8 Best eCommerce CMS in 2021 (and why)

Wanting to know about the best eCommerce CMS? Must-have features for an eCommerce CMS and 8 best CMSs for 2021.

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If you’re considering jumping into eCommerce, then there hasn’t been a better opportunity than now. Over the last ten years, the eCommerce industry has grown around 15% year-over-year, with 2020 increasing twice that amount.

But, before you make any initial investments with an eCommerce software like CMS, you’ll want to know which one suits your requirements. This way, you’re able to purchase something more meaningful and helpful towards your business plan.

Wanting to know about the best eCommerce CMS? We discuss this below:

Must-have features for an eCommerce CMS

Before we hop into the best eCommerce CMS, I thought it would be ideal to suggest the “must-haves” you’ll want to consider before start using or subscribing to software. Here are some of the vital features you need in your CMS:

  • Cost – First and foremost, you’ll want to opt-in for a CMS that provides the best value for money according to your requirements. Most CMS are around the $20 a month mark, but you can choose much higher and even lower plans. But, from experience, a great place to start is to at least invest $20 a month into a CMS. We’ve found this price range typically produces something worthwhile. As you grow, you can always look at purchasing more complete plans, which may give you more customizability, speed, or other features.
  • Accessibility – The following feature targets both you and your audience. When crafting a website through a CMS, you’ll want to make updates and changes on the go with your mobile device. From this, you can act on issues quickly and schedule your day better due to not having to be stuck at a desk to perform work. Included with this, when designing your website, you’ll want to see if your CMS is compatible with mobiles. Failing this could result in you losing around 61% of unique website visits.
  • SEO friendliness – Something else you’ll want to consider is the overall SEO friendliness the CMS provides. SEO is an important ranking factor and something you’ll want to optimize for considering websites that do, get on average, 50% more traffic. For a CMS to be SEO friendly, it must generate easy-to-read code and URLs.
  • Flexible design options – Lastly, you’ll want a CMS that has flexible design options, so you’re able to create something engaging and suited to your brand. This is vital, as you’ll only have around 50 milliseconds, yep 0.05 seconds, to captivate your user before they decide to leave.

What is the best CMS for eCommerce?

Now you completely understand why a sound CMS system is so important; we thought it would be good to suggest some of the best CMS platforms circulating in the industry. By choosing one of the below, you’re ensuring yourself you’re investing in quality software that can help aid results.

WooCommerce

One of the critical players within the CMS industry is WooCommerce.

Currently, WooCommerce powers around 7% of all eCommerce websites in the entire world. Included with this rather spectacular statistic, they also hold a 25% share in the top one million websites on the internet.

From this, it’s a clear indication that WooCommerce is a great CMS. Without a doubt, if you’re going to invest your money into WooCommerce, you’ll undoubtedly get what you’re hoping for.

  • If you have a premium WordPress account, the WooCommerce plugin is free
  • With WooCommerce, you’ll have access to WordPress’s plugin market, so you’ll be able to install various helpful plugins
  • WooCommerce is on WordPress, which is one of the largest website building platforms ever to exist.
  • WooCommerce is known to require complex coding knowledge if you genuinely want to make a website that suits your requirements
  • Sometimes WordPress and WooCommerce can become out of sync with each other when they update
  • This CMS platform doesn’t include free hosting or domains

Suggested for

Between Shopify and WooCommerce, I have to say they’re the best eCommerce CMS platforms to date. It goes without saying that they’re both superb for beginner, average and expert users. WooCommerce is the perfect CMS for anyone looking to test the water of eCommerce and wants the chance to upgrade if their website is a success. With WooCommerce, you may need to gain some coding knowledge, but you can also bypass this by selecting a well-rounded theme.

Further Reading: Creating a WordPress eCommerce Website: The Ultimate Guide

Shopify

If you want to invest in the best eCommerce CMS, then Shopify is your go-to option. Without a doubt, since they released this platform, it’s changed the way people have developed websites. 800,000 different businesses believe this is an excellent CMS as it’s affordable, easy to formulate good-looking websites, and has an abundance of additional plugins you can install to grow your business.

  • Shopify is well-known in the industry and has had positive reviews since it began
  • Most plugins or software’s that are related to eCommerce support Shopify
  • For what you receive and what you pay, it’s excellent value for money with both small and large businesses
  • Many themes and plugins require additional subscriptions or money
  • Because of the sheer amount of people that run businesses through Shopify, the stores can look like one another
  • You only gain access to their mobile app if you live in the US, UK, New Zealand, or Australia

Suggested for

Shopify is one of the best eCommerce CMS platforms you can opt-in for if you’re a drop-shipper, small or large business owner, and digital service seller. Without a doubt, there’s plenty of features you can upgrade when you’re ready to scale your online store.

BigCommerce

Next on the best eCommerce CMS list is BigCommerce. Now BigCommerce isn’t as prominent within the market as both Shopify and WooCommerce, but it still packs a punch. With BigCommerce, around 55,000 active websites are using their CMS. Don’t get me wrong; this is still a rather impressive number and something you shouldn’t shy away from. This platform is known to be SEO friendly and offers fast loading times for end-users.

  • It can be used for various business models, like B2C and B2B
  • This CMS is well-known to be a fast-loading eCommerce site
  • It’s also SEO friendly, as it provides readable and straightforward codes for search engines to crawl.
  • Its standard plans pricing is pretty cheap. However, if you want to scale your business, upgrading is rather expensive.
  • You may be forced to upgrade, as they limit how many sales you’re able to retrieve depending on your plan
  • People have mentioned that the shipping options are minimal

Suggested for

Without a doubt, BigCommerce should be considered when selecting an eCommerce CMS. Although it doesn’t have many active platform users like the above, it’s still excellent. When using this platform, you’ll be able to operate both small and large businesses. This is because it’ll allow small businesses to enter the eCommerce market and supply great scaling tools to help growth.

Wix

Another critical player in the best eCommerce CMS is Wix. Wix has been around since the bigging of eCommerce, and you’ve probably seen them heavily advertise on television. Because of this, in 2019, it was recorded that Wix had around 120 million users on its platform. Although this number is rather impressive, the platform itself is more targeted towards beginners and beginners only.

  • The themes you receive with any Wix plan are pretty good to start with
  • You’re not locked into any long-term plans; you pay per month and cancel anytime
  • The design interface is simple to operate and doesn’t require any in-depth knowledge
  • With the $5 starter plan, your website will be riddled with Wix advertisements
  • Lack of scalability because you’re unable to enroll in plans with unlimited bandwidth and storage
  • People have mentioned that Wix isn’t as SEO-friendly as they say it is.

Suggested for

If you’re considering Wix as your eCommerce CMS, I expect you’ve just started, and you only want to invest a small amount of income into your eCommerce project. This is understandable, as Wix is considerably cheap for what you receive, minus the free options below.

Magento

Magento is another honorable mention for the best eCommerce CMS. This platform is driven by thriving eCommerce entrepreneurs who have significant and well-established brands. With a price of around $1988 a month, it’s clear that you’ll need a full functioning and profitable business before even considering this option. However, if you’re eCommerce brand is growing exceptionally, you may want to consider Magento.

  • Magento is SEO friendly, simple to use, and extremely fast loading
  • They offer solutions that can help their clients scale their businesses
  • On the Magento site, they have a forum with over 360,000 members which all ask and answer queries
  • This CMS is only used by large-scale online businesses due to its high price tag
  • All websites will need domains and hosting
  • Although it’s easy to use, some people have said to get the results you want; you’ll need to understand coding

Suggested for

If your eCommerce business is growing, you may want to consider Magento. Although the price of $1988 a month can sound ridiculous, the features and customer service makes up for it. It goes without saying that Magento is only suggested for people who are already making many profits through eCommerce. If this is you, Magento may be the best eCommerce CMS for this type of skill bracket.

OpenCart

With OpenCart, you’ll be greeted with two plans. One is free, and the other is a paid option with hosting support. Since the platform opened back in 1998, it’s been well-known in the industry but never really took off. Saying that it’s still a great CMS for smaller businesses looking to introduce themselves in the eCommerce market. However, it’s an excellent option for people who want to try out this sales technique because it’s free.

  • You’re not restricted with payment gateways as they allow a bunch
  • It doesn’t require you to have much technical knowledge to get your desired outcome
  • Simple to set up and sync with various online features
  • It isn’t the most secure and glitch-free CMS platform
  • Great for starting, but if you want to scale, avoid this
  • Compared to other CMS on this list, it isn’t the best

Suggested for

Although OpenCart may not be the best eCommerce CMS in the history of the internet, it certainly isn’t the worst. For beginners wanting to join the eCommerce trend, this is an excellent opportunity to start feeling it out. This way, you’re able to see if this is the right direction for your business for very little money.

PrestaShop

Moving further down the list of the best eCommerce CMS in 2021, and this next one is called PrestaShop. Now PrestaShop has been available on the CMS market for around 10 to 15 years. Because of this, they’ve managed to hold approximately 1.62% of the market share, according to Datanayze. Considering some competitors on this list, that’s a considerable amount.

With this platform, you’ll receive many built-in features, which on other CMS, you may have needed to install a plugin. Having these types of plugins already installed makes it run a lot smoother. The fewer plugins you apply to a CMS, the quicker your load time will be for the end-user.

  • Simple to install and sync, allowing you to focus on your website’s design
  • It’s known to be a great starting point for those who don’t have coding knowledge
  • With PrestaShop, it supports multiple payment processors like Google and PayPal
  • Again, because it’s free, it lacks scalability features and doesn’t include any upgrades
  • This CMS platform also doesn’t have any support team other than its partners
  • Almost impossible to design a large-scale store with this CM

Suggested for

This is the ideal solution for merchants looking for a simple CMS. With this platform, you won’t need to add any additional plugins to get your desired outcome. Because of this, it makes it perfect for beginner eCommerce brands that are looking for a straightforward and affordable option.

HubSpot

HubSpot undoubtedly deserves a spot on the best eCommerce CMS list. For those who don’t know, HubSpot is used by many well-known household brands, such as Classpass, WWF, Calm, and even Coca-Cola. Due to them having such a world-class system, It would be rude not to mention them. With this platform, you’ll receive a seamless digital experience, yet something that offers some immense tools to enhance the growth of your business.

To back the above, they’ve also won many awards for their remarkable software, such as best results, best usability, and leader for mid-market CMS.

  • Before you invest a cent, you’re able to enroll within a seven-day free trial
  • During the free trial, you’ll gain access to everything
  • It’s a well-known brand, and they have excellent customer service
  • HubSpot can get considerably expensive as you start getting more and more orders
  • They only offer locked-in contracts
  • People have had difficulty using their editor

Suggested for

With HubSpot, you’ll be fixed to a contract, so you’ll want to guarantee that your store will be a success. Failing to do this will result in you being at a loss. Which, from a business standpoint, isn’t great. Due to the fixed contract, I would suggest this platform for users who already have basic knowledge of the eCommerce world and know what it takes to succeed.

Conclusion

As you can see from the above, there is an abundance of different eCommerce CMS you can choose from. Some are better than others, but it really comes down to preferences. A few of the above allow 7-day free trials, so be sure to take full advantage of these deals before finalizing your initial purchase. Doing this will guarantee that you’re investing in something that is suited to your requirements.

After reading, you should have a broad knowledge of what eCommerce CMSs are currently on the market. So, now you understand this, which one will you be choosing?

Further reading: eCommerce Fulfillment Guide

FAQs

After reading the above, you’ve probably got some queries related to CMS. Being industry experts for some time now, below are the most frequent questions we’re asked about this topic.

Do I need a CMS for eCommerce?

You don’t need a CMS for eCommerce, but for the price they’re and the accessibility we now have to them, it’s more than worth considering it. Without a doubt, they make your life a whole load easier, and you’ll be in control of the marketing, placements, products, etc.

Is Shopify a good CMS?

As it stands, Shopify is considered a good CMS. They’ve been around for years and are still used by thousands of different brands. Included within these brands are big celebrity websites like Kylie Jenner’s makeup brand.

What is an eCommerce CMS?

A CMS is an abbreviation of a content management system, and it’s a software that allows eCommerce shop owners to create, edit, and publish website content without implementing any problematic code. Simply, it helps the average non-technical user get onto the eCommerce marketplace.

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