eCommerce

The 13 Best Shopify Alternatives for Your Business

Read Time: 22 min

The success of any eCommerce business relies on selecting the best platform to facilitate online purchases. While Shopify is one of the most popular choices, many other Shopify alternatives are available to meet different needs. This guide explores 13 different options, highlighting their unique features and capabilities to empower businesses of any type and size. If you’re searching for greater customization, scalability, or particular tools, this guide will help you choose wisely, ensuring you find the right fit for your business growth. 

Top 13 Shopify Alternatives

1. BigCommerce

BigCommerce is an eCommerce platform that provides businesses with an end-to-end solution for creating, managing, and scaling their online stores. It’s a SaaS (Software as a Service) product, meaning that it’s hosted in the cloud and accessible via a web browser.

A hand holding a cellphone with hand bags on the screen..

BigCommerce offers a range of features to support online retail, including website creation, search engine optimization (SEO), product management, marketing tools, and integration with various payment gateways. It caters to many businesses, from small startups to large enterprise-level operations.

With BigCommerce, merchants can customize their storefronts using simple templates or advanced CSS and HTML editing. They also benefit from a secure shopping cart, inventory management, and the ability to sell across multiple channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Amazon. Its standout feature is the ‘multi-storefront’ capability, enabling merchants to manage multiple shops under a single subscription.

Pros

With BigCommerce, merchants can integrate their payment gateway. While there will be credit card transaction fees from the payment gateway, BigCommerce, unlike Shopify, does not charge an additional processing fee when using an external payment gateway. In addition, all BigCommerce plans come with unlimited staff accounts, products, file storage, and bandwidth.

Other noteworthy advantages of using BigCommerce include:

  • POS integration to Square, Heartland Retail, Clover, Vend, and more
  • Mobile responsive website
  • BigCommerce mobile app
  • Single-page checkout
  • Promotion tools, including coupons, discounts, and gift cards
  • Multi-currency support
  • Professional reporting tools
  • Product ratings and reviews feature
  • Free site-wide HTTP and dedicated SSL
  • 24/7 tech support

Cons

A significant disadvantage, especially for medium—to large businesses, is that BigCommerce limits the value of online sales. The Standard plan allows up to $50k on a trailing 12-month basis, while the Plus plan allows $180k and the Pro plan up to $400k.

Other disadvantages of using BigCommerce include:

  • The “abandoned cart saver” feature is only available on higher-tier plans
  • A limited number of free templates—additional templates can cost between $150 to $400
  • Product filtering is only available on higher-tier plans
  • A high level of customization may require purchasing third-party add-ons

Fees

BigCommerce offers three plans ranging from $29 monthly to $299 when paying annually. The platform also offers an Enterprise plan, which involves custom pricing based on sales volumes and requirements.

If you exceed the sales limit allowed on your chosen plan, you will automatically be bumped up to a higher tier. If you are already on the Pro plan, you will be charged an additional $150 monthly for every $200k online sales.

User Interface

BigCommerce is known for its scalability and comprehensive set of built-in features. It has a straightforward and user-friendly interface and a drag-and-drop builder. Although developers can use code to customize a site, users without code knowledge can quickly build their store. BigCommerce is ideal for starting and established businesses that aim to grow their online presence.

2. WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a Shopify alternative that allows users to turn their WordPress website into a fully operational online store. The open-source eCommerce plugin for WordPress provides basic store functionality immediately, with free and paid extensions available for additional features and integrations.

WooCommerce’s strength lies in its customizability and the wide range of add-ons in its ecosystem. From payment gateway integrations to shipping options, marketing tools, inventory management, and SEO, there are many possibilities to expand your store’s functionality. Its open-source nature also means a community of developers continually contributes to its improvement and security.

Pros

A significant advantage is that WooCommerce is free to install and use without any subscription fee. Other advantages include:

  • Highly customizable—users can stand out from the crowd with a unique design
  • Facilitates POS integration for in-person sales
  • Over 55,000 apps and plugins to expand design, features, and functions
  • Stores can be tailored and scaled to suit your budget
  • Supports 140 different payment gateways, including WooCommerce Payments, Google Pay, Amazon Pay, Apple Pay, Stripe, Square, and PayPal

Cons

WooCommerce can only be used with WordPress—and while the basic plugin is free, it can become costly as you increase functionality with paid extensions and features. Due to its open-source nature, the platform provides limited support; this often requires users to directly reach out to individual plugin developers for each issue resolution.

Some other WooCommerce disadvantages include:

  • The basic plan does not include domain registration, SSL certificates, or hosting
  • Developing your store requires some technical knowledge
  • Requires routine maintenance

Fees

Although WooCommerce is free, you must pay for your domain registration, SSL certificates, and hosting plan. Hosting for these services ranges from $5 to $30 per month. Domain names typically cost around $9 annually, and SSL certificates can range from free to $100 annually.

To reduce costs, you can access free themes and plugins in the WordPress app store. However, a high-functioning eCommerce site will likely require paid premium templates and extensions. All these variables mean the costs of a WooCommerce store can differ significantly between users.

User Interface

Although the WooCommerce dashboard is easy to navigate, and users won’t find it difficult to add products, it requires technical setup and integrations before you can start building your store. If you are unfamiliar with using WordPress and WordPress plugins, expect a steeper learning curve than with options like Shopify.

3. Adobe Commerce (Formerly Magento)

Formerly known as Magento, Adobe Commerce is a popular eCommerce platform that allows users to create, customize, and manage their online stores. Adobe Commerce comes in two main editions—Commerce and Open Source.

Open Source is the free version of the platform. Users can modify code to tailor their site to their needs; however, they must manage their hosting, updates, and security. Some technical knowledge is required to optimize your store correctly—or you’ll need to hire a developer to create a unique and optimized site.

Commerce is the premium, paid version. It has full support, hosted cloud infrastructure, enhanced security, and a suite of pre-designed tools to simplify store setup and management for non-technical users. Although you will pay a monthly fee, the store setup is fast and straightforward.

Pros

Adobe Commerce presents a comprehensive solution for businesses demanding high control over their online store’s functionality and customer experience. The platform stands out for its ability to handle complex product catalogs, various customer groups, and global markets with multiple languages and currencies.

Further advantages of using Adobe Commerce include:

  • Access to advanced marketing tools and integrated B2B functionality
  • Powerful reporting and analytics features
  • Wide range of extensions and themes
  • Over 300 payment extensions, including PayPal, Stripe, and Amazon
  • No additional charge for using external gateways

Cons

One key downside of the platform is its lack of support service. It offers extensive resources, including videos, guides, and an active community; however, direct customer support is not provided. Collaborating with a developer for site maintenance is advisable, as they generally possess the necessary expertise or can access information to resolve site-building queries.

Other disadvantages of using the platform include:

  • Complicated setup for small businesses
  • Additional features can quickly hike up monthly fees
  • It is more time-intensive than an option like Shopify

Fees

Adobe Commerce does not offer a straightforward pricing structure. Instead, you must contact the sales department for a quote based on your gross merchandise value (GMV).

While the open-source version is free, you must organize and pay separately for your domain registration, SSL certificates, and hosting plan. Although this option can offer a primary online store at a relatively low cost if you use free or low-cost extensions, a high-functioning eCommerce site will most likely require paid premium templates and a knowledgeable development team. As with WooCommerce, these variables mean that the cost of an eCommerce store can vary significantly from business to business.

User Interface

Although Adobe Commerce is feature-rich, it lacks Shopify’s user-friendliness. The open-source version demands a high level of development knowledge to configure. Even with the paid, more accessible drag-and-drop version, the abundance of features can complicate the setup process and hinder the ease of launching your store. If you’re a beginner, you may want to consider other Shopify alternatives instead.

This cellphone on a platform displaying different Shopify alternatives.

4. Squarespace

Squarespace is an all-in-one solution for businesses looking to start or grow their online sales with a professional, easy-to-use website. The SaaS provider simplifies website hosting and building with customizable pre-made templates.

While the lowest tier plan does not offer eCommerce capabilities, higher tiers are specifically designed for eCommerce. Users can effortlessly add products, customize options like size and color, handle shipping methods, and manage inventory. Squarespace supports secure payment methods like major credit cards, PayPal, and Apple Pay. Additionally, it features tools for abandoned cart recovery, customer account creation for quick checkouts, and detailed analytics to track sales and customer trends.

Pros

Offering a wide range of tools to create professional-looking storefronts in various industries, Squarespace presents a compelling option for beginners, creatives, and designers. Some eCommerce advantages include:

  • 14-day free trial
  • Powerful marketing tools, including email campaign integration, discounts, and gift card functionalities
  • SSL certificates (annual plans) and unlimited bandwidth
  • SEO features
  • Mobile-optimized sites and checkouts
  • Dropshipping integrations
  • Free custom domain for the first year
  • 24/7 customer support

Cons

Although Squarespace offers 24/7 support, the service does not provide any customer service call numbers. This can be frustrating if you have an urgent query or prefer dealing with service agents over the phone.

Other disadvantages to consider include:

  • Sales are limited to a single currency
  • Limited multilingual support
  • No free plans
  • All plans have video storage limits
  • Limited to only one sub-navigation menu

Fees

Squarespace offers four plans; however, the Personal plan does not offer eCommerce functionality or allow you to use CSS or JavaScript. This limits the extent to which you can use and customize your site.

The remaining three plans are the Business, Commerce Basic, and Commerce Advanced, which cost $25, $29, and $55 per month. This fee applies to annual subscriptions, whereas month-to-month subscriptions are more costly. With a Business plan, you are charged an additional 3% transaction fee for sales, while Commerce plans have no further sales charges. Different fees apply for digital products. All plans, however, are subject to credit card processing fees.

User Interface

Squarespace’s drag-and-drop editor stands out for easy template customization without coding. However, the platform offers less creative freedom than, for example, WordPress since editing is limited to the template’s preset layout. For those with specific designs in mind, these limitations might be a hindrance. However, one benefit of working within the template’s structured layout is that it reduces the chance of crafting a visually unappealing site. It is also much quicker to set up your website and online store.

Advanced users with coding skills can utilize custom code for aesthetic tweaks such as color and background alterations. Still, Squarespace advises against using code for complete layout changes to prevent compromising site functionality.

5. Wix

Wix is a cloud-based web development platform that allows users to create and design websites with drag-and-drop tools. It also allows users to create responsive and mobile-ready sites without extensive coding.

Wix provides hundreds of professionally designed website templates for various industries and purposes, which users can customize to fit their brand and needs. Small businesses, freelancers, artists, and individuals looking to build a professional online presence often choose the platform without incurring the expenses of hiring a web developer or designer.

Pros

Wix offers a free domain name when taking out an annual eCommerce plan. All eCommerce plans include unlimited product listings, abandoned cart recovery, social selling functionality, and an online booking platform for service-based businesses. Higher-tier plans include unlimited storage and video hours, loyalty program features, customized reports, and automated sales tax.

Other advantages of using Wix are:

  • 24/7 customer support via email tickets and callbacks
  • Hundreds of free templates to choose from
  • Wix sites are optimized for mobile
  • Free ad vouchers with a Business plan

Cons

Wix has several limitations to consider. Notably, free and Combo plan users cannot access Google Analytics, limiting website traffic monitoring. A common pain point among users is the slow response times of customer service despite the apparent round-the-clock service.

Other limitations to consider include:

  • Limited design customization
  • Storage constraints
  • Once you build your site, you cannot change your website template
  • Wix sites are not transferable; if you want to switch platforms, you’ll have to start from scratch
  • Businesses with an expansive inventory may find the platform too slow and navigation options too limited

Fees

Wix offers numerous website options—but to accept online payments with an eCommerce store, you’ll need to choose one of the Business plans.

There are three options: $27 monthly for Business Basic, $32 monthly for Business Unlimited, and $59 monthly for Business VIP. All websites include an SSL certificate and are automatically backed up. In addition, all business plans offer online and recurring payment options, social selling, and customer account features.

User Interface

Wix is the ideal Shopify alternative for users with little to no technical background in web development. The platform’s intuitive drag-and-drop editor makes adding text, images, galleries, social media links, and more to a webpage easy. Wix offers a feature called Wix (Artificial Design Intelligence) for users who want an even easier setup. It creates a unique website by asking users questions about their needs and preferences.

6. Big Cartel

Suppose you’re looking for a cheaper option than Shopify. In that case, Big Cartel is a fully-hosted eCommerce platform specifically for small-scale artists and creators to sell their artwork, merchandise, and other unique products.

Big Cartel is not intended to compete directly with large-scale, full-service eCommerce platforms. Instead, it provides a streamlined and straightforward solution for those who want to sell a limited number of products with minimal fuss.

Pros

Big Cartel includes essential selling features like inventory tracking, product options (size, color, etc.), basic statistics, a mobile app, and a direct checkout process. One of its key advantages is that it doesn’t charge additional processing fees on sales. You will, therefore, only pay the payment provider’s transaction fee.

Other advantages of using Big Cartel include:

  • Affordability, relative to the starter plans of other eCommerce platforms
  • Free design templates
  • Integration with POS for in-person sales
  • Custom domain on paid plans
  • iOS and Android mobile apps to manage and monitor sales on the go

Cons

This is not your platform if you seek Shopify alternatives offering vast features and unlimited product listings. The following disadvantages can prove restrictive:

  • Limited advanced features, such as abandoned cart recovery and blogging capabilities
  • There are low limits on the number of products you can list
  • Limited SEO capability compared to some other platforms
  • Less than 20 design templates
  • Low customization capability on templates

Fees

Unlike many competitors, Big Cartel’s pricing plans are based on your list of products. The free plan (Gold) allows you to list only five products, with one image for each. The Platinum plan costs $10 monthly and allows 50 products, with five images for each. The highest tier is the Diamond plan, at $20 monthly; here, you can list up to 500 products.

Store owners can choose Stripe or PayPal as their payment processor and will be subject to the applicable transaction fees of the selected provider.

User Interface

Big Cartel is known for its user-friendly interface and easy store setup, allowing users who aren’t tech-savvy to create an online store quickly. If simplicity and ease of use are a priority for you, Big Cartel might stand out as a good option.

7. Ecwid

Ecwid, which stands for “eCommerce widget,” is a cloud-based eCommerce platform that allows users to add an online store to any existing website or social media page. It is designed as a SaaS solution, allowing you to simultaneously integrate a shopping cart into multiple sites and manage them from one dashboard. It integrates seamlessly with most website platforms, including WordPress, Wix, Weebly, and custom-built sites.

The platform is particularly beneficial for those who want to start selling online but do not want to develop a new, full-fledged, separate eCommerce website. It’s also well-suited to businesses with a web presence and want to add eCommerce functionality with minimal disruption.

Pros

Ecwid supports selling across multiple channels, including Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, and eBay. With a paid plan, you receive a mobile POS system enabling you to process sales on the go at fairs, farmers’ markets, and physical stores. Ecwid’s App Market offers a vast selection of free and premium apps, allowing you to enhance your online store functionality through marketing, inventory, order management, accounting, and reporting integrations.

Other advantages of the platform include:

  • Mobile-optimized stores
  • Multi-currency selling (on paid plans)
  • Multi-language support
  • Free plan options
  • SEO tools
  • Free customization by Ecwid developers on the Business (2 hours) and Unlimited (12 hours) plan
  • With the Unlimited plan, you can create a custom iOS or Android app

Cons

Although you can use the platform as a stand-alone store, it only offers a single-page site. This can work for users who only have one product—but most business owners are best off integrating Ecwid on an existing site. Note that if you’ve signed up and decided the platform is unsuitable, Ecwid will not refund you.

Also, consider the following disadvantages:

  • If you don’t have one, you’ll need to build a website before integrating Ecwid
  • Free and Venture plans do not offer product variations
  • Free and Venture plans do not allow you to edit orders

Fees

Ecwid doesn’t charge additional processing fees on sales, regardless of your chosen plan. Therefore, you will only pay transaction fees as your payment gateway selected requires.

Ecwid offers four plans. The free plan limits you to ten products, while the Venture plan ($19 per month), allows 100 products and includes functionality to sell on Facebook and Instagram. The business plan costs $39 monthly, and it can be sold on Amazon and eBay, with a 2500 product limit. The Unlimited plan ($99 monthly) does not limit product listings.

If you pay annually, you will also save 25% on the above prices.

User Interface

Ecwid lets you quickly set up an online shop with a drag-and-drop dashboard. The platform is designed to be user-friendly, with an intuitive admin interface that makes it simple for users to manage their inventory, process orders, and update products.

If you have an existing site, Ecwid should be a top consideration when looking for a Shopify alternative.

8. Volusion

Volusion is a hosted eCommerce platform. The platform caters to small and medium-sized businesses and

offers a variety of features such as inventory and customer management. Volusion provides a variety of responsive themes you can customize to align with your brand. It also includes access to CSS and HTML for further customization. While it’s not free, the company also offers in-house design and marketing services, which can be particularly useful for businesses that prefer to keep everything under one umbrella.

Pros

Volusion offers versatile, adaptable themes you can modify anytime without losing your website content, even when switching templates. The platform allows unlimited product options and variants; additionally, the product export/import function is ideal for businesses selling across multiple channels. This lets you use Volusion as the central hub for all your online stores.

Other advantages of Volution include:

  • Extensive app integrations to increase functionality
  • Extensive reporting features
  • Social media sharing and integrations
  • Email marketing tools
  • Returns and refunds processing
  • 24/7 support
  • POS integration for in-person sales
  • 14-day free trial

Cons

While there are many pros to using Volution as a Shopify alternative, the platform also has drawbacks. Volusion does not have a built-in blogging platform, which can be a drawback for content marketing strategies. Although it offers POS integration for in-person sales, the feature is not intuitive, and the setup can be long and complicated.

Other cons to consider include:

  • A limited selection of free themes
  • Additional fees when exceeding your allotted monthly bandwidth
  • No digital product sales are allowed
  • Specific plans cap product listings and gross merchandise volume

Fees

Volusion offers competitively priced software with four tiers: Personal ($35 monthly), Professional ($79 per month), and Business ($299 per month). The Prime plan pricing is customized according to your gross merchandise value. Tier prices vary based on product display capacity and bandwidth allotment; all tiers include online support and secure checkout, with higher-tier plans providing additional tools and features for store enhancement.

Regardless of your selected plan, volution does not impose extra processing fees on sales. You will only be responsible for the transaction fees your payment gateway charges.

User Interface

While Volusion’s website builder is designed to be user-friendly, many users don’t find the platform very intuitive. While you don’t need coding expertise, editing and customizing your store can be complex. This becomes incredibly frustrating when setting up more complex functionalities.

9. Prestashop

PrestaShop is an open-source eCommerce platform built in PHP. It offers extensive customization, supports major payment providers, and is available in various languages and countries. Due to its open-source nature and the large variety of templates, PrestaShop presents a highly customizable Shopify alternative.

Pros

Prestashop has many out-of-the-box features, including catalog management, product displays, checkout, shipping, and payments. The Add-Ons Marketplace allows you to extend the functionality and design of your site to manage your business seamlessly. Other advantages include:

  • Unlimited products
  • PrestaShop Metrics’ comprehensive analytics tools
  • PrestaShop Marketing and PrestaShop Social, for automated ads on Google networks, Facebook, and Instagram
  • Unlimited employee accounts
  • PrestaShop Checkout with PayPal, which supports 20 currencies and sales in 190+ countries

Cons

Although PrestaShop can handle a growing business, scaling your store significantly may require additional resources, optimization, and potentially more robust hosting solutions. A large number of modules or a poorly configured server can lead to performance issues such as slow loading times. In addition, many essential and advanced features are not free, and the Classic plan does not include customer support.

Fees

The PrestaShop open-source Classic plan is free to install, use, and customize; however, you must organize and pay separately for your domain registration, SSL certificates, and hosting plan. Although this option can provide a low-cost solution, you will need technical expertise and may need to pay for additional extensions. Hiring a developer can become extremely costly.

PrestaShop also offers a Hosted plan at approximately $26/month (€24). This plan includes hosting, support, and backup services.

User Interface

Prestashop is less user-friendly than Shopify. Setting up and customizing a store is complex and generally requires a decent understanding of web development or the assistance of a developer. If you’re a beginner, we recommend choosing one of the other Shopify alternatives.

10. Sellfy

Sellfy is well-suited for selling digital products like e-books, music, videos, photography, digital art, software, and print-on-demand merchandise. The platform provides a simple and streamlined process for setting up an online store without requiring extensive technical knowledge.

Pros

Sellfy is optimized for selling digital products, with features such as instant downloads, PDF stamping, and limited download attempts to protect digital content. You can embed Sellfy storefronts and product widgets into existing websites or blogs, allowing you to sell products directly from your site.

Other platform benefits include:

  • Print-on-demand (POD) services
  • Built-in marketing tools such as email marketing, discount codes, upselling capabilities, and tracking pixels for retargeting
  • Unlimited product listings
  • Subscription-based product support

Cons

While Sellfy provides a straightforward setup, there are limited options for customizing the look and feel of the storefront. The platform caps sales at $10k to $200k annually, depending on your plan. Other disadvantages to consider include:

  • No free options
  • Limited third-party integrations compared to other platforms
  • Only offers essential SEO functions
  • No native blogging tool

Fees

Sellfy has three plans and offers three payment options: monthly, annually, or bi-annually. Depending on the plan and payment terms, you will pay between $19 and $159 monthly for a subscription. For those looking at the cheapest options, the starter plan offers limited support and does not provide a cart abandonment feature.

Sellfy does not charge extra fees on sales. You will only pay the transaction fees from your payment gateway (Stripe or PayPal) and your monthly

subscription.

User Interface

Sellfy is known for its user-friendly interface, which allows sellers to set up an online store quickly and with minimal technical effort. If you’re a beginner and don’t need a high level of customization, this can be a good option.

11. Shift4Shop

For a small business on a budget, Shift4Shop is one of the better alternatives to Shopify. It is a remarkable feature-rich free plan with an extensive template library, drag-and-drop site editor, abandoned cart saver, order management, and built-in email marketing CRM systems.

Pros

Shift4Shop is designed to accommodate businesses as they grow, providing unlimited storage and bandwidth and handling high traffic and sales volumes. It offers integrated payment solutions, giving customers a seamless checkout experience without needing third-party payment gateways.

Other pros include:

  • Unlimited product listings
  • Advanced SEO tools
  • 24/7 Support
  • An extensive free plan and affordable paid plans
  • No revenue caps

Cons

While Shift4Shop offers a free plan, qualifying requires using Shift4 payments as the sole payment processor. Due to its system’s complexity, migrating to or from Shift4Shop to another platform can be challenging, potentially making switching platforms difficult without technical help.

Other disadvantages to consider include:

  • Limited customization options
  • A minimum of $500 in sales to use the free plan

Fees

Shift4Shop is free to use, provided you use its credit card processor. In this case, the only fees you pay are its credit card processing fees, at around 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction. If you prefer to use PayPal or another third-party payment processor, you’ll need to use a paid plan starting at $29 monthly.

User Interface

The platform’s user interface can be less intuitive than other platforms, potentially resulting in a steeper learning curve for new users. Due to the vast array of features and options, the platform can be overwhelming for beginners or small businesses wanting a more straightforward setup.

12. PinnacleCart

PinnacleCart lets businesses create, manage, and grow their online stores with various customizable templates, add-ons, and marketing tools. The platform offers a streamlined, one-page checkout process, which can help reduce cart abandonment rates and improve the shopping experience.

Pros

PinnacleCart allows you to syndicate products with significant shopping sites like Google Shopping, Amazon, and eBay to expand your reach. It is PA-DSS compliant and offers a range of security features to protect merchants and customers, including SSL support and fraud protection tools.

Other advantages of using the platform include:

  • Built-in SEO tools
  • Mobile Optimization
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Web analytics
  • 14-day free trial

Cons

PinnacleCart is not the cheapest option and does not offer refunds. Therefore, ensuring it’s the right option for you before building or transferring your site is essential.

Some of the platform’s disadvantages include:

  • No in-built blogging function or product review feature
  • PinnacleCart coding can be complex when creating advanced template modifications
  • Limited language capabilities
  • Difficulties accepting international payments (outside the US)

Fees

The platform offers a Standard plan at $79.95 per month and an Advanced plan at $199.95 per month. The Advanced plan offers unlimited staff accounts and 30 payment options, while the Standard plan only allows five staff accounts and three payment options: PayPal, Stripe, and Authorize.net.

User Interface

Users have access to various design templates and can extensively customize them to match their brand through access to HTML and CSS. However, much customization beyond standard drag-and-drop design will require technical knowledge. Some users find the platform less user-friendly and more complex than Shopify, requiring a steeper learning curve.

13. Square Online

Square Online integrates seamlessly with Square’s suite of POS products, offering a unified solution for managing both online and in-person sales.

The platform features website creation tools, inventory sync across sales channels, built-in payment processing, and simple store management functions. It’s aimed at retailers of all sizes looking for a no-fuss approach to online business. It emphasizes a smooth transition for existing Square POS users to expand into the digital marketplace.

Pros

Square Online provides a free plan with a point-of-sale system, inventory tracking, and online payment processing. The only fees on the free plan are around 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fees. All Square Online plans can accept credit card payments, Cash App Pay, Apple Pay, and Google Pay.

Other advantages include:

  • Facebook and Google ad management through your dashboard
  • Built-in SEO tools
  • Abandoned cart recovery on top-tier plans
  • Advanced reporting on high-tier plans
  • Lower processing fees on the Premium plan

Cons

While Square allows you to sell unlimited products online, the free plan is restricted to a Square-branded website or social media platforms. Additionally, you’ll be constrained by a bandwidth and storage cap of 500 MB, which could affect the volume of sales on your site. Other cons include:

  • Limited third-party integrations compared to other platforms
  • Poor customer service reputation
  • Limited customization options
  • No in-built blogging function

Fees

Besides the free plan, Square offers two paid plans: the Plus plan, which costs $29 annually, and the Premium plan, which costs $79. With the Plus plan, you get a free domain for the first year and website builder access; this plan also eliminates all Square ads from your online store.

The Premium plan also offers real-time shipping rates and lower transaction fees than the free or Plus plans, at 2.6% + $0.30 per sale.

User Interface

Square Online offers a very user-friendly interface: it is easy to navigate and provides thorough step-by-step guidance for first-time users. But while it is simple, fast, and convenient, some users find the customization options too limited.

Features to Look for in a Shopify Alternative

This hand holds a phone with a dress that was bought using Shopify alternatives and other websites.

When assessing Shopify alternatives for your eCommerce business, there are several key considerations to ensure the platform you choose aligns with your specific business needs and goals, including:

  • Cost Structure. Compare total costs, including monthly fees, transaction fees, add-on services, developer rates, and other associated costs. Some platforms may have lower upfront costs but higher transaction fees, or vice versa.
  • Ease of Use/Customization/Flexibility. Consider how user-friendly the platform is, especially if you lack technical skills. Some platforms offer more freedom for customization, while others are more rigid but simpler to use.
  • Scalability. Evaluate whether the platform can grow with your business. This includes handling increased traffic, more products, and additional functionalities you may need as the company expands.
  • Payment Gateway Options. Which payment gateways are supported? More options can help you offer customers their preferred payment methods and operate in international markets.
  • Features and Integrations. Determine whether the essential features you need are built-in or if you can add them through integrations or apps.
  • Support. Research the level of support provided—such as live chat, email support, or phone service—and the responsiveness of these channels.
  • Mobile-Responsiveness. Since a significant portion of online shopping is done on mobile devices, your eCommerce platform must provide a seamless mobile experience.
  • SEO Capabilities. Does the platform support SEO best practices? This can impact your store’s visibility in search engine results and affect your organic traffic.
  • Security. Ensure the platform offers robust security features to protect sensitive customer information and complies with data protection regulations.
  • Marketplace and Social Media Sales. Check if the platform allows for integration with marketplaces like Amazon or eBay and social media sales channels, which can be necessary for omnichannel selling.

Which Alternatives to Shopify Make the Most Sense for Your Business?

While Shopify is a widely recognized and robust eCommerce option, various alternatives exist, each with advantages. Your choice should align with your long-term vision, operational preferences, and budget; payment processing is a vital part of this.

A payment service provider that will set you up with secure payment processing is vital for any business. This way, no matter your business type or processing volume, you’ll have peace of mind that you can process transactions without being shut down. PaymentCloud works with business owners to provide customized payment processing solutions that ensure a smooth and secure transaction experience. Our services include simple setup, rapid processing, and extensive integration options while maintaining PCI compliance. Furthermore, PaymentCloud stands out for its flexibility in pricing, working with you to tailor a solution that grows with your business and your budget. Start building your eCommerce future today.

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