Weebly is the simplest and easiest ecommerce website builder on our list. While its design capabilities are limited, it’s an excellent choice if you don’t want to waste hours (or days) getting started and adding all of your products.
It’s more than enough for most small stores that want to stay small, like handmade shops, home-based businesses, and hobby sellers.
Furthermore, it’s also an excellent fit for small restaurants, breweries, and other local shops looking for a quick way to transition to online sales as a result of COVID-19. In less than an hour, you can list your products, create your online store, and push it live to your customers.
With Weebly, it’s incredibly easy to add new products, remove out-of-stock products, push updates, and track your inventory levels without fiddling too much with the platform itself.
So, rather than spending countless hours setting up and managing your online store, you can focus on actually running your business.
Every plan (even the free one) comes with a built-in shopping cart, a quick shop option that lets customers check out in a matter of seconds, and automatic tax calculations. You also get unlimited products and in-store or delivery options at checkout.
On top of that, you can create custom coupons, offer digital gift cards, and manage inventory in real-time as customers order.
You can even optimize your website for local SEO and capture leads to grow your email list.
As such, you get everything you need to set up and run your small store without ever paying a penny. With that said, you can’t connect a custom domain name with a free account. This may not be a deal breaker for you.
But if it is, you can upgrade to a paid plan at just $6 per month.
Both the free and entry-level plans display Square ads on your website, which isn’t a huge deal if you’re a small, local store or selling products as a hobby.
The ads aren’t too distracting and the features you get in return outweigh the limitations.
If you decide to upgrade to a higher tier (starting at $12 per month), you can enjoy an ad-free website, a free domain name for the first year, no transaction fees, and unlimited storage space.
If you’ve never built a website before, customer support is one of the best things to prioritize in a potential ecommerce website builder. Out of all the builders on our list, Shopify stands out as having the best 24/7/365 customer support of the bunch.
That, paired with a feature-rich platform and a drag-and-drop page builder, gives you an easy path to starting and launching your online store, even if you have no experience.
Without ever touching a line of code, you can have a well-designed online store up and running in no time.
But the best part is that you don’t have to do it alone. Whether you have a general business question or a technical question about the backend of your website, Shopify’s customer service team is ready to help you out.
You can reach them via live chat at any time. In our experience, their response time is nearly instant, so you never have to wait around for hours in full-blown panic mode.
On top of world-class support, there’s a massive community forum full of questions and answers from Shopify experts and current customers alike.
You can search through previously asked questions or post one of your own if you can’t find an answer. Within a few hours, most questions get answered so you never have to struggle through building or maintaining your online store by yourself.
And if that wasn’t enough, Shopify also has a robust knowledge base full of articles, courses, podcast episodes, and how-to guides written by Shopify itself.
Have a question on how to do something?
There’s probably a guide on it. However, if you can’t figure it out, you can always fall back on reaching out to support.
Aside from support, every Shopify plan comes with the essential features you need. From built-in marketing tools and digital gift cards to shipping discounts, unlimited products, and support for 133 currencies, the platform is packed full of valuable features.
If you need more functionality, there’s an app marketplace with more than 4,000+ free and premium apps designed to extend the capabilities of your online store. From email marketing and social media integrations to shipping platforms, there’s an app for (nearly) everything you can imagine.
As a photographer, artist, or creative, you rely heavily on imagery and branding to help sell your work online. Since users can’t interact with what you’re selling, photos, videos, and your website have to do the heavy lifting for you.
If that sounds like you, Squarespace is our top recommendation.
It’s built specifically for creative, highly-visual websites with dozens of aesthetically pleasing templates ready to go out of the box.
But the best part is that these templates put visuals at the center of your online store.
Most of them require very little editing on your part, but you can customize the template you choose using Squarespace’s intuitive what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) site editor.
t’s 100% drag-and-drop and changing colors across your entire site takes just a few seconds. So, all you have to do is apply your branding, upload your images and videos, set up your product listings, and you’re good to go.
On top of regular products, you can sell premium spots on your calendar for custom work or consultations using the online booking tool.
Another amazing feature is the ability to sell memberships and subscriptions on the advanced ecommerce plan. This is excellent if you plan to sell stock photography subscriptions, digital assets, or other products with recurring revenue.
When you’re ready to start marketing your store, Squarespace delivers various tools to help you get the word out via social media where you can connect with potential customers.
With Squarespace’s social media integrations, you can easily tell your brand story and sell your products directly within the platform. As such, your customers never have to leave the page to buy something from you, making the buying process a breeze.
And if you’re on Instagram, you can use Squarespace to set up shoppable posts so followers can see your offerings with one tap.
Every plan comes with built-in tax tools, the ability to create discounts, gift cards, mobile inventory and store management, and in-person payments if you sell at pop-up events or art shows as well.
When you want an ecommerce website builder that grows alongside your expanding business, BigCommerce is a great choice.
With that said, it doesn’t have an introductory plan that’s suitable for beginners or those just getting started. Another quirk with BigCommerce is that each plan has an annual revenue cap.
The cheapest plan caps out at $50k per year, so it’s a good place to start but you’ll quickly outgrow this plan as your online store grows.
For rapid growth, the keys are automation, personalizing the customer experience, and delivering enhanced strategies to attract new customers. BigCommerce combines the powers of all three to help you scale your business as fast as possible.
These three areas are at the core of what this website builder does.
Plus, you can sell across multiple channels—like Facebook and Pinterest—pick your own payment gateway, and avoid transaction fees so you get to keep more of what you sell.
Every plan includes unlimited products and unlimited staff accounts, so you can onboard your entire team and every product in your catalog without ever needing to pay extra. You can also connect your store to powerhouse marketplaces, like Amazon and eBay.
One of BigCommerce’s standout features is a single-page checkout process that helps boost conversions.
Most of the builders on our list use a two-page checkout process, meaning potential customers have to go through more steps before completing their purchase. Reducing the number of clicks with a one-page design makes the process easier and can result in more sales.
Customers can pay also using a variety of payment methods, including Apple, Google, and Amazon Pay, making it easy to use their preferred method.
Regardless of the plan you choose, you get essential ecommerce features like discounts and coupons, enterprise-grade reporting tools, product ratings and reviews, a built-in blog, and real-time shipping quotes through various carriers.
When you’re ready for more advanced features, the software scales with you.
On higher tiers, you can take advantage of things like conversion audits, abandoned cart emails, advanced segmentation, and in-depth SEO optimization capabilities to bolster your growth even more.
You also get top-notch customer support with 85% of issues resolved on first contact.
You can contact them any time, 24/7/365 with questions or for personalized site audits and tailored advice. There’s also a robust community-driven forum and thorough product documentation to help you along the way.