Ecommerceplatfroms.com was founded with the primary purpose of providing its readers with the most accurate, reliable, and transparent information to help them navigate towards an educated decision when choosing the best platform and tools to start their online business or to improve an existing one.
Our readers come from a range of experiences. From newbies to advanced users who already run an ecommerce business, to staff and executives of big brands.
We strive to provide them with all the relevant information to cover their needs and stay updated in real time.
For this our research team is always on the look, whether through assessing platforms directly, or through social media, forums, and other marketing channels, for the newest and most efficient tools and platforms, as with the latest features and developments that are constantly being adopted in the online shopping ecosystem.
That being said, it takes a lot of resources and time to test, review, and compare the various platforms and tools, and consequent updates and upgrades through time. Thus, in our articles throughout the site there will be some affiliate links that we might earn a commission from, but, with no cost to our readers(!).
Needless to say, building a successful online business or any other business requires knowledge, research, and financial resources which sometimes may even amount to one’s entire funds and savings.
We, therefore, take our reviews and comparisons very seriously and try to provide the most up-to-date information for each ecommerce platform or tool covered, by opening an account and testing it ourselves firsthand.
That is the only way we can be sure we deliver our readers the best and most accurate opinions and rankings we can offer.
When looking to review and evaluate a platform or a tool, we follow the below criteria which we think contain the essential elements for any business to evaluate when coming to choosing which platform to engage with:
- Ease of use
- Ecommerce functionalities
- Design flexibilities
Let’s have a look at each criterion and see its importance:
Ease of use
Many website builders can be very intimidating to someone who is just wetting his or her legs in the digital shopping world and often to veterans as well. There are so many options, possibilities, and different capabilities for any need that it is no surprise it occasionally can become overwhelming.
With so many variables to consider and choose from, the ease of use of any platform or tool and their respective features is of utter importance on the path of managing to operate your business online efficiently and steadily.
We ask our team members to start from scratch by opening a new user account, filling in the details, and starting the actual process of building a store or experimenting with a new tool.
We then average all of them and conduct a score that reflects our overall opinion on the ease of use.
Needless to say, this evaluation and scoring method is applied similarly to all the other features we look for and examine listed below.
This is at the core of what we look for when reviewing an ecommerce platform.
Every business requires different functionalities, but all of them need basic ones. Such as well-designed site and product pages, inventory management, CRM, marketing, and payment gateways to name a few.
We look for these main features in each platform or tool we cover and then perform an in-depth evaluation to ensure that all these critical elements run smoothly and as expected in the eyes of a veteran online business owner.
Some platforms offer basic features, depending on the package chosen, however, most of them will have an App Market, as Shopify has, that can be used for add-ons of further various features that provide a 360-degree solution for all the ecommerce functionalities one needs.
A good-looking website/store that catches the eye of the visitor and makes everything clear, simple, and easy to navigate is absolutely crucial these days for success.
It takes the average user less than 3 seconds from the first impression to decide if to remain on the site or continue somewhere else.
For each platform reviewed, we, therefore, examine and review the design elements that are available to users and their functionality.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Having a functioning well designed online store is a great start, but it’s only halfway through.
The next thing you want to invest in is making sure your website is well-optimized for search engines like Google, Bing Yahoo, and so forth.
Remember – if search engines do not display your site in their indices, or if they just place it on the 5th, 10th or 100th page of their results to searches on a certain product or product class – the chances of visitors entering your site will decrease dramatically, and you will not really be capable to materialize the online presence of your business and the ‘world-wide’ exposure intended by it.
SEO is intended to deal with just that – so your site will have the best starting point to rank higher in search results so to start receiving online visitors (i.e., ‘web traffic’ or just ‘traffic’) that might be interested in the products and/or services offered on your site.
The most common way to do this is by implementing ‘Seo’s Best Practices. A set of certain widely accepted practices to optimize websites performance and their online presence.
For that reason, we look at what each platform is offering at its basic core in terms of SEO to help website owners optimize their site and achieve the highest ranking possible, that hopefully turn into sales.
Some of these functionalities include:
- Title and meta description for any page with emphasis on product pages.
- Proper categories (i.e., man/women’s shoes/shirts etc.).
- Google analytics and Google search console integration.
- Image optimization (having high quality and clear but yet light in size product images).
- Website speed.
- Blogging to increase site authority and traffic.
- Friendly URLs.
Here you can read our review on the best ecommerce platforms for seo.
Everyone is on a certain budget, especially if starting a new business. Paying for an ecommerce platform subscription is just one expense out of many others involved in maintaining an online store and operating it through time.
We take this into consideration by evaluating the value for money you will be getting from each platform or tool overall, and sometimes in terms of specific features that they offer.
Some platforms and tools offer a free plan which is a key factor in our reviews as it provides users with the option to experiment with them before investing real money.
But the issue here is that most “free plans” usually offer only limited functionalities that make it hard to assess the value-for-money aspect. That is why we test all plans available, also paid ones, so to be able to provide our readers a full and as real as possible assessment of value-for-money which we then reflect by the respective score.
Reliable customer and technical support is, in our opinion, a must-have feature for all type of users, whether newbies or experienced ones.
When building a new website there are many steps on the way that might require a technical help. From connecting the site to your domain, building product pages, managing inventory, to implementing proper SEO and much more.
And of course, it doesn’t end with that as these issues may just as often rise during the ongoing operation of the site, as when new features and tools are introduced.
So basically, it is relatively easy to conclude that having reliable customer support – is a must have at all times and as long as you operate your online store.
We, therefore, test and make sure for each subscription plan of any platform, what are the methods for receiving support (via chat, email, forums, or phone), how quick the response is, along with the accuracy of the solutions given to certain problems.
Why Rely on Our Ranking Methodology:
Our in-house team is made of experienced ecommerce and SEO experts that have actual experience in running various online businesses. And even though we may earn a commission via one of the affiliate links in the site (as explained above – in order to maintain the resources needed for reviewing and researching many platforms, tool apps, and software) it does not impact the final score provided, as we have our readers in mind, as our own business relies on keeping our readers coming back to read the reviews, tutorials, and comparisons published on the site.
To make effective use and benefit from the scoring system on the site, we advise you first to examine a platform or tool (in the article or review that best matches your needs, for example, best ecommerce platforms for beginners – if you are a beginner) with a score of 5 (highest) to 3.5 points.
If nothing is of satisfaction in the first score tier, proceed to inspect platforms or tools with a score of 2 to 3.5 points.
In the event, there is no match also there, you can consider of course platforms or tools with a score of 2 and lower, as a low score is not a bad score necessarily, but more of an indication of a lower stand or weakness compared with the other platforms or tools featured in the relevant area (‘beginners’ as per the example above).
The point is, you may very well examine these platforms or tools, but while doing so keep in mind there is a fair chance that you will probably need to compromise with certain features you aimed for so you can attempt to consider which platform or tool might contain compromises that least affect you or which under you can comfortably operate without damaging your basic requirements.