Best eCommerce Platform: BigCommerce vs. Shopify

Shopify was founded in 2004 and has seen an exponential growth in users since then. That is not too surprising considering the market share for eCommerce has exploded in that time. BigCommerce was founded in 2009 and has seen an upward trajectory as well. Both Shopify and BigCommerce are eCommerce platforms that many people have chosen to use because of their simplicity, reliability, and features. Which is better though, Shopify or BigCommerce? 

If you use Shopify you are going to need apps. A lot of them. In fact, BigCommerce out of the box equates to about 35 additional Shopify apps that you will need to install to have the same basic functionality as BigCommerce. All these apps, besides your time, can cost upwards of $20,000 a year in addition to your monthly hosting website package plan. BigCommerce works to offer a complete b2b and b2c experience without the need to pay or download additional apps. 

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See photo to reference what is and isn’t included with each platform.*

BigCommerce has a better conversion rate. Another included feature that BigCommerce has vs. Shopify is the abandoned cart saver. Shopify is limited to the wholesale channel when using the abandoned cart saver.

Bigcommerce offers competitive plans that offer more features and customization options previously only available for large, very profitable corporations. One of the most notable customizations comes in the form of integrated support for variants and values in a single option. What this means; using BigCommerce makes it easier to offer a variety of products to your consumers to fill their specific needs. Other features included with BigCommerce and even BigCommerce Standard, their most basic plan, is the fact wishlists are included. This might not seem like a big deal but even USA TODAY has articles about what is on everyone’s wish list this holiday season. 

Can Shopify have wishlists? Yes but only through the use of a third-party app. That means yet another thing you need to manage and worry about failing. 

Not really sure what to sell in your eCommerce store? Don’t worry because with BigCommerce you can have unlimited products. Even if you do already know what products you’re going to sell to make your millions you don’t have to worry about having a cap on the number of products in your store. 

Can Shopify have unlimited products? They sure can through the use of a third-party app.

Shopify Comparison

Upsell Functionality Built-in

BigCommerce has a seamless way to up-sell and cross-sell products. They even include the ability to create a pop-up at check out that suggests another product the consumer might enjoy. Even if only 1% of your revenue comes from upselling or cross-selling, that’s 1% more than Shopify could have offered out of the box. You might be wondering if Shopify has a pop-up to recommend a more expensive or additional product the consumer might want? Yes, and its included. Just kidding, it’s another app you have to install. 

BigCommerce offers order editing right out of the box. BigCommerce offers customer rewards, natively. That being said we recommend smile.io given the amazing customer experience they strive to create. Shopify has apps that allow users to do these things but those are additional costs or time to manage and use. 

In a previous blog, we discussed that Shopify Plus has an advantage over the lower levels of Shopify because it included third-party calculated shipping costs. BigCommerce includes calculated shipping even at their lowest tier. Calculated shipping might not seem like it brings a tremendous amount of value… but in another blog post, we dive into why this is so important. Customers do not like to be surprised by uncalculated costs and it often results in abandoning their cart. If you’re using Shopify, you can’t even get them back from abandoning their cart. 

Credit Card Freedom using BigCommerce

Although all plans of Shopify and BigCommerce are Level 1 PCI Compliant Included only BigCommerce includes Credit Card Vaulting. Shopify can have credit card vaulting but only if you install a third-party app. 

Speaking of credit cards, you are going to notice that through BigCommerce there are no additional transaction fees you have to pay. It doesn’t matter the credit card processing provider you are using. With the main Shopify plan costing $79/month, each transaction costs the business 2.6% +¢30 per transaction. That might seem like a lot but given the sheer volume you want to achieve, that will add up. Plus, BigCommerce has no transaction fees

BigCommerce also supports a lot of discounts out of the box. There are over 70 of them to be customized and then applied to different customer groups. Shopify does actually include discounts as well, just not the same number of customization that BigCommerce offers or the ability to segment your customer base. 

BigCommerce has better SEO features. This means when people look for a product like yours, they’ll find it easier when you’re using BigCommerce. With BigCommerce you have the ability to fully customize URLs to help improve search rankings and get traffic to your store. 

BigCommerce is more than just a place for your business to be, it is a place for your business to succeed and thrive. BigCommerce has a community that features benefits like talking to BigCommerce experts and “town halls” where these experts talk about improving BigCommerce. These experts also give tips and tricks on how to improve other aspects of your store, like user interface and content creation.   

 

Conclusion

There is unlimited growth potential with BigCommerce. No max for platform capabilities. No need to migrate to a scalable eCommerce platform down the road. With Shopify, even upgrading to higher plans does not mean more features all the time or a better scalable platform. 

If you use Shopify and want to expand while maintaining the same cost or even lower, start thinking about making the jump to BigCommerce. It is simply a better platform to scale your business and grow the product line that you sell. At NuEthic we specialize in establishing and growing your eCommerce business. Reach out today to see how we can help you with your eCommerce needs.