10 October 2019

First blog on the E-commerce website options

Online shopping is a form of electronic commerce which allows consumers to directly buy goods or services from a seller over the Internet using a web browser. Consumers find a product of interest by visiting the website of the retailer directly or by searching among alternative vendors using a shopping search engine, which displays the same product’s availability and pricing at different e-retailers. As of 2016, customers can shop online using a range of different computers and devices, including desktop computers, laptops, tablet computers and smartphones.

An online shop evokes the physical analogy of buying products or services at a regular “bricks-and-mortar” retailer or shopping center; the process is called business-to-consumer (B2C) online shopping. When an online store is set up to enable businesses to buy from another businesses, the process is called business-to-business (B2B) online shopping. A typical online store enables the customer to browse the firm’s range of products and services, view photos or images of the products, along with information about the product specifications, features and prices.

Online stores usually enable shoppers to use “search” features to find specific models, brands or items. Online customers must have access to the Internet and a valid method of payment in order to complete a transaction, such as a credit card, an Interac-enabled debit card, or a service such as PayPal. For physical products (e.g., paperback books or clothes), the e-tailer ships the products to the customer; for digital products, such as digital audio files of songs or software, the e-tailer usually sends the file to the customer over the Internet. The largest of these online retailing corporations are Alibaba, Amazon.com, and eBay.

Over the next 10 blogs, we will be examining different e-commerce website platforms that one should consider when starting your online business to buy and sell goods or services. While this is not in any particular order we will start with the company that got the highest reviews a few years standing. That company is called BigCommerce out of Austin, Texas.

BigCommerce is a privately held technology company and provides a SaaS ecommerce platform. The company was founded in 2009 and has 600+ employees with headquarters in Austin, Texas. BigCommerce was founded in 2009 by Australians Eddie Machaalani and Mitchell Harper following a chance meeting in an online chatroom in 2003. In August 2009, the two relaunched a hosted version of Interspire Shopping Cart called “BigCommerce” and opened its first U.S. office.

BigCommerce was 100% bootstrapped until July 31, 2011, when it closed $15 million in Series A funding from General Catalyst Partners. BigCommerce is one of the biggest Ecommerce website builders globally. They offer great features and excellent service with no transaction fees.

BigCommerce has hundreds of apps in a searchable app store, including 3rd party developed features that you can add with 1-click. They’ve also got terrific SEO tools like table-less themes, optimized URLs, sitemaps, and a blogging platform, along with marketing tools with social media capabilities, email and multi-channel marketing outlets. Don’t forget analytics, multi-currency support and an auto-respond cart abandon feature that pushes them head and shoulders above the competition. BigCommerce premium templates are a better investment. BigCommerce has a beautifully-designed interface that’s modern, clean and effortless to navigate, and adapting your cart to incorporate features like bulk pricing or Google shopping is also a snap. If you are a coder or designer, you’ll also appreciate BigCommerce FTP access. Some may say that customer support is the most important factor in choosing website services. BigCommerce has 24/7 live chat and email, but limited phone support. BigCommerce wins here, as there are no limits on any of their subscription plans, either in bandwidth, or what you can sell. BigCommerce pulls ahead though, with their “go the extra mile” features and apps, their value for money and their across the board usability. Test drive BigCommerce today, and get your business off the ground in no time.