Online sales are very popular. It doesn’t require leaving the house, each product has a detailed description, and in the event of a failed purchase, the customer has 14 days to return the goods. The convenience and ease of buying through online stores means that more and more people choose to buy in this way.
That’s why your own online store is a very good idea for a business. All you need is the right software for the online store, some advertisemen and you can use it, having not one, but various cheap online stores.
What frightens many future entrepreneurs is related to IT issues: support for an online store, software that is convenient, easy and have all the necessary functions. Here is an overview of the best and most popular solutions.
What should the online store software have?
When creating your own online store, before choosing a software, you should think about what it should be. This applies to both the appearance – colors, the appearance of the category, the size of the tiles with the products, as well as the functionality.
It should be considered whether the store should have a chat panel, „favorite products” tabs, the option to log in via a Google account or Facebook.
The decision about the software should also depend on whether you prefer to have a transparent, easy and uncomplicated tool, or you want to be able to change and personalize most of the elements. Here, are the most frequently chosen options
It is chosen not only by many people who set up cheap online stores, but also by many other people. The Weebly creator* allows not only to create online stores, but also many other types of websites.
These include: a blog, company website, portfolio and many more. This is one of the most versatile tools for creating and maintaining various types of websites.
When choosing Weebly * as software for an online store, you should be aware of its capabilities. First of all, it’s an intuitive tool, it has a lot of themes, but most of Weebly’s features depend on the chosen package.
The user has the choice between the creator: website and online store. The first option is more general – you can also use it to create an online store, but it requires more work.
However, as part of it is possible to set up a free website (ads will be displayed on it). This tool is quite poor in functions, although it can be good at the first contact with Weebly, when the user wants to check how he will feel when creating different elements of his own site.
As part of it, you have 500 MB for data, domain, SSL protection, an intuitive wizard with drag-and-drop function. However, for the needs of an online store, a much better choice will be put on the dedicated software for an online store.
The cheapest package is $8 a month (with an annual fee). Already the cheapest choice means unlimited storage, no Weebly ads, the ability to connect your own website, SSL security, the ability to use technical support and access to online store statistics.
The next packages contain many more functionalities, from the widening of the personalization of the website’s appearance to additional improvements such as warehouse management, calculators of costs (deliveries, taxes). The more expensive packages also enable optimization of the site in terms of positioning, including marketing tools.
WIX* It is one of the most-often-chosen wizards of the online store. Most people who have their own online store have just started working through Wix.
For years, it has been competing with Weebly*, internationally, for the first position of online wizards. In addition to the free, poor Wix package, it offers a Connect Domain plan. It costs only PLN 17 a month, however, the package will still display advertisements.
Only the option for PLN 34 will prevent the Wix from showing on the online store. This plan also guarantees optimal bandwidth, which is 2GB. In terms of the amount of space, however, it is worse than the cheapest Weebly package, in which the user has an unlimited amount of data space.
Wix* offers as part of the second package 3 GB of space, so it can be sufficient for small and novice online stores. In terms of functionality, Wix is very similar to Weebly – both types of software make it possible to set up online stores and are great tools when it comes to cheap online stores.
They have a lot of templates and simple, intuitive management of all elements. They don’t require knowledge from a person who wants to have their own online store.
Wix loses in terms of the number of features in paid options, but it seems to be more user-friendly when making the first steps in managing online stores.
It’s worth to test the free versions of both software and opt for the more convenient one.
Shopify* this software is rarely chosen by Polish owners of online stores. The reason is simple – the Polish version of the website has translation errors and it is difficult to find a lot of information on it.
Therefore, it’s much better to use the website in English. However, this requires at least a medium level of English.
Shopify is a tool created exclusively for online stores. You can test this software for free for 14 days, then the cheapest option costs as much as $29 a month.
This is very much considering the competition that is Wix and Weebly. They are wizards at cheaper prices which offer many more features. Shopify in the cheapest (but expensive compared to the competition) package doesn’t even offer gift cards for customers.
The upside, however, is the unlimited amount of storage space for the store data in the first package. Shopify has a large database of templates, but it isn’t so simple and intuitive to use.
Changing the appearance of an online store: background, number and size of tiles, panels, etc. is much easier with wix* and weebly*.
Shoplo* is much younger than Wix and Weebly, tools that are the biggest competition on the online store market.
It stands out with its modern design and extremely simple operation. It has a clear website in Polish. You can try it for free for 15 days, which is a big plus, because you can test all its functionality.
Own online store on Shoplo* is one of the more convenient solutions offered by modern software. The cheapest plan called Starter costs $12 per month. However, in the cheapest package you don’t have to pay commissions on sales, and this is a known practice, many software owners use it (eg Shopify from 0.5% to 2% – depending on the chosen package).
Unfortunately, chat with clients is the functionality available from the package at the price of $45 per month. And with the cheapest option, it is possible to have only 20 product variants.
Therefore, Shoplo will be a good solution when it comes to small, cheap online stores. The best amenities and all the necessary and additional options that greatly facilitate the online store are included in the fairly expensive Advanced package ($45).
However, the cheapest option will be good for beginners, Shoplo offers a lot of free templates and a simple way to edit many items. You cannot interfere in HTML / CSS code.
However, this is an option requiring knowledge of these programming languages, in most cases unnecessary. The price of each package includes hosting and unlimited disk space.
Sendowl* has a website in English. A basic and very poor package costs $9 a month.
It contains only 1 GB of data space, with only 10 product variants. The more expensive package ($15 a month) is still not enough, because only 30 variants of the product and only 3 GB of space.
Sendowl* and Shopify* are two software products that don’t offer much functionality at high prices.
For people who have digital products and usually only a few, this solution is ideal. It has implemented an affiliate system, which in my case was a necessity in the selection of the sales platform.
The second factor is fast integration. One day is enough to start selling. In the case of an online store platform, I would have to spend many days learning and configuring.
Your own online store can turn out to be very profitable. The software for online store makes it much easier to run. It’s worth considering all the possibilities of the most popular tools, test them during free trial periods and choose the most profitable one owing to the nature of the store.
There are also many free solutions on the market ranging from WordPress with special plugins in the form of for example, WooCommerce to such solutions as Magento, Prestashop, VirtueMart and probably dozens of others that I don’t know.
And here it’s worth asking yourself whether it’s better to spend time on implementing software for an online store or whether it’s better to devote this time to doing business.