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In this article, we will explore this eCommerce platform builder in great detail and how you can use it to establish an online presence:
The eCommerce industry has grown exponentially since its inception, and this trend is expected to continue as per industry reports. This makes it a very attractive avenue for entrepreneurs and retailers looking to start or expand their businesses.
With eCommerce expected to make up 95% of all purchases by 2040, the competition is getting fierce and you will need a quality website for your business to thrive. Organizing an eCommerce store is not as complicated as it seems.
Ecommerce features needed to run a proper website
With the rise of eCommerce platforms, it is now easier than ever to set up an online storefront. Beyond understanding branding and content strategy, you must focus on a number of other things to build your eCommerce store.
Here is a list of all eCommerce features needed to run a proper website:
- A dedicated IP and support line needed for resolving customer queries
- An SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Certificate required to collect payments securely (WordPress gives a free SSL certificate.)
- A domain name that represents your business and catches your audience’s attention
- Affordable WordPress hosting for handling the resource-intensive eCommerce function
- WordPress plugins to support your operations (e.g. lead capture) such as WPForms, OptinMonster, MonsterInsights, and MemberPress
- A managed WordPress hosting provider such as Bluehost, SiteGround, or WPEngine for enhancing the performance of the eCommerce site
Having a WordPress site for your eCommerce business
Using WordPress to build an eCommerce site is a breeze, as it is the best website builder. With over 40% of the web running on it and plenty of pre-made WordPress themes, you can get set up in no time at all, minus the hassle and unnecessary expenses.
WordPress also offers a full range of eCommerce options such as Page Builders and a variety of plugins, as mentioned earlier, which add complete eCommerce functionality to your site. For instance, WooCommerce is the default and most powerful WordPress plugin.
You can easily manage everything from displaying products on specific pages to adding them to the shopping cart and checking out.
If you are in the eCommerce business, you can quickly build an eCommerce store using WordPress. It makes your task simpler by allowing you to create your own online store and sell products from the same platform as your content publishing site.
In addition, WordPress offers full customization through tools such as "one-click" payments and paid subscriptions. Another reason it is right for your eCommerce business is its flexibility. It offers full control over what your WordPress eCommerce website does and how it appears.
You can even build additional pages, like blogs or forums, alongside your storefront. It is perfect if you plan to add more product categories as you scale over time.
WordPress as a platform for eCommerce development
An eCommerce website builder is the easiest way to create an online store from scratch. It offers a drag-and-drop page editor to help you build your entire site without any knowledge of coding. Website builders include everything you need for the success of your online store i.e. order management, shipping, abandoned cart recovery, multichannel selling, and so on.
The best eCommerce website builders can help supplement revenue by allowing customers around the world to buy products from their platform as well as find new customers with ease. The software allows users to create custom web pages that match their products and brand.
Additionally, it gives you the ability to integrate social media tools onto your page for increased accessibility. It also adheres to mobile-friendly design practices so you will be able to access your content on various devices.
WordPress is the best among content management systems. It will support your content marketing strategy and offer the best SEO features for your eCommerce business. It helps you manage the tons of content on your WordPress site while your traffic continues to grow. Let us take a look at the benefits and disadvantages of using WordPress in eCommerce.
Pros of using Wordpress for eCommerce
1. Swift and seamless setup process
WordPress is an easy-to-use platform with a quick installation process. In a matter of minutes, you can set up and install the right theme and get going with the website. You can also invest in a custom design from theme marketplaces such as ThemeForest or hire designers to create a WordPress site that resonates with your brand.
2. Purpose-focused WordPress plugins
WordPress has a large number of free and paid extensions plugins available. These are small add-ons that you can import and install on your WordPress site even without any technical knowledge or programming skills.
The WordPress plugin administration page on the WordPress Dashboard is intuitive and allows one-click installation of the add-ons. You can pick plugins for your WordPress eCommerce site product page customization, SEO, shopping cart management, and online payment processing.
3. Transparent stock management
WordPress offers you the flexibility to create web stores selling both digital and physical products using WooCommerce. You can keep adding new items regularly as well as set different product types for each item.
In addition, it simplifies inventory management through a WordPress-centric UI. It allows you to check current stock levels and manage the day-to-day inventory effectively with little effort.
4. Added site enhancements
WordPress speeds up the development of your custom eCommerce site by supporting transactions through payment gateways in multiple currencies. You can also add shipping options as suitable for your products.
It also allows you to enable geolocation to detect a customer's address. Furthermore, it displays the appropriate currency and tax rate depending upon the customer’s location.
Such personalization enhances the customer experience, which can be further improved through custom offers on particular products.
5. Robust analytics dashboard
As an online retailer, you must use analytics to track visitor activities and collect customer data to improve your marketing strategy.
WooCommerce Google Analytics, for instance, is an extension that provides WordPress eCommerce sites the ability to integrate with Universal Analytics. Even if you use some other plugin, you would not have any trouble using the analytics dashboard.
It tracks basic user information and lists events collected per session or page views. Other data, such as product views or shopping cart actions, can also be recorded for review on the backend.
6. Efficient data storage
Unlike other eCommerce platforms, data does not get lost with WordPress. Useful customer information like purchase history and current purchases are also saved on WordPress servers, even if the application shuts down unexpectedly.
This helps you to improve the customers' shopping experience by personalizing services and storing the selections for each shopper as well.
1. Needs WordPress eCommerce plugin support
A WordPress eCommerce plugin provides an easy-to-use platform, but it lacks some of the more advanced features provided by other eCommerce Content Management System (CMS) solutions.
2. Limited number of WordPress themes
WordPress helps reduce application development costs, but it offers limited options in terms of theme and eCommerce functionality choices. Paid versions of WordPress themes and plugins give you more flexibility, but they increase your eCommerce app's overall cost.
3. Frequent upgradation
The numerous update processes for WordPress are time-consuming but necessary to properly display your store across browsers and devices.
Factors to look for in a WordPress plugin for your eCommerce site
Ecommerce plugins are customizable, open-source add-ons for eCommerce platforms built on WordPress. Ecommerce plugins help you get started quickly and make your way to a successful online store. One simple plugin allows you to set up a new store in minutes.
Most of these eCommerce tools are free and come with an array of useful features including configurable shipping options, autoresponders, and more. Ecommerce plugins allow your site to have more customizable features.
The plugin allows you to manage your business on the go. You can create a product page, accept orders, and deliver on time. It also provides you with the key stats of your sales, cart abandonment, and revisits in real-time.
There are several eCommerce plugins for WordPress out in the market. But they might not all meet your specific requirements.
Before deciding on one, you need to consider what products you would be selling and the features that will make running your online store more
efficient. You must make sure the WordPress eCommerce plugin supports the following important functions for your WordPress eCommerce site:
- There should be sufficient support for your payment gateways. Either it should be available through default settings or via extensions.
- Your customers' first impression of your business might be formed by the design and layout of your store. Ensure there are options available for customization to help you create an appealing and cohesive look throughout all aspects of the eCommerce store.
Third-party integrations for apps such as email marketing services, CRM software, and accounting systems should be available.
- Technical support is mandatory to recover and restore your data and services in case of an unprecedented incident. Proper support reduces downtime and improves your credibility as an eCommerce business.
Best WordPress plugins for eCommerce businesses
Selecting the right WordPress eCommerce plugin is necessary for your online business because an efficient platform means happier customers and more growth. Often business owners end up losing money over plugins because they do not conduct thorough research. To make your job easier, here are the best WordPress eCommerce plugins you can try for your business:
1. Wix — a top-notch website builder
2. Gator — a superb value website builder service
3. Zyro — a serious, high-quality site builder
4. Easy Digital Downloads — for selling digital products (and enabling digital downloads)
5. Ecwid, Cart66 Cloud and WP EasyCart— to use as an eCommerce shopping cart
6. OptinMonster — a dynamic lead generation app
7. BigCommerce — a fully hosted eCommerce platform for WordPress
8. All in One SEO — to make your eCommerce site Google-friendly
9. SeedProd — a drag-and-drop WordPress landing page builder
10. Constant Contact — to add a contact form to your WordPress site for lead capturing
Shopify vs Wordpress: The better option for building an eCommerce site
Shopify is a web application that allows you to create an online store without the need for coding or hosting. With this service, all of your data will be stored on their servers, so there are no costs involved in maintaining it.
On the other hand, WordPress also helps with creating an online shop, but for installation and maintenance, you are required to purchase server space from third-party providers which have higher associated costs.
Easy setup and personalization
You can easily sign-up on the platform and start your Shopify store by adding products. You can also customize your site's theme and purchase a domain name through Shopify in order to keep things simple without opting for additional web hosting services from third-party providers.
If you choose WordPress instead, then there are many steps involved in setting up your store. It involves purchasing both web hosting with an external hosting provider among several other necessary tools. This could be an expensive option for new and budding entrepreneurs.
Wealth of tools
Shopify's all-in-one system provides tools to help businesses grow and prosper. This includes an online website builder, inventory management tool, integrations with platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Amazon.
WooCommerce is the most popular WordPress eCommerce plugin when it comes to selling products online and enabling digital downloads. However, Shopify is better because of its ease of use and high level of customization features available compared with WordPress.
It only has the ability to offer preselected templates as per industry type. You may also get some additional add-ons, such as SEO and shipping options on WP.
Scaling the business — hassle or expensive?
Shopify simplifies the process of selling online for multiple business types. The platform includes an eCommerce website builder, inventory management tool, and integrations with platforms such as Facebook & Instagram.
The WooCommerce plugin is popular among eCommerce websites because it offers high levels of customization compared to Shopify's pre-selected templates as per industry type. The cost of a WordPress eCommerce website varies dramatically depending on your needs.
Whereas for new businesses, the Basic Shopify plan provides everything you need to start selling, including an eCommerce website with inventory and order management features as well as POS tracking tools for easier business transactions.
A comparative analysis: Shopify vs WordPress
The verdict: WordPress is all about growth
You might think Shopify is a better option for entrepreneurs as it puts convenience above all everything else. There is no doubt both Shopify and WordPress are good! However, if you are looking for more functionalities and hyper-personalization, WordPress is the perfect choice.
Is WordPress good for eCommerce in 2021?
A well-oiled eCommerce machinery can help you increase revenues, improve the customer experience, streamline processes primarily through automation and enable multi-touch engagement programs. You are going to love it!
Official extensions from the WooCommerce Marketplace can be used on your e-store, allowing you to expand its functionality further.
More importantly, with the help of plugins, you can remain up-to-date on security measures as well as other technical aspects such as SEO rankings because they will affect how successful visitors find you online.
If you are looking for eCommerce website development support, Intuz can help because we have helped numerous entrepreneurs get their online business off the ground. To get started, please fill the contact us form on the website or simply call +1 650.451.1499.