The Indian e-commerce industry has been growing rapidly and expected to grow even more. Also, it is expected to surpass the US to become the second largest e-commerce market in the world by 2034. India’s e-commerce industry is expected to grow from US$ 38.5 billion as of 2017 to US$ 200 billion by 2026. India’s internet economy is expected to double from US$125 billion as of April 2017 to US$ 250 billion by 2020, majorly backed by e-commerce.
Much growth of the industry has been triggered by increasing internet and smartphone penetration. Internet penetration in India grew from just 4 percent in 2007 to 34.08 percent in 2016, registering a direct increase of 89 percent in 2016 over 2007. The number of internet users in India is expected to increase at a CAGR of 15.6 percent from 450 million as of June 2017 to 700 million by 2020.
So, with the rise of technology starting an online business is not as much difficult as it used to be a few years back. There are E-commerce tools available online which will take care of everything without even writing a line of code. There are either free or paid services that let you host, build, and manage an eCommerce website. These services differ in features, appearances, and procedures, but all are aimed at letting you create a website where visitors can browse and eventually buy your products. In this blog post, we will talk about top 5 E-commerce tools to start an online business.
Top 5 E-commerce Tools to Start an Online Business
Founded in 2006 Shopify and since then, the platform has hosted over 220,000 online retailers. It gives you a super easy platform to set up an online store. In addition to ease of use, Shopify offers beautiful themes for your online store. Some of the themes are free, while others require payment. Premium themes cost around $140-$180 and they usually come in different layouts for more design options.
Once you’ve added your products, you can manage them using Shopify’s built-in inventory section. You can also offer discounts and gift checks to your customers all from the dashboard. For anything else that you want to do or integrate with Shopify, you can head over to the Shopify App Store. Most integrations are free, but there are some premium ones that offer more advanced and specialized functions.
- Basic Shopify ($13/month) – This plan will give you the basic website, blog, and store features including unlimited products, two staff accounts, and a free SSL certificate.
- Shopify ($54/month) – This increases the staff accounts to five and includes all Basic features. It also allows Abandoned Cart Recovery and Fraud Reports.
- Advanced Shopify ($107/month) – Up to 15 staff users, includes all Basic and Shopify plan features plus Advanced Report Builder and third-party calculated shipping rates.
BigCommerce has been around since 2009 and is used by brands like Camelbak, Toyota, and Martha Stewart. It’s a full-featured software that manages everything from web hosting, web design, order processing, shipping, and analytics. If you don’t want to go for the hassle of buying a domain. BigCommerce can set that up for you when you sign up for their service. All plans also come with a free SSL which means your website will be secure and will protect customer payment information.
Using its integration feature, you can sell on eBay, Amazon, Facebook, and Pinterest. It also integrates with POS software like Square and Shopkeep to record in-person sales. With BigCommerce, you can accept payments from PayPal, Braintree, Stripe, Authorize.net, and even digital wallets like Amazon Pay and Apple Pay.
- Standard Plan ($29.95/month) Maximum of $50k sales per year. It also includes the most important features like the website builder, zero transaction fees, unlimited storage, and a dedicated SSL.
- Plus Plan ($79.95/month) Maximum of $150k sales per year. Comes with more features like Customer Groups and Abandoned Cart Saver.
- Pro Plan ($249.95/month) Maximum sales limit of $400k/year. Adds more features like a custom SSL, product filtering, and Google customer reviews.
Magento is open-source software for building an eCommerce website. This means it’s free, just like WordPress. You can install it from your cPanel and build your store using the Magento Admin Panel. This platform is more advanced and may require you to hire someone who specializes in this system. The advantage of this is that you can customize every product as much as you want to. Creating groups, for example, allows you to show specific products to a certain group of people.
Other than product customization, you can manage pretty much anything else inside the Admin Panel. You can monitor sales, organize the catalog, manage customers, check abandoned carts, and create newsletters. These are similar to features offered by paid services like Shopify, but all at minimal cost.
Magento itself is free to install. There’s a premium service called Magento Go which includes hosting. Extra integrations and themes may come with a price.
#3 Big Cartel
You can really feel the simplicity of this platform once you sign up and start the setup process. After adding your first product, adding categories, and setting up a payment processor, you are pretty much done.
- Free Plan (free) – Allows up to 5 products, order management, and Facebook integration.
- Paid Plan ($9.95/month) – Allows up to 25 products and has more features including Google Analytics and a custom domain.
- Diamond Plan ($19.99/month) – Allows up to 100 products.
- Titanium Plan ($29.99/month) – Allows up to 300 products.
#5 Woo commerce
WooCommerce is popular among WordPress users. In fact, it powers 28% of all online stores. Other than buying a domain and web hosting, using WooCommerce is completely free, but other extensions may require a purchase.
Considering all other platforms in this list, WooCommerce wins when it comes to ease of use and affordability. It provides the basic and most important features for you to get your online store running without spending a cent. It’s a perfect starting point if you simply want to manage a small store and see how it turns out.
WooCommerce is free to install a WordPress plugin. Free and premium extensions and themes are available from the WooCommerce marketplace.
You can monitor sales, organize the catalog, manage customers, check abandoned carts, and create newsletters. These are similar to features offered by paid services like Shopify, but all at minimal cost.