Did you know that according to Nasdaq, by 2040, 95% of all purchases will be performed online, rendering the current method of purchasing outdated?
In addition to running a brick-and-mortar shop, creating an online presence that lets you extend the offerings of your products and services to a broader audience is ideal.
Not only has the internet made the world one global village, but 93.5% of all members of that global village worldwide have also made purchases online.
However, with the advancement of technology, consumers’ needs have shifted dramatically. People now demand the perfect customer-centric environment for their purchases and would leave your online store for a competition if they feel their needs have been neglected.
Consider the following scenario: Sophia, a high school student, wishes to purchase a prom dress online from an e-commerce site recommended by a friend. However, she only receives suggestions for men’s shoes when she visits the website. This creates a negative customer experience, and she leaves with the impression that the store does not cater to her needs.
To effectively serve their customers, businesses must keep up with modern trends while following technological advancement closely. Not only will this help provide just the purchasing experience a customer needs, but it also gives organizations a competitive edge in the market, thus ensuring their market share.
However, establishing an e-commerce business is not without difficulties, as you will be competing with millions of other firms selling the same things as you. This implies you’ll need to employ some of the top e-commerce solutions to reach your full potential.
E-commerce tools can help you automate and streamline a variety of business processes. This can improve your efficiency and allow you to use your time more effectively. Before we go further, let’s briefly look at e-commerce solutions.
What Is an E-Commerce Solution?
An e-commerce solution is a specialized tool, software, or service that helps a company conduct its business over the internet. It provides businesses with tools to reach customers from different locations and fulfill orders worldwide.
Most e-commerce software solutions let you create and design a custom website for your business. You can reach a broader range of prospective customers by creating an online version of your traditional store. It also allows you to run your physical walk-in and online stores simultaneously with little effort.
At the barest minimum, e-commerce solutions allow your business to display the items on its catalog and make transactions online. But since most customers want more than the bare minimum, companies opt for e-commerce platforms with added features and business management tools.
With a suitable e-commerce solution, your customers can easily navigate your website and complete transactions more quickly. By providing SEO-friendly designs and layouts, e-commerce solutions also accelerate the growth of your business and give you access to prospective customers worldwide.
Why Should You Use E-Commerce Solutions?
Whether you’re expanding a physical location, seeking a robust enterprise solution, or starting a new business, the right e-commerce software will significantly impact your business’s success and stability.
E-commerce solutions give more visibility to your business while, at the same time, increasing your revenue.
Here are some benefits of e-commerce software solutions to businesses and consumers:
Not only do e-commerce stores allow you to sell products to a broader range of customers, but it also saves you payments like maintenance bills. You do not have to pay rent for a physical store or employ sales staff that attend to customers in traditional stores when you use e-commerce solutions.
It also reduces costs for consumers by allowing them to buy products from the stores that sell them the cheapest, regardless of their location.
Higher Profit Margins
Companies with e-commerce stores have a higher average profit margin compared to those that do not use e-commerce solutions since they get to cut costs and reach more customers. You can grow your business by reducing production costs and generating more sales.
Most e-commerce software solutions that follow e-commerce trends generate sales for your business by allowing you to reach your specific target audience worldwide.
Excellent Customer Service
When customers visit your online store to shop, they expect a user-friendly interface and smooth transitions between pages. People do not want to waste time figuring out how to use a complicated website.
The best e-commerce solutions help provide excellent customer service through an excellent User Interface when customers visit your website.
Search Engine Optimization
E-commerce solutions allow businesses to create awareness for their products by making SEO-friendly content that helps their site rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs).
When you appear on the first page of search engines, you reach even more customers and make more sales.
Personalized Customer Experience
Have you ever returned to an e-commerce store and found more products that meet your needs?
This occurs because your vendor’s e-commerce platform allows them to collect your data and shopping preferences to suggest products you might want or need.
When customers visit your e-commerce site for the first time, you can suggest products that customers with similar profiles are interested in based on the data provided by your e-commerce solution.
Sales Around The Clock
Businesses that use e-commerce stores never have to close shop or take a break. Customers can browse through their catalogs and make transactions at any time of the day.
You also get to display important product information to your customers, making it easy for them to choose the products that best suit them. This increases your sales opportunities because customers do not have to wait for a customer service agent before they can buy a product.
Although e-commerce solutions simplify your life in many ways, you must ensure that you do not get lost in e-commerce trends but choose the right one. Let us consider the different types of e-commerce solutions and see how they work.
Types of E-Commerce Solutions
Business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce solutions like Shopify help a business to sell its products and services to other businesses. The companies that buy these products are rarely the end users but often resell them to the consumers.
B2B dealers supply organizations with products that simple consumers can not use. They act as wholesalers that supply retail businesses with the products and services they refine and sell to their consumers.
As the name suggests, Business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce solutions like Amazon help a business sell its products directly to consumers. B2C is one of the most common types of e-commerce models.
B2C e-commerce requires buyers to make less critical decisions than B2B because it involves less expensive items. This e-commerce solution helps retail companies to offer their products and services to people online.
Consumer-to-business (C2B) is a helpful e-commerce solution that connects independent specialists to businesses needing their services. Websites like Google Adsense allow consumers to offer services or sell products to companies online.
This e-commerce solution gives consumers the edge by allowing them to name their prices and make earnings by selling their products and services to businesses willing to pay.
Consumer-to-consumer (C2C) e-commerce solutions like eBay connect consumers to trade products and services. It is helpful to consumers who want to auction items they find undesirable or do not need anymore.
C2C e-commerce apps profit from the transaction and listing fees they charge consumers that do business on their apps.
11 E-Commerce Solutions to Simplify Your Life
Shopify is an e-commerce platform that offers you tools to design, start and grow your e-commerce store with no coding. It is a B2C and B2B website builder software that provides e-commerce solutions to businesses wanting to sell to other companies and consumers.
Arguably the best e-commerce solution with a 26% market share, Shopify simplifies your business and takes care of every aspect of your e-commerce store. The platform provides new users with a free 14-day trial without requiring their credit card information to determine whether or not the platform meets their needs before committing financially.
You gain access to free design templates that streamline the process of building a custom e-commerce site for your business, all for a monthly fee starting at $29 per month for the “Basic Shopify” package.
The abandoned cart recovery tool, accessible with all Shopify plans, is one of the most useful built-in features. It enables store owners to send an email to customers reminding them of their abandoned carts and urging them to complete their purchases.
In addition, Shopify offers phone assistance, live chat, and email help 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This ensures that customers receive direct assistance from the team within minutes.
BigCommerce is a comprehensive e-commerce solution mainly targeting enterprise-level businesses. It offers B2B and B2C services to businesses looking to build and grow their e-commerce stores.
With BigCommerce, you can display all your products, regardless of how many, on an efficient catalog that allows your customers to find what they need quickly.
Although the e-commerce platform aims to provide its services to large enterprises, it also has “BigCommerce Essentials” packages for smaller businesses looking to use BigCommerce.
Like Shopify, this e-commerce solution provides new users a 15-day free trial. You gain access to basic features like a mobile responsive website for your online store when you pay a monthly fee of $29.95. You can upgrade to packages like “BigCommerce Plus” that give your e-commerce more tools to satisfy your customers.
Additionally, BigCommerce offers headless shopping. While a CMS manages the content and graphics, a headless eCommerce system manages the eCommerce functionality of your online business.
For instance, you can alter the front-end while keeping the back-end the same by combining BigCommerce with WordPress. Regardless of the CMS used for the front end, it enables developers to use their chosen technology or programming language.
Wix, a B2C e-commerce site builder, mainly targets small businesses with fewer products. Although it is not suitable for businesses with many products compared to comprehensive e-commerce solutions like BigCommerce, Wix has its perks.
Wix offers significantly more design templates for your websites than other e-commerce platforms. It lets you choose from hundreds of free professional template designs to make your website. You can even say that it multitasks as both a website builder platform and graphic design software.
If you want to build not just an e-commerce store but a complete website for your brand that includes an online store where visitors can make transactions, then Wix will come in handy for you. It helps you design and build an e-commerce store, all for a monthly fee starting at $27.
While Amazon is mainly known as a place to promote your products and services, it has evolved into providing e-commerce solutions to businesses and consumers.
It acts both as a B2B and C2C e-commerce platform that helps businesses and people showcase their products and make transactions online. It also acts as a storefront that markets products and connects businesses and consumers.
As a consumer, you can make money by selling items you do not need at $0.99 per item. You can also sell products and services as a brand at $33.00 per month, regardless of how many items you sell.
Squarespace is an e-commerce website builder that helps its users make an attractive online store. It is a B2C site builder that offers unique design tools to businesses and helps them present their products to customers appealingly.
Although it is generally a good fit for anyone looking to take their business online, Squarespace is more suitable for small companies with fewer products. It helps you build an impressively attractive online store as a small business and stores high-quality images and videos of your products with no storage limit.
With this e-commerce solution, you get a good design interface to customize your online store and give visitors a feel for your brand. It also gives you analytics tools that help you know what your customers prefer and how to satisfy them better.
Volusion is an e-commerce website builder software that helps businesses to sell their products and services online. It is a comprehensive e-commerce solution that smoothly handles all aspects of online transactions like payment processing.
With this solution, you can build a stylish e-commerce store with no coding experience. It gives you access to a range of mobile-responsive themes and templates that you can edit to create a custom store for your business.
Volusion is well known for the efficient analytical and powerful SEO tools it provides its users. Although you would generally have to pay for its services at a starting price of $29.00 per month, you get a 14-day free trial with no risk or credit card details required as a new user.
Although it is mainly a website builder, GoDaddy also offers e-commerce solutions. It helps small businesses build their online store and provides tools to transact with their customers online.
GoDaddy does not offer users much creative freedom to create an e-commerce store. All you have to do is answer the few questions it asks you about your business. It then uses the information you have provided to create a custom e-commerce website for your business.
With GoDaddy, you won’t have to wait a long time or put in a lot of effort to create your website. The program takes care of everything, ensuring your e-commerce site is up and running in no time. Despite giving new customers a 30-day free trial, you must pay a monthly price to continue using its features, starting at $14.99/month.
Shift4Shop is an easy-to-use B2C e-commerce software that allows businesses to build online stores to connect with customers. All you need to do is create an account for your brand and pay a monthly fee starting from $29/month to access the tools that help you build an online store.
You can display an unlimited number of inventory on digital shelves to make it easy for your customers to find them. It also has an integration feature that allows you to use third-party apps and their features to create a better customer experience for your consumers.
This e-commerce plan offers businesses in the U.S an all-inclusive free plan called “End-to-End” that lets you create your e-commerce store and process credit card transactions only through Shift4Shop.
WooCommerce, a WordPress plugin, allows you to add an e-commerce store to your WordPress website. It lets you build your functioning e-commerce store through your WordPress blog. To start, you must sign in to your hosting provider and select a WordPress hosting plan.
The software provides a setup wizard that guides you through the whole process and lets you build your online store without prior experience. Although free to download, you only gain access to its features when you pay a monthly fee starting at $6.95/month.
WooCommerce is relatively easier to use than other e-commerce solutions because it lets you use a platform you already know.
Formerly known as Magento, Adobe Commerce is a top e-commerce platform for large and well-established businesses. It offers B2B and B2C services to enterprises with the resources and technical know-how to maintain an e-commerce store.
Adobe Commerce is a self-hosted e-commerce solution that allows large and medium businesses to create e-commerce stores and sell thousands of products and services annually. It is not beginner-friendly to set up, and you need to know a bit of code to build your e-commerce store or just pay someone who does.
You get to showcase multiple variants of your products to your customers in attractive catalogs at a starting price of $22,000 per year.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud
Salesforce Commerce Cloud is a leading cloud-based e-commerce platform that lets you build an e-commerce store that provides what your customers need effectively. It provides B2B and B2C services to businesses of every size.
It has an efficient social media integration feature that allows you to increase your reach by selling everywhere your customers shop. You gain access to hundreds of features that create a good buying experience for your customers at a price starting at $25.00 per month.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud also offers special services to businesses looking to unify their online and offline stores into one platform. You get to monitor and operate both your physical and digital store efficiently.
For years, e-commerce solutions have made customers’ and business owners’ lives easier, and it has become nearly difficult to run a firm without an online store.
These sites and software meet the needs of businesses by boosting their access to prospective clients and lowering the costs of running their physical stores. It also expands consumers’ options and allows them to access items and services that would otherwise be impossible.
However, to effectively serve your online customers, you must have an e-commerce platform that matches your brand and provide every service needed for the smooth running of your online business.