BigCommerce Review (2019): eCommerce Solutions Review
BigCommerce is a sophisticated ecommerce suite that features premium SEO tools, more than 150 integrated apps, a mobile and social store, and 24/7 support. It is a premium suite, and there are four tiers to choose from, all of them supporting unlimited product listings, storage and bandwidth.
This feature-rich ecommerce suite offers a secure shopping experience for your customers, as well as easy to navigate product calendars, handy features like eBay integration, and marketing tools to help you build your audience. It has been around since 2009, which makes it a mature suite in the eCommerce world, that is both reliable and powerful. It has been used by more than 100,000 stores, to process tens of millions of transactions. Let’s take a look at its features, one by one.
BigCommerce is a flexible suite that can create unique looking stores. Currently, there are 124+ themes to choose from that have been professionally designed. Each of these themes can be customized in a number of ways, so you can change the font and color quite easily, and you can make more significant changes to the HTML and CSS if you wish. If you don’t have the skills or confidence to do this, you can get in touch with their designers and have them make the changes for you.
Each theme offers the option for customers to view zoomed-in, high resolution versions of the product images. Sellers can upload an unlimited number of images, and these images will be automatically resized to fit the layout of the store and the screen size of the device that the visitor is using to access the store.
Store Design is BigCommerce’s new visual merchandising tool. It makes it much easier and intuitive to customize the theme’s look and feel, than what was previously possible through the theme editor. Click on the image below to see it in action (opens in a new page):
Store Design also lays the foundation to support for more visual merchandising capabilities (Widgets, Dynamic Widgets, CMS Promos, etc.) and will improve your store’s:
- Efficiency: Merchant experience via centralized and streamlined theme management and capabilities;
- Performance: Improved performance with changing settings and live previewing;
- Cross-Browser Support: Developed and tested the functionality to ensure support across major browsers including Edge, Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc.
High Performance Ecommerce Hosting
Rapid page loading times are essential if you want your website to attract a lot of customers, and BigCommerce is committed to providing visitors with a smooth and convenient experience. Ecommerce customers can enjoy unlimited bandwidth, so no matter how much traffic your website gets, it will stay up, with no extra fees for massive amounts of traffic. The average up-time of their network of sites is 99.994%, which is an incredible figure, and they run automatic, scheduled back-ups so that the work you do on the store will always be backed up should things go wrong. You will not have to worry about products, photographs, orders or customer information going missing. In addition, the company has a security team that is constantly monitoring their servers, so you can be confident that your financial data, and that of your customers, is always being well looked after. In the unlikely event that a breach does happen, it should be noticed, and taken care of, promptly.
A store is only useful if you have lot of customers, and that’s another thing that BigCommerce does a great job of. The suite includes a selection of marketing tools aimed at helping store owners to promote their websites both to the main search engines and to people directly. It includes promotion and coupon features, newsletters, and SEO tools.
Easy to Pay
There are a staggering amount of payment options built-in to BigCommerce. The big ones – PayPal, credit cards, and echecks – are all included, along with many other less well-known ones that are perfect for people who are targeting visitors from other countries, or those in niche markets, as well as people who just want to offer a little more flexibility to their visitors.
When you sign up to BigCommerce, you get a 15-day trial, which will give you time to see whether the suite is for you. There are plans for every size of store and every budget. The Standard plan costs $29.95 per month and offers unlimited products, unlimited bandwidth and a shared SSL certificate, as well as 99.9% up-time. There are no set-up fees, and no transaction fees, and this makes the suite ideal for a small but growing store. You get marketing help and support as standard. The more advanced plans, such as the Plus plan, Pro plan and the Enterprise plan, are aimed at those who want more control over their stores and also more help with setting things up.
Safe, Secure and Trusted
BigCommerce is safe, secure and trusted. It offers SSL for all plans, which means that data going between your server and your customers is protected. Even if someone were able to eavesdrop on the data that your customers are sending (which is unlikely), the information is encrypted so they would not be able to understand it. The data centers are equipped with denial of service protection, to ensure that the servers will stay up even if a malicious person or group tries to bring them down. There are also firewalls and other security measures in place to prevent data breaches.
So, is BigCommerce for you? Well, even if its international localization support is not as good as Shopify, it is definitely one of the top contenders. The monthly fee may be intimidating for a new store owner, but it is well worth it for the majority of companies. After all, other stores limit the number of products that you can list, and carry per-transaction fees. These fees are sometimes a percentage of the value of the product you sell and sometimes a flat fee, depending on the store package you choose. Either way, you would not need to sell a lot of products to make it worthwhile subscribing to the basic package, and you can always upgrade later if your store takes off and you decide that you need access to the extra features.
Here are a few key benefits that you can expect:
- Easy set-up. With an easy store launch guide and simple control panel, your site can be up and running in as little as nine steps.
- Reduced total cost of ownership. Compared to other SaaS eCommerce platforms which require more apps to perform basic tasks, you can easily save a bunch of money with all the built-in features and the absence of transaction fees. It also tends to be much cheaper than on-premise solutions like Magento since you won’t need to spend additional time and money on tedious software upgrades, security and hosting.
- Unified channel management. Streamline the management of your listings on other marketplaces like Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, eBay, and Google Shopping.
- Increased conversion. Themes have been designed to provide a great user experience and convert.
BigCommerce is a remotely hosted package. This means that you are paying them to look after the software and update it for you. If they ever close down, you would lose access to it – but the chances of this happening are very slim, and if they do shut down you can always export your data to move it over to another provider. Given their size, experience and track record, they can be a logical choice for small businesses through to enterprise stores to roll out their online shopping presence.