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BigCommerce vs Volusion vs Shopify
Bigcommerce vs Shopify vs Volusion - The Best Ecommerce Solutions?
Choosing the right ecommerce software can be one of the most difficult decisions you make. Why? Because there are tons of choices, but which one is the best? As an experienced web developer and ecommerce specialist, BigCommerce, Shopify, and Volusion are the top three hosted cart solutions. All three of these solutions are packed with tons of features, tools, and a solid support system. And best of all, their plan packages are affordable. But which one is the best? This BigCommerce vs Shopify vs Volusion comparison review will tell you the answer you are dying to know.
Please stay away from free open-source platforms as they do not deliver as they advertise. First, you need to be familiar with coding and HTML to get one of those sites up and running. Second, your website will be similar to others using the software and Google will not like that very much. Lastly, all these open-source platforms have international developers.
I used OpenCart and was banned from Google Advertising because apparently my website looked international and I was advertising in the United States market; which was completely ridiculous. I then found about 10 other websites that are very similar to mine.
Do yourself a favor, and go with one of the platforms I review below.
**A no obligation free trial is available with each cart on the bottom of this article**
BigCommerce vs Shopify vs Volusion – Which One is the Best Choice?
Do not get me wrong, they are all incredible shopping carts; however, Shopify is the best choice for an online store. Here is how we rank them and why:
- Shopify – We have bumped Shopify back to the first spot due to the fact that you can waive transaction fees on all of their plans. Their plans start at $14 per month and allow you to list up to 25 products. You would end up paying $29 per month if you wanted 100 products. Although, all of their plans have unlimited bandwidth. In order to waive transaction fees, you have to use their credit card merchant account (It’s a free merchant account).
- BigCommerce – The best overall features and tools needed to run a smooth online store. BigCommerce plan packages start at $34.95 per month and give you the eligibility to save 10% on annual membership – that’s a decent discount. Unfortunately, they charge transaction fees on their Silver package.
- Volusion – Their shopping cart has not been receiving useful updates and is falling behind from the two above. However, Volusion is still among the top three hosted shopping carts because of its versatile features and simple store creation. Volusion plans start at $15 per month for up to 100 products and 1 GB of bandwidth. They do not have transaction fees but there are overage fees if you go over your monthly bandwidth limit. Obviously, the bigger the plan is, the more bandwidth you receive.
We will include a full plan comparison further down in this comparison review.
Plan Packages [Winner: Shopify]
Shopify Plan Packages [14-day free trail is available]
Unlike BigCommerce, Shopify limits such features as real-time shipping, discount engine, and support to lower priced plans. They offer unlimited bandwidth and allow you to waive transaction fees. To waive transaction fees, store owners MUST use Shopify’s credit card processing service which has no service fees. Otherwise, their transaction fees range from 0-2% depending on the plan you select.
- Starter Plan – This plan is ideal for store owners that have a very small inventory and do not need to edit their themes. The Starter Plan costs $14 per month for 25 products, 1 GB of storage, and chat/email support. This plan does not allow you to have coupons, real-time shipping, phone support, nor editing your template. If you do not use their credit card processing service, you will be charged 2% per transaction.
- Basic Plan – The Basic Plan costs $29 per month for unlimited products, 1 GB of storage, and access to their discount code engine. This plan does not give you access to features such as abandoned cart recovery, real-time carrier shipping, nor professional store reports. Their Basic Plan is perfect for store owners that want to have some wiggle room for expansion as you have unlimited products but only 1 GB of storage. As with the above plan, you are charged a flat-rate of 2% per transaction if you do not use their credit card processing service.
- Professional Plan – If you have a bigger inventory and do not need more than 5 GB of storage, I would go with this plan. Their Professional Plan costs $79 per month for unlimited products, 5 GB of storage, discount code engine, professional store reports, and the ability to recover abandoned carts. However, you cannot have real-time carrier shipping rates. If you do not use their credit card processing service, you are charged a flat-rate of 1% per transaction.
- Unlimited Plan – This plan costs $179 per month for unlimited bandwidth and products. Unlike the above plans, their Unlimited Plan does not limit you to any of the features. This plan does not have any transaction fees, regardless of how you process transactions.
Q: What is the best Shopify package? – The Unlimited Plan is their best overall plan as you have unlimited everything and you do not have to worry about being charged any transaction fees. I would also want to know that I can process payments through the service of my choice and not what Shopify wants.
BigCommerce Plan Packages [Each plan offers an easy to set up 15-day free trail]
All plans are equipped with the same features including no bandwidth fees. First time BigCommerce users are eligible for a $100 Google AdWords credit. Once the free trial ends, you are able to upgrade or downgrade between one of their five plans.
- Silver Plan – This plan gives you some wiggle room as your store grows. Their Silver Plan costs $34.95 per month for unlimited products and 5 GB of storage space. Has a 2% per transaction fee.
- Gold Plan – The Gold Plan is the best choice for medium-sized store owners. This plan costs $79.95 per month for unlimited products, unlimited storage space, and the ability to use their Abandoned-Cart Saver tool, which can recover lost sales.
- Platinum Plan – We strongly believe that this is their best overall package as you have no restrictions on the amount of products listed. The Platinum Plan costs $199.95 per month for unlimited products, unlimited storage space, and access to Abandoned-Cart Saver.
Q: What is the best BigCommerce package? – As mentioned above, the Platinum Plan is their best deal as it comes with unlimited products and bandwidth. The plan also comes with Abandoned-Cart Saver. However, this plan might not be a good idea if you have a smaller inventory.
Volusion Plan Packages [14-day free trail is available]
When it comes to plan selection, Volusion has got you covered. Like Shopify, Volusion limits certain features across its plans, especially the lowered priced ones. So, you might be losing key features if you go with one of their cheaper plans. They do not charge store owners any transaction fees; however, all plans come with limited bandwidth. Each one of their plans will state how much monthly bandwidth you have, but they will not tell you that there are overage fees for going over the monthly bandwidth limit.
- Mini Plan – Their Mini Plan costs $15 per month for 100 products, 1 GB of bandwidth, email support and a mobile store. This plan has extremely low bandwidth and is not meant to withstand a store with traffic for that many products. Key features such as product reviews, newsletters, and deal of the day are not included.
- Bronze Plan – This plan costs $35 per month for 1,000 products, 2 GB of bandwidth, mobile store, phone support, newsletters, and product reviews. As with the above plan, you are given extremely limited bandwidth. Their Bronze Plan limits key features such as phone orders, my rewards, and deal of the day.
- Silver Plan – Their Silver Plan costs $65 per month for 2,500 products, 5 GB of bandwidth, mobile store, phone support, newsletters, product reviews, newsletters, and phone orders. This plan limits features like my rewards and deal of the day. If you have a limited budget and cannot go with a more expensive plan, I would strongly recommend this one as you have a decent bandwidth limit of 5 GB.
- Gold Plan – This plan costs $125 per month for 10,000 products, 25 GB of bandwidth, priority support, and gives you access to all of their features.
- Platinum – Their Platinum Plan costs $195 per month for unlimited products, 40 GB of bandwidth, priority support, and gives you full access to all of their features.
Q: What is the best Volusion plan? – In terms of overall value, their Gold Plan is the best plan available. They give you a very high product limit, priority support, and a decent bandwidth limit.
*As of September 2013, Volusion charges bandwidth overage fees of $7 per GB.
BigCommerce vs Shopify vs Volusion – Primary Feature Comparison [Winner: BigCommerce]
In terms of features, BigCommerce, Shopify, and Volusion have tons to offer. All three perform very well and give you access to key features including discounts, gift certificates, single-page checkout, product reviews and ratings, free templates, product options, and more. Each shopping cart has an app store for additional features. However, both Shopify and Volusion limit key features on their lower priced plans.
Ease of Installation and Setup [Winner: Shopify]
Overall, all three hosted shopping carts are easy to install and setup. However, Shopify is probably the easiest shopping cart to install, setup, and launch your online store. All these carts provide you with several basic steps to complete before launching your store. Additionally, if you run into problems, there are tons of tutorials and guides to help in the creation of stores on either one of these platforms.
Marketing and SEO Tools [Winner: All Three]
Marketing and SEO tools are very important to ecommerce store owners as that is they are the most effective way of bringing traffic to your website. BigCommerce, Shopify, and Volusion give you all the marketing and SEO tools that you need to run a good advertised store. From a Facebook store to coupons, all three platforms have ways of promoting your store. However, BigCommerce goes the extra mile and automatically creates feeds to popular comparison shopping sites such as Google Shopping, Shopzilla, and BizRate. Volusion tries to separate itself from the rest by offering MyRewards, which are very popular in today’s market. On the other hand, Shopify has a fully integrated blog that is great for SEO.
All three shopping carts give you a wide range of SEO tools and the ability to control titles, descriptions, and meta tags. Additionally, your store will rank naturally pretty well on search engines.
Additional Features via the App Store [Winners: BigCommerce & Shopify]
Having an app store increases your chances of having all of the features you are looking for in a hosted shopping cart. App stores are a great way to get additional free and premium features. BigCommerce and Shopify have a larger app store than Volusion. App stores on these shopping carts carries integrations with popular services and features.
Technical Support and Assistance [All Three]
Technical support is an important aspect of any business. With BigCommerce, Shopify, and Volusion, you can expect professional support via phone, chat, and email. They all have a knowledge base consisting of tutorials and guides. There have been reports that Volusion lacks great customer support; this is not true at all. Volusion has a similar customer service focus as BigCommerce and Volusion.
Which shopping cart is the best in 2013?
BigCommerce vs Shopify vs Volusion – Conclusion
After a close comparison of the best three shopping carts, Shopify is the top shopping cart for creating an online store. It does not have any bandwidth or transaction fees (if you use the Stripe credit card processing service).
We will always have tons of options when looking for hosted shopping carts. Some of these hosted shopping carts are good while others lack important features. Shopify continues to be the best hosted ecommerce software as it is the most overall value in terms of price, features, and design. Bigcommerce and Volusion are good Shopify alternatives.
Shopify is probably the easiest shopping cart to set up, while Volusion has plenty of features to guide you in building your dream store.
If you want to build a shopping cart using the best ecommerce platform, be sure to go with one of these shopping carts.
How do you feel about BigCommerce vs Shopify vs Volusion? Which one do you think is the best? Why?
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- Ecommerce Software & Shopping Cart Solutions | Bigcommerce
Bigcommerce provides ecommerce software solutions and shopping cart software for online businesses. Try it free and start selling your products online today!
- Ecommerce Software, Online Store Builder, Website Store Hosting Solution- Free 14 day Trial by Shopi
Shopify is a powerful ecommerce website solution that allows you to sell online by providing everything you need to create an online store. Try our free 14 day trial.
- Free Trial with Volusion
Start a free trial with the Volusion shopping cart and see if it the best solution for your online store.