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Let the battle of the eCommerce giants commence.

When it comes to understanding your eCommerce website, an excellent place to start is by knowing the platform itself. In this blog, we’re putting two eCommerce platforms up against each other in an attempt to highlight which could benefit your business the most – Shopify and BigCommerce.

So, whether you’re here passing time, maybe you’re trying to figure out which platform to use on your next build or just maybe you’re here for a good time? Our blogs are that good, in case you haven’t heard. It’s going to be an eCommerce party in the coming paragraphs, and you’re invited!

Let’s stop time-wasting and get to the good bit, let the battle commence.

Why BigCommerce and Shopify?

The first question to answer is probably why we are drawing a comparison between these two companies. Well, for over ten years, Shopify and BigCommerce have been two of the go-to host platforms for the majority of the world’s websites. Between them, they deal with billions in online spending and have client lists that include some of the biggest brands in the world. Does that answer the question? We hope so.

The main feature you’re looking for in a host platform is reliability, especially where online payments and transactions are concerned. You need to know that you and your customers are in safe hands, and that’s precisely what Shopify and BigCommerce bring to the table. However, it’s their features that separate the two and those are what will really make your decision a difficult one.

Usability

If there’s one place we love to start when talking about websites, it’s usability. There are a number of reasons for this, and honestly, we could talk about usability all night. But, in this sense, we want you to think about those painful office days, chopping and changing things in the back end of your website, hoping and praying that they don’t completely butcher the front end.

Both Shopify and BigCommerce, create intuitive spaces where you can work and alter your website with relative ease. BigCommerce, being the younger of the two platforms, borrows less of its usability on features copied from WordPress and Magento. This can be a problem if your web design knowledge comes from either of those platforms, although in general, BigCommerce is probably easier to understand. Therefore, if you’ve got skills, you’re going to be OK.

Shopify is based more on those classic web design platforms; therefore, your previous knowledge will guide you rather logically through Shopify. However, the one stumbling block many amateur designers seem to uncover is the secondary level of navigation within the host platform. It can feel more complicated than it needs to be, and as Shopify is constantly reinventing itself, it can mean that the helpful online tutorials are outdated and no longer useful, not ideal, we know.

eCommerce web design at Create8

At Create8, building eCommerce websites is in our DNA. No web design job is too big or too small for us to offer our creative support and knowledge. With every client that teams up with Create8, we join another business journey, that’s because we are there to support your company every step of the way. From the initial wireframing process all the way through to implementation and watching those sales roll in.

If you want to have a look at some of our recent eCommerce web design projects. Let us know what you think; we can’t wait to hear from you.

Designs

When it comes to choosing the right platform for you, a large chunk of the decision will be design-based. That’s because many businesses want to portray a modern and relatable vibe, as they should. When we are addressing both Shopify and BigCommerce, it’s essential to note that both have a wide range of capabilities.

When choosing a theme, there are several factors that should drive your decision:

  • Responsiveness
  • Cross-platform capability
  • Flexibility of design
  • Built-in marketing tools
  • Built-in SEO tools
  • Additional check-out integrations
  • A variance of plug-ins
  • Ability to customise product offerings

If we are asked to select one platform over another, we typically suggest Shopify. When it comes to the theme offering, Shopify has over 100 pre-built themes, both free and premium, for you to get stuck into; BigCommerce just doesn’t have the same amount or quality.

Getting paid

OK, so it would be negligent of us to not talk about the payment options available on the platforms. After all, the aim is to drive those customers to purchase and part with their cash!

Both Shopify and BigCommerce have great payment options; this is essential if you are looking to grow a worldwide company as a variety of payment options will make it easier for people in different locations to purchase from your store.

With Shopify, there are over 100 different payment gateways compared to BigCommerce’s 40+. Therefore you have more scope to reach a bigger audience of customers with Shopify. However, slight charges are incurred depending on the level of account you currently hold. Look into these first to ensure your decision is driven by the overall sale value after deductions.

The web app store

In case you didn’t know, an app store is just as important in your web build as it is on your mobile phone; that’s because a lot of the additional functionality of your website comes from the apps and plug-ins available to you.

Both Shopify and BigCommerce come with some of the most beneficial plug-ins already built into your chosen theme. With SEO and analytics tools as standard, as well as cross-platform web building, you’re off to a great start no matter which option you choose.

Within the Shopify App Store, there are actually more free plug-ins than there are apps in total for BigCommerce. With a much wider variety of products, you can pretty much optimise your Shopify website to do whatever your heart desires. With around 4000 in total within Shopify and 1000 for BigCommerce, it’s understandable why you would lean towards Shopify.

Security & Support

In the eCommerce world, security and support are pivotal to your site remaining live and avoiding that dreaded ‘downtime’ scenario. Downtime is effectively when your website isn’t working properly. The longer your site remains this way, the more hazardous it becomes to your business and customers.

Downtime can cause lots of additional problems to your business, for example, Data leaks, loss of revenue, damaged brand reputation, loss of visitors, website damage, loss of time, etc.

Without boring you with too much techy talk, both platforms perform incredibly well and ensure 99.99% uptime, which in any sector is impressive. Of course, excellent hosting capabilities doesn’t mean a brilliant website without the bandwidth too. Both Shopify and BigCommerce guarantee the performance of their sites, which is reassuring, especially during Cyber Week and Christmas rush periods.

So what about support?

As you can imagine, both companies offer 24/7 support as is needed in the eCommerce world; however, there’s something we particularly like about how BigCommerce deals with its FAQs. By providing the answers in understandable videos, they have made the information as accessible as possible to whoever may need it. It feels personal, and it’s a great touch from the eCommerce platform giant.

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At Create8, we aim to make the lives of our customers as simple as possible; in fact, for anyone looking for some advice, we are more than happy to share. We understand how intimidating the world of web design can be for an outsider, and we want it to feel a little more homely and relatable.

So, what’s our decision on the big debate discussed in this blog?

Well, if you’re going to be doing the whole process yourself, we would suggest using Shopify. The flexibility, themes, and plug-ins alone are enough to give you more of what you envision and less stress. However, if you want complete honesty, we would suggest reaching out to a web design agency, like, well, us.

The difference is, when you hire an agency, we will support you throughout the entire journey without ever leaving you stuck due to a lack of sector knowledge.

We are a Shopify eCommerce expert, and building websites to elevate our clients is something we have always done. So, you want honesty; there you have it. If it’s Shopify V BigCommerce, it’s Shopify for us. If it’s doing it yourself against getting a mind-blowing agency made website, go for the spectacular and hire someone like us.

If you want to see some of our recent Shopify web builds, follow the link below. Reach out to us through our contact form or alternatively arrange a meeting and pop into our offices; we can’t wait to hear from you.

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