The 17 Absolute Best Ecommerce Platforms for Any Type of Business in 2021

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The 17 Absolute Best Ecommerce Platforms for Any Type of Business in 2021
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If you want to sell products online, you need an ecommerce platform.

With an ecommerce platform, you can manage your entire online business activities. You can...

  • Build your own online store
  • Manage orders
  • Organize customer data
  • Perform marketing activities
  • Lots more...

There are hundreds of ecommerce platforms, but choosing the right one isn't easy. Every business has specific requirements that an ecommerce platform needs to fulfill.

For example, a dropshipping business needs another ecommerce platform than a local business - since a dropshipping business needs integrations to dropshipping partners.

A tech business might need another ecommerce platform than a fashion business.

That being said, here are the 17 best ecommerce platforms for any type of business in 2021:

The 17 Best Ecommerce Platforms for 2021

Here's a list of the 17 best ecommerce platforms for 2021:

In the following, I'm going to give you a quick introduction to each ecommerce platform. I'll show you the pros and cons, payment methods, pricing, and the main features of each software.

So if you want to know which ecommerce platform is best suited for your business, this article is for you.

Let's dive right in.

Squarespace

Squarespace

Squarespace was founded in 2004, has about 800 employees, and is based in New York City. Squarespace is known for its awesome website builder - however, they also offer an integrated eCommerce solution, except for the personal plan.

Squarespace is popular for its beautiful and modern templates and is the best ecommerce platform for small to mid-sized businesses and startups.

Pros:

  • Custom domain
  • Drag-and-drop builder
  • Beautiful templates
  • Unlimited products
  • Mobile optimized
  • All-in-One tool
  • You can sell physical products, digital products & services
  • Email marketing
  • Flexible solution
  • Analytics
  • Calendar
  • Manage finances
  • No additional fees with third-party payment solutions like PayPal or Stripe (only the fees of the payment processor)

Cons:

Squarespace might not be the best solution for enterprise ecommerce companies.

Payment methods:

With Squarespace, you can connect:

  • Stripe
  • PayPal
  • Square (only for Squarespace Point of Sale, US only)

Pricing:

  • Personal: $12 per month
  • Business: $18 per month
  • Basic Commerce: $26 per month
  • Advanced Commerce: $40 per month

You should check out all Squarespace plans here.

Shopify

Shopify

Shopify is the most popular ecommerce platform in the world. Shopify was founded in 2006, has over 5.000 employees, and is based in Ottawa, Canada.

It's is an All-in-One ecommerce platform for small to large businesses. They also provide a drag-and-drop builder, so it'll be easy for you to build your online store from scratch.

They offer awesome support and over 3.200 Apps within their Shopify App Store.

Pros:

  • Drag-and-drop builder
  • 70+ themes to choose from
  • Optimized for mobile devices
  • Custom domains
  • Customzationable with HTML and CSS
  • Email marketing, Google campaigns, and Facebook Ads
  • Integrated comprehensive store management tools
  • Marketing & SEO tools
  • Abandoned cart saving functionality
  • Analytics
  • Multi-currency selling
  • Great customer service
  • 3.200 Apps
  • Dropshipping
  • Cross-border ecommerce
  • Shopify Point of Sale
  • Multichannel selling on social media like Facebook or Instagram

Cons:

  • You need to install lots of apps if you want to customize your store
  • Shopify Payments only allows you to sell from certain countries
  • Professional reporting functionality only comes with the more expensive plans
  • Email marketing functionality is pretty basic
  • Additional fees for third-party payment providers like PayPal or Stripe

Payment methods:

You can either use Shopify Payments or another third-party payment provider. In case you use Shopify Payments, you can let your customers pay with over 100 credit cards.

Here are the fees you've to pay with Shopify Payments:

Online Credit Card rates:

  • Basic Shopify: 2.9% + 30¢ USD
  • Shopify: 2.6% + 30¢ USD
  • Advanced Shopify: 2.4% + 30¢ USD

In-Person-Credit Card rates:

  • Basic Shopify: 2.7% + 0¢ USD
  • Shopify: 2.5% + 0¢ USD
  • Advanced Shopify: 2.4% + 0¢ USD

Additional fees using third-party payment providers:

  • Basic Shopify: 2.0%
  • Shopify: 1.0%
  • Advanced Shopify: 0.5%

Pricing:

  • Basic Shopify: $29 per month
  • Shopify: $79 per month
  • Advanced Shopify: $299 per month

If you're new to ecommerce, the Basic Plan will be enough, but I recommend switching to the Shopify Plan once your business grows.

BigCommerce

BigCommerce

BigCommerce is one of the biggest competitors to Shopify. The company was founded in 2009, has over 600 employees, and is based in Austin, Texas.

Like Shopify, BigCommerce is an All-in-One solution for small businesses and larger companies who want to sell online.

Compared to Shopify, BigCommerce has more in-built features from the start you don't need to pay extra for.

BigCommerce is especially popular for multichannel selling. You can easily sell on Amazon or other marketplaces like Facebook or Instagram.

They also offer an enterprise solution for large ecommerce companies and solutions for B2B ecommerce.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Flexible solution
  • Large feature set compared to other solutions
  • No additional transaction fees for third-party payment providers
  • Reporting tools
  • Built-in product review functionality
  • Sell in multiple currencies
  • Sell on multiple marketplaces
  • Real-time shipping calculation with the lowest plan
  • Drag-and-drop builder
  • Blogging features
  • Point of Sale Apps
  • Unlimited user seats for employees

Cons:

  • Limits based on annual sales volume
  • Themes are not as good as with Wix or Shopify
  • The built-in blog doesn't have an RSS feed

Payment methods:

Choose from more than 65+ integrated online payment solutions without additional fees.

Pricing:

  • Standard: $29.95 per month
  • Plus: $79.95 per month
  • Pro: $299.95 per month

BigCommerce is a flexible solution for small to larger businesses that want more functionalities and pay fewer fees.

Square Online

Square Online

Square was founded in 2009 and is based in San Fransico, California. Square offers a wide range of financial services, but they also have a great ecommerce platform.

When you use Square Online, it will be easy for you to integrate your online store into other Square services.

Square Online is an awesome solution for local businesses that want to take advantage of Square PoS.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Sync with your existing Square PoS
  • Streamline inventory management
  • Multichannel selling
  • SEO tools
  • Analytics

Cons:

  • The website isn't that customizable
  • No PayPal

Payment methods:

Square Online lets you accept all major credit cards, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Square Pay.

Pricing:

  • Free: $0/month and 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction
  • Professional: $12/month and 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction
  • Performance: $26/month and 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction
  • Premium: $72/month and 2.6% + 30 cents per transaction

Weebly

Weebly

Weebly was founded in 2006 and is headquartered in San Francisco, California. In 2018, they had more than 625.000 paid subscribers.

Pros:

  • Drag-and-drop builder
  • Optimized for mobile devices
  • Over 200 integrations
  • Custom domain
  • Shop management
  • Mobile App
  • Sell physical, digital products, and services
  • Show customers remaining available products
  • Manage inventory & orders
  • No additional fees for third-party payment processing

Cons:

  • Weebly isn't suited for larger ecommerce companies
  • No Dropshipping

Payment methods:

  • Stripe
  • Paypal
  • Square (Support Point of Sale)

Pricing:

Ecommerce functionality is available with their Pro Plan for 10€/month.

Ecwid

Ecwid

Ecwid specializes in selling products through different marketplaces like Amazon, Facebook, or Instagram. It's also a very flexible ecommerce platform with lots of integrations.

With Ecwid, you can turn any website into an online store. For example, there are integrations for:

  • Wix
  • Weebly
  • Squarespace
  • Joomla
  • Tumblr
  • Blogger

But you can install Ecwid on any website.

What's also great is that they offer a free plan you can use to sell up to 10 products through your online store.

Pros:

  • Drag-and-drop builder
  • PoS
  • Mobile optimized
  • Lots of integrations
  • Multichannel selling
  • Fair pricing
  • Global solution
  • Marketing tools
  • Reporting tools
  • Shipping price calculator
  • Lots of payment solutions

Cons:

  • Limited design
  • Not suited for larger ecommerce companies
  • Phone support is only available with more expensive plans

Payment methods:

Around 70 payment gateways, including PayPal, Stripe, and many others. No additional transaction fees from Ecwid.

Pricing:

  • Free Plan
  • Venture: $15 per month
  • Business: $35 per month
  • Unlimited: $99 per month

Jimdo

Jimdo

Jimdo was founded in 2007, has about 200 employees, and is based in Hamburg, Germany.

It's an easy-to-use website builder with ecommerce functionality. It has an affordable pricing and is best suited for small local businesses. Medium to large ecommerce businesses should go for more powerful solutions like Shopify or BigCommerce.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Mobile optimized
  • Order management
  • Affordable pricing
  • Custom domain
  • SEO Tools
  • Reporting
  • 0% transaction fees
  • Logo creator
  • Great customer support
  • Set up discount codes

Cons:

  • Website isn't that customizable
  • Not a good fit for larger businesses
  • Not flexible

Payment methods:

Jimdo offers several payment options such as PayPal, Credit Card (Stripe—for Business customers), Invoice, Payment in Advance, Local delivery, Local pickup, Collect-on-Delivery, and Check (by mail).

Pricing:

  • Basic: 15€
  • Business: 19€
  • VIP: 39€

Sellfy

Sellfy

Sellfy was built to sell digital products, but now you can also sell physical products through it. Sellfy is the best platform for creators, bloggers, and small businesses who want to sell digital products, subscriptions, and physical goods on their site and through their social media profiles.

Sellfy also provides tools for email marketing, discount codes, upselling features to increase your sales, and more.

Pros:

  • Very easy to use
  • Website builder
  • Sell all kinds of products
  • Optimized for mobile devices
  • Embed your store everywhere, for example on your social media sites
  • Email marketing
  • Upsells
  • Analytics
  • 1000+ Zapier integrations

Cons:

The main downside of Sellfy is that you can only use PayPal and Stripe as payment methods.

Payment methods:

  • PayPal
  • Stripe

Pricing:

  • Starter: $19 per Month
  • Business: $39 per Month
  • Premium: $89 per Month

Zyro

Zyro

Zyro is relatively new in the ecommerce space. It was founded in 2019 and is headquartered in Kaunas, Lithuania.

What's different about Zyro is that they provide AI solutions for their customers. For example, you can use a content editor that automatically generates SEO friendly content.

That's a perfect solution for absolute beginners who have no clue about copywriting.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Website builder
  • Sell on marketplaces like Amazon, Facebook, or Instagram
  • Mobile optimized
  • AI tools
  • Affordable
  • Shop management
  • Analytics
  • Marketing tools
  • Coupons

Cons:

  • Complex domain handling
  • Limited customizability
  • Slow customer support

Payment methods:

Choose from over 50 quick and secure payment options.

Pricing:

  • Basic: $15.99
  • Unleashed: $16.99
  • Ecommerce: $25
  • Ecommerce+: $35

3dcart

3dcart

3dcart was founded in 1997 and is based in Tamarac, Florida. 3dcart has been in the business for 20 years now and is a great option for advanced sellers.

If you've built online stores in the past, 3dcart is a great option for you to consider because it offers advanced features that you can take advantage of.

Pros:

  • 50 themes
  • Great SEO tools
  • No transaction fees
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Choose from 100+ supported payment processors
  • Integrations
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Web hosting
  • Free domain for one year

Cons:

  • The admin dashboard isn't user friendly
  • Designs are outdated

Payment methods:

Choose from over 100+ payment processors with no additional fees.

Pricing:

  • Startup Store: $19
  • Basic Store: $29
  • Plus Store: $79
  • Power Store: $129
  • Pro Store: $229

3dcart is the best ecommerce platform for SEO.

Wix

Wix

Wix.com is one of the most famous drag-and-drop website builders. The company was founded in 2006, has 2.562 employees, and is based in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Wix.com is not only perfect to build standard websites without HTML and CSS knowledge - but you can also build online stores with Wix.com. They provide over 500 templates and features like collections, galleries, related products, or a customer wishlist.

In fact, Wix.com is popular for the simplicity of its system.

Pros:

  • Easy to use drag-and-drop builder
  • Custom domain
  • Optimized for mobile devices
  • Manage inventory, track orders, and communicate with customers
  • 500 templates to choose from
  • Additional features like collections, galleries, related products, or a customer wishlist
  • Set up global shipping rules from multiple carriers
  • No additional transaction fees for third-party payment providers
  • Outsource fulfillment automatically
  • Dropshipping
  • Wix Point of Sale
  • Print-on-demand capabilities
  • Add suppliers or fulfillment services to the system
  • Multichannel selling on social media like Facebook or Instagram
  • Many more features like scheduling tools, social media automation tools, SEO tools, email marketing, video maker, Facebook ads, and so on
  • Financial tools

Cons:

  • Limited storage space - not suited for big ecommerce businesses
  • No upselling features
  • They had SEO issues in the past

Payment methods:

  • WixPayments (Credit Card, Pay Now, iDeal, GiroPay)
  • 35+ payment providers, you should check out here.
  • PayPal
  • Manual

WixPayments is their internal payment system. If you're going to use WixPayments, you've to pay the following fees:

Credit Card:

  • EU Countries: 1.9% of the transaction amount + 0.30 EUR
  • Switzerland: 2.3% of the transaction amount + 0.30 CHF
  • United Kingdom: 2.1% of the transaction amount + 0.20 GBP
  • USA: 2.9% of the transaction amount + 0.30 USD

Pay Now:

  • Austria, Belgium, Germany: 2.5% of the transaction amount + 0.30 EUR
  • Switzerland: 2.5% of the transaction amount + 0.40 CHF

iDeal:

  • 2.5% of the transaction amount + 0.30 EUR

GiroPay:

  • 2.5% of the transaction amount + 0.30 EUR

While you don't have to pay additional fees for PayPal, keep in mind that you also have to pay the PayPal fees.

Pricing:

  • Business Basic: $23 per month
  • Business Unlimited: $27 per month
  • Business VIP: $49 per month
  • Enterprise: $500 per month

All in all, Wix.com is a great ecommerce platform for small to mid-sized business. If you run an enterprise ecommerce company, Wix.com might not be the best solution for you.

Volusion

Volusion

Volusion was founded in 1999 and is based in Austin, Texas. It's a top ecommerce solution for those of you who want to sell only physical products. There's no restriction on how many products you can list within your online store - buy you can only sell physical products.

Pros:

  • Search functionality
  • Barcode creator
  • Related products
  • Inventory management
  • Collect customer reviews
  • Mobile App
  • Sell in multiple currencies
  • SEO Tools
  • Social Media Integration
  • Sell everywhere
  • Reporting
  • Discounts
  • Gift cards
  • Newsletters

Cons:

  • "Only" 30 payment providers
  • Limited integrations

Payment methods:

30 payment gateways, including PayPal, Stripe, and Amazon. They don't charge additional fees.

Pricing:

  • Personal: $29 per month
  • Professional: $79 per month
  • Business: $299 per month

Pinnacle Cart

Pinnacle Cart

Pinnacle Cart was founded in 2003 and is headquartered in Colorado. Pinnacle Cart is an All-in-One ecommerce solution that provides lots of features.

Pros:

  • Great store builder
  • No transaction fees
  • Unlimited products
  • 5 administrative accounts
  • 25+ different payment providers
  • Complete customer management
  • Order Management
  • SEO & Marketing tools
  • Reporting tools

Cons:

  • Low learning curve
  • Customer support is not available 24/7
  • The PoS isn't in-built
  • It's not globally compatible

Payment methods:

They partnered up with over 25 payment providers. However, if you're going for the Standard Plan, you can only use PayPal and PayPru.

Pricing:

  • Standard: $79.95
  • Advanced: $199.95
  • Enterprise: -

Salesforce Commerce Cloud

Salesforce Commerce Cloud

Salesforce was founded in 1999 by Marc Benioff, has about 50.000 employees, and is based in San Fransico. Salesforce is the world's leading CRM system, but they also offer an ecommerce solution.

Their ecommerce solutions are suited for all kinds and sizes of business, and also for businesses focusing on B2B ecommerce. 

If you want an ecommerce solution with an integrated CRM system, Salesforce Commerce Cloud would be your best bet.

Pros:

  • Integrated CRM
  • AI functionalities to improve UX
  • Enterprise solution
  • Order Management

Cons:

  • Might not be a good fit for small businesses

Pricing:

There's no fixed pricing. Pricing is not transparent on their website. You can request a quote if you're interested in Salesforce Commerce Cloud.

WooCommerce

Woo Commerce

WooCommerce is not an All-in-One ecommerce solution like Shopify or BigCommerce. It's rather a WordPress plugin that turns your WordPress site into an online store.

However, since most websites are built on WordPress, most online stores in the world are power by WooCommerce.

It's also a free solution if you already have a WordPress site. Yet, you need to pay for hosting and other services to run your WordPress site.

Pros:

  • Nearly unlimited features
  • Lots of payment gateways
  • Scalability
  • Localization
  • Analytics
  • Marketing features
  • Choose between multiple shipping carriers
  • 300+ themes
  • Store management
  • All payment options
  • Flexible

Cons:

  • A large number of plugins can get overwhelming
  • Not suited for total beginners

Payment methods:

  • WooCommerce Payments: 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction for U.S. issued credit or debit cards, +1% for transactions paid using a card issued outside the US
  • 100+ payment gateways without additional fees

Pricing:

WooCommerce is free to download.

PrestaShop

Presta Shop

PrestaShop is an open-source ecommerce solution written in PHP. They have more than 1 million community members and 1.000 active developers.

Presta Shop is available in over 75 languages and they have over 300.000 users worldwide.

Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Budget-Friendly
  • User-friendly
  • Easy customization
  • Demographic assistance
  • Secure payment

Cons:

  • Limited scalability
  • No official support team

Payment methods:

PrestaShop supports by default all major types of payment methods such as checks, cash on delivery, bank wire, PayPal, Moneybookers, and various other payment methods.

Pricing:

PrestaShop is an open-source software.

BigCartel

BigCartel

BigCartel is an ecommerce platform especially for people who sell artwork, clothing, jewelry, and photo prints.

Pros:

  • It's very easy to use
  • It's reliable
  • Perfect for artists and creators

Cons:

  • Not scalable
  • Not suited for large companies

Payment methods:

You can set up PayPal and Stripe. Big Cartel does not charge additional payment processing fees.

Pricing:

  • Gold (5 products): Free
  • Platinum (50 products): $9.99/mo
  • Diamond (250 products): $19.99/mo
  • Titanium (500 products): $29.99/mo

Conclusion

Choosing an ecommerce platform is an essential long-term decision that affects your business success.

It's uber important that you take a close look at each ecommerce platform before you make a decision. Take your time and determine what's important for your business. 

For example, is it more important to stay flexible or do you want the highest productivity?

With this article, I gave you a guide in the right direction when choosing an ecommerce platform.

Here's a summary of all ecommerce platforms we've reviewed:

  • Squarespace - Best ecommerce platform for small to mid-sized businesses
  • Shopify - Best ecommerce platform for mid-sized to large businesses - Best ecommerce platform for dropshipping
  • BigCommerce - Great for mid-sized to large businesses
  • Square Online - Best for small local businesses
  • Weebly - Best for people who hate complexity
  • Ecwid - Best platform if you've an existing website
  • Jimdo - Great for small local businesses
  • Sellfy - Best ecommerce platform for bloggers and influencers
  • Zyro - Great for small to medium businesses
  • 3dcart - Best for advanced sellers
  • Wix - Great for small to mid-sized businesses
  • Volusion - Great for small to mid-sized businesses
  • Pinnacle Cart - Open source
  • Salesforce - Best ecommerce platform for enterprise businesses
  • WooCommerce - Best ecommerce WordPress integration
  • Prestashop - Great for mid-sized to large businesses
  • BigCartel - Best ecommerce platform for designers and creatives

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