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BigCommerce Website Builder Review 2022

8.2
good
Nadav Shemer

In a Nutshell

BigCommerce’s drag-and-drop editor and user-friendly interface enable sites to be customized and branded without the need for coding, making it an ideal platform for anyone building their first online store. Although BigCommerce does offer third-party integrations, its sizable suite of built-in features enables store owners to quickly create an optimized and high-conversion online store without too much hassle.

pros

  • + Unlimited products, file storage and bandwidth
  • + Intuitive drag-and-drop solution
  • + No extra fees for using external payment providers

cons

  • - Poor customer service reputation
  • - Features like abandoned cart are very expensive

BigCommerce BigCommerce Visit Site

What Is BigCommerce

BigCommerce is a website-building platform serving 60,000+ businesses in more than 150 countries. Founded in 2009, it listed on the NASDAQ in 2019 and is now valued at around $4 billion. BigCommerce has earned plenty of recognition by global market intelligence firms, including being named a leader among ecommerce platforms by IDC, and as having robust feature sets for the customers it serves by Gartner. BigCommerce’s code-free functionality, drag-and-drop editor, and marketing and conversion tools make it ideal for business owners transitioning into e-commerce.

BigCommerce homepage showing important statistics

Using BigCommerce

Signing up for BigCommerce is simple and takes about two minutes. To begin, enter your email address, name, store name, and select your business’s size from the options (e.g. new business, >$50,000 in annual sales, $50,000 to $250,000 in annual sales). Then, answer the following questions: Do you have an existing website? What will you be selling? What best describes the products you currently sell?

Once that’s done, you’ll come to your own personal dashboard, where you can take advantage of the 15-day trial period to experiment with BigCommerce’s tools and brand and customize your chosen theme with the Page Builder tool.

Like any website builder, there’s a learning period to using BigCommerce, but overall we have to say the platform is fairly intuitive and a good option for anyone wanting to set up a website without having to deal with too many third-party integrations and plugins.

BigCommerce Features and tools:

Page Builder

Lets you customize elements of your theme, such as colors, text sizes, and the number of featured products to show on the homepage, without coding.

Drag-and-drop editor

Drag and drop content onto your pages, such as text blocks, images, videos, banners, carousels, buttons, and custom HTML.

SEO

BigCommerce auto-populates SEO-friendly URLs while also giving you full control over your URL settings if you decide there’s a better strategy for your business. 

Sales

Lets you sell directly on Amazon, list products on eBay, integrate into the Facebook Commerce Backend Platform, edit listings directly in Google Merchant Center, and more.

Streamlined checkout

Single-page checkout with conversion-boosting features like account creation for faster checkout, guest checkout, and SSL support.

Optimization

Built-in integration with Google AMP lets you improve page speed and performance on mobile devices, while integration with Akamai Image Manager optimizes online images for page-load performance.

Inventory management

Native tools help you manage stock levels, view order trends over time, and maintain synchronicity between your online and offline channels.

BigCommerce website builder screenshot

Creating a website with BigCommerce

How to Create, Design & Edit Your BigCommerce website

BigCommerce offers a choice of 12 free themes and 150+ paid themes. The free themes are all pretty similar to one another and aren’t all that inspiring, so you’ll probably find yourself forking out $110 to $230 for one of the paid themes.

The paid themes can be easily customized and branded with the Page Builder tool. If you know how to code, then you can customize your online store with HTML, CSS, and other popular code libraries. The templates are automatically mobile responsive. The drag-and-drop editor makes the whole job of creating, designing and editing your BigCommerce website pretty easy overall. 

If you’re moving over from another ecommerce platform such as Shopify or WooCommerce, then you can do so by using one of BigCommerce’s dedicated Catalog Transfer Applications. Likewise, if you decide you don’t like BigCommerce and wish to migrate to another platform, you should be able to do this on your new platform.

Adding Multimedia to Your BigCommerce website

The WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor lets you upload content such as images, videos, PDFs, audio files, and downloadable files. Videos can be embedded from YouTube, Vimeo, or Metacafe, or from one of these seven file types: Flash, HTML5 audio and video, QuickTime movies, Shockwave applications, Windows Media files, Read Media files, or another website via an iframe.

The platform has a number of shortcuts, including being able to add multiple images at one time by first uploading them all to a folder using BigCommerce’s WebDAV tool). 

On the downside, the availability of stock multimedia files is fairly limited, so you’ll need to use your own or sign up for a third-party stock image and video site.

Marketing Functionality with BigCommerce Websites

Marketing capabilities are driven partly by native apps and partly by third-party apps available through the BigCommerce app store.

These include:

  • Blog – Every BigCommerce store has a built-in blog, which is great for promoting your products and boosting your site’s SEO ranking.
  • Customer Groups – this built-in feature lets you classify your customers into segments based on different criteria, such as level of loyalty or preferred products.
  • Google Shopping – native integration that connects your BigCommerce store to Google Merchant Center, allowing you to edit your listings directly in Google Merchant Center and manage your Google campaigns in Google Ads.
  • Facebook Business Extension – native integration that lets you sell through dynamic advertising and a Facebook store that integrates directly to your BigCommerce site.
  • Email marketing – 30 apps, including MailChimp (free, email marketing), Drip (custom pricing, for email and SMS marketing), and Privy (free, for growing your email list with popups, banners and other tools).

SEO Functionality & Add-Ons with BigCommerce Websites

BigCommerce offers a range of built-in SEO tools to help improve your search rankings. This is in addition to third-party SEO integrations offered on the BigCommerce app store. Built-in integration with Google AMP improves page speed and performance on mobile devices, automatically improving your SEO.

Other native functionalities include:

  • BigCommerce’s content delivery network (CDN) works continuously in the background to make sure your site loads quickly.
  • Auto-population of SEO-friendly URLs for product and category pages (while allowing you to retain full control over URLs, in case you have a different strategy).
  • Each page gets a unique URL, saving you from the negative SEO impact of duplicate content.
  • Built in microdata in your product pages, such as ratings, pricing, and stock levels, serves to further enhance your search result rankings.
  • Automatic 301 redirects ensure your site continues to be navigable.
  • Gallery of pre-built website themes from BigCommerce

E-Commerce:

As its name suggests, BigCommerce includes a number of e-commerce features. Below are the highlights.

  • Choice from more than 55 payment providers, with no additional fees charged by BigCommerce.
  • Streamlined checkout – includes default country in the drop-down menu based on the customer’s IP address, clearly labelled text fields when entering credit card details, and auto-fill of billing and shipping details for returning customers.
  • BigCommerce Channel Manager – lets you connect inventory to existing channels or add new channels in a few clicks.
  • BigCommerce Shipping Manager – lets you quickly set up locations to which you’ll be selling and choose specific methods for each area, including real-time carrier quotes, flat-rate shipping, and weight- and value-based rates.

BigCommerce Plans and pricing:

BigCommerce offers a choice of three plans (Standard, Plus, and Pro), each with a 15-day free trial. It also offers an Enterprise plan with custom pricing. You can save up to 10% on the Pro or Plus plans by paying annually.


Standard
Plus
Pro

Price

$29.95/month

$79.95/month

$299.95/month

Best for 

Individual sellers

Growing your online business

Comprehensive set of features

Max online sales per year

$50,000

$180,000

$400,000

All plans include unlimited products, file storage, and bandwidth, unlimited staff accounts, and no additional transaction fees for third-party payment gateways.

Standard includes some of the tools discussed in this review, including integrations with Amazon, Facebook, and Google, mobile-responsive website, built-in blog, single-page checkout, multi-currency payment, and free sitewide HTTPS/SSL.

Plus is what you need for most of the marketing and SEO tools as well as for conversion tools like abandoned cart saver and stored credit cards.

Pro gets you a range of advanced tools such as integrated Google customer reviews and custom product filtering. 

Help and Support:

The BigCommerce website has an extensive Help Center with tutorials, guides, and articles. We recommend starting off by using the free trial and consulting the Help Center for guidance. 

While the online resources are good, the customer service reputation is not. While it claims to offer access to professional e-commerce consultants and does appear to follow through on this in some cases, many customers have complained about sub-standard support. 

Tech support is available 24/7 via chat, tickets, or U.S.-based phone support.

BigCommerce BigCommerce Visit Site

How BigCommerce Compares to Other Website Builders


BigCommerce
Shopify
Wordpress.com

Pricing

$29.95-$299.95/month

$29-$299/month

$0-$45/month 

Hosting included?

Yes

Yes

Yes

Number of templates

150+

100+

Thousands (third-party)

Blogging functionality

Yes

Yes

Yes

Ecommerce functionality

Yes

Yes

Yes

Email marketing functionality

Yes (via third-party apps)

Yes (built-in)

Yes (third-party apps)

Responsive design

Yes

Yes

Depends on theme

Analytics & Reporting

Yes

Yes

Yes

As the above table shows, BigCommerce is a competitor to Shopify, while other platforms like WordPress are designed for being able to design a website at a cheaper cost but scale up with your plug-ins, coding, or with the help of a professional developer.

The differences between BigCommerce and Shopify aren’t all that obvious, and some people prefer to experiment with both with a free trial before making a decision. Overall, BigCommerce is seen as having a greater level of customizability and better SEO and marketing tools, while Shopify is seen as a little more user-friendly. 

Some shared features are available on the cheapest BigCommerce plan but the intermediate Shopify plan, and vice-versa, e.g. abandoned cart is available on the basic Shopify plan but the intermediate BigCommerce plan. So if you’re weighing up between these two providers, we recommend thinking about which features you need before looking at both platforms’ pricing tables.

Bottom Line

BigCommerce charges a premium compared to other website builders, but this gets you access to countless built-in tools in areas like SEO, marketing and conversion. If you’re looking to start out with basic functionalities and scale up with third-party apps, then you might look elsewhere. But if you want to build your store up quickly with minimum hassle and you don’t mind paying for it, then BigCommerce is worth your consideration.

Frequently Asked Questions
Which is better: Shopify or BigCommerce?
-
+
BigCommerce is seen as having a greater level of customizability and better SEO and marketing tools, while Shopify is seen as a little more user-friendly. The good news is both offer a free trial, so you can try them out for yourself.
How much does BigCommerce cost?
-
+
BigCommerce costs $29.95/month for a Standard plan with basic functionalities, $79.95 for a Plus plan for growing your online business, and $299.95 for a Pro plan with a comprehensive set of features.
Is BigCommerce like Shopify?
-
+
BigCommerce and Shopify are both premium website builders with code-free customizability and stacks of built-in functionalities. Both can be used for a simple website or online store. The best of the two is a matter of personal preference.
Nadav Shemer specializes in business, tech, and energy, with a background in financial journalism, hi-tech and startups. He enjoys writing about the latest innovations in financial services and products.

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5 months ago

I love BigCommmerce. I just starting using this a few weeks ago. This application is very easy to use and maneuver around. So far I am on the free trial period which is also amazing because it gives you the chance to know whether or not that's the application that you want to use. I would recommend this to anyone that is ready, to move to BigCommerce.

6 months ago

Excellent service and a great value,and a leader for their innovative ecommerce platform.

6 months ago

I'm a huge fan of BigCommerce. They are overall top 5 in my opinion. They really help me build a great user friendly platform.

6 months ago

I like how it allows you to easily manage eCommerce and has great support. I also like how it has a great site design.

6 months ago

BigCommerce was almost an exact match for what my company required including the pricing structure. There isn't much we do not like about it.

6 months ago

Great experience for a e-commerce platform, using BigCommerce is the only way to go.

6 months ago

BigCommerce was easy to use and I was able to complete my project quickly without any issues. I was able to follow their built in tutorials to complete the store set up.

6 months ago

Running a wordpress site and dropshipping is super easy and integrates perfectly as a plugin automating several jobs that would take hours without.

6 months ago

Because it easy to use. I like the value for my money. This is why have given this overall 5 star rating.

6 months ago

BigCommerce is a good company, would recommend to friend or family, gets work done, is very fast, and satisfied my needs.

7 months ago

BigCommerce, I rated it high because of the good quality they provided to the customer.

7 months ago

I love using them because they have the best eCommerce store for the best prices and the best service ever offered.

7 months ago

BigCommerce is a quality service, easy to use and satisfactory for customers.

7 months ago

It is easy to use and will provide an excellent monetary service to the company.

7 months ago

Because they offer a good value per the money for your services and platforms...

7 months ago

They are one of the best in the league they have great service and strive to be the best.

7 months ago

I like it very much because it is very much reliable and trustworthy, easy to use.

8 months ago

A lot of options for consumers including drop shipping where they pack and ship to the consumer for you. Different selling platforms for entrepreneurs. Easy to operate. Great 24hr customer service. You get a lot of quality for your money. Just an great overall service.

8 months ago

It has been easy to use, profitable for my business and overall a positive experience.

8 months ago

It is an easy program to use and easy to understand. The rates they offer are very good too.

80 reviews