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Online shopping is now very common. Because of the increasing number of online stores on the web today, shopping carts are also gaining much popularity. Conventional businesses are too costly and so many business persons are now putting their investments in online stores. The risks involved are also minimal and as long as there is an internet connection, people can now shop conveniently. The shopping cart by Bigcommerce is now recognized as one of the easiest eCommerce software. Today, it serves more than 10,000 stores in the World Wide Web.
So why do a lot of online businesses go for the Bigcommerce shopping cart?
Customization is quite easy. The designers of the eCommerce software have complete access to CSS (
through FTP As of July 2012 you have to use the Web DAV method or the built in HTML/CSS editor outsourcing to manage your files. Don’t panic Web DAV is even easier than FTP for normal people – I will break it down in a new post shortly), HTML, QuickEdit, and other tools. To customize the layout of your own store, you can simply pick among the fifty store designs or you can also use the Drag and Drop Design Mode.
Some store owners find it hard to learn how to use the shopping carts but with BigCommerce, there is no learning curve. With the aid of this eCommerce software, you can easily sell products on the web. If you have no idea how to use the software, you can use the ‘Getting Started Wizard’ and after that, you can now operate your online store together with the shopping cart. With a bit of research, you can find step-by-step videos that you can use just in case you’re stuck or you encounter problems.
Just imagine how you can easily outrank all your competitors online!
The eCommerce also has built-in intelligence reports that store owners can use. If you need help, Bigcommerce can help you in making better business decisions. You get to work less and yet you’re earning more money.
Bigcommerce will not penalize stores that tend to sell more. You can sell as many products as you like and the software will not get in the way. There are no transaction fees involved and most of all, there are no hidden costs.
The top priority of Bigcommerce is the security of online stores as well as the up-time of the shopping carts. Because of this, the software boasts of 99.99% up-time average track record. You can be sure that your store is protected with the same encryption and military-grade security like the large and prominent banks.
This eCommerce software has many features. For the design, the layout customization was already mentioned earlier and aside from that, you can also choose among the many templates, edit CSS and HTML from your browser, upload business logo, edit the email templates, etc.
The features are divided into the design features, SEO features, tax features, in-store features, marketing, support, hosting and security, payment and shipping, content management, search features, order and checkout, product and inventory, import or export, customer, and the reporting features.
Bigcommerce is also far better than that of the Yahoo shopping cart and Volusion shopping cart. In terms of monthly price, Bigcommerce offers the lowest monthly price of only $24.95 as compared to $39.95 of Yahoo and $29.95 of Volusion. A fifteen day free trial is also available with this new eCommerce software as compared to that of the 14-day trial by Volusion (and Yahoo doesn’t even offer a free trial!). The Drag and Drop Design Mode for easy customization is unique to Bigcommerce, as well as the W3C Complaint Templates, online HTML/CSS editor, and the optimization by SEO gurus. The software offers 46 templates whereas Yahoo offers only 1 and Volusion, 20. This year, Bigcommerce is recognized as one of the best shopping carts known today.
By visiting Bigcommerce.com, you will be guided accordingly on how to open your very own online store. You can start by determining what you want to sell on the web. If you have a business in your area, then you can make it visible on the net. After choosing the products that you’re going to sell, you will now determine how to ship orders. Will you focus internationally or just locally? Know your shipping methods and jot it down.
Creating your own Bigcommerce store is free and you can do this by filling out the form. You will simply provide your full name, organization, email address, phone number, and shop address. After providing the required fields, click on the ‘create my store’ button.
Once you’ve completed the sign up, you will need to decide how you will accept online payments. Bigcommerce already has built in payment gateways and you’re free to use them. Picking a domain name is another vital decision and just make it short. You can use the default or you can pick your own domain name.
Various store designs are offered by Bigcommerce and you can personalize your stores layout. With so many designs to choose from, it’ll be easier to pick one that suits your business and requirements.
Use the import wizard Big Commerce to import existing products, categories, photos, and variations. It’s also easy to add products with the use of the simple wizard and it already comes with descriptions, photos, etc.
Once you’ve completed all these steps, you can now launch your online store and start with the promotions. Add the URL in the marketing materials, invoices, and business cards so that you can effectively promote your new online store. Just in case you need help from the experts of Bigcommerce, check out the contact details of the company found at the pages top portion.
Having a thorough business plan before opening an online business is necessary to ensure success. The eCommerce software of Bigcommerce is the perfect solution for your shopping cart needs. Having an automated and efficient payment gateway will make the shopping experience worthwhile for most customers.
If you’re still looking for a shopping cart, it’s time to go for Bigcommerce eCommerce software. This is a name you can trust.
Bigcommerce Pricing (updated Jan 2015)
Bigcommerce offers three plans plus enterprise solutions. If you pay for a year at a time you get a 10% discount.
The Silver Plan – $29.95/month
- 1.5% transaction fee depending on the payment gateway you choose
- 3 Gb Storage
- No Abandoned Cart Saver
- No Loyalty Programs and customer segmentation
- No eBay or Google Merchant integration
The Gold Plan – $79.95/month
This is the plan most people start with – you can always upgrade or downgrade later if you find you do not need everything included. Includes Unlimited storage and bandwidth, abandoned cart saver, customer loyalty groups and integration with eBay, Amazon and Google Merchant center.
The Platinum Plan – $199.95/month
This plan is the best if you are moving from another shopping cart to Bigcommerce because it includes data migration and expert setup & migration (which you would pay more than $600 for on the Gold or Silver plans). The Platinum Plan is also the only plan that allows for Google Trusted Store Datafeed Automation necessary to maintain Google Trusted Store certification.
Notable Stores Using Bigcommerce in 2015
Collette Dinnigan – International Fashion House – http://shop.collettedinnigan.com.au
Mason Jars – Full site built using Bigcommerce including blog and static pages – http://masonjars.com
Hoka One One – Leading long distance running shoe brand – http://shop.hokaoneone.com.au/
Fugoo – Not the poison fish. Simple marketing site built with Bigcommerce – http://www.fugoo.com/
Bigcommerce Next is the 2014 update to Bigcommerce but apart from a new name there is quite a lot of back-end functionality that is being upgraded or simplified. Existing customers have probably stumbled across many of these features in the last few weeks as they were incrementally dripped into the Bigcommerce stores. What is Bigcommerce Next? Simply an effort by Bigcommerce to simplify the Bigcommerce platform while making it more visually appealing and powerful. Sounds like a good goal from an ecommerce provider and the first set of features and simplifications is a fantastic start.
New Features in Bigcommerce Next:
- App Store. Simple installation of extra functions for your store like rewards systems, shipping and social incentives for shoppers
- Premium Themes – extra fancy, full featured usually responsive themes you can pay for over and above the free themes already provided.
- A new blogging engine to replace the old news feature.
- iPhone and android apps for managing your store on the run
- Stripe and Simply Commerce payments
- Google Trusted stores integration
- Traffic Engine – a wizard offering step by step task lists to help you get more visitors to your shop
- Shipping Label Printing – finally – well almost, it is still in beta but one email and you could help shape it
Bigcommerce Premium Themes
These are good. Very good. Responsive design, well coded, clean, fast and less than $200 which is about a tenth of what you will pay for a custom theme design. I have a few customers already who have bought premium themes to speed up new shop development and everyone of them has been impressed.
Bigcommerce App Store
The “Single Click Store” that is actually two clicks. It’s a great base. Shopify have had this for years and use it to great effect to keep the core store simple and letting customers add functionality and complexity only if and when they want it. It also helps store owners manage costs in the early days before adding more as the shop develops and generates a return. As expected there is very little in here but look at that to change once developers start porting apps over from other carts like Shopify.
Bigcommerce Blogging Engine
I actually have a whole post dropping tomorrow on which blogging option to use for Bigcommerce – WordPress, the old Bigcommerce News and Updates or the new Bigcommerce Next Blogging Engine so I won’t go into too much detail except to say its a good start but seems very incomplete especially from a post management point of view. You can’t edit a post date once it’s published which is a HUGE pain when you are bringing a new customer over from another platform and have to bulk load lots of posts. It also means you can’t keep your posts fresh. The templates for the blog do not let you add meta data to the archive page like date published and author.
So what’s good?
- You can add feature images
- The content editor allows you to insert tables easily (take that wordpress)
- You can very simply insert products with links and images to make blog readers buyers.
- Tag support,
- Custom URL’s for posts and the blog itself (you are not forced to use /blog/),
- Disqus comment integration with one toggle,
- Social media sharing options.
It isn’t a WordPress killer yet but for a good number of Bigcommerce customers they maybe able to soon dispense with the second hosting bill and move their blog onto there store. This will change bandwidth charges and Bigcommerce need to create a WordPress blog importer – maybe I should write that I have nothing but free time 😉 – if you see the blue banner asking you to switch you probably should but consult your SEO first because you may have to do some URL redirects to keep the Google juice alive – I have not yet heard back from Bigcommerce about what happens here. Look for tomorrow’s post with that answer.
Bigcommerce Google Trusted Stores Integrated
Lifted right from the press release because this is a no brainer. If you qualify you should get it, to get it you should follow the steps required. Admit it you love the way I simplify things don’t you?
— Start Bigcommerce quote —
Google Trusted Stores is a certification program for online merchants. Similar to programs like the Better Business Bureau, it increases buyer confidence for online merchants. Google wants to ensure that all GTS stores are of a certain size and meet excellent customer service standards. To that end, they have performance requirements to apply to the program, plus some additional store-side requirements that need to be met before the badge goes live.
- Minimum Order Volume: 200 orders/month on a rolling 28-day basis
- Trackable Orders: >50% of orders trackable via supported carriers (UPS, FedEx, USPS)
- On-Time Shipping: >90% of orders shipped on time
- Be on your own domain and SSL certificate
- Supply a shipping feed to measure performance
- Supply a cancellation feed to measure performance
- Insert Google’s badge code on every page
- Insert Google’s checkout confirmation code on the order confirmation page
The Bigcommerce Google Trusted Stores integration makes it easier for clients to qualify for the program if they meet the above criteria by building in the required feeds and inserting the badge code on every page of the store.
— End Bigcommerce quote —
Bigcommerce Next – Conclusion
I will be circling back to this post so make sure you bookmark it. The long and the short of this 2014 Bigcommerce version is that it is still moving the software in the right direction. There is still the same differentiation between Shopify and Bigcommerce and I will update all the reviews and tools (especially the Shopify 2 review) because there are a lot of people asking should they choose Bigcommerce or Shopify and to be honest it is usually obvious. Both products are poles apart in implementation and usage and the two of them really do stand head and shoulders above any other ecommerce platform on the market. Look for some shopping cart reviews and shopping cart comparisons to be updated throughout the week.
Do you want a take away line to retweet?
Bigcommerce Next is a great progression of today’s leading shopping cart platform. Simpler interfaces, more powerful marketing tools and third party apps and themes will provide the platform customers need to build profitable online stores.
More to come, come back tomorrow to find out where Bigcommerce Next missed the mark
Decided on Bigcommerce – check out my post on selecting the best Bigcommerce plan to sign up for