Ecommerce platforms and CMS have become an extraordinary choice for entrepreneurs, small and large companies, due to their functionalities and capabilities. These are computer programs that make it easy for you to create your website on the Internet quickly, using predefined structures, templates, or the insertion of programming code. Therefore, the importance of knowing their main differences and which are the most popular today, as well as their most valuable characteristics.
What is eCommerce?
Ecommerce refers to electronic commerce and it is a system for buying and selling products in the online environment. To do this, they consist of resources to manage collections and payments by electronic means. In short, it refers to the transaction of goods and services using the Internet as the main means of exchange and requires a buyer and seller, as well as an online site.
There are many models that encompass the world of ecommerce and are related to:
- Commercial profile: since each business deals with a specific type of client. For example, another company or organization, end consumers, people who publish products or services for subsequent bidding, facilitators of sales between consumers.
- Business model: since it depends on how the income is generated and the way to carry out the exchange between those who are part of the process. For example, online store with own products, dropshipping, affiliate ecommerce, membership, Marketplace, services.
Electronic commerce as it is known today began in 1920, with the first appearance of catalog sales, which revolutionized the United States market. Back then sales were made by phone calls and customers could pay by credit card. These were the first forms of purchase without physically verifying what was acquired, consisting only of referential images.
It was in 1970 when the first computers appeared and with it, among other things, commercial relations, using them to transmit data. During the 90s, with the rise of the Internet, portals were born that opened the way to online sales, such as Amazon and eBay.
What is an ecommerce solution?
An ecommerce solution allows businesses and entrepreneurs to market their products using the Internet as their main resource. Thanks to this and a set of indispensable tools you can increase idealizations, user tracking, conversions and much more. All this in order to manage electronic commerce in the best possible way.
Each solution has its advantages and disadvantages because they work within a particular context. This is due to the type of audience you are addressing, what you offer and the way in which you do the latter. In addition, each ecommerce platform or CMS allows you to configure aspects that may or may not be valuable to you.
Differences between platforms and eCommerce CMS
Between platforms and CMS there are some interesting differences that you should know to choose between one or the other and mainly they are the following:
- A platform is a business model that allows exchange between consumers and sellers. It is a computer program in which companies can host and manage their online stores and for this they offer online tools to locate and sell their products in the best possible way. Among other things, it allows you to manage your orders, accounting, inventory and customer service. In addition, among its main functions it offers audience construction, basic services, rules and standards.
- A CMS is a content management system that allows you as a merchant to generate and adjust the information of your online store. In this way, it offers you resources and tools for you to manage and place valuable texts that attract your potential customers and allow them to understand what you are selling. Among other things, it allows you to customize templates, reduce the need for code, integrate audit records, install and update wizards, manage SEO, work on modularity and extensibility.
List of best 7 eCommerce platforms and CMS
Today there are multiple platforms and eCommerce CMS and among the most popular I detail the following:
Shopify is an ecommerce platform that has many outstanding features and that is why more than 800,000 companies around the world use it as a reference to create their online stores. Among its most relevant features, it allows you to configure your e-commerce, manage products and manage orders with the help of a simple access panel. In addition, it has free integration with popular platforms such as Amazon and eBay.
Among other things, this platform allows you to customize your product showcase thanks to templates. In addition, you get full access to the HTML and CSS code of your website, as well as the content management system to attract your target audience. It also allows you to enable the shopping cart, gift cards, social networks, among other aspects.
Shopify is a great choice if you want to start a dropshipping business or a small business. It is even a good option if you are starting with a start up and want to build a website that works smoothly.
Magento is a famous open source ecommerce leading ecommerce CMS developed in PHP. It is very popular for its compatibility with different sizes of online companies and for the ability to meet the needs of different business models such as B2B, Mobile ecommerce, Omnichannel, among others. It even allows you to integrate many own or third-party extensions to add more functionalities and improve user experiences.
This CMS has handled up to 100,000 million in gross volume of merchandise each year. At the same time, it has a large community of developers who collaborate day after day around the world. In addition, Magento Marketplace has a platform from which you can download multiple extensions to improve your online store.
Among other things, it is a simple solution such as a drag and drop interface to create your e-commerce site easily. It allows you to personalize content and promotions, easily manage the engagement of your products, manage the texts and use SEO to optimize your website on the Internet, create a smart inventory, etc.
3. Open Cart
OpenCart is an open source e-commerce platform that is very simple to use and in which you do not have to invest a large amount of money to create your online store. It also has a useful and customizable free plugin that allows you quick installation, template choice and product addition.
This platform has more than 14,000 extensions and themes so that you can apply in your online store, it does not matter if it is a small or large company. It also offers you more than 20 payment gateways so that your potential customers can pay you without problems, as well as 8 default shipping methods.
OpenCart is an excellent option whether you are a beginner or if you have technical knowledge to create your site online. Therefore, it is a useful tool that allows you to design from a simple website to something more complex.
4. Presta Shop
PrestaShop is an alternative to create your e-commerce store using open source. This ecommerce CMS is free and used by more than 300,000 companies around the world. It is highly customizable and you can choose between a hosted or self-hosted version.
Among its main features you will find the ability to create product designs and packages of these with pleasant and attractive styles for your target audience. In addition, you can upload files to sell what you offer in a customizable way. It even offers you resources to create categories and subcategories, configure payment, display products, descriptions, content and much more.
This online tool is a great solution whether you are a new merchant or if you have technical experience to apply it by creating your site online. It offers you simplicity, ease of use and functionality thanks to all its accessories.
5. Woo Commerce
WooCommerce is one of the best ecommerce CMS today and this is reflected in the statistics. For example, up to 2021 million sites use their e-commerce technologies to create their online stores.
With this tool you can transform a WordPress website into an online store thanks to its set of functionalities. Among other things, they allow you to add many extensions and themes for free. In addition, you get support through the community of users who use it, free of charge and throughout the year, due to the large number of users who use the main CMS.
Among its many functionalities, it allows you to easily and quickly configure your store, accept credit cards, manage product categories, manage a modern and orderly interface, among other things. It is a great option for entrepreneurs and new merchants who want to popularize their online store. In addition, by integrating with WordPress it allows you to take advantage of all your existing knowledge to develop even easier.
6. Big Commerce
BigCommerce is a powerful e-commerce platform that allows you to start an online business in a matter of hours. It offers you a great set of functionalities that allow you to customize your online store quickly and compete with the largest on the market. Today it has attracted the interest of thousands of dealers of all walks of life, including famous brands such as Natori, Toyota and Martha Stewart.
Among other things, it allows you to easily create and edit pages using drag and drop functionality. In addition, it supports dozens of discounts and native promotions so that you can put them into operation before your users. They also allow you to optimize your site for mobile devices, sell in multichannel, recommend products, among other things.
This software is an excellent option for small or large companies and you can even choose it if you want to scale over time. Thanks to its impressive features you can optimize your online store and adapt to the current and future market without problems.
7. Commerce Tools
CommerceTools is a highly scalable ecommerce CMS that is made up of a great modern architecture so you can easily design your ecommerce store. Although it is paid, it has a trial version in which it offers you great features so that you can check its full potential and experience its advantages. It was founded in 2016, in Germany and gives you the opportunity to run campaigns, maintain catalog data and access the most essential on orders and customers.
There are different eCommerce platforms and CMS that you can use to create your online store and offer the products you want to your target audience. Just keep in mind that whatever tool you want to use, it offers you great features, add-ons, extensions, scalability, usability, mobile compatibility and everything you need to be successful. In addition, it is important that you choose the resource that fits your budget if it is paid or offers you good capabilities if it is free.