Best E-Commerce Platforms
November 13, 2022
The basis of any online store is the e-commerce platform that it uses, since a good platform allows customers to have a better shopping experience and there are two types of e-commerce platforms, there are open source platforms, which they are self-hosted through their own hosting setup, and there are also closed source platforms, those that are hosted by the platform provider, that is, hosted.
What are the benefits of using an open-source ecommerce platform?
These platforms allow you to make the source code available for users to modify and offer endless possibilities to customize your store, therefore these types of platforms are excellent for helping you create an online store that is exactly tailored to your needs. your business, however, needs coding skills and technical knowledge to handle them better.
Using a platform that is not tied to a specific host also gives you more flexibility as your store grows and because open source platforms are self-hosted it is possible to choose a provider based on their hosting capabilities. Previously, self-hosted eCommerce platforms were more viable for organizations with IT departments, however, with managed hosting options, it’s easier for small businesses. Now, let’s check some other benefits:
With the growth of electronic commerce it is important to have a website that is more immersive and attracts more to the audience, therefore customization is very important. With an open source platform, it allows you to create your page however you want, be it the fonts, style, layout, whatever you want to use on your site, on the other hand, with a closed source platform, you can only use templates to customize your website.
You can use the community to get people together in forums so you can answer questions about the software and others create their own custom plugins and mods. Also, the exchange of information between users helps a lot to your page and have a better experience, which is a benefit of using an open source platform.
Using open source platforms makes it easier to scale and grow as your business grows, also these platforms can manage all your data and daily usage, and you can stay on top of all this important data.
Let’s check the top open-source ecommerce platforms
It is an open source e-commerce platform, WooCommerce is easy to use, allows you to connect to other software and has a variety of functions for your website, more than 30% of all e-commerce sites. Also, the content management system is run by WordPress, where it helps developers create many useful plugins.
The platform also includes:
- Unlimited products
- Cart and checkout
- Order management
- Unlimited images and media
- Product ratings and reviews
- Support for digital products
- Built-in blogging
This is an open source e-commerce platform owned by Adobe, Magneto is the third most used e-commerce platform in the world. This platform has two versions: Community, which is one of the most popular and works on more than 200,000 sites; and Enterprise, which is much more robust, but has a cost, you must pay the annual license.
This platform is designed for large e-commerce sellers, it has great customization features and options, there are many extensions and integrations for third-party applications as well as with WordPress and WooCommerce, it also requires a little experience. in PHP programming to be able to use it in a better way.
Also an open source PHP-based e-commerce platform, Prestashop has a huge worldwide community consisting of 1,000,000+ members and 1000+ contributors, as well as hosted and self-hosted versions, with dozens of features which include one-page checkout, digital products, and even support for 75 languages and over 5,000 modules available.
nopCommerce is an open source ASP.NET based e-commerce platform that was released in 2008, allows for easy customization as well as includes a variety of features including multi-vendor functionality, customer service, catalog management, and more. also payments and taxes.
Another PHP-based open source e-commerce platform that includes features such as discounts and promotions, user management, unlimited products, multi-currency and multi-language support. It also has more than 1,300 modules as well as payment, reporting and shipping marketing options through the themes it offers.
Factors to consider when selecting an open-source platform
Even though most open source ecommerce platforms are free to download and install, there are a few that do cost to use them, many of the ways that do cost are when you need to invest in a domain, hosting or even additional extensions that help you provide a particular functionality to the site.
Some of the open source platforms are not free, you need to pay a license fee to use it, for example the Magneto platform, it has an annual license fee that starts at $22,000 for stores with less than $1 million in revenue and increases. as income increases.
Security is a very important factor, especially when transmitting and storing payment details and other confidential customer information, therefore you must be sure that your website and data are safe, as well as comply with the requirements of the Data Security Standard. of the payment card industry (PCI DSS). Many times these standards are related to your hosting configuration and business policies and not to the platform, which makes it very necessary to ensure that the platform you use is reliable for your security.
Sometimes with open source platforms it takes longer to create websites and their configuration, therefore it is very useful to consider the time that this creation takes, also, you must prepare the hosting, security and everything that is necessary for the page. Many times you need the help of developers if you are building your website from scratch.
Ongoing maintenance requirements
It is important that you handle website maintenance yourself if you use an open source platform, as it can reduce costs, likewise you should create backups of your website and keep an eye out for software updates. Also, a proprietary hosted platform where you can focus on day-to-day operations and technical details are handled in the background.
For example, using managed WordPress eCommerce hosting, one backup is done daily.
Closing thoughts on open-source ecommerce platforms
Choosing an ecommerce platform will benefit your business and your customers, using an open source solution, you have the means to customize as well as manage your site as you wish, it can be a bit more complicated than using a source code platform closed, however, with little time and resources you can use an open source platform like WooCommerce, and have your e-commerce store using the best website and platform for your business.