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WordPress is beyond doubt the best platform for building any kind of website. eCommerce stores aren't an exception either. But in order to set up an online store within WordPress, you will be required to choose the best option from a list of eCommerce plugins.
Since online stores require to maintain good contact with customers both pre-sales and post-sales, it should be designed and built with that purpose in focus. Although I don't mean to scare you there, it is very important that you made the right choice if you do not want to blow up your business with a poor functioning website.
This article will guide you about the important things you need to consider while choosing a WordPress eCommerce plugin and a list of plugins along with their feature comparison. So let's dive in,
Things to Consider Before Choosing an eCommerce Plugin
1. Ease of use
For managing your store fast and efficiently, it should be user-friendly. User-friendliness is the topmost criterion for any eCommerce plugin. It will help you save your time and to use it wisely.
2. Third-party apps/plugin integration
As your store expands, the built-in options may not suffice to your needs. This will require you to integrate third-party apps and plugins into your store. Thus it is always best to go for an eCommerce plugin that allows easier integration of such tools.
3. Diversity in payment methods
A proper payment system is the backbone of any online store. There are a number of payment methods out there. Thus it is important that the eCommerce plugin supports all the popular payment solutions within it either built-in or via third-party integration.
No matter how user-friendly your chosen eCommerce platform is or how good you are at handling technical glitches, there would be times when you would be forced to seek help from the outside to get things fixed. Thus always choose the plugin that offers excellent support when requested.
Now that you are aware of the requirements of a good eCommerce plugin, let's find the best ones in the market.
Powering over 28% of all online stores WooCommerce stays on the top in the list of popular eCommerce plugins. Being a free plugin WooCommerce makes it affordable to set up online stores easily. It comes with hundreds and thousands of both free and premium extensions which allow you to expand your store to any level you wish to take it to.
It supports the sale of both digital and physical goods, allows you to sell affiliate or external products and also offers complete inventory management of your eCommerce store. Payment gateways are a great attraction too with all the popular payment gateways built-into it. Support will not be an issue with their well-guided documentation, online video tutorials, official forums, etc.
Design and customization options are also great with this plugin as it offers eCommerce specific themes along with abundant customization options. All in all, WooCommerce is a great plugin that you can completely trust to build your store.
Easy Digital Downloads
Easy Digital Downloads as its name suggests is designed for selling digital goods with WordPress. Thus if you are intending to sell only digital goods like ebooks, PDF files, audio clips, etc., EDD is a perfect choice for you. But you can also sell physical products with EDD if you are willing to purchase their premium extension that allows you to do so.
What makes EDD a popular platform is because it is free to use and that it provides a beginner-friendly interface. It comes with hundreds of extensions that range from payment gateways to marketing tools. When it comes to its design and customization possibilities EDD works well with any WordPress theme and if you want more it has got built-in themes as well.
The plugin comes with great documentation, videos, and tutorials that easily lets you understand its working. Along with that, IRC chatroom is also available to solve your issues. Premium users of EDD will be provided with priority support as well.
Although it isn't a plugin, Shopify deserves to be mentioned on the list because of the easy way it offers to set up an online store for its users. Since it is a cloud-hosted service you do not need to worry about upgrading it as your business grows. Unlike eCommerce plugins that require you set up a store from scratch, you will be able to build one easily by just signing up for a Shopify account.
Just like WordPress, it supports the selling of both digital and physical goods in its store. Shopify charges you a monthly fee for as long as you are running your online store on their platform which won't be high as compared to the hosting fee you will be paying when you set up your store using a plugin.
Hope this article gave you an overall idea regarding all the major eCommerce platforms out there. Now you would be in a much better place to make your choice of an eCommerce plugin by weighing their pros and cons to your needs.