Shopify E-Commerce Platform Software Review

ShopifyWith more than 50,000 clients and growing every day, Shopify makes for excellent eCommerce software for retailers. Among its clients include Amnesty International and Foo Fighters. Money-wise, the website offers one of the most cost-efficient programs for their many subscribers – but is it worth every penny you’re paying for them? The following review should tell you if Shopify is the shopping cart service you need for your own domain.

Service Specifications

 Once you sign up for the service, you will gain access to several functions and services. There are actually 5 different membership options for retailers, each one offering something new to fit your needs. Here’s how it goes:

Starter Plan

$14 per month

  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Chat and email support
  • 1 GB File Storage
  • 25 Products

The credit card rate for the Starter Plan is 2.9% plus 30 cents for online transaction. Fortunately, there’s no transaction fee within approved Shopify Payments – if you choose to pay through a different method however, there’s a transaction fee of around 2%.

Basic Plan

  • $29 per month
  • File Storage of up to 1GB
  • Unlimited Products
  • Discount Code Engine
  • 24/7 Support
  • Free Card Reader
  • Mobile

The credit card rate for the Basic Plan is the same with the Starter Plan.

Professional Plan

  • $79 per month
  • 5GB of File Storage
  • Professional Reports
  • Abandoned Cart Recovery
  • Unlimited Products
  • Discount Code Engine
  • 24/7 Support
  • Free Card Reader
  • Mobile

For the Professional Plan, you get a credit card rate of 2.5% plus 30 cents.

Unlimited Plan

  • $179 per month
  • Unlimited Storage
  • Professional Reports
  • Abandoned Cart Recovery
  • Unlimited Products
  • Discount Code Engine
  • 24/7 Support
  • Real-Time Carrier Shipping
  • Free Shopify Card Reader
  • Shopify Mobile
  • Advanced Report Builder

Credit card rate is 2.25% with 30 cents additional.

Store Experience – Pros and Cons

So, there are a lot of features that come with the system, even at its most basic format – but what exactly do these mean? Here’s what you can look forward to with the features offered:

  • The best thing about their system is the excellent customer support. There is a Live Chat, a phone number, and an email system so you have several options under your belt.
  • The phone numbers are extensive and cover several countries including Malaysia, Singapore, India, Australia, the UK, and more. This ensures that wherever you are, it is possible to contact the headquarters based in Canada.
  • Another definite plus is the mobile friendliness of the system! With more and more buyers using their smart phones to access online shops, this is a definite must that could significantly increase the results of your sales.
  • The system is SEO friendly so with a good setup, you’ll find that this shopping cart can help push your shop in the Google rankings! What does this mean for you? Simply put, you’d find yourself getting better sales and reaching a wider range of market.
  • The backups are automated, which means that in the event of a crash, you’d be able to retrieve all the information from the last backup. The backup itself is done fairly often so you won’t find yourself losing a lot of important data.

The main CON of this system is the fact that although they may have several add-ons, most of these come from third-party providers. They’ve been vetoed by the system but as a buyer, you’ll still feel a bit wary when utilizing these integrations. Also note that when transferring domains, you might have a problem with the system. The service doesn’t exactly have a Lock-In setup, but it can make transitions difficult.

Setup and Server

The setup is incredibly easy. In fact, the Shopify service is by far the easiest one to set up – and at no cost to the client. Since the service also has their own server, there’s practically no need for you to pay for your own – definitely a cost effective option. As for the uptime, their track record is also clean with very minimal down time – most of them scheduled, therefore allowing you to warn clients of impending offline time.

Buyers Experience – Pros and Cons

Of course, let us not forget that when it comes right down to it, the experience of the buyers with the shopping cart is more important. The fact is that if it’s complicated to load the cart and check it out, then there’s little chance that buyers will continue with their purchases. Abandoned carts are not that uncommon when it comes online shops, but Shopify makes the chance of a complete sale possible:

  • Adding and removing products from the cart is simple and seamless.
  • The shopping cart doesn’t ‘brand’ their service so users get a streamlined, unified take when checking out their carts. This gives many buyers a sense of security because of the ‘professional’ aspect of the process.
  • Several payment gateways are available – including PayPal and Visa. Since most buyers use either of the two, you wouldn’t have to worry about accommodating other needs.
  • The payment process is simple and comes with excellent security measures. The program uses a 128-bit encryption system, putting them firmly in the Tier 1 of PCI Compliance. When it comes to online buying, this is something every client looks for.
  • With an excellent user experience, you’ll have no problem getting positive reviews from buyers – consequently spreading the efficiency of your service and products by word of mouth. Really, there’s no better marketing strategy like a personal recommendation.
  • The system doesn’t exactly provide extensive design options that are considered ‘attractive’ directly, but third party providers have some of the best themes available. So far, there are more than 100 options to choose from, each one designed to appeal to buyers.

For buyers, the main con would be if you’re using a different payment processor than recommended. Expect to have some difficulties with the system but otherwise, it all works OK.

Registration and Payment

The best thing about this product is the fact that they do not have any fees for cancellation or for setting up the system. Since registration is done on a monthly basis, you can try it out for 30 days before choosing to continue, plus, there’s a 14-day trial period that’s completely free and doesn’t require you to register with your credit card!

Who Should Use This?

The ecommerce service is a good choice for practically all online retailers looking for a system that handles all their concerns in one fell swoop. Your choice of plan, however, should depend entirely on the kind of reception you have in the market. For example, if you have a small batch of products (less than 25) then a starter kit would be your best option. If you have more than that however, you can choose through other plans. Note that if you expect to sell more than a million online, the service is open to renegotiating your subscription plan.

Overall Score

All in all, the Shopify gets a rating of 9 stars out of 10 for its user-friendliness, ease of use, good prices, and excellent customer service. Like all services out there though, some improvements may still be done – such as add-ons that come directly from the company instead of third party providers. Right now, the service shows promise as being one of the best shopping carts today, making it perfect for small to large-sized companies that want something easy, simple, fast, efficient, and cost-effective.

Shopify makes it easy to open an online store by providing all the tools and help you need. Click here to try it for free!

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4.8

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