Starting your own website with the intention of selling something might sound like a huge step and a very complicated one but trust me, if you listen to what I have to say, you will be able to do this in a very short time and, most importantly, do it right.
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If you have a company and you want to expand your business to the Internet and cover a bigger market, you need to find the best tool to help you build your online store just the way you envisioned it. There is, of course, the option of hiring a professional to do this for you, but if you don’t have a big budget or you simply want to save some money and learn how to do this on your own, you can. You only have to choose the right store builder tool for you and you can get started in no time. However, before you choose the store builder tool you will use to design your online store, you need to think carefully about your needs and requirements. That means that you need to focus on certain things and take them all into account so you can choose the best store builder tool for you. I will help you with this and then, I will talk about my favorite and, in my opinion, best store builder tools.
How to Choose a Store Builder Tool?
Choosing the best tool to use when you design your website is the first, but also the most important step you will need to take if you want to make sure that your online store ends up being visually attractive, but also engaging and effective. So, before you start designing your website with any tool, you should think about what you need and what builder can offer you those things.
Your Product and Stock Size
The first factor you need to consider is the nature of your product. If you are thinking about creating an online store, you should already know what type of product you intend to sell. That will have a significant impact on your decision when it comes to the store builder you should use because some platforms are better than others for selling physical products, while others are better for selling digital products.
Another important thing to consider is the stock size. If you are selling physical products and have a large quantity of merchandise you want to sell, you should find a platform that can handle your needs.
Budget and Price
It is very important to plan your budget ahead if you don’t want to spend more money than you can handle. Even though you might think that you have a big enough budget, you need to take all possible expenses into account.
My suggestion is to look for store builder tools and platforms that take monthly payments and to avoid those builders that take a percentage of your sale. It might seem like a small percentage, but if you move a lot of merchandise it can amount to a lot.
Look for a store builder tool that will allow you the most freedom and flexibility when it comes to design. Remember, it is your website and you probably have the exact idea of how you want your online store to look like. Creating an attractive and visually pleasing design can really help you with your sales and can also attract new customers.
Functionality and Customization Options
You need to make sure that your online store is completely functional and that all features that you wish to include work like a charm. Find the platform that will allow you to customize your website as much as you want.
Most store builder tools include core fundamental functionality and have strong features. However, even though this is extremely important, it simply isn’t enough, especially if your store works great and starts to grow. In this case, you will need to add some new features to expand your business and that is why customization options are important.
I hope that now you understand what some of the important things you need to focus on when you choose your online store builder tool are. However, there are many options out there and choosing the best one isn’t easy even if you know what you need. That is why I have selected 5 store builder tools that I personally think are the best and can handle almost anything you might throw at them.
Wix.comTry it Now for Free »
The first website building platform on our list is also one of the most popular ones. Wix is used by many companies and it is not just a store builder tool. In fact, in addition to creating an eCommerce website, it is also a great platform for photographs, designers, musicians, etc.
Is Wix Ease to Use?
Wix can offer you over 500 beautiful templates, many of them created particularly for eCommerce. It is a very simple and straightforward platform that is considered to be a pure drag and drop store builder tool, which means that you don’t have to know how to code or have extensive tech experience to use it and create a stunning website with it. Wix also allows you to sell both physical and digital merchandise, so whatever your business is, using Wix is the right choice.
Wix is one of the builder platforms that have a really impressive and comprehensive feature list. For example, you can use their product galleries to properly display your products and you can even create a product page for every individual product as well. Among the most important features Wix has to offer, customizable design with eCommerce templates is the most significant for you if you want to create an online store.
Another great feature you can use is a discount code creator and you can include shipping calculations or tax calculations as well. You can turn on automatic email notifications for your clients and newsletter tools.
If you decide to design your online store using Wix, you will be able to offer your client 12 different payment processors, including PayPal, Stripe and Square as some of the most popular ones. Also, keep in mind that Wix doesn’t charge any transaction fees, so any profit that you make is yours to keep.
Wix lets you create a mobile responsive store and allows you to choose from numerous apps when you build your website. There are many eCommerce, marketing and business apps that can help you create a more engaging environment for your clients.
Weebly.comTry it Now for Free »
Weebly is another amazing website builder tool and it is definitely one of the best drag and drop builders available today. Also, it is one of the easiest store builders as well. You don’t need to learn how to work with it, it is all pretty straightforward and because it is such a great eCommerce builder, around 450,000 online stores are currently using Weebly.
Weebly Speed and Simplicity
Since Weebly provides hosting for every website that has been built on their platform, this allows them to offer faster load speeds to their clients. Also, you won’t have to worry about safety as much as you would with other builders because Weebly takes care of security against spammers and hackers.
When it comes to the building process, you will be able to create your online store in a matter of minutes. In many cases, drag and drop website builders require some learning before you can design your website just the way you envisioned it. With Weebly, this is different and everything works exactly as you would expect. Also, online stores built with Weebly are mobile-friendly and have responsive designs.
Features of Weebly.com
When it comes to features that are important for eCommerce websites, Weebly has a lot to offer. Product presentation is amazing and Weebly allows you to create a product page for every single product that you want. There you can add multiple images, multiple product variations, sales option, product description and social media sharing buttons, among other things.
You can add a shopping cart with one very useful and interesting feature – when a person leaves your store without completing their shopping cart list and checking out, they receive a reminder on their emails.
There are numerous options you can choose from when it comes to shipping and tax settings, but they also depend on where your business is based. You can also add coupon codes, gift card products, and track what articles you have in stock.
When it comes to payment options, compared to some other eCommerce platforms Weebly doesn’t offer as many options. They provide 4 payment options (PayPal, Stripe, Square, and Authorize.net) which are more than enough and cover a lot of ground.
VolusionTry it Now for Free »
Volusion has grown a lot in recent years and it became one of the most popular eCommerce platform providers and store builder tools. There are many advantages that come with using this platform and you will not regret your choice if you go with Volusion for creating your website for online commerce. It is a cloud-based e-commerce platform that has all the most important features and functions you might need to develop the best possible web store.
The software that Volusion has allows you to create your online store without too much hassle and it is very user-friendly. However, it isn’t as easy to use as some other builder tools, so you will have to go through a guide that you can find on your dashboard. You will have to follow instructions if you want to make your online store just the way you have imagined. For example, if you want to set up a store that will sell downloadable digital products, you will have to go through the multi-step procedure in order to set it up.
Volusion Features and Themes
Volusion has many useful features and integration with Amazon and eBay definitely stands out. However, that is only the tip of the iceberg. For example, once you build your online store, you will be able to add as many products as you want, without any limits. You can also create gift cards, coupons for discounts, daily deals and many other things that will help you attract new clients and keep the ones that already buy from you. You can do the former by using various loyalty reward programs, which is another great feature that comes with using Volusion.
There are also many themes you can choose from if you go with this website builder, but I have to point out that only a handful of those themes are free. On the other hand, there are no transaction fees that will impact your profit.
Volusion Customer Support
One of the things that make Volusion stand out among such fierce competition is their customer service. They provide constant support, at any time of day or night, and you can contact them via phone, or email. You can also talk with them on the online chat they have set up for their clients.
BigCommerceTry it Now for Free »
With so many store builders out there, it is not easy to choose the best one. Well, BigCommerce definitely deserves a chance and after I have tried it, I can honestly say that it surely deserves a place on my list as well. If you do, you will not be the only one. In fact, more than 100,000 online stores use BigCommerce, which is now one of the most popular and fastest growing website building platforms in the world.
BigCommerce Ease of Use and Scalability
Even though there are many features and options you can choose from if you use BigCommerce, it is still a very simple store builder that doesn’t require any technological knowledge or expertise. Of course, because there are numerous options, for example those in tax settings, you might feel overwhelmed at times.
Another big advantage of BigCommerce is scalability. That means that you can use BigCommerce regardless of the size of your online store. Also, if your business grows a lot with time, you can always scale up and upgrade all the features that you perhaps didn’t need when you started out.
BigCommerce doesn’t offer a free plan like some other store builders, but they do offer a 15-day trial. Of course, they don’t charge any transaction fees, which is very important for people that are just starting out.
BigCommerce Features and Themes
BigCommerce allows you to present your products in so many details and you can also use images and videos to display your products. There are also different cart functions that you can use and various payment options (credit cards, PayPal, Authorize.net, etc.).
You can sell both physical and digital products; you can create coupon codes, gift cards, use various shipping settings, as well as tax settings, and track your inventory to a great detail.
One thing that stands out with BigCommerce is the fact that they offer a third-party theme store. Some of those themes are free, others are premium and have to be paid for, but this store builder definitely gives you the biggest choice and so many options.
Webs.comTry it Now for Free »
Webs.com is one of the long-lasting website builders that has been around since 2001 and has constantly grown, fighting the new competitors like Weebly and Wix and keeping up with them. In fact, over 55 million websites have so far been created with Webs and it is still one of the most popular store builder tools today.
Is Webs.com Ease to Use?
Webs is one of the most straightforward website builders you can find. They are a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) builder tool. That means that you design the whole site right in front of you and what you see while you build is actually the same thing that will show up once you are done. You can choose between normal pages and specialty pages, but both options are pretty easy to use and understand. You can even combine normal and specialty pages, so there is a lot of flexibility at your disposal when you build your online store with Webs.
Webs provides you with all necessary features that any online store might need, like inserting product images, prices, descriptions. You can set different tax options and use various shipping settings. You can create different product versions (same product in different colors, sizes, etc.).
There are also many widgets that you can add to your website that allow you to further customize your online store. You can also choose third party widgets if you feel like you could benefit from them additionally.
It is also a completely mobile friendly and responsive site builder that allows you to share your website on various social networks. There are also many SEO tools that can help you optimize your website for Google and other search engines. When it comes to payment options, you can use PayPal and Google Checkout. However, if you choose to integrate your Etsy store in the website you can use more payment options.
As we have already said in the begging, choosing the right store builder tool is one of the most important steps you will have to take in order to expand your business to the unlimited market that is the Internet. Creating an online store is not easy, but if you know what you need and what to look for it doesn’t have to be hard.
I hope that my advice can help you find the best possible store builder tool that will be able to meet your needs and thus help you improve your business more than you though is possible. Going with one of these 5 store builder tools I have talked about in this article is a smart choice.
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