Best Shopify alternatives

The ecommerce space is teeming with platform options that help you run an online business. Even if you’re a die-hard Shopify fan, it won’t hurt to check out some of the best Shopify alternatives that are out there. After all, what’s good for one ecommerce store may not necessarily be good for another.

What’s the deal with Shopify? 🤔

We all know that Shopify helps you build a website and display products in an eye-catching manner using stunning, fully responsive templates. It allows you to sell across multiple channels, collect payments via multiple gateways, and grow your online store. All without having to go back to school to learn code. And to top it all, Shopify has different plans to suit you, whatever the size of your business:

There are three main Shopify plans.

Basic is $29.00 per month, Shopify is $79.00 per month, and Advanced is $299.00 per month. All prices reflect annual billing. Month-to-month billing is also available, but naturally costs more. The plans include web hosting, an SSL certificate, and a domain name. There is also an additional Starter Plan, which lets you sell from your existing website or social media pages for only $5.00 per month.

This sounds all fine, so why look for alternatives?

Why would you look for Shopify alternatives?

Here are a few reasons:

  • Shopify does not offer free plans, only a free trial period.
  • It’s hard to display variations and options for the same product with Shopify.
  • If you’re the kind that needs to be in full control of your store, Shopify may not work for you.
  • Using external payment gateways involves additional transaction fees.
  • Cost of apps can quickly add up as you add extra features.
  • Advanced customization requires you to be familiar with Liquid (Shopify’s template-editing language).

Now, let’s sift through some of the best Shopify alternatives out there:

The best Shopify alternatives 🏆

Now that we’ve shared a few reasons for considering Shopify alternatives, let’s look at six of the best. Each option offers you an opportunity to build a successful ecommerce store, so the best one for you will depend on your budget and the special options you’re after.

BigCommerce

Best Shopify alternatives - BigCommerce

Let’s start with BigCommerce, a cloud based ecommerce platform that lets you start small and scale up later. It’s a fine fit if you’re growing and looking for everything in one place. The tons of built-in features ensure you’ll not be paying for additional apps.

Pricing 💵

Start with a 15-day free trial when you use our link – no credit card required. According to the size of your business, you can then choose from three annual plans.

Standard $29.00 is per month, Plus is $79.00 per month, and Pro is $299.00 per month. These plans are also available on a month-to-month basis, but at a higher per month cost. They allow online sales of up to $50K per year, $180K per year, and $400K per year, respectively. Beyond this, you can request a custom quote for Enterprise-level plans.

Why is BigCommerce a good Shopify alternative? 🤔

  • You most likely won’t need to purchase apps to add features.
  • Built-in CSS, HTML, and JavaScript allow a great deal of customization.
  • Built-in integration with sales channel, like Facebook, and marketplaces, like Amazon and eBay.
  • Fully customizable URLs for better SEO.
  • No transaction cost is another huge attraction.
  • Also, it allows multiple product options and variations for the same product.
  • 70+ coupons, discounts, and gift cards, without third party app.
  • Built-in cart management Customer grouping, price lists, and bulk pricing help with B2B selling.

BigCommerce is a good fit if you need all core ecommerce features in one place. Shopify is better if you’re looking for versatile features. BigCommerce keeps its focus on online selling, while Shopify supports multiple selling channels.

WooCommerce

WooCommerce

WooCommerce (an ecommerce plugin) teams up nicely with WordPress to create a popular platform option for online stores. Both are free and open-source. They allow you to sell both physical and digital products, and customize extensively. At the same time, you have total control over your website. Moreover, if you have the technical chops, you can code your way to design a website that you dream up.

Pricing 💵

The basic WordPress software and WooCommerce plugin are free. And though you can very well get by without having to open your wallet at all, there are free/paid official extensions that enhance functionality. However, keep in mind that you’ll still need to find a web host, install WordPress and WooCommerce, and then modify or extend it to suit your requirements. These costs can add up, but you’ll find web hosts who offer specialized WooCommerce packages for reasonably low prices.

Why is WooCommerce among the best Shopify alternatives? 🤔

  • Highly flexible and scalable, allowing you to add just the functions you need.
  • Being developer-friendly, it lets you keep your website bare-bones or add all the bells and whistles you want.
  • WooCommerce is set up on your own servers, so you have full control over your website.
  • Unlimited products and product variations, easy product search.
  • No transaction costs.
  • Customer accounts and secure payments, guest checkout option.
  • SEO friendly, and built-in blogging.

While WooCommerce offers a reliable platform that’s more affordable, Shopify is the better option if you want everything taken care of in a single place. There’s also only community support available for WooCommerce (unless, of course you purchase paid extensions). On the other hand, WooCommerce gives you full control over your website, you can also add a Shopify button to your WordPress site. This is something you don’t get with Shopify.

PrestaShop

Best Shopify alternatives: PrestaShop

Third on our list of Shopify alternatives is PrestaShop, a platform that helps businesses create and develop their ecommerce stores. Similar to WooCommerce, PrestaShop is open-source and you can download it for free from the PrestaShop website.

Pricing 💵

There are two different plans available.

Classic allows you to use the plugin for free. However, hosting, your domain, and other associated costs aren’t included.

The Hosted plan includes hosting, support, and ecommerce services to help you launch your website. Hosted plans start from €24 (about $26) per month, billed annually.

Both plans include unlimited employee accounts, SEO capabilities, PrestaShop checkout with PayPal, and the ability to sell unlimited products. If you have additional needs, you can contact the team for a custom quote.

Why is PrestaShop a good Shopify alternative? 🤔

  • Being open-source allows you to modify and customize your store as you wish, making it more flexible than the closed-source nature of Shopify.
  • If your budget is tight, you can choose the Classic plan and use the platform for free.
  • PrestaShop Marketing (developed in partnership with Google) can help you display your products in the shopping tab of search results.
  • Marketing automation (via Klaviyo) enables you to target prospective customers more efficiently.
  • Over 2000 website templates to choose from.
  • It enables you to manage multiple stores from a single admin interface.
  • Advanced SEO features to help your store become more discoverable online.

Affordability is one of the biggest drawing factors for PrestaShop. If you want to use it for free, you can simply download the plugin and then use it with a hosting company of your choice. For example, A2 Hosting has some attractive PrestaShop hosting packages. If you’d rather not bother with buying hosting separately, the PrestaShop paid plan comes with a 14-day free trial that lets you test it out to see if it’s a good fit. In contrast, as highlighted earlier, Shopify doesn’t have a free plan and the free trial is only for three days.

Wix

Best Shopify alternatives - Wix

The only Wix plan that does not allow you to accept online payments and build a basic online store is the entry-level Light plan. As soon as you jump up one level to the Core plan, you can start an ecommerce business with relative ease, thanks to Wix’s user-friendly, drag-and-drop interface. As you’d expect, higher level plans unlock additional functionalities like multi-currency support, and the ability to display customer reviews. Though to be fair to the Core plan, it really is robust and offers many of the features that even the pricier plans support, such as the ability to sell up to 50,000 products. Overall, Wix is a great Shopify alternative.

Pricing 💵

Three plans are available.

Core is $27.00 per month, Business is $32.00 per month and Business Elite is $159.00 per month. All plans are billed annually. There’s a free domain voucher for one year. Wix branding is also removed with any of their paid plans and you get 24/7 customer support.

Why is Wix Ecommerce a good Shopify alternative? 🤔

  • Wix’s design flexibility will find favor with brand conscious businesses.
  • Drag and drop features, loaded with page layout tools, make website editing easy.
  • 500+ beautiful templates (many of them free) to choose from, as compared to Shopify’s limited template collection.
  • Built-in product videos function (five hours to unlimited video hours) to showcase and sell/rent your videos.
  • Cheaper plans and no need to worry about transaction fees.
  • Lets you modify the URL for each page and optimize for SEO.
  • Easy integration of your online store with your website.

At the heart of it, Wix is a general-purpose builder, while Shopify keeps its focus on ecommerce. Therefore, stores with a bigger budget that need strong ecommerce features will prefer Shopify as a long term option. However, you’ll be able to manage all transactions and accept payments securely from the Wix dashboard.

Square

Best Shopify alternatives: Square

Square started off as a tool to help business owners accept credit card payments. It has since gone on to build a broad set of flexible tools that can do a lot for any business. It doesn’t matter if you’re starting a new website, accepting payments on your current website, or accepting orders for your restaurant, Square has tools to help out. And conveniently, you pay only for what you need.

Pricing 💵

There’s no start up cost with Square, and you can launch your online store for free. However, you pay 2.9% + $0.30 for each transaction. To remove Square branding, choose the Plus plan for $29.00 per month (+ transaction fees).

Why is Square among the best Shopify alternatives? 🤔

  • Sell online even without a website by simply creating Buy buttons, QR codes, and Payment links using Square Online checkout.
  • Add secure Square payments to existing site using integrations.
  • A number of versatile POS options that connect with Square hardware for easy built-in payment processing.
  • Share online via social media, email, text or on your website.
  • Fast and easy customized checkout pages with easy payment options, like Google and Apple Pay.
  • Able to accept tips and one-time/recurring donations.
  • Lets you track payments and fulfill orders through shipping and pickup, all without customers having an account or separate app.
  • Seamless integration with hundreds of third party tools.

Square can take over all the functions of a small business. If your business revenue comes chiefly from in-store sales, Square with no monthly fees and exclusive Square payment processing is a good choice.

Weebly

Best Shopify alternatives: Weebly

Weebly is a hosted platform that is now part of the Square suite of products. It packs in a website builder and a bunch of professionally designed templates. What makes it an attractive ecommerce option is the set of strong marketing and ecommerce tools that it includes.

Pricing 💵

To build an online store, you’ll need to choose from paid plans that are pegged at $10.00 per month, $12.00 per month, and $26.00 per month, paid annually. All paid plans include a free custom domain, free SSL security, unlimited storage, and removal of Weebly ads. Most ecommerce and marketing features are included only in the higher plans.

What makes Weebly a good possible Shopify alternative? 🤔

  • Weebly keeps things simple.
  • Easy-to-use drag and drop builder and customizable themes help you with branding and personalizing your store.
  • Weebly doesn’t charge on transactions.
  • It relies on Square Online to receive payments. There’s Stripe and PayPal as well.
  • Assists in lead capture using pop-up notifications.
  • Weebly offers a free forever plan for basic use.

Hands down, Weebly is the more affordable platform. Consequently, it’s a better fit for small stores and businesses. Shopify is way more expensive but is worth the cost in terms of the functionality it offers.

Final words on the best Shopify alternatives 💡

All these Shopify alternatives have the potential to set you up for success. The key is to know what you want your ecommerce tools to do for you.

Out of the Shopify alternatives featured in this post, we have three frontrunners that we can recommend:

  • If you’re looking for a solution that gives you more features for the same price, go with BigCommerce.
  • If you want 100% control over your online store, your server, and your domain name, you need to go with WooCommerce. Here’s how to get started with WooCommerce.
  • If you want an all-in-one website system – not just for the ecommerce part of the operation but the rest of the business’s online presence – then use Wix.
  • Lastly, in case you’re looking for free ecommerce options, check out this post.

Let us know what you think of these best Shopify alternatives in the comments below. Have you found your favorite here?

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