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Which online store to choose? The best e-commerce platforms

Katarzyna Chomąt
14/12/2023 | 12 min read
Which online store to choose? The best e-commerce platforms

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    The pandemic has caused many businesses to move online. Perhaps you also have a physical store, but you see the possibilities and potential that e-commerce offers. Or maybe you are just thinking about starting your own online store and wondering which platform to choose. There are many scripts to choose from. However, it is worth considering a few important issues and then deciding on the right platform.

     

    Which online store to choose?

     

    There are many online stores on the internet, so choosing the right one can be overwhelming. Therefore, the first step should be competitor analysis. Check what software your industry rivals are using, how their stores look, and how they promote them. Also, pay attention to the needs of your target audience

     

    The next step is to answer a few questions:

     

    • What range of products do you want to offer?
    • How many products will you sell?
    • How much traffic do you expect?
    • Do you want to run a store only in Poland or also abroad?
    • Do you want the store to be connected to a blog, for example?
    • Will you need help setting up the store?
    • What budget do you want to allocate for launching the store?

     

    Various needs and requirements of people wanting to do business online result in various types of e-commerce platforms. Open Source and subscription platforms are distinguished. Of course, each of them has its advantages and disadvantages, so you will find different opinions about each of them on the internet. You can also choose a dedicated system, but creating such a store will take several months and will be very expensive. 

     

    Open Source - can you set up a store for free? 

     

    Open Source is free software that you need to install on your own server and customize to your needs. Thanks to this, you are the owner of the online store. The advantages of such shopping platforms also include scalability. When the store grows, we can easily adapt it to increased traffic and user requirements. Other advantages include a large number of free templates, add-ons, and functionalities, frequent updates, as well as compliance with SEO.

     

    However, such platforms also have some disadvantages. If you don't have enough knowledge to configure the store, you will need to hire a programmer to do it for you. Hosting costs are also added to this. As you can see, although the Open Source system is free, it generates additional costs. One of the disadvantages is also that you need to adjust the store to comply with the applicable law on your own. 

     

    The most popular platforms include: WooCommerce, PrestaShop, Magento, and Shopware.

     

    1. WooCommerce

     

    WooCommerce is an Open Source e-commerce plugin designed for easy integration of an online store with WordPress, a popular content management system (CMS). The platform includes many free themes, allowing you to personalize the store's appearance and improve the online sales process. An important advantage of WooCommerce is the community around it, which is ready to help other users. The ability to use different language versions, currencies, or international payments opens the way to selling worldwide. However, this platform is more suitable for small and medium-sized stores, as managing a store with a large range of products can be complicated. 

     

    Integrate Rating Captain with your WooCommerce store and collect product reviews.

     

    Source: WooCommerce

     

    2. PrestaShop

     

    PrestaShop is a solution that allows you to easily set up your own store. Of course, before you start selling, you need to have hosting and a domain. After configuring PrestaShop, you can manage products, monitor inventory, and customize functionality (payment methods, delivery methods, internal search, product highlighting, etc.). It is a good solution for medium and large stores. You also receive reports on the effectiveness of your actions. However, a disadvantage of this platform is frequent updates, which require a lot of knowledge to implement correctly.

     

    Integrate Rating Captain with your PrestaShop store and collect product reviews.

     

     

    3. Magento

     

    Magento is another e-commerce store software dedicated to more complex stores. The platform has a free and paid version, but the basic version includes functionalities that are additionally paid in other scripts. An important advantage of Magento is that the platform allows you to manage multiple stores in one administrative panel and supports the mobile version of the store. It also provides many possibilities for SEO optimization. Unfortunately, this platform also has disadvantages. One of them is the requirement for larger server parameters than in the case of other platforms. Moreover, advanced programming knowledge is necessary when making modifications.

     

    Integrate Rating Captain with your Magento store and collect product reviews.