Choosing the E-commerce Platform for Your Products

Anyone can start a e-commerce site these days. And to make it easier there are platforms making entry easy if you have the skill and/or money to use them. Some are complicated, while others are simple to use. Which platform a business uses depends on their needs or the skills of the person they may hire to set up their e-commerce site.

WordPress E-commerce is free to use. It is for those with intermediate skills since you will probably have to use plug-ins to get it to do what you need it do and look how you want it to look.

Shopify has made inroads as one of the most popular places to start a store. There are even contests held a couple of times per year for people to start stores. They offer a free 30 day trial, then the pricing starts around $25 for up to 100 products. You could use the templates as they are, or purchase plug-ins, themes, etc to customize it.

Goodsie is the relatively new kid on the block which offers a 30 day trial, then it is $15 per month with zero transactions from their end. It is set up to be used as a store front for physical or digital products. The stores are easy to set up since there are not a lit of bells and whistles. It is great for the beginner who doesn’t have a lot of products or want to learn how to code to get more functionality. They also offer unlimited products and images so you don’t have to pay more over the standard 100 products, 200 mb storefront that other services use. Merchants can be paid through PayPal and/or Google Checkout immediately for their orders.

Amazon offers storefronts, but at a price. Pretty much they start around $40, but you don’t get paid when a customer orders for you. It usually takes around 2 weeks, so merchants have to have the ability to manufacture and ship the product(s) at their own cost until they are able to recoup it later. Further, Amazon takes a piece of the sales, so that should be built into the pricing.

PayPal also offers an opportunity to set up e-commerce sites through them. Pricing depends on what package is chosen. You must have a business account in order to do this. No personal accounts. You are also charged at least 2.9 percent plus a “processing” fee for your sales depending on the monthly volume.

Whichever platform a business chooses to use, they must keep it up to date and not let it become stagnant.

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