Best WordPress Ecommerce Plugins (Performance Compared)


Best WordPress Ecommerce Plugins (Performance Compared)
Best WordPress Ecommerce Plugins (Performance Compared)

Want to set up an online store? And want to know which WordPress eCommerce plugin is the best?

Choosing the right e-commerce plugin is crucial for your online business because a better platform means more opportunities for growth. Usually, most sellers end up losing money because they don't do the proper research when choosing an e-commerce platform.

In this article, we will introduce some of the best WordPress eCommerce plugins, detailing their pros and cons to help you find the right helper for your business.

The features you expect

There are many WordPress e-commerce plugins on the market, but not all of these tools are suitable for your needs. For example, certain plugins are specifically designed to sell virtual products, including eBooks, photos, music, and more, while others are better suited for physical products that require shipping.

Basically, you first need to research what items are for sale and then look for features to match them. In addition to that, here are some important factors to consider when choosing an e-commerce platform.

    1. Payment solutions: by default (or by extension), the e-commerce plugin should support your preferred payment gateway.
    2. Design and customization: the store design is the first interaction between the customer and the business, make sure it has enough templates and simple customization options.
    3. Application integration: checks apply to the integration of third-party applications, such as email marketing services, CRM (customer relationship management), accounting software, etc..
    4. Technical support options: Make sure you have support options available, good technical support can save you a lot of money in the long run.

Preparation for launching an e-commerce website

E-commerce websites are a resource-intensive business, so the first thing you need to do is to choose reliable WordPress hosting.

If budget is limited, then you can start with BlueHost (detailed review), their eCommerce plan comes with SSL certificate, dedicated IP and dedicated technical support, and WooCommerce is installed by default, which is the most powerful WordPress eCommerce plugin, as we will cover later. If budget is not an issue and you want the best performance, then we recommend using a dedicated WordPress hosting service such as Kinsta (reviewed in detail).

Next, you need to choose a domain name for your website. Finally, you have to choose the basic business plugins needed, such as OptinMonster, which can help you reduce cart abandonment rates and increase sales.

    1. The best domain name registrar recommendations
    2. The best trade server list

1. WooCommerce

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WooCommerce, the most popular WordPress eCommerce plugin and the most popular eCommerce platform in the world, was acquired by Automattic (the company behind the WordPress.com hosting service) in 2015.

The solution not only includes a large number of other related extensions and themes, excellent support for multilingual websites, the best free and paid subscription options, but also an active developer community behind it. As of today, more and more web hosting providers are offering dedicated WooCommerce hosting solutions.

    1. How to create a WooCommerce online store

Advantages

    1. Extensions and themes: WooCommerce offers hundreds of extensions and themes that make it easy to add new features to your e-commerce site, and the large number of themes means that there are many options for the design and layout of your site.
    2. Support both digital and physical goods: You can sell both physical products and digital content, such as e-books, music, software, and more.
    3. Sell members or external products: With WooCommerce, you can add members or external products to the store, and affiliate marketers can create product sites and provide a better experience for users.
    4. Comprehensive inventory management: You can easily manage inventory and even assign it to store managers.
    5. Payment and shipping options: Built-in support for popular payment gateways, with the ability to add many other payment options using extensions, and the ability to calculate shipping and tax amounts.
    6. Support and documentation: excellent online documentation, knowledge base, help desk and community forums.

Disadvantages

    1. Too many options: WooCommerce is very easy to use, but the number of options on the settings page can be daunting for new users.
    2. Find attachments: WooCommerce has a large number of attachments available, but sometimes, users may not find the right match for the functionality they need.
    3. Theme Support: Although it works with any WordPress theme, setting up the look is not always easy. You need a theme designed for WooCommerce to take full advantage without too much hassle.
    4. Scalability: As your store grows in size and user base, you will need to migrate to an advanced hosting provider such as Kinsta (detailed review) to expand your online store.

2. BigCommerce

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BigCommerce is a fully hosted eCommerce platform that integrates seamlessly with WordPress, which allows you to launch a scalable eCommerce platform while managing content and running your website. It features an integrated plugin for WordPress that is powerful enough to easily allow you to embed products and also automatically create logins, shopping carts, accounts, and other important pages.

It's a powerful and easy-to-use SaaS eCommerce platform, and with the BigCommerce For WordPress plugin, you can have the best of both worlds. As your business grows, it eliminates the worry of scaling your hosting needs in the future, and at the same time, you don't have to worry about security, performance, SEO (search engine optimization), caching, etc.

Advantages

    1. Highly scalable: Provides all the features needed for enterprise-class security, high performance, and high scalability.
    2. Less maintenance: Separate the eCommerce engine from the rest of the content to make it easier for you to run your WordPress site.
    3. Sell across multiple channels: You can sell not only on your own website, but also through various other channels (e.g. Facebook, Instagram, Amazon).
    4. No transaction fees: Unlike some platforms, they don't charge you for every transaction. You can choose from dozens of top payment gateways and pay only to the payment service provider.

Disadvantages

    1. Limited integrations: BigCommerce integrates with all the top third-party applications and tools, however, its plugin market is still growing and you may not find some cold integration options.
    2. No mobile app: As of now, you can't manage your store through a mobile app.

3. Easy Digital Downloads

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When it comes to selling digital products online, Easy Digital Downloads is the best plugin focused on this task, allowing you to easily manage digital sales and downloads using WordPress, very easy to use and with powerful features to create beautiful and practical digital e-commerce websites.

Advantages

    1. Designed to sell digital goods: Built from the ground up specifically to sell digital goods and provide a better operational experience.
    2. Easy to use: From the very beginning, you can immediately understand how to add and display products, which is useful for beginners.
    3. Extensions: Hundreds of available extensions, including payment gateways, marketing platforms, support services and more.
    4. Themes: Works with almost any WordPress theme, but Easy Digital Downloads also offers a variety of dedicated themes if you haven't chosen one yet.
    5. Technical Support: The documentation is very thorough and you can also get free support through online forums, videos, tutorials, and even IRC chat rooms. For advanced users, there is also a priority support option.

Disadvantages

    1. Digital downloads only: If you want to sell physical goods, then it will become quite complicated.
    2. Sell external products: When you want to sell members or external products, you need to install a third-party plugin.

4. MemberPress

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MemberPress is the perfect eCommerce plugin to sell subscription-based products or services, perfect for newbies, with tons of integration options and easily extendable with add-ons to steer your eCommerce site in any direction you want.

Advantages

    1. Sell subscription-based products: Enables you to easily sell subscription-based products/services, membership plans, pay-per-view, etc.
    2. Powerful access rules: customize access levels and content restrictions so that only users with appropriate permissions can access restricted content.
    3. Powerful extensions: You can integrate it with WooCommerce stores or LearnDash learning management systems, and a large number of extensions can connect MemberPress with third-party services.

Disadvantages

    1. Limited payment options: MemberPress only supports PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.
    2. Annual Pricing: Pricing plans are available on an annual basis only.

5. Shopify

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If you want a powerful platform and don't want to deal with technical issues, Shopify is the best solution. While the monthly fee may sound off-putting, the hassle-free management and extreme hassle-free approach is definitely worth it, and it allows you to focus on what you do best!

Shopify is a fast growing eCommerce platform that can handle everything for you, but it's not a WordPress plugin, it's a complete all-in-one solution. For a detailed comparison of these two platforms, see this article of ours.

    1. How to create a Shopify online store

Advantages

    1. For beginners: No need to worry about the various technical implementations of e-commerce, such as setting up SSL, integrating with different payment gateways, handling shipping, worrying about taxes and fees, etc. Shopify can handle all of that.
    2. Support for digital and physical goods: Whether you're selling physical goods like shirts or digital goods like music, Shopify can handle it all.
    3. Complete inventory management: provide inventory editor, batch importer, and order tracker to manage inventory easily.
    4. Payment and shipping options: Payment is easy both online and offline, and their shipping system integrates directly with popular providers such as USPS, thereby streamlining your fulfillment process.
    5. Facebook and Pinterest stores: Whether you are creating a Facebook store or selling products on Pinterest, it can be done through Shopify.

Disadvantages

  1. Monthly platform fees: Shopify will charge you a monthly fee for using the platform, which is basically comparable in price to the other plugins on this list.
  2. Shopify Payments: Shopify encourages you to use their payment platform -- powered by Stripe -- which is a great option for beginners. However, if you want to complicate things and use an external system, Shopify will charge an additional fee.

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Conclusion

The only question is, which side are you going to pick?

Let me know in the comments.

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