Many people still think that building an online shop involves a lot of technical wizardry and skills that would be required when it is exactly the opposite today. Big software vendors ( Shopify and big commerce) have made it so easy that anyone can just sign up and build an online store within an hour or less and start selling.
“Big commerce” is an Australia, Sydney-based software start-up company that provides end to end services to start your eCommerce online store. It started up as a startup not too long ago and is now a well-established portal for building online store-front websites. The Shopify solution caters to the beginner entrepreneur as well as the established million dollars a day shops.
Bigcommerce powers over 95,000 online shops and have processed over $5 billion in transactions and that is no easy task. Its even got its top competitors like “Shopify” “Volusion” “3Dcart” worried. They have a good collection of store design add-ons and also provide website store examples to give you an idea of how your store can look. But Shopify is fast catching up with its ease of use and perfectly priced plans.
Bigcommerce was founded by BRW Young Rich Listers Eddie Machaalani and Mitchell Harper. Their customer’s list boasts some top companies like Samsung, Marvel, Cetaphil and Ubisoft yet they have affordable plans for smaller eCommerce stores. Below is our review on BC focusing on what’s important to you.
Building an online business store is no easy task and trust me I have gone through this well and truly a few times to know how hard it can be. There is more involved in starting an e-commerce store than it is for just starting a blog or website, however software companies like Big Commerce and Shopify have made this task much easier with their custom software and help given in the form of written guides and video guides to set everything up.
There are plenty of reviews online, but I have my own unique viewpoints of why Bigcommerce and Shopify is an e-commerce store builder that you should consider trying out if you are really serious about creating your own online store.
Right now with both of them upping their game – if its ease of use and an all in one solution your after – I would recommend Shopify if your starting small and intend to grow big, but if you need a big solution for a big online shop then its “big” commerce.
List of top 5 E-commerce platforms
1. BigCommerce – www.bigcommerce.com
2. Shopify – www.shopify.com ( Recommended)
3. 3Dcart – www.3dcart.com
4. Volusion – www.volusion.com
5. Magento- http://magento.com
I’ve added one more platform Magento – which is self-hosted on the list
Take a look at these online store examples here and you can see what Bigcommerce or Shopify can do for you.
Compare Shopify Vs Bigcommerce features below
Cheap E-commerce Solution: Woo Commerce + WordPress Blog
Now before we go any further, I need to say that if you really are on a low budget and just want to test things out then this other option here might suit you. It includes setting up a wordpress blog and using a free payment and online shop plugin called woo commerce. This method is a bit more involved than using Shopify which is custom based shop software that works out of the box.
With this method – you can get a wordpress blog for ($3.95 a month) and add a woo commerce plugin (free) to get started quickly with your e-commerce shop /website/or blog.
This set up will allow you to run a blog store front on wordpress and sell products and accept payments via paypal through the woo-commerce plugin. You might want a spend a bit of extra money ($20 to $60) though to get a decent storefront wordpress design ( I recommend elegant themes for his ) to help attract traffic and build trust with a good-looking storefront design for your store.
What is this WooCommerce Plugin ?
WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that lets you turn your WordPress site into a full-featured online store. It gives you an easy way to handle inventory, payments, shipping, and more.
It gives you reports on customers and products and it works with practically any theme and doesn’t get in the way of your website. It can be easily integrated into an existing site as well.
The difference between this above cheap method and a proper eCommerce platform are many.
In an e-commerce platform, you will be able to manage everything – all in one place like store management, inventory management, shopping cart systems, social networking, blogging, SEO, security, ease of use and expandability. Costs play a big role in this decision. – but with wordpress and woo commerce – the connection between listing and payments are not as seamless and needs some tech knowledge or willingness to test and learn.
The good thing however with woo commerce is that Paypal tells you whenever you receive a payment with this method implemented so you can follow up with the delivery of product etc once you receive notification via woocommerce, so it’s not that hard after all.
Feel free to choose whichever platform you are comfortable with but let’s get on with the custom-made online shop builders – big commerce platform & Shopify
Pros and Cons of Using Bigcommerce for your online store
Let’s start with the features that big commerce offers because every person needs to know what they are getting when they sign up for an online store solution.
Integrated Education – As I said earlier their big university video tutorials are a great help on setting things up and teaching you all about this stuff
All in one platform – They have integrated pretty much everything together, so if you want reviews, an easy way to add & delete products, inventory management, integrated payments, analytics, order management, coupon code creation, discount functionality, easy shipping integration, etc., It’s all in one place. They have other marketing buttons like sell on Facebook, Google trusted sites which you can integrate into their dashboard.
In- Built Marketing Features – once you have logged into their admin panel and click on the marketing tab, you will find features like email marketing (keeping in touch with customers and promoting products)
Speed & Security for your store – You don’t need to worry about your store being online all the time ( they got a 99.95 % Uptime guarantee), as they ensure that your store is speedy to load and also secure from online threats.
Design – While Big commerce can still work out of the box, you would probably need to get a designer to make it look top end. Their design functionality is basic but good enough to get started.T heir platform is easy enough for an outside designer to make you a custom good design for your shop with their platform.
Pricing plans for Big commerce
The 2nd most important thing you need to know is pricing for the ecommerce plans they have. You might argue, that in fact this is the most important point and I would still agree.
Initially, Bigcommerce offered quite a few different pricing plans with different options, but they have refined it over the years and whittled it down to just three plans:
- Bigcommerce Standard: $29.95 per month (Get it now)
- Bigcommerce Plus: $79.95 per month
- Bigcommerce Enterprise: pricing varies, depending on your business requirements
The ‘standard’ and ‘plus’ plans are aimed at individuals and small businesses. The more advanced Enterprise plan is geared more towards large businesses and corporates (users with very high bandwidth & advanced functionality requirements).
About the Popular standard plan:
Bigcommerce’s cheapest offering, the ‘standard’ plan, costs $29.95 a month and is more expensive than the equivalent starter plans offered by its competitors Shopify and Volusion ($9 and $15 respectively) – but BC offers a more comprehensive starter plan than either of those plans
One of the good features about Big commerce I like is that right from the start when they began they had the user in mind and has always had a very good support base with nice written tutorials and also Video tutorials to support their paying customers. They, in fact, have updated it even further and now got Bigcommerce University which puts a first-class e-commerce education at your fingertips all in one place – to help you succeed.
This section has In-depth videos hosted online store experts will teach you how to launch your store, attract shoppers, improve conversion and build loyalty. As these are on videos you can watch them and when you want according to your schedule.
Bigcommerce also works with Alibaba.com
Alibaba.com (also known as Ali express app) the leading cheap gadget, clothing and pretty much everything store that ships stuff directly from China has now partnered with big commerce. You can source high-performing, competitively priced products with Alibaba Wholesale and then learn how to quickly create a beautiful, optimized online store to sell all those great new products you sourced from Alibaba.com
Bigcommerce and Alibaba.com make it easy to source and sell
What some of ALIBABA + Big commerce customers have to say :
In two years, we’ve seen a 150% increase in online sales. We had a big vision, and Bigcommerce has not only supported us, they’ve grown with us.
– Kirsten Dickerson, Raven + Lily
A little bit about ALIBABA.com
How to sell cheap China imports through your own website
Alibaba.com is a leading platform for global wholesale trade owned by Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA) and is listed on the NEW YORK EXCHANGE.
This website has an extensive network of Chinese wholesale suppliers that also list their low-cost products on this website. The partnership of big commerce with Alibaba can enable many entrepreneurs to seamlessly pick and sell individual low-cost products from this marketplace and sell it for higher prices with the Alibaba+BC collaboration.
Get started with Alibaba & BC over here
Everything you need for your online store
Snapshot of the feature list. Bigcommerce gives you a plethora of securely hosted ecommerce tools:
· Website Builder
· Domain name
· Secure shopping cart
· Powerful Marketing Tools
· Product catalog
· Payment gateway
· Marketing tools
· Reporting & Analytics
· Mobile-optimized store
· Award winning 24/7 Customer service
How to Set Up Your eCommerce Store with Bigcommerce
Bigcommerce is one of the most popular eCommerce platforms around. It’s not quite as ABC easy as Shopify, but it’s still simple to use, and what you lose in ease-of-use, you gain in customizability and performance.
Below is a video to show you how its done and also a written guide below it for you – with a quick step by step process.
Source Products with Bigcommerce + Alibaba.com
In this tutorial, we’ll show you just how easy it is to get started on Bigcommerce. If you’ve already got products to sell – you could be trading within a couple of hours.
The Most Popular E-Commerce Alternative ( Shopify)
If you want ease of use and quick setup of your online store, then you can consider “Shopify” as the best option for setting up and maintaining a shop by yourself.
Shopify is as good as Bigcommerce and some would argue better, their plans have a good affordable starting price and they are good for starting your own store as well as starting a drop shipping business.
Check out his Shopify video below and our free
90-day trial link 14-day trial link
Get started with shopify free trial offer today
They offer a one-stop solution for your eCommerce store needs with various flexible pricing plans. The bespoke software creates beautiful and completely customizable online stores with powerful features, with the ability to sell products online with ease. They also process and ship orders, and track inventory, shopify has everything an online business needs.
Here is a look around video of a shop I built with Shopify and its damn easy to build if I’m building another shop right now – I would be using Shopify!
As part of our DigitalGrog Special deal – You can complete an online form to try shopify FREE for 14 days( no credit card required ). Click here to try it out
HOW TO Launch a store with Bigcommerce
Are you ready to start with big commerce – here is how you do it!
1. Essential Step – Sign Up to Bigcommerce here (free trial)
Enter the name of your store into the form on the home page. Don’t worry, you can change your store name later if you want to.
Click the orange button, Start my free trial now.
Fill Out Your Details > Create my store now >
Sit tight while Bigcommerce builds your store. This can take up to two minutes.
When your store is ready, you’ll see a big green open sign
You’re ready to go!
Click the orange button Visit your store.
2. Detailed Guide: Customize Your Store > Use the Bigcommerce Quick Start Wizard to get things set up as you want them.
[If you close the Quick Start Wizard by accident, you can re-open it using the big blue button at the top of the page, Quick Launch Wizard.]
> Set You Store Name and Address > Set Measurement Units and SEO Details
If you don’t want people to stumble across your half-finished store while you’re still creating it, select the box Yes, display a ‘Down for Maintenance’ message on my store.
Choose Your Theme > The next stage in the Quick Launch Wizard is to choose your theme and Logo.
The default template is Classic (White).
Scroll down to look at the different templates available.
To take a close look at any template, click on the template image. You’ll get a zoomed in preview.
Once you’ve decided on a template you like the look of, click the Apply this template text. When you’ve checked all the confirmation boxes, click Apply, and the theme will be applied to your store.
3. Add Your Logo >
The recommended size is 250 x 100 pixels. Bigcommerce will resize your logo if you upload an image of a different size.
[If you don’t have a logo, you can select Show Text where my logo will be displayed. You’re then given the option to enter the text you want to use instead of your logo.]
4. Add Products > Go to the Add a Product Page
Relaunch the Quick Launch Wizard, and click on Stage 2. Then click the blue buttonAdd Products. You’ll be taken to a page where you can add a product.
Complete Product Details > Add Product Description
Name Your Price and Shipping Costs > Add a Product Image
(When you’re done, click Save & Exit (or Save & Add Another, if you’ve got more products to list).
5. Set Up Payments, Shipping and Taxes > Configure Shipping
There will be guides available to help you go through these steps at set it up right as per your need for your store and your personal situation.
Launch Your Store!
With a payment gateway in place, you’re ready to let customers into your store. Return to the Quick Launch Wizard, and click the Launch button. Click the orange button Launch your store!.
Congratulations! you’re now an eCommerce trader! Now, all you need to do is find a way to pull in the customers (traffic).
Yes They have ABANDONED CART SAVER
What I really like about big commerce is the BIGCOMMERCE’S ABANDONED CART SAVER FEATURE. Bigcommerce’s abandoned cart feature – it’s one of the best out there. The tool allows you to create up to three automated emails to site visitors who go part of the way through the sales process only to leave your store without buying anything. T
This has the potential to dramatically increase your revenue with little effort – other than the ‘one-off’ time investment in setting up the automated messages – being involved.
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