Shopify vs Bigcommerce; Which is Best for You?

Shopify and BigCommerce are excellent tools that allow you to build online stores to sell digital or physical products and there’s no denying that each platform deserves a top spot among the industry’s rankings.

They are essentially designed for people looking to start an online business without a substantial web development budget.

Shopify and BigCommerce are both web browser-based tools, which means you won’t have to install software on your computer. In addition, users can manage their online stores remotely from any location, with a compatible device and stable internet connection.

That said, it might be difficult to determine which product would be the ideal fit for your virtual store. That’s where our in-depth features comparison comes in handy!


Pricing

‘How much do they cost?’ is usually among the first questions that potential Shopify or BigCommerce users ask. This is perhaps because the recurring monthly plan cost is an important factor when trying to pick the right eCommerce website builder for your budget.

Shopify and BigCommerce both offer 3 pricing plans with Shopify’s plans costing between 29USD to 299USD each month and BigCommerce’s plans varying between 29.95USD to 299.95USD monthly.

The features for each Shopify and BigCommerce plan range from basic, to medium, and advanced with the tailored solutions costing more. Both platforms also offer free trials to new users with Shopify offering 14 days and BigCommerce granting 15 days free access.

On the surface, Shopify and BigCommerce’s pricing prices may seem quite similar but all that changes once additional costs such as Transaction Fees and Credit Card Fees are involved.

Overall, both platforms serve up great value for your money.


Ease of Use

Shopify and BigCommerce both boast of straightforward website editors and user-friendly content management systems complete with a modern dashboard interface.

However, most people soon find that using BigCommerce is more complex that Shopify, This is largely due to the scalable nature of BigCommerce’s features which makes them less suited for beginners. Furthermore the BigCommerce sales features are more robust and thus will require a bit more time to learn.

Meanwhile Shopify simplifies the product adding process with lots of pointers along the way.

But in contrast, the design flexibility of BigCommerce’s drag-and-drop editor outshines Shopify’s builder because all you have to do is specify your preferred web page element and you can modify it however you like.


Designs and Templates

Unlike some other website building and eCommerce platforms out there, BigCommerce and Shopify offer small free theme selections with 12 and 15 found on each.

However, both products eventually serve up more free template choices as you’ll find multiple variations to choose from within these categories.

BigCommerce is not as user-friendly as Shopify, and as such, even a newbie can build an attractive, operational storefront.

Several free themes found on BigCommerce are only distinguishable from each other because of their slightly different colors.

Bear in mind that you won’t have to tweak the free Shopify themes as much anyway since they are less uniform to begin with.


Customer Support

You’ll enjoy access to the following support features on Shopify or BigCommerce:

Video tutorials

Email support

Community forum

24/7 live chat support

24/7 phone support

Help center

Round-the-clock live chat and phone support are the standout tools for both platforms, but useful resource centers can make a huge difference here, and the Help center on BigCommerce is loaded with useful information.

The Shopify knowledge center does not leave you stranded thanks to helpful prompts across the site’s dashboard connecting you directly to relevant information pages within.

Upgrading to a higher paid plan is the best way to unlock priority support on both platforms.


Editor

Now it’s time to edit your themes and thankfully Shopify and BigCommerce both adopt a drag-and-drop approach to manipulating web page content more easily.

Although both web builders feature drag-and-drop interfaces that are fairly similar in quality, most users prefer the Shopify editor as you can use it to work with more varied content block categories.

With the Shopify builder tool, you can add blog post strips, contact forms, and e-newsletter signup forms to a web page - but not with BigCommerce.

Many online storeowners may also prefer the free Shopify themes’ aesthetics to the contemporary and professional appearance of those available on BigCommerce.


Ecommerce

BigCommerce and Shopify offer custom enterprise-level eCommerce plans to equip online stores with advanced support tools. Both platforms are well equipped to help businesses maximize their online potential.

While Shopify Plus is limited to handling 10 API calls per second, BigCommerce Enterprise systems can cope with over a hundred calls each second which is best handling large scale Omni-channel growth. This allows BigCommerce store merchants to sync their product catalogues almost immediately.

In addition, BigCommerce merchants are in a better position to sell more widely and expand their customer base due to third-party partnerships.

Shopify is best suited to large online plus brick & mortar stores, while BigCommerce is perfect for super-sized strictly virtual online selling stores.

Apps and Widgets

BigCommerce already has an incredible online marketing feature set integrated to your digital store from the start. It’s therefore not surprising to find that the platform has a much smaller app store than Shopify’s. This simply means that you likely won’t need to download any additional applications to improve your BigCommerce store’s functionality.

A lot of users argue that Shopify only offers some of the most eCommerce useful features through separate apps that already come in-built with BigCommerce.

Some of these integrated BigCommerce features include real-time third party carrier shipping quotes, onsite customer ratings & reviews, and unlimited online staff accounts.


SEO

Both Shopify and BigCommerce perform well in our SEO comparison.

The fundamentals of on-page SEO on both eCommerce platforms are straightforward. The processes involved with adding headings, changing Meta descriptions, alt text, and page titles are also easy to understand.


Blogging

When done correctly, blogging can serve as a proven store traffic boosting method.

By creating relevant blog posts for your product or industry niche, you are more likely to attract the desired audience to your website.

Luckily, both Shopify and BigCommerce come with simple blog creation tools. Shopify even lets you import blog posts from an existing site.

Overall, we discovered the Shopify blog was a bit easier use, thanks to a collection of multiple third-party apps you can use to get publish content from the platform.


Conclusion

Ultimately, Shopify and BigCommerce are equally matched website builders. However, BigCommerce dominates in terms of product options, multi-currency selling, and shop customization.

Shopify outshines BigCommerce when it comes to, app integration, email marketing, templates, and abandoned cart recovery.