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shopify alternatives to ecommmerce businesses

Shopify Alternative for eCommerce Businesses

Aamir Qutub
Aamir Qutub
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eCommerce website development is noticing exponential growth for the businesses globally. In Australia alone, the online business recorded a rapid rise of 7.84% CAGR, with the revenue reaching $53.2 billion in 2023.

If you want to take advantage of this rapid digital growth, there are several platforms that can provide you the space to open your online store. And there’s no chance that while you’re searching for a suitable platform, you haven’t heard about Shopify!

Shopify is a popular CMS platform that has a market share of 11% worldwide, ranking 4th amongst the top 5 eCommerce platforms.

what makes shopify a popular platform

While Shopify offers user-friendly features and has undeniably emerged as a powerhouse in the eCommerce ecosystem, it may not be the ideal choice for everyone. And if you are here, there’s a high possibility that you are aware of its limitations and trying to search for a better alternative.

Therefore, this comprehensive guide will help you pave the path for a thriving online presence and making an informed decision for your business.

Here, we will provide a detailed list of the top 11 noteworthy Shopify alternatives, each offering distinct features and advantages to empower your online store. But before that, let us have a quick discussion about the critical reasons that make you consider alternatives for Shopify.

Why to Consider Shopify Alternatives?

Considering alternatives to Shopify can be prudent for businesses seeking a more tailored and cost-effective eCommerce solution.

While Shopify is renowned for its user-friendly interface, it may not align with every business’s budgetary constraints or customisation needs.

Scalability is another critical factor, as some eCommerce platforms may provide better options for growth without causing disruptions.

why shopify is not suitable option for many businesses?

Therefore, exploring alternatives opens the door to platforms that offer greater flexibility in pricing models and extensive customisation options, allowing companies to create a more unique and personalised online shopping experience.

eCommerce website development services

Let us now figure out the best direct alternatives to Shopify, that can help your business to grow while catering to your specific needs.

11 Best Alternatives to Shopify

While Shopify reigns supreme in the eCommerce realm, it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. Exploring alternatives to Shopify opens up a world of diverse eCommerce platforms, each offering unique features, advantages and futuristic eCommerce trends that can boost your online business’s sales.

Here are the top eleven alternatives for Shopify that cater to various business needs:

11 best alternatives to shopify

1. BigCommerce

  • Ideal for: Established businesses seeking to scale and expand.
  • Strengths: Feature-rich with built-in scalability, omnichannel selling, robust analytics, and efficient handling of high-volume transactions.
  • Considerations: Requires more technical expertise and a higher starting price point than some alternatives.
  • Cost: BigCOmmerce offers a 15 days free trial plan to users. Alongside, the pricing ranges from $29 to $299 per month under the umbrella of Standard, Plus and Pro plan.

For businesses seeking an alternative to Shopify, BigCommerce emerges as a strong contender. BigCommerce is positioned as a cloud-based eCommerce platform, shining with its built-in scalability and user-friendly interface catering to businesses of all sizes with ambitious growth plans.

What sets BigCommerce apart is its excellent multi-channel selling capabilities, allowing businesses to expand their reach by selling on platforms like Amazon, eBay, and Facebook—managed from a centralised dashboard and saving you on additional apps or upgrades needed in Shopify.

Plus, BigCommerce avoids transaction fees if you use their payment gateway. However, BigCommerce can have a steeper learning curve and a higher starting price compared to Shopify which may be a burden for smaller enterprises.

Despite these considerations, BigCommerce remains a powerful choice for businesses seeking scalability, advanced features, and a streamlined eCommerce experience beyond Shopify.

Pros and Cons of BigCommerce
Pros Cons
Scalability and Performance Higher Pricing for Small Businesses
Built-in Features Learning Curve
Multi-Channel Selling App Marketplace Size
Responsive Customer Support Transaction Fees
Design Flexibility Limitations on Lower-Tier Plans
Secure and PCI Compliant CMS Integration Challenges

2. WooCommerce

  • Ideal for: Businesses already using WordPress or those seeking complete control and customisation.
  • Strengths: Open-source and highly customisable with plugins and themes, seamless integration with WordPress, cost-effective for basic stores, easy updates for seamless functionality and risk reduction of major bugs.
  • Considerations: Requires technical knowledge for setup and maintenance, and essential plugins and themes might incur additional costs.
  • Cost: WooCommerce is a free-to-use WordPress Plugin. Though you can start with zero investment, you might have to pay for the additional extensions and plugins that may go as high as $5,000.

WooCommerce, a WordPress product, is ideal for businesses already leveraging WordPress. It is a robust plugin that seamlessly integrates and transforms WordPress websites into fully functional online stores.

WooCommerce’s strength lies in its cost-effectiveness, as the plugin itself is free, making it an attractive option for small businesses and startups. Plus, its extensive customisation options make it an excellent choice for businesses that prioritise flexibility and scalability.

The vast array of WordPress themes and plugins further enhances its flexibility. However, extensive customisations may affect performance. Additionally, while the core plugin is free, costs can accrue with adding premium themes and essential extensions.

Still, WooCommerce remains a potent choice for businesses seeking a customisable, budget-friendly, and WordPress-integrated eCommerce solution distinct from the Shopify ecosystem.

Pros and Cons of WooCommerce
Pros Cons
Seamless WordPress Integration Learning Curve
Extensive Customisation Options Plugin Dependency
Cost-Effective (Free Core Plugin) Additional Costs for Premium Themes and Plugins
Vast Ecosystem of WordPress Plugins Limited Built-in Features Compared to Shopify
Regular Updates and Security Patches Scalability Challenges

[Also read: Magento v/s WordPress]

3. Magento (Adobe Commerce)

  • Ideal for: Large businesses requiring enterprise-level features and extensive customisation.
  • Strengths: Highly scalable, feature-rich with advanced functionalities, suitable for complex product catalogues and high-volume businesses.
  • Considerations: Requires significant technical expertise and resources for setup, maintenance, and customisation and comes with a high price tag.
  • Cost: Magento software is free, however, you will have to bear the web development, hosting and third-party integration cost that may range between $1,800 and $10,000+.

Magento, an open-source eCommerce platform, offers a robust alternative to Shopify, particularly for larger enterprises that demand wide customisation and a high level of control over their online presence.

Thinking about switching to Magento? Get precise knowledge about Magento pricing here. Read: How Much Does a Magento Website Cost?

Magento excels in eCommerce web development in many ways. For example, handling a large number of products and extensive catalogue management.

However, businesses considering Magento should be mindful of its steeper learning curve and potentially higher development costs, making it better suited for those with substantial technical expertise and budgets.

Despite these points, Magento features makes it a powerful choice for businesses seeking unparalleled customisation and scalability in their eCommerce ventures, surpassing the capabilities of Shopify for large-scale operations.

Pros and Cons of Magento
Pros Cons
Highly Scalable and Customisable Steeper Learning Curve
Robust Feature Set and Extensive Extensions Limited Built-in Features Compared to Shopify
Excellent for Large Inventories and Enterprises Resource-Intensive for Smaller Businesses
Comprehensive Catalog Management Less User-Friendly Interface
Global Community and Multilingual Support Longer Development Time

[Also read: Magento v/s BigCommerce]

4. Wix eCommerce

  • Ideal for: Absolute beginners with no coding experience.
  • Strengths: Drag-and-drop interface, user-friendly for beginners, a wide range of features including marketing tools.
  • Considerations: Limited design flexibility compared to some alternatives and can be slower than other options.
  • Cost: Building cost is free on Wix. However, it charges once you launch your eCommerce site and start accepting payments. The pricing plan ranges from $27 and $159 per month, based on the site’s complexity.

Wix has evolved from a website builder to include robust eCommerce functionality and now it is known as a compelling alternative to Shopify, especially for businesses placing a premium on design aesthetics and user-friendly interfaces.

Wix eCommerce is an excellent choice for small to medium-sized businesses that prioritise ease of use without compromising on design and functionality.

With its drag-and-drop features and a variety of templates and plugins, Wix empowers businesses to create visually appealing online stores. However, while it suits smaller businesses and startups admirably, larger enterprises with complex requirements might lack certain features.

Additionally, while growing, Wix’s app marketplace may not be as extensive as Shopify’s. Despite these, Wix eCommerce is an excellent choice for businesses seeking a user-friendly, design-centric solution beyond the Shopify ecosystem.

Pros and Cons of Wix eCommerce
Pros Cons
User-Friendly Drag-and-Drop Interface Not as Feature-Rich for Advanced eCommerce
Visually Appealing Templates and Designs Less Customisation Compared to Some Platforms
Intuitive Setup Process for Beginners Transaction Fees on Lower Plans
All-in-One Solution with Hosting Included Limited Scalability for Large Businesses
Extensive App Marketplace for Add-Ons Template Switching Can Be Limited

5. Volusion

  • Ideal for: Businesses seeking a comprehensive solution with built-in marketing and B2B capabilities.
  • Strengths: All-in-one platform with marketing tools, inventory management, B2B features, and good customer support.
  • Considerations: Steeper learning curve compared to some alternatives and higher pricing plans.
  • Cost: Volusion offers 14 days free trial to users. After that, the pricing ranges from $29/month to $299/month based on additional integrations and benefits.

Volusion emerges as a robust alternative to Shopify, offering a comprehensive suite of features for businesses venturing into the eCommerce landscape.

Known for its user-friendly interface, Volusion facilitates easy store setup and management, making it an attractive option for entrepreneurs seeking an accessible platform. With a focus on scalability, Volusion accommodates businesses of various sizes, allowing them to grow seamlessly.

Volusion’s responsive customer support and competitive pricing make it a noteworthy choice for businesses looking to establish and expand their online presence.

Pros and Cons of Volusion
Pros Cons
User-Friendly Interface for Quick Setup Limited Design Flexibility
Affordable Pricing Plans for Small Businesses Additional Costs for Advanced Features
Robust Inventory Management Capabilities Smaller App Marketplace
Mobile-Optimised Templates Learning Curve for Advanced Customisation
Built-In CRM Features Limited Blogging Capabilities

6. Drupal

  • Ideal for: Highly technical developers and businesses seeking complete control and open-source solutions with custom development.
  • Strengths: Open-source, highly customisable with extensive modules, flexible for unique development needs.
  • Considerations: Not fit for beginners as it requires significant technical expertise for setup, maintenance, and security. Requires additional modules or extensive development to build a functional online store.
  • Cost: Drupal core software is free and open-source; however, the additional costs like hosting, development, etc. is required. On an average, it starts from $40,000 and can go upto $400,000.

Drupal’s modular architecture allows for extensive customisation, making it suitable for businesses seeking tailored online store experiences.

With a wealth of contributed modules and a vibrant community, Drupal provides a foundation for businesses to create feature-rich eCommerce solutions.

Thinking about switching to Drupal? Get precise knowledge about Drupal pricing here. Read: How Much Does a Joomla Website Cost?

While it may involve a steeper learning curve, the platform’s flexibility and scalability can be advantageous for enterprises with complex eCommerce requirements.

The cost of building an eCommerce website on Drupal may look expensive compared to other platforms. However, the top-notch security and automatic updates, along with the other advanced features makes Drupal a foremost choice for the users.

Drupal’s inherent strength in content management seamlessly integrates with eCommerce functionalities, making it an intriguing choice for businesses looking beyond the conventional Shopify ecosystem for a customisable and extensible eCommerce solution.

Pros and Cons of Drupal
Pros Cons
Highly Customisable and Flexible Limited Built-in eCommerce Features
Open-Source with No Licensing Costs Requires Additional Modules for eCommerce
Scalable for Both Small and Large Enterprises Limited eCommerce-Specific Themes and Templates
Security-Focused with Regular Updates Steeper Learning Curve
Extensive Integration Capabilities Smaller Marketplace for eCommerce Add-Ons

[Also read: Drupal v/s WordPress]

7. Ecwid

  • Ideal for: Businesses that already have a website and want to add a simple online store quickly and easily.
  • Strengths: Free plan available, easy to integrate with existing websites, simple to use.
  • Considerations: Limited features in the free plan, transaction fees can add up, and may not scale for large businesses.
  • Cost: Ecwid lets you sell upto 10 products for free. After that, you are required to opt for any of the three plans: Venture Plan, Business Plan or Unlimited Plan that ranges from $19 to $99 per month.

Ecwid, short for “eCommerce Widget,” offers a unique approach to online selling with its widget-based integration. It stands out as a compelling alternative to Shopify, offering a distinctive approach to online retail.

With its seamless integration capabilities, businesses can effortlessly embed eCommerce functionality into existing websites, blogs, or social media pages, making it an attractive option for those seeking a diversified online presence.

The platform’s user-friendly interface ensures a quick learning curve for both beginners and experienced entrepreneurs.

Pros and Cons of Ecwid
Pros Cons
Easy Integration with Existing Websites Limited Design Customisation
Seamless Integration with Social Media Fewer Built-in Features Compared to Shopify
Multi-Channel Selling Capability Limited Advanced eCommerce Functionalities
Free Plan Available for Small Businesses Not as Suitable for Large Enterprises
Global Support for Multiple Currencies Limited Third-Party App Marketplace

8. Joomla

  • Ideal for: Businesses with strong technical expertise seeking complete control and open-source solutions.
  • Strengths: Open-source, highly customisable with extensive plugins and modules, flexible for unique development needs.
  • Considerations: Require significant technical knowledge for setup, maintenance, and security, not specifically designed for eCommerce and require additional plugins or development to build an online store.
  • Cost: Joomla is open-source and free to use software. However, the development, hosting, templates etc. may cost you between $50,000 to $1,50,000 for a high-end eCommerce site.

Joomla, typically known as a content management system (CMS), has evolved to offer a unique and versatile solution for eCommerce, making it an unconventional alternative to Shopify.

Thinking about switching to Joomla? Get precise knowledge about Joomla pricing here. Read: How Much Does a Joomla Website Cost?

With its robust set of extensions and plugins, eCommerce website development on Joomla empowers businesses to transform their websites into fully functional online stores.

Although Joomla might not be as widely recognized for eCommerce as Shopify, its strength lies in flexibility and customisation. Joomla allows businesses to tailor their online stores precisely to their needs, leveraging the diverse extensions available.

Pros and Cons of Joomla
Pros Cons
Open-Source and No Licensing Costs Learning Curve for Beginners
Highly Customisable with Extensions Smaller eCommerce Extension Marketplace
Strong Community Support May Require Additional Modules for Features
Flexible Design Options May Need Development for Advanced Features
Scalable for Both Small and Large Sites Not as User-Friendly for eCommerce Beginners

9. Shift4Shop (formerly 3dcart)

  • Ideal for: Businesses requiring advanced features like subscriptions, product bundles, and robust B2B functionalities.
  • Strengths: Feature-rich platform with strong B2B capabilities, robust marketing tools, and good customer support.
  • Considerations: Can be more complex to set up and manage compared to some alternatives, higher pricing plans.
  • Cost: It is basically a free platform; however, charges the processing fee of $29 for using PayPal or 2.9% for using the credit card through Shift4Shop Gateway.

Shift4Shop, formerly known as 3dcart, stands out as a formidable alternative to Shopify, offering a comprehensive eCommerce solution focusing on scalability and feature-rich functionality.

With a user-friendly interface, Shift4Shop lets businesses quickly set up and manage online stores catering to various industries and sizes. The platform boasts a vast app store, providing users with an extensive selection of integrations to enhance their online stores.

Shift4Shop’s flexible pricing structure, which includes a free trial period, makes it accessible for businesses with varying budgets.

Pros and Cons of Shift4Shop
Pros Cons
Scalability for Businesses of All Sizes Learning Curve
All-in-One Solution with Hosting Included Template Customisation Can Be Challenging
Wide Range of Built-in Features App Marketplace Smaller Than Shopify
Customisable Design with Templates Limited Free Themes Available
Integrated POS System for In-Person Sales Smaller Community Compared to Some Platforms

10. PrestaShop

  • Ideal for: Businesses seeking a highly customisable and cost-effective open-source solution.
  • Strengths: Open-source, highly customisable with modules and themes, cost-effective with self-hosting options.
  • Considerations: Requires technical knowledge for setup, maintenance, and security, and additional costs may be incurred for hosting and modules.
  • Cost: The cost for using this platform may go as high as $5,000 for a high-end eCommerce website, which includes customised features and templates.

PrestaShop emerges as a powerful open-source alternative to Shopify, providing businesses with a highly customisable and scalable eCommerce solution.

With its user-friendly interface and extensive library of themes and modules, PrestaShop empowers enterprises to create unique and visually appealing online stores. Prestashp’s robust community of support ensures a wealth of resources, plugins, and third-party integrations.

The platform’s open-source nature allows for deep customisation, making it suitable for businesses with specific design and functionality requirements.

Pros and Cons of PrestaShop
Pros Cons
Highly Customisable with Extensive Modules Limited Built-in Features Compared to Shopify
Robust Internationalisation Features Smaller App Marketplace
Scalable for Both Small and Large Businesses Limited Official Customer Support
Large Community for Support and Resources Design Customisation May Require Technical Expertise
Vast Library of Themes and Templates Some Modules May Have Additional Costs

11. Squarespace

  • Ideal for: Creatives and design-focused businesses with a limited product range.
  • Strengths: User-friendly interface with stunning pre-designed templates, strong marketing and SEO features, perfect for beginners.
  • Considerations: Limited app integrations and may not be suitable for complex product catalogues or high-volume businesses
  • Cost: The monthly cost for running an eCommerce website on this platform may cost you between $16 and $65 excluding the development and maintenance cost.

Known for its visually stunning templates and user-friendly design tools, Squarespace has incorporated eCommerce features seamlessly into its website builder platform.

While Squarespace may not offer as many third-party integrations as some other alternatives, Squarespace appeals to businesses focused on aesthetics and brand presentation. It provides a cohesive experience for those who prioritise design simplicity.

Pros and Cons of Squarespace
Pros Cons
All-in-One Platform with Hosting Included Limited Third-Party Integrations
Visually Stunning Templates and Designs Transaction Fees on Lower Plans
Integrated Blogging Capabilities Customisation Options May Be Limited
Mobile Optimisation for Responsive Design eCommerce Features May Require Paid Plans
Seamless Integration with Social Media May Lack Some Advanced eCommerce Features

Conclusion

While Shopify remains a popular choice for many eCommerce businesses, exploring alternative platforms is crucial to finding one that aligns with your unique needs and objectives.

Each platform mentioned here has advantages and considerations, so it’s essential to evaluate them based on scalability, customisation, ease of use, and pricing.

However, if you need an expert opinion to solve your eCommerce platform selection dilemma, don’t hesitate to contact a professional eCommerce website designing and development company. An experienced company can offer comprehensive eCommerce solutions that not only meet immediate needs but also facilitate long-term growth.

So, select the right eCommerce website building platform today and pull your business to new heights.

Aamir Qutub
Aamir Qutub
CEO of Enterprise Monkey
Aamir Qutub is the founder and CEO of Enterprise Monkey, has a sincere passion for innovation and startups. With an experience of around a decade, he is a proud co-founder of 4 technology startups, focusing on real-world problems and their solutions. He also loves to cook and spend time with his onlyborn.
Aamir Qutub
Aamir Qutub
Aamir Qutub is the founder and CEO of Enterprise Monkey, has a sincere passion for innovation and startups. With an experience of around a decade, he is a proud co-founder of 4 technology startups, focusing on real-world problems and their solutions. He also loves to cook and spend time with his onlyborn.

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