Shopify and Bigcommerce are surely two of the best eCommerce platforms available today. While Shopify has over 2.1 million active users, Bigcommerce serves over 60,000 merchants around the world.
If you’ve already shortlisted these two platforms or are thinking of switching from one to another, this blog post is for you. We’ll make a comprehensive comparison between BigCommerce and Shopify to help you choose the right platform for your eCommerce business.
TL:Dr: Why Shopify Is Better for You
Need a quick answer? Shopify is certainly a great choice for businesses of all sorts. It is going to meet your unique business needs regardless of your business size, industry, or goals.
In case you want to switch to the most supported and optimized eCommerce platform, Shopify should be your first choice. While BigCommerce is a great solution for a range of online merchants, Shopify offers a diverse range of growth possibilities for small, medium-sized, and large companies.
BigCommerce Compared to Shopify
Let’s take a quick look at the pros and cons of Shopify and BigCommerce to determine why Shopify is better for your business.
The Pros of Shopify
Whether you want to build your online store today or looking to create a stunning eCommerce user experience, Shopify will make your business life easier. Here is why millions of online businesses love to use Shopify to power their online stores:
- Quick, easy setup
- 24/7 customer support
- Unique theme options
- Ease of customizations
- Thousands of tools to choose from
- Own payment gateway
The Pros of BigCommerce
From scalability to security, the features of BigCommerce make it more than a store builder. Here are the advantages of BigCommerce:
- Built-in sales features
- No transaction fees on any plan
- Sound SEO features
- Multi-channel selling capabilities
The Cons of Shopify
The majority of merchants around the globe use Shopify to sell their products online. Nevertheless, there are a few cons of Shopify:
- You often need to install an app to get the required functionality.
- It’s slightly complicated to add custom fields such as file upload options.
- Advanced reporting functionality is only available for premium users.
- The email marketing functionality is pretty basic.
The Cons of BigCommerce
Here are some of the cons of BigCommerce that you must consider before choosing it for your business:
- Expensive themes, lack of variation
- Yearly sales threshold
- No email marketing tools
- No subscription features
- Complicated editor for beginner
- Features options are not fully customizable
How We Judged Which Is Better
You may wonder how we can judge these providers to decide which is better. The best eCommerce software is the one that simplifies inventory management, order management, kitting, tracking shipments, and other essential processes.
Simply put, you should be able to manage all of your business processes in a single location in a cost-efficient way. The following are important basic and advanced features that you must consider when deciding on an eCommerce platform:
How much can you afford to spend in order to build and manage your online store? Both BigCommerce and Shopify offer three pricing plans, including basic plans for beginners. The pricing of these two eCommerce giants looks similar. However, you need to take into account transaction fees, credit card fees, add-ons, and other additional charges.
Nothing can tell more about a product than its user reviews. We can judge these platforms based on what existing Shopify and BigCommerce users say about their experience with these platforms.
The success of your eCommerce store largely depends on how you present your business or products online. This is where you need a flexible, user-friendly eCommerce site and templates to design unique and exciting customer experiences.
There are certain elements that your website should have to keep attracting online shoppers. Here are some of them:
- Shopping cart and wish list
- Abandoned cart recovery
- Security features
- Product reviews
- Advanced payment options
- Search bar
Another way to judge an eCommerce platform is to evaluate its marketing and SEO features. A good system must allow you to market your business easily and quickly. Consider switching to a more comprehensive platform if you’re using a platform but still need other marketing tools to optimize your store.
As a CMO or online retailer, you need certain reporting tools to keep track of things and set effective strategies. Popular eCommerce solutions like Shopify or BigCommerce come with in-built reporting and analytics tools.
Security features are a key component of a robust online website builder. While functionality and visual appearance play a key role in building a successful shop, you need to make sure your website is secure.
BigCommerce or Shopify: Who Has Better Pricing?
Shopify offers three plans: Basic, Shopify, and Advance, which cost $29/mo, $79/mo, and $299/mo, respectively.
BigCommerce also offers three packages: Standard plan, Plus, and Pro, which cost $29.95/mo, $79.95/mo, and $299.95/mo, respectively. Enterprise plans are also available for enterprise-level companies.
The pricing structure looks almost similar. However, Shopify offers 20% off when you sign up for two years. Also, things change dramatically when it comes to transaction and credit fees and buying additional functionality.
While Shopify offers Shopify Payments that enable you to avoid transaction fees, BigCommerce charges no transaction fee. Shopify turns out to be more cost-efficient when you evaluate the overall cost of running a business.
BigCommerce or Shopify: Who Do Users Prefer?
If we look at the number of Shopify and BigCommerce users, Shopify clearly wins the race. A growing number of small businesses prefer Shopify because of its large app store, ease of use, and forums. Store owners on Shopify get access to plenty of useful tools to choose from.
No matter the size or nature of your business, you’ll find best-fit third-party apps in the Shopify App Store. BigCommerce store is also great, but it is much smaller than that of Shopify.
Related: Neil Patel’s Shopify Review
BigCommerce or Shopify: Better Design Capabilities?
Both platforms offer free and paid themes and certain design capabilities. However, Shopify is better when it comes to changing the layout or customizing the design of your website.
Compared to BigCommerce, WordPress, or WooCommerce, Shopify set itself apart with its vast collection of free and paid themes. You can fully customize a Shopify theme and create the design and experience you want for your customers.
BigCommerce or Shopify: Whose E-commerce Features Are More Robust?
Both Shopify and BigCommerce offer standard eCommerce features: basic shipping tools, multichannel selling, and an SSL certificate. While BigCommerce is popular for its built-in features, Shopify inspires retailers and managers with its customizable features.
Besides, Shopify’s app store is larger than that of BigCommerce. It is ideal if you want more control over your site or want to run a big business with complex inventory.
BigCommerce or Shopify: Who Has Better Marketing Features?
Again, these eCom platforms come with great marketing features. When you purchase a BigCommerce plan, it allows you to create discount codes, customizable URLs, and one-click Google Shopping integration.
You can do the same with Shopify but get some additional features such as automatic sitemaps and analytics for product performance or finance summaries. When it comes to search engine optimization, Shopify allows you to optimize your content and address other technical issues.
BigCommerce or Shopify: Whose Reporting Features Are Better for Your Business?
BigCommerce has its own suite of reporting tools designed specifically to support your business. On the other hand, Shopify allows you to integrate with the industry’s leading reporting tools and helps you keep track of many important metrics with its own analytics.
It is super easy to generate performance reports on Shopify and fine-tune your strategy. However, it’s hard to choose a winner in this area as both store builders provide sellers and marketers with top-notch reporting and real-time analytics tools.
BigCommerce or Shopify: Who Has the Best Security Features?
Both platforms have incredible support and security features such as 24/7 phone support, live chat, email support, and SSL certificate on all of their plans. The paid SSL options from BigCommerce range from $59 to $299.
Shopify and BigCommerce are PCI DSS-compliant services which means they meet the security requirements. The area where Shopify beats its competitor is its knowledge center.
Conclusion: What To Do Next
So, what do you think after going through the pros and cons of both platforms? Our winner is Shopify after judging both platforms based on the most critical features and capabilities.
Shopify and BigCommerce are two big competitors in the world of eCommerce. However, we choose Shopify for your business because of its flexibility, customization features, marketing tools, affordability, and ease of use.
If you’ve chosen Shopify as your preferred eCommerce platform, get ready to partner up with Anatta, where we’ll help you develop best-in-class user experiences. Feel free to contact us and tell us more about your business goals.
- Nirav is the CEO and founder of Anatta. Nirav received his engineering degree in 2006 from George Washington University. Prior to Anatta, he served as founder of Dharmaboost, a software company working with Cisco Systems, Hewlett Packard, and New Leaf Paper. He is also cofounder of Upscribe, a next-level subscription software for fast growing eCommerce brands.