The 5 Easiest Ways to Build an eCommerce Site

Updated on September 20, 2021 | by Alex Smith

One of the most important decisions you need to make when starting a business is whether your store will be physical, virtual, or a mixture of both. In the United States alone, eCommerce sales are in the hundreds of billions annually. This shows the type of profit available if you were to incorporate an eCommerce website into your business strategy. We will be going over a few eCommerce platforms that you can use to build your site.  

Shopify

A great platform for beginners, Shopify has been in business since 2004. The platform is very user-friendly in that it includes many tips, guides, and help wizards to assist you in setting up a website. If you have an interest in trying out Shopify, the platform offers a free 14-day trial with no need to input your credit card information beforehand. 

There are over 100 templates that you can choose from for your Shopify site, then you can add your customizations afterward. Shopify also offers the following features:

  • Shop Pay – Automated payment processing using the saved information. PayPal is just one of the many different payment gateways that Shopify offers
  • Shopify POS – Point of Sale system integrates your online and in-person sales for easier transactions 
  • Shopify Fulfillment – Improves the process of filling orders and shipping to customers 

WordPress/WooCommerce

People familiar with WordPress are aware that the platform is typically associated with blogging or written content instead of eCommerce. This is where WooCommerce comes in. WooCommerce is a plugin that you can get for a WordPress site. It is fully customizable and includes popular payment gateways such as PayPal, Apple Pay, and Stripe. 

If you are looking for the ultimate WooCommerce guide to help you build the best eCommerce site possible, many online tutorials are available. The platform also provides a public support forum for account users to post their questions. 

Another advantage that WooCommerce has is its multilingual capabilities. The platform is completely translated into 24 different languages, meaning that you can extend your business all around the world.  

Square

Square (formerly Weebly) is a more simplistic platform for eCommerce. New customers will get a questionnaire to fill out about their business. This will give you an optimized experience, and will not overwhelm you with unnecessary options. 

You will be designing your theme with Square, rather than choosing a pre-set option. The platform’s site builder makes the process easy and painless. Your inventory library will sync to both online and in-person sales so that everything remains in one primary location. 

In addition to this, there is no monthly fee for using Square. You will only need to make a payment when you have a sale go through. You have the option of paying per sale or choosing a pre-set plan. 

PrestaShop

If you have some technical knowledge that you want to use, PrestaShop may be a good choice. It is an open-source eCommerce platform and currently has over 300,000 merchants worldwide. There is only customer support if you purchase support plans through the company, but they do offer a community forum for questions. 

Your privacy and security settings will be completely customizable to you. You can also include business tools such as the following:

  • Certain built-in marketing tools
  • Automated purchase confirmation emails to customers
  • Email reminders about abandoned carts
  • Easy inventory tracking

Wix

Wix is a popular website builder that includes many important eCommerce features. The platform offers an easy-to-use drag and drop UI and customizable templates. You will not need to know anything about coding or web design because the platform will help guide you along the process.   Wix can be set up to sell any type of product, whether it be a physical object or a downloadable file. They offer features that appeal to customers and encourage them to make a purchase, such as including a built-in zoom while hovering over a product image. You are also able to add up to 15 product images, which can show the customer every possible angle. If the item needs a demonstration on how to use it, you can also include product videos as well.

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