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Best Online Store Builders–Get up and Running in a Few Clicks

Dave Platt

There’s no question that the future of commerce is shifting to online, especially as more businesses are dealing with the fallout from COVID-19. With our phones readily available every minute of the day, the ease of browsing, shopping, comparing, shipping, and even returning, are making online shopping just about everyone’s first choice today.

So, the question for any forward-thinking business owner becomes, how do I get online? That’s the easy part. There are thousands of Ecommerce website builders that you can find with a simple Google search. The hard part comes with choosing the right one for your business. A website builder has to be easy to use, offer the right combination of features, and all fit within your budget. A little daunted? Don’t be; here are 10 of the best Ecommerce site builders on the market for businesses with their eye on expansion in 2021.

Fast, easy, and beautiful website design
Domestic US businesses
Easy, all-in-one online stores
Businesses seeking scalability
WordPress businesses
Professional site design, top quality & tools
Users that want a quick Ecommerce site
SMBs, startups seeking advanced features
Small online businesses, easy DIY website designing
Total site-building newbies
From $23 per month, or free plan
From $12 or free plan
From $25 per month or free plan
From $29.95 per month
From $19.99 per month
From $12 per month
From $25 / month (Online Store tier)
From $29 per month
Free- $229/month
Premium costs $12.80/month
14 days
Yes
Yes
15 days
30 days, 90-day money-back guarantee
Yes
No
14 days
Free plan
No
500+
Limited
1,500+
100+
1000s
100+
Yes
70+
110
28
Wix Payments, PayPal, credit/debit, in person
Square, Apple Pay, Google Pay
Square, Stripe, ApplePay, PayPal
40+ of your choice
PayPal, Stripe, PayFast, Amazon, etc.
Stripe, credit cards, Apple Pay, PayPal
Yes
100 external payment gateways
Yes
3
Multichannel including Facebook, Instagram
Multichannel including Instagram
Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Walmart and more
Multichannel, Amazon, eBay, Pinterest
Fully compatible for multichannel selling
Fully integrated for multichannel
No
Multichannel with Facebook, Instagram, eBay
Hubspot, Facebook Shop, eBay, Mailchimp, UPS, GSPay, Houzz, Aweber, Affirm, Printful, Avalara, Doba, Visa Checkout, many more
Google analytics, SEO tools, and more

A Closer Look at the Top 10 Ecommerce Website Builders

  • 1
    Wix
    exceptional
    9.9
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 4157people in the past 30 days
      9.9
    • Customer Feedback
      Collecting Data
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      9.4
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.9
    Learn how we score
    • Best forFast, easy, and beautiful website design
    • PriceFrom $23 per month, or free plan
    • Free trial14 days

    It's hard to not get excited about building your business when working with an Ecommerce site builder pro like Wix. It’s got all the right features in all the right places to make your online store boom. Hundreds of templates to choose from, a customized domain name, and an easy drag-and-drop editor really help kick things off nicely. All site designs are mobile responsive, so they look great on any device. Wix even has artificial design intelligence to help you tweak your site.

    There’s no doubt about it. Wix is probably the best option for ease of use, and user-friendly design and editing options. You can literally do it without any design knowledge whatsoever. But then Wix does even more. This website builder offers advanced features like blogs, SEO tools, and dropshipping with Modalyst.

    Pros
    • Easy design and edit tools for anyone
    • Tons of features included in the price
    • Rich product galleries
    Cons
    • Locked into a template after launch
    • So many choices can be daunting
  • 2
    Square
    excellent
    9.4
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 1751people in the past 30 days
      8.9
    • Customer Feedback
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      8.6
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.8
    Learn how we score
    • Best forDomestic US businesses
    • PriceFrom $12 or free plan
    • Free trialYes

    Square’s ecommerce service offers US and Canadian business owners a simple way to get their business up and running online. It offers an attractive payment model with a unique commision structure and a host of tools that makes it a competitive option for those looking for a balance between ease and professionalism.

    Building an online store with Square is easier than with some of its competitors. The templates are limited but the site builder offers a set of dynamic themes to choose from and services customized to restaurant, service, retail, and non-profit organizations. Users have access to Square’s full stack of tools and services, which includes its POS devices and simplified scheduling and inventory tools. For businesses operating in the US and Canada, Square offers an attractive model with a unique pricing structure and easy to use site builder that’s versatile and professional.

    Pros
    • Exceptional options included in the free plan
    • Easy-to-create ecommerce sites
    • Competitive pricing
    Cons
    • Limited templates
    • Not available for overseas orders
  • 3
    GoDaddy
    excellent
    9.0
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 725people in the past 30 days
      8.0
    • Customer Feedback
      Collecting Data
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      9.7
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.9
    Learn how we score
    • Best forEasy, all-in-one online stores
    • PriceFrom $25 per month or free plan
    • Free trialYes

    GoDaddy Website and Marketing is an easy-to-use website builder that you can start free and level up to a fully functioning online store that integrates seamlessly with the world's top marketplaces, such as Amazon and eBay.


    You can choose a template specific to your industry, design a custom store with no tech knowledge necessary, and integrate all the tools you need for a successful Ecommerce operation, like easy product uploads and inventory syncing across platforms, social media marketing content, SEO optimizations and more.

    Pros
    • Easy-to-use for novices
    • Mobile-friendly and attractive templates
    • Integrates with top marketplaces
    Cons
    • No custom code additions
    • Can't export content
  • 4
    BigCommerce

    BigCommerce

    very good
    8.6
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 571people in the past 30 days
      7.9
    • Customer Feedback
      Great inBrand Satisfaction
      8.4
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      8.1
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.6
    Learn how we score
    • Best forBusinesses seeking scalability
    • PriceFrom $29.95 per month
    • Free trial15 days

    BigCommerce is one of the biggest and most reputable Ecommerce builders on the market today. This is because of the wide range of features, sales tools, and integrations available through its service. The easy-to-use system lets you quickly and efficiently set up an online store, sell products, and accept payments. BigCommerce also goes the extra mile, though, with tools that actually help improve your business. Things like analytics, SEO tools, and next-level shipping allow online stores to move products faster.

    While not all templates are responsive, most will work well on mobile devices. And with features like abandoned cart recovery, SSL security certificate, and the ability to sell on multiple channels like Amazon, Instagram, Facebook, and more, it’s worth testing out a few templates to reap the benefits of working with BigCommerce.

    Pros
    • Scales easily with your business growth
    • Multichannel selling made easy
    • Huge assortment of tools and features
    Cons
    • Not all designs are responsive
    • Tough learning curve at the beginning
  • 5
    WooCommerce by Bluehost

    WooCommerce by Bluehost

    very good
    8.8
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 388people in the past 30 days
      7.7
    • Customer Feedback
      Great inValue for Money
      9.6
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      9.0
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.5
    Learn how we score
    • Best forWordPress businesses
    • PriceFrom $19.99 per month
    • Free trial30 days, 90-day money-back guarantee

    When you sign up for Bluehost powered by WooCommerce, you really get the strength of 3 huge brands supporting your online store. WooCommerce is an open-source online shop builder specifically designed for WordPress sites, and it’s known for being simple to use while packing a powerful punch at the same time. BlueHost is an all-inclusive hosting service that gives you an SSL certificate, free domain name, and 1-click WordPress installation with every plan.

    So, you know you’re getting a powerful and reliable service with this dynamic duo. In terms of website design itself, WooCommerce is a great choice. It takes minutes to choose and design your site from one of the templates. Then you can configure your online store with the many extensions provided. Add your products, create coupon codes, and set up tax and payment rules to fit your shopping cart. The combo team isn’t as good for scaling up or down with your business, but if you’re looking for easy migration, intuitive setup, and lots of features, it’s just a more efficient, self-explanatory, and easy-to-use system than you’ve probably dealt with in the past.

    Pros
    • Get all your hosting requirements included
    • 1-click WordPress setup
    • Unlimited bandwidth and storage
    Cons
    • Not as scalable as other options
    • Very WordPress-focused
  • 6
    Squarespace

    Squarespace

    very good
    8.9
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 287people in the past 30 days
      7.7
    • Customer Feedback
      Collecting Data
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      9.0
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.9
    Learn how we score
    • Best forProfessional site design, top quality & tools
    • PriceFrom $12 per month
    • Free trialYes

    Squarespace is a smaller name, which is funny because, in our book, it's probably the best option for really professional Ecommerce building. The quality of design templates and built-in features make Squarespace stand out from the competition. And you can customize designs to your liking. There are also plenty of important features from this online store builder like inventory management and unlimited products, and video uploads included in your plan. While some Ecommerce services are cheaper, Squarespace provides a sleek, professional online store. You know exactly what you paid for.

    Squarespace is also a leader in marketing and promotion. Online stores can grow their business with social media integration tools, built-in SEO tools, and email marketing campaigns that you can set and forget. Design banners and create promotions to highlight and sell specific items, and check analytics even while you’re on the go with the Squarespace mobile app.


    Pros
    • Strong marketing tools, email campaigns, SEO, and more
    • Most professional designs on the market
    • Inventory management and abandoned cart recovery included
    Cons
    • Shallow sub-navigation
  • 7
    1&1 IONOS
    very good
    8.6
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 152people in the past 30 days
      7.6
    • Customer Feedback
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      8.4
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.5
    Learn how we score
    • Best forUsers that want a quick Ecommerce site
    • PriceFrom $25 / month (Online Store tier)
    • Free trialNo

    If you’re looking for an Ecommerce website builder that combines the ease of drag and drop with the power to scale up to 1 million products, then IONOS’s tool might be what you’re looking for.

    There’s also online payment gateway support, included hosting, an SSL certification, and the ability to configure multilingual stores. One of its 3 tiers might be perfect for your online business.

    Pros
    • Multilingual support
    • Up to 1 million items
    • SSL for security
    Cons
    • No wish lists on bottom tier
    • B2B only on top tier
  • 8
    Shopify

    Shopify

    very good
    8.7
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 146people in the past 30 days
      7.6
    • Customer Feedback
      Great inBrand Satisfaction
      8.4
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      9.2
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.3
    Learn how we score
    • Best forSMBs, startups seeking advanced features
    • PriceFrom $29 per month
    • Free trial14 days

    Shopify might well be the most popular Ecommerce platform around today. It's easy to work with, has more features built-in than you'll know what to do with, and even supports multichannel selling and social media integration. Shopify has great features like inventory management and abandoned cart recovery. You can also use more than 100 payment gateways for worry-free transactions.

    The one downside to this versatile Ecommerce site builder is the transaction fee that gets charged for each transaction. You can skip this payment by using Shopify Payments, but if you are dedicated to your processor, expect to get charged. Shopify provides 24/7 support, 12,000 third-party apps to install, and more than 50 beautifully designed themes with an easy editor to give your website a customized look and feel.

    Pros
    • Industry-reputation for excellent features suite
    • Extremely simple to use
    • 100+ payment gateways
    Cons
    • Have to reformat content when switching templates
    • Applies a transaction fee unless using Shopify Payments
  • 9
    Shift4Shop

    Shift4Shop

    very good
    8.7
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 34people in the past 30 days
      7.5
    • Customer Feedback
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      7.6
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.8
    Learn how we score
    • Best forSmall online businesses, easy DIY website designing
    • PriceFree- $229/month
    • Free trialFree plan

    Shift4Shop is a great option if you’re looking for an easy way to create a website for your online store. The ecommerce website builder allows you to choose from over 100 attractive templates that are free and mobile responsive. You can sort by industry to find the one that fits your business best. Best of all, Shift4Shop has a totally free end-to-end commerce plan that has more features than many paid-for builders offer.

    Shift4Shop plans come with the latest technologies and features you’ll need to grow, manage, and promote your business. You have easy HTML and CSS editors, drag-and-drop editor, and blog integration. Shopping cart is conversion-optimized with reminders and discounts built in. Top it off with a colossal product order management system, unlimited products, and SEO tools, and Shift4Shop covers plenty of bases in one package deal.

    Pros
    • Free plan loaded with features
    • Easy-to-use site builder with nice templates
    • 24/7 assistance
    Cons
    • Designs aren’t ideal for all types of online stores
    • Paid-for plans have a sales limit
  • 10
    SITE123
    very good
    8.6
    • Consumer Engagement
      Chosen by 34people in the past 30 days
      7.5
    • Customer Feedback
      Collecting Data
      - -
    • Brand Reputation
      Based onweb analytics
      7.8
    • Features & Benefits
      Product Review
      9.8
    Learn how we score
    • Best forTotal site-building newbies
    • PricePremium costs $12.80/month
    • Free trialNo

    Site123 markets itself as a tool for website building newbies, but in reality there’s quite a bit of firepower under the hood.

    This builder from Israel can do everything from gate digital downloads to keep automatic tabs on inventory levels.

    Pros
    • Automatic inventory tracking
    • Sell digital downloads
    • Wide integration library
    Cons
    • Can’t customize HTML/CSS
    • Only 3 payment gateways
Frequently Asked Questions
Which website builder is best for ecommerce?
-
+
Wix is a wildly popular website builder and one of the best options for ecommerce. It's easy to use, features myriad templates, and boasts a built-in ecommerce shop that allows anyone to build a professional looking website regardless of their technical skills.
How can I make my own online store for free?
-
+
Today there are many free website builders on the market that you can use to create an online store. To choose one, make sure that it has ecommerce capabilities, professional-looking templates, and a site builder that's easy to use and aligns well with your level of tech prowess.
Does Wix take a percentage of sales?
-
+
Wix takes transaction fees at roughly 2.9% plus $.30 per transaction.

How to Choose the Right Ecommerce Store Builder

You have flexibility in how to fit your website into your budget once you have a plan that makes sense for your business. Most providers offer a range of choices, and you can adjust your plan as your needs change or your online efforts become more successful. 

Fees for Ecommerce platforms can start from less than $10 per month, and some services offer a free trial period, allowing you to test whether or not a website makes sense for you. Your website can be a true extension of your business, and you can find affordable solutions that cost less than an additional hire.

Without having a website, you risk missing opportunities for additional sales and growth. Those missed opportunities cost you much more than the time and money you might spend on maintaining your online business. You may have taken a big risk when you started your business, and if you believe in what your business has to offer, you should have no trouble taking a small risk by putting it online.

So how do you know which is the right Ecommerce site builder for you? Comparing features that are important to you will help reveal the best solution for your specific situation. Here are a few non-negotiable features that every business should look for while on their search:

Templates

First impressions are important. So you want your online store to make a good one. That’s only going to happen with a fresh, crisp, clean, and responsive website design. Look for a website builder with attractive and industry-relevant templates to use. And unless you want your site looking like every other online store, you need a unique look. That either means having a lot of templates to choose from or having an excellent editor tool that will allow you to customize the design to perfection.

Mobile-responsive 

More and more consumers are shifting toward mobile purchases and research. That means your online store needs to be mobile-responsive. A poor mobile experience will spell disaster for a website, so don’t make that mistake.

Payment gateways/solutions

Processing payments is another area your store needs to have down pat. Because if a customer runs into a hiccup while trying to checkout, most likely, they'll just leave your store altogether and shop somewhere else. Look for an online store builder that has multiple payment processing options, offers free or affordable transaction fees, and makes it easy for your customers to check out. 

Third-party integrations

No website builder has it all, but the smart ones allow you to integrate with external apps, so they don't have to. Accessing other applications within your website expands your functionality, providing more power and flexibility in every area of your business.

Multichannel selling

This is debatable, but we think it’s important. The ability to sell across channels automatically increases your sales potential exponentially without having to do any additional work. Some Ecommerce platforms are confident enough that their site will bring in enough revenue for you (think Amazon) without the complications of multichannel selling, but most sellers prefer to have the choice.

Additional features that will make for a more attractive package include things like inventory management, customer management system, and SEO capabilities.

In terms of functionality, decide what your business’ needs are, how much product-selling you intend to do (and can handle), and what your budget is to determine which Ecommerce platform is right for you. For example, Volusion is a good option if you’re looking for cheaper processing rates, but WooCommerce is hands down the best choice if you are working with WordPress. Square is great for really small businesses, while Shopify is just a great all-around product. Figure out your needs and choose accordingly.

Shopping cart features

There are hundreds of Ecommerce applications on the market today. All of these applications will have most of the same basic features, such as the ability to list an item with photo and description, the ability for a consumer to purchase the item and provide payment. Beyond the basics, applications vary widely in their ease-of-use and features offered. Make a list of the features you want before starting your search.

Building an online store is more than just providing a product or service to customers online. Ecommerce websites need top of the line security systems, as cybercrimes like identity theft and stolen personal data have become the most reported consumer crimes in the US in the last decade.

Using an Ecommerce builder with a good reputation is a great start. All Ecommerce vendors are required to keep to guidelines set out by the PCI Security Standards Council. Never use an Ecommerce builder who is not PCI compliant. 

Maintaining your own high-level security systems is integral to keeping your customers safe, and at the end of the day, any breach is going to result in an investigation into your practices.

Dave Platt
David Platt writes for top10.com. He developed an extensive working knowledge of background check and data management services in his time providing support for military access credentials with respected biometric security service provider SureID. He has further developed his internet security skills in completing a Bachelors of Science degree at Portland State University.