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How SaaS Shopping Carts Compare to Their Competition

E-commerce Inspiration Posted on Aug 3, 2015 by

So, you’re ready to launch an online store? Well, you’re in luck. A wide variety of shopping cart packages exist to meet your business’s needs.

In essence, shopping cart software helps your customers purchase your products and services on an eCommerce website. This virtual version of a supermarket eases customers’ frustration and saves them time when shopping for items.

Moreover, from the business standpoint, shopping carts can assist you with maintaining inventory, shipping orders, tracking sales, and promoting products via social media channels. It’s a one-stop shop to starting, growing, and maintaining a successful online store.

In recent years, there’s been an influx in new shopping cart providers. Online store owners can choose from numerous options, ranging from thousand of templates to sites specifically for artists.

It can be tough to choose which software will work best for your business. Before you make a decision, let’s see how these four major SaaS shopping cart brands stack up to their competition.

Shopify

Shopify is more than a shopping cart; it’s an “eCommerce infrastructure where both end-users and developers benefit.” If you don’t want to hire a website designer, this brand offers 100+ professional templates and hundreds of apps, including Ordoro, Inventory Source, and eCommHub to set up a dropshipping business.

For marketing campaigns, Shopify empowers you to easily create landing pages. The company also creates 100% crawlable, clean code to aid with search engine optimization (SEO).

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Source: Shopify

Plus, with Shopify Mobile, you can capture payments and fulfill orders right from your phone. There Mobile dashboard also lets you track trends in your business. No more waiting to manage inventory with your desktop computer; you can do it all from your phone.

Like everything in life, there are a few drawbacks. To add functionality to Shopify, you will need to use apps. These plugins are built and supported by third parties. So, the quality and cost of these apps can vary greatly.

Functionality is built into some of the templates. If you can’t write code to change it, your theme can become more expensive.

Bigcommerce

Bigcommerce is a popular solution. Much like Shopify, it is geared to help people with limited web design skills. However, more advanced users can adjust the HTML/CSS.

Their pricing options range from a standard package of $29.95 per month to a plus package of $79.95 per month. If you have a large business or corporation, they also offer an enterprise version with varying prices.

Depending on the plan you choose, you can opt-in to several features. Send automated emails to remind prospects that they have abandoned their carts. Add keywords to your product pages to boost SEO. Integrate with Alibaba.com, PayPal, and e-newsletter services, like MailChimp, Constant Contact, and iContact.

Bigcommerce also offers 24/7 support via phone, live chat, and email. They also have a community forum and resourceful video trainings.

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Source: Bigcommerce

The cons of Bigcommerce include their slightly pricey starter plan. If you only want to sell a few products, you may not want to fork over the money. A better option would be Shopify’s entry level plan. In addition, customizing templates may require in-depth knowledge of coding. To circumvent this issue, the shopping cart platform supplies online coding tutorials.

Volusion

While updating your site, you may want to tweak your designs based on customers’ feedback. Volusion offers hundreds of templates. Some designs are free; others require a fee. Filter through templates that match your needs by price, category, industry, and color.

Volusion is always there to guide you on your eCommerce journey. Their platform places hints on major forms. Question mark icons next to form fields offer short descriptions of the purpose of the field. No more second-guessing yourself when creating your store. This software helps curb the steep learning curve.

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Source: Volusion

The Deal of the Day feature lets you create limited-time discounts on landing pages. Control the products included and the duration of the promotion. Also, you can link the deal within an email campaign.

Need help with spreading the word? Volusion’s interface is equipped to automatically post messages on Facebook and Twitter accounts. Tools like this keep you connected with your customers.

What is Volusion’s pitfall? The software does not currently have a blogging platform. Blogging helps drive traffic and establish an online presence. It’s definitely a low-cost way to build quality relationships with your customers. Thus, Volusion does allow you to link to external blogs, like Wordpress or Blogger.

LemonStand

Since launching in 2010, LemonStand has grown to be a fierce competitor. Their web-based solution is great for scalability. As your business grows, the software will accommodate your needs.

LemonStand has an ease-to-use SaaS dashboard. The layout is well-organized, so any novice can learn the tools quickly. The platform offers a range of free themes with ready-to-edit capabilities. If you need total customization, they provide web design services for an extra fee.

This brand offers excellent customer service. Sending a simple email to customer support produces informative responses in a timely fashion. LemonStand is readily available by phone and Skype to answer setup and general questions.

If you ever desire help with growing your eCommerce business, this company also writes great blog posts on how to attract more visitors, optimize sales conversions, and improve logistics and operations.

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Source: LemonStand

The bad news: LemonStand’s free templates are only a starting point for your website design. If you don’t want your online store to look like a third eye, you will need to hire a web designer to give you that custom-built feel. Moreover, if you are a small business, you will need to pay $49 per month for their startup package.

Side-By-Side Comparison

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Source: Ecommerce Platforms

Choose Wisely

If you’re trying to upgrade your software or launch an entirely new online store, it’s important to make sure that the shopping cart provider meets your business’s needs.

From price to customer support, research brands that will serve not only your customers but also your staff. Streamline your eCommerce store with the help of a shopping cart.

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