It has taken the best part of 8 months to get this comparison together. BigCommerce and CoreCommerce have both grown in features so quickly and prolifically in the last 12 months, that every time I wrote this comparison I was needing to edit it before I published.
BigCommerce and CoreCommerce have almost identical plans at the time of writing, except that CoreCommerce has launched a beginner plan for $20 a month – the cheapest BigCommerce plan is $25/month. At the moment, (as of February 2011) neither shopping cart is charging a setup fee – usually $50.
The Basics of a Shopping Cart
Both BigCommerce and CoreCommerce support a huge array of Payment Providers so you should be safe unless you picked an obscure one. That aside if you use anything other Authorize.net, 2Checkout, eWay or Paypal (with some exceptions) you will find your options to move limited in the future.
Again, BigCommerce and CoreCommerce support an almost identical group (and a very extensive group) of shipping providers including USPS, UPS, FedEx, DHL, Canada Post and Australia Post. Both support ShipWire and digital (e-goods) delivery.
CoreCommerce integrates with USPS, FedEx and UPS to print labels directly from your store – BigCommerce has no such support for mail labels.
What are the differences between BigCommerce and CoreCommerce?
Excess Bandwidth Charges
BigCommerce charge $5.12 for each extra gigabyte (1/2 cent per megabyte)
CoreCommerce charges $7 per gigabyte
Accounting Software Integration
BigCommerce integrates with MYOB and Peachtree Accounting
Both support Facebook and Twitter sharing. Both support selling products through Facebook. Only CoreCommerce allows your customers to login to your store (to checkout and purchase) using Facebook, Twitter and Google.
Multiple Warehouses and Drop Shipping
CoreCommerce allows for unlimited vendors and warehouses which can be tied to individual products. A full suite of reports helps you manage your drop shipping and postage.
Google Website Optimizer
BigCommerce currently supports 6 different GWO tests to continually test and improve your shopping cart conversions. You can A/B test Add to Cart button positioning, Single or Multi page checkouts, Newsletter Signups, Checkout button images and product detail areas and content. CoreCommerce has no integrated support for Google Website optimizer.
BigCommerce basically only supports MailChimp as it’s email management system. Other solutions can be worked with but they require significant effort. The upside of this focused approach to email marketing is that the integration you get with MailChimp is rock solid and full featured.
You can subscribe customers to different lists depending on the product they bought, the type of product they bought, the total amount they spent at your store or any combination of the above.
Multiple language support
CoreCommerce allows you to add any language and translate and string in the store. BigCommerce has no such functionality and struggles with Asian character sets when you try and use them.
Returns and Refunds
CoreCommerce supports processing refunds from the control panel for selected payment processors such as; Authorize.net, Paypal and Quickbooks Merchant Services.
What do BigCommerce and CoreCommerce have in common?
Gift Certificates, Reviews and ratings, Discounts, Coupon Codes, Up-sell, Cross sell and inventory management and notifications.
SEO tools for meta descriptions and keywords, page titles and content management.
Mobile versions of the store front end, PCI Compliance and business reports and statistics.
Given the remarkable similarity between BigCommerce and CoreCommerce you could generally choose either one and have a wonderful experience. My opinion is that unless you need multiple warehouses, direct label printing or Constant Contact support go with BigCommerce. I just find it a little bit more polished and easier to handle. Start by looking at BigCommerce and if you find it doesn’t have a feature you need look at CoreCommerce.