for medium to large businesses. Its built-in multi-currency and multi-language features make it an excellent choice for selling internationally.
Adobe Commerce – Feature-Rich Platform for Large and Enterprise-Grade Businesses
Powered by Magento, Adobe Commerce is an eCommerce platform designed for B2C and B2B merchants to create large-scale online stores.
Adobe Commerce offers two self-hosted solutions: Magento Open Source and Adobe Commerce. The former is free, while the latter is a paid option. It also provides an enterprise-grade cloud-based solution named Adobe Commerce on Cloud.
Adobe Commerce’s main selling points include extensibility, integrated B2B functionality, Live Search, Product Recommendations, and Payment Services.
Merchants can extend the platform using extensions and themes found on its marketplace. They can provide personalized experiences using customer-specific catalogs, pricing, content, and promotions through integrated B2B functionality.
Powered by Adobe Sensei, Live Search delivers quick and personalized search results, while Product Recommendations suggest relevant products based on trends, similarities, and shopper behavior.
The platform’s integrated payment solution, Payment Services, facilitates secure global eCommerce sales using PCI DSS transaction security and the latest encryption standards. It supports local currencies and various payment methods.
Adobe Commerce offers a ticketing system for support requests. However, it is only available to users with Adobe Commerce accounts.
Pricing and Plans
Magento Open Source is free, while Adobe Commerce’s pricing is available upon request. The latter offers the same features as the former, with additional features like designated cloud infrastructure resources and dedicated escalation management.
Although no specific price is given, Adobe Commerce has two main pricing packages: Commerce Pro and Managed Services. Users can request a demo before purchasing a subscription.
- Staging environment: Allows safe site updates to prevent downtime and potential losses.
- AI-powered customer personalization: Enhances customers’ shopping experience with personalized product recommendations and search results.
- Secure transaction technology: Processes payments securely using encryption, 3DS, and PCI DSS.
- Limited customer support: Ticket support is only available to users with Adobe Commerce accounts. Open-source platform users must rely on existing documentation and community forums.
- Steep learning curve: Installation and customization require technical knowledge, making it challenging for beginners.
Adobe Commerce is one of the best eCommerce solutions for advanced features and large-scale businesses. However, creating a complete online store may require prior experience or developer assistance.
Shift4Shop – Feature-Rich eCommerce Software for US-Based Merchants
Shift4Shop is a SaaS eCommerce solution with an intuitive interface, similar to the WordPress dashboard or a user-friendly site builder. Currently, this platform is only available to US-based business owners.
Shift4Shop stands out because of its checkout customization feature. It offers a three-page or one-page checkout method, as well as a guest checkout option to prevent cart abandonment.
Despite the guest checkout option, Shift4Shop still provides customer accounts. Visitors can keep track of their order status and use a feature that automatically places recurring orders.
Shift4Shop supports digital products and event ticket sales. It automatically sends buyers an email with an encrypted download link, eliminating the need for manual delivery.
For payment methods, Shift4Shop is integrated with Shift4. This payment system supports credit cards and digital wallets like Google Pay and Apple Pay.
Other notable features of Shift4Shop include over 100 free themes, fraud protection, abandoned cart recovery, website migration assistance, advanced inventory management, and SEO tools.
Pricing and Plans
Shift4Shop offers its End-to-End eCommerce plan for free as long as the business processes at least $500/month with Shift4 via their eCommerce stores. This plan includes domain registration, web hosting, and a site builder. Other features include unlimited products, an integrated blog, and no revenue limits.
Shift4Shop also offers an Enterprise plan for high-volume businesses. It starts at $1,999/month and includes unlimited staff user accounts, automatic software updates, and a customer relationship management (CRM) solution.
- 24/7 customer service: Round-the-clock tech support is available to assist with any issues.
- Feature-rich: Shift4Shop has many built-in advanced features, making it easy to create great eCommerce websites.
- Multiple checkout options: Streamline the checkout process and enable guest checkout for quick purchases.
- Digital downloads: Sell software, eBooks, photos, or online courses.
- Limited app library: Shift4Shop has fewer apps compared to its competitors, limiting store functionality extension options.
- US-only platform: The platform is only available to US-based merchants.
Shift4Shop is an excellent choice for US-based business owners looking to create a basic online store. Its free plan offers many built-in features that typically require payment on other eCommerce platforms.
Big Cartel – Best for Artists
Big Cartel is a cloud-based eCommerce solution designed for artists and creative freelancers. To sell online, users can pick a theme, upload product images, and set prices. It supports both online and offline checkout options.
Big Cartel offers a click-and-drag customization tool that makes it easy to design a website. However, advanced customization requires using the code editor.
By default, Big Cartel provides a URL with the bigcartel.com domain. However, all plans allow users to connect a custom domain, boosting branding and improving search engine discoverability.
Pricing and Plans
Big Cartel offers three plans: free, $9.99/month, and $19.99/month. The free plan allows merchants to list up to five products with one image per item. The other two plans allow for up to 50 and 500 products, respectively. Both include five images per product and additional features like bulk editing and theme code editing.
Big Cartel does not charge listing fees, and most apps and integrations are free. However, users must pay the subscription or transaction fee set by each extension.
- Free plan available: The free plan is an excellent option for small businesses and individuals looking to start selling online.
- In-person checkout support: Big Cartel facilitates offline purchases, processing payments using Stripe or cash.
- Wide selection of free themes: Save money when building a website with various free themes for customizing an eCommerce store.
- Limited payment processors: Big Cartel is only compatible with three payment gateways.
- Complex customization: The paid plans include a theme code editor but require basic coding skills to use.
- No PCI compliance: Each store owner is responsible for adhering to PCI regulations.
Big Cartel is an excellent platform for artists looking to create a simple and straightforward site to sell their creations. However, it may not be the most beginner-friendly platform, and users may need to install third-party apps to enable more features and customize the theme code.
Volusion – Best for Dropshipping Businesses
Volusion offers a user-friendly interface and a straightforward site builder. Combined with drag-and-drop functionality and free themes for various niches, users can create their eCommerce stores within minutes.
Volusion stands out for its dedicated dropshipping tools, making it one of the best platforms for dropshipping businesses. The platform also provides abandoned cart reports and product ratings and reviews.
Volusion has an advanced inventory tracker that allows users to monitor inventory status and set low stock notifications. Its analytics tool provides in-depth reports to help users manage and scale their business.
The platform’s mobile app enables users to run their eCommerce business on the go, with features like updating prices, taking product pictures, and checking inventory from their phones.
Volusion offers 24/7 customer service via live chat, email, and phone. However, phone support is not available for users on the Personal plan.
Pricing and Plans
Volusion offers a 14-day free trial and three main plans ranging from $35-299/month. Each plan has different yearly Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) limits, and the Prime plan’s pricing is available upon request. The more advanced the plan, the more products can be listed and staff accounts created.
Volusion Payments, the platform’s Stripe-powered payment solution, does not charge transaction fees. However, it is only available to US merchants. Third-party payment gateways are available but may charge transaction fees depending on the plan.
- PCI compliance: Volusion ensures its sellers are PCI-compliant, regardless of the plan.
- Advanced commerce features and tools: Includes a store management app, inventory tracker, and barcode generator.
- Round-the-clock support: Provides 24/7 support via live chat, email, and phone.
- No dedicated tools for blogging: Users must use other platforms for content marketing blogs and integrate the URL into their Volusion site.
- Only US-based suppliers: The dropshipping solution only accommodates US suppliers, although international shipping is available.
- Transaction fees: Users using third-party payment processors are subject to transaction fees depending on their subscription plan.
Volusion is an excellent platform for running a dropshipping business, with dedicated features for connecting with vendors. However, the US-centric supplier options may be a drawback for those targeting an international market.