Shopify is a popular eCommerce platform and houses more than 2 million websites to date. It lets you start your online store right from scratch with pre-made templates. Shopify is chockfull of incredible features—but unfortunately, as the needs and demands of store owners are evolving, some of those features don’t meet the cut.
That is why it is best to consider Shopify alternatives before diving into the waters of eCommerce platforms. But first, why exactly should you look for a Shopify alternative? Below are the top drawbacks of Shopify.
- Pricey. Shopify’s beginner plans start at $29. As your business grows you might have to shell out more, and Shopify’s advanced plans can go up to $299, plus other hidden costs that may or may come to the limelight later.
- High transaction fees. Shopify’s plans come with a built-in payment processor called Shopify Payments. If the user uses this built-in payment system, the transaction fee is zero. However, this system is not available in every country. Due to that, the transaction fee can go up to 2.6% and more.
- Steep learning curve. For an absolute beginner (or someone who is less tech-friendly) the trenches of Shopify might be difficult to navigate. Plus, when you set up your store with Shopify you will find yourself going back and forth to access the front-end and the back-end of your store. Wonder why? It’s because the policies, as well as the payment gateways, are located in the backend, whereas other features like theme edits are found in the front end.
Although Shopify has an intuitive interface, the ‘terms’ used within the platform might be confusing at times. For example, ‘product category’ is termed as ‘Collections’ within the platform.
Below we dive into 5 Shopify alternatives and expand upon points that make them better than Shopify.
Best Shopify Alternatives in India (2022)
Dukaan is India’s finest eCommerce platform that empowers entrepreneurs from all walks of life to turn their offline store into a full-fledged online store.
Whether you have one product or ten, you can start your online store in just 30-seconds.
Dukaan comes with a clean and intuitive interface and the best part, you don’t have to be technically savvy.
It also seamlessly integrates with social media. From inventory, payments, customer management, and marketing to customer support — Dukaan handles it all.
Seamless third-party integrations (for example, Mailchimp, Shippo, Intercom Live chat) and business tools (like invoice generator) help entrepreneurs add more functionalities to their websites and eventually attract more customers.
As of now, there are 90+ integrations and 8+ business tools available.
You get a 14-day free trial and the paid plans start just at $9.99. If you plan to purchase a premium plan (billed yearly) you get a free custom domain too.
In nutshell, Dukaan is the right pick for individuals, and small to medium-sized businesses (specially India-based) that want to take their offline store online and make more $$$.
Do you have an existing blog or a website on WordPress? WooCommerce is a free plug-in that can transform your WordPress blog or website into a proper online store.
In comparison to Shopify, WooCommerce gives you far more control and freedom to tweak your website, and with its extensive library of plug-ins, you can create a store of your dreams. Although it is fully secure, you might have to do more manual work when creating your website. So, yes you need to be more technically savvy with this one.
WooCommerce is free-to-use and the only costs attached with it come from paid themes or premium extensions. But the good news is that the extensions are priced reasonably.
Although it is free, the domain name can cost you around $12/per year, and the hosting service can cost around $10-$25/per month.
BigCommerce is another Shopify alternative with a similar pricing structure to Shopify’s but unlike Shopify, it doesn’t ask for any transaction fees, even if you make use of 3rd-party payment services.
Coming to sales features, BigCommerce beats Shopify. Wondering why? Because it has an extensive set of built-in tools. Although Shopify has customizable sales features, BigCommerce has features that are more useful right from the start.
Shopify comes with 8 free themes whereas BigCommerce provides you with 12 free themes.
In terms of search engine optimization, you get professional reporting tools in each of the plans by BigCommerce. But with Shopify, you get advanced reporting tools only with the top plans.
Volusion is a cloud-based application to create an eCommerce store. Whether you are an absolute novice or have the know-how about eCommerce platforms, Volusion is a good choice. No matter your niche, Volusion lets you create your online store in no time.
It is similar to Shopify in the majority of aspects, but there is one great feature that beats Shopify, which is payment processing.
Shopify lets entrepreneurs integrate their online stores with 100+ payment gateways, however, an additional fee will be charged if you use them without Shopify’s built-in system called Shopify Payment. That’s where Volusion does its magic.
It gives you an option to choose from 30+ payment processors without zero additional fees. This surely saves you a lot.
5. Big Cartel
Big Cartel follows a similar path to Shopify but it primarily targets an audience that wants to sell artsy creations (like photographs, DIY fashionable products, or jewellery). On the contrary, even though Shopify targets audiences across all niches it is comparatively more suitable for large-scale eCommerce businesses.
Another good reason why Big Cartel is better than Shopify is its pricing structure. It has a free plan and the basic plan starts at $9.99 per month. The free plan lets you sell a total of 5 products. Even with that, this free plan is a great starting point and beats Shopify for sure.
Coming to templates, although they are limited in comparison to Shopify, they are entirely free of charge. Shopify’s themes can range from $150 to $350.