The 20 Best eCommerce Platforms to Start an Online Store

By Matthew Guay

You are reading: Chapter 7 of 8

If you want to start selling things, it's hard to beat selling them online. With over two billion global internet users, your online store can reach vastly more people than a local storefront could. You can run that store from the comforts of your home or office, without a lease or license in sight.

All you'll need is a tool to list your products, manage shopping carts, process orders, and customize everything with your branding. That's what eCommerce platforms are for—and here are the best of those tools to get your online store launched.

The Best Tools to:

The Best Tools to Build an eCommerce Store

There's a wide market for eCommerce apps, just as there are for almost any other popular software category. Some are simple tools for selling individual products; others are focused on enterprises with large sales volumes and warehouses of inventory.

Chances are, if you're starting a new online store, you're right in the middle. You want a tool that'll help you list all of your products and manage your sales, without being too difficult to set up or requiring an excessive upfront investment. And you'll want a tool that's widely supported, with themes, add-ons, and integrations to make your store look and work the way you want.

That's what these apps do. We've gone through over 50 eCommerce apps, looked for those that work well and are used by a wide range of stores, and made sure they each let you:

  • List products on your own store site, and let customers add them to a shopping cart and place orders online
  • Sell physical and digital goods
  • Include a shopping cart so customers can purchase more than one product at once
  • Use your own store branding and domain name
  • Manage orders and easily see what needs shipped
  • Run a store for $30 or less per month
  • And, for most of the tools, get extra themes, tools, and support from an online community

Here they are, starting with the simplest options for the smallest stores to the most customizable options you can run on your own server. We've listed their core features, pricing, and if they have a mobile app to manage orders and products on the go.

App Icon:  Best for: Mobile App: Free for: Plans from:
GumroadGumroadStarting a simple small store, especially for selling digital goods8.5% + 30¢/sale$10/mo.
SelzSelzA simple store with customizable themes and a built-in blog5 products$19.99/mo. + 1%/sale
StorenvyStorenvyBuilding your own customized store inside an existing marketplaceDirect sales10%/sale on marketplace
JimdoJimdoEditing product listings directly on the page and adding details with a clickiOS & AndroidBranded store$7.50/mo.
WixWixAdding apps to your site for the features you wantiOS & Android$17/mo.
SquarespaceSquarespaceFlexible product arrangement with beautiful themes and templatesiOS & Android$30/mo.
WeeblyWeeblyBuilding a customized site and store with drag-and-dropiOS & Android$8/mo. + 3%/sale
Big CartelBig CartelA full-featured small store for up to 300 productsiOS5 products$9.99/mo.
ShopifyShopifyQuickly building a full-featured hosted online store with built-in payment processingiOS & Android$29/mo.
VolusionVolusionGetting your products noticed with promotions and search integrationiOS & Android$15/mo.
BigCommerceBigcommerceSelling products in multiple online marketplaces and your own store at once$29.95/mo.
3dcart3dcartMarketing to potential and loyal customers and streamlining shipping$9.99/mo.
SendOwlSendOwlAdding simple checkout tools to any web page$9/mo.
EcwidEcwidEmbedding a full store into your existing siteiOS & Android10 products$15/mo.
E-junkieE-junkieAdding a shopping cart to any website, including blogs$5/mo.
WooCommerceWooCommerceBuilding a detailed store inside WordPressiOSSelf-hosted$49+ per extension
MagentoMagentoBuilding a self-hosted store on your own3rd partySelf-hostedEnterprise Pricing
X-CartX-CartBuilding a self-hosted store for selling in-person or on eBayiOSSelf-hosted$495 one-time
PrestaShopPrestaShopStarting a free hosted or self-hosted store with the same software3rd partyCore Features$20+/add-on
FoxycartFoxycartCoding your own product listings$20/mo. + 15¢/sale

Start a Simple, Hosted Online Store

The simplest online store tools let you create product listings and turn them into a basic store in minutes. You can still customize your store's branding, sell multiple items in one checkout, and either use your own domain name or a custom URL from the site—but they're far easier to manage than more full-featured store tools with their more complicated configuration options and bells and whistles.


Best for starting a simple small store, especially for selling digital goods

Gumroad screenshot

Gumroad is best known as a way to sell individual products. List more than one product on Gumroad, though, and it automatically turns into a simple store for your goods.

Just drag-and-drop a photo of your item into Gumroad's product editor, then add a quick description and price, along with a file for digital products or extra shipping fields for physical goods. When selling digital products, Gumroad can add your customer's name to PDF files, or automatically generate license keys for software which you can then verify from your app with a bit of code. To sell just that one thing, you could just share the Gumroad link on your website, social media, or elsewhere, and customers can buy it in seconds.

Add multiple products, and Gumroad turns into a store, one that's accessible at or your own domain name. Customers will see each product you've launched, and can tap on each item to view more details or add it to their cart. You can then stay in touch with customers using Gumroad's emails, or customize your site's theme colors with a paid plan for a bit of your own branding.

Gumroad Pricing: 8.5% + 30¢ per sale (including payment processing) Free account with basic features; $10/month plus 3.5% + 30¢ per sale with Premium account.

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Gumroad review .

See Gumroad integrations on Zapier


Best for a simple store with customizable themes and a built-in blog

Selz screenshot

For a store that's a bit more customizable but still a breeze to use, Selz offers a wide range of site themes and optional apps for your store. You can customize its themes to fit your branding, and add physical or digital products in a couple of clicks.

On the free plan, you can only sell one product at a time—but with a paid plan or the $4.99/month shopping cart add-on, your customers can choose as many items as they want to buy. There are also more advanced add-ons to remind customers about abandoned carts, customize your receipts, add custom order fields, and more. Or you can stay with the core features for a streamlined way to sell products.

Selz also lets you add a basic blog and extra pages, such as About and Contact pages—but its focus is on helping you start a store in just a few minutes.

Selz Pricing: Free for 5 products; from $19.99/month plus 1% transaction fee Plus plan for unlimited products and main features including a shopping cart

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Selz review .

See Selz integrations on Zapier


Best for building your own customized store inside an existing marketplace

Storenvy screenshot

The hardest part of running your own store is getting customers to discover it. Marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay help with discovery, since so many people search for products on their sites already, but they don't give you much space to make your own personalized store.

Storenvy offers the best of both worlds, with a personalized store right inside the Storenvy marketplace. With a customized theme and domain—along with Facebook Store integration—Storenvy has the core tools you'd look for in an eCommerce app. It even comes with social-style watch and envy buttons to let people follow your products and make a wish list.

All of those features are, amazingly, free. Then, for a 10% fee on each sale, you can cross-list your products on the Storenvy marketplace to get them in front of more eyes.

Storenvy Pricing: Free for sales on your own store with up to 500 product listings; 10% transaction fee for sales on the Storenvy Marketplace

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Storenvy review .

See Storenvy integrations on Zapier

Build a Site With a Store

Perhaps you don't want a tool that's only designed for building a store and you want a bit more space to describe your brand and market your products. You also want a blog to share ideas, extra pages to showcase your design process, and tools that make it easy to customize your site.

These site builder tools are the best option. They let you create websites with a simple editor, so you can tweak everything on your site without any code. And they happen to be great at eCommerce, too.


Best for editing product listings directly on the page and adding details with a click

Jimdo screenshot

Instead of dragging-and-dropping elements from a toolbar into your site design, Jimdo lets you click to add something and select the element you want. With a simple, one-column design by default, it's easy to get customized header, description, and other sections quickly added to your site. And you can change the entire design with a new theme in a click, keeping your custom sections while changing up the color and design.

Adding products to your store is just as easy. Just scroll down to the store section, click in between an existing product, and select Store Item. You can then add the product listing—including images, descriptions, pricing, and more—right there inside the page editor. And, you can select any other product and edit it on the page as well.

To manage orders, see site stats, and more, you'll use the sidebar on the right. You'll find everything you need to turn your product listings and pages into a real store there, complete with shipping and payment options. You can even manage inventory right from inside your website builder.

Jimdo Pricing: Free for a branded store with core features; from $7.50/month JimdoPro plan for custom branding and no ads with annual billing


Best for adding apps to your site for the features you want

Wix screenshot

Drag-and-drop site editors typically come packed with features, but what if you want something extra? Wix solves that with its own App Market.

You'll first design your site using its Photoshop-style editor that lets you align website elements on a grid, format text with Word-style font and style settings, and even add PowerPoint-style animations to any element. Then you can add products within the Store tab that shows your products, orders, and more in a popover right inside your site editor.

Need any more tools? Just click the App Market button to open an add-ons store in another popover. Find the feature you need—say, a form builder, live chat, or events booking tool—click + Add to Site, and that item will be added to your page immediately. It's a simple way to add everything you need to your website and online store.

Wix Pricing: From $17/month eCommerce plan for a store, domain name, and form builder


Best for flexible product arrangement with beautiful themes

Squarespace screenshot

Squarespace is known for its artsy site themes and tools that help you build a landing page or blog for your brand. With its new Online Stores tools, you can also use its themes and design tools to sell your products online.

Editing your site is especially easy with Squarespace. Just open your site, and click the arrow button in the top left corner to unveil an editor for that page. You can drag-and-drop products into the order you want instead of having to rely on categories to sort products automatically, and can tap a product to edit its listing right there. Pages work the same: Just select the page you want to edit and start typing, or drag-and-drop your pages in the editor sidebar to arrange them in the order you want.

Want to write in Markdown on your site or add a customized form to your Contact page? Need charts and graphs in your companion blog or a menu to build a restaurant site that also sells products online? Squarespace includes widgets for that and more to build a customized site to fit even the most unique stores.

Squarespace Pricing: From $30/month Basic Online Stores plan for core store features

Squarespace Zapier integration coming soon


Best for building a customized site and store with drag-and-drop

Weebly screenshot

Building an online form that works the way you want is simple—with apps such as Typeform, for example, you just drag-and-drop the fields you want, and the form editor makes sure they look and work correctly. Weebly does the same thing for your website.

You can build a standalone website, add a blog, and include a store section all by dragging-and-dropping website elements onto a page. Once you add items to the Store section of Weebly, it'll automatically add a corresponding Store page to your site that shows each of your products. Then, drag in the extra elements you want on each page—buttons, image slideshows or galleries, maps to your store location, surveys, and more—to make the site your own.

With Weebly's newly redesigned eCommerce tools, you can now automatically calculate tax and shipping rates for orders, send branded store emails, and organize your products into categories in your Weebly site pages. It's everything your store needs–in a flexible website builder.

Weebly Pricing: From $8/month plus 3% transaction fee per sale Starter plan for core website and eCommerce features with up to 10 products

Weebly Zapier integration coming soon

Create a Full-Featured eCommerce Store

When you think of an eCommerce store, these apps are the ones that likely come to mind. They're tools designed specifically for building robust online stores with dozens or hundreds of products, and power many of the stores you've likely already shopped from.

You won't need to manage a server or worry about security—but you can usually add extra features with custom themes and plugins if you'd like. All these tools require is some time to set them up.

Big Cartel

Best for a full-featured small store

Big Cartel screenshot

Big Cartel is one of the cheapest ways to start your own online store. If you're only listing up to 5 products, it's free—with reasonably priced plans for managing more products. You'll find most of the features of full-featured store builders, with a focus on making smaller online stores successful.

A checklist will help you start your store, making sure you've added a logo, chosen a theme, and created your products. To make things quicker, you can set default price, shipping, and other settings. Then, add a new product, and Big Cartel will fill in those extra details for you automatically. To get your store looking the way you want, you can choose from free, built-in themes, or customize your own with code.

Big Cartel is designed for smaller stores—and only lets you list up to 300 items, max—but gives you the same core selling features as other platforms in a simpler interface.

Big Cartel Pricing: Free Gold plan for stores with up to 5 products with core features; from $9.99/month Platinum plan for 25 products and full features.

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Big Cartel review .

See Big Cartel integrations on Zapier


Best for quickly building a full-featured, hosted online store with built-in payment processing

Shopify screenshot

What WordPress is to blogs, Shopify is to online stores for small businesses. It's a full-featured hosted eCommerce tool that powers a wide range of small brands' sites, with its own theme and app store to make your shop your own. And it integrates with Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest so you can sell products directly from those networks—and even let customers get order updates right inside Facebook Messenger.

Just like other eCommerce apps, you'll list products and manage orders in its app. You could sell solely on social networks with a cheap $9/month light plan, or go with a full plan for a complete store on your own Shopify site. Then, for extra features, the Shopify App Store includes tools to create loyalty programs, print nicely designed labels, and more. Shopify even includes a point-of-sale (POS) system to process sales at your real-world store, along with its own payment processing service that offers lower transaction fees as you upgrade to Shopify's more expensive plans.

And if you're struggling to come up with a great name for your brand, need a logo, want to see what your designs would look like on a shirt, or wonder how much your business could borrow, Shopify includes free tools to help you start or run your business, too.

Shopify Pricing: $29/month Basic plan for an online store with core features

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Shopify review .

See Shopify integrations on Zapier


Best for getting your products noticed with promotions and search integration

Volusion screenshot

One visit isn't enough. Ideally, customers would visit your store regularly to see your latest products and promotions. Volusion's built-in flash sale tool is a great way to keep people coming back.

Once you've added products to your store, jump over to the Marketing tab and select Deal of the Day. There, you can queue up deals for any days you want, add marketing copy, and set the sale price. Volusion will then promote that item on your store automatically. You can queue up email newsletters the same way, and offer a MyRewards program to customers to give points based on purchases.

You'll still need to get your store in front of new customers, and Volusion includes tools to help there, too. It can cross-list your products on eBay, Amazon, and a Facebook Store, and includes SEO tools to let your products show up as detailed product listings in Google search results complete with customer ratings and price info. And once that new customer visits your site, you can keep them coming back with rewards and promotions.

Volusion Pricing: From $15/month Mini plan for 100 products

Connect your Volusion store with hundreds of apps using Zapier's Vextras integration


Best for selling products in multiple stores at once

BigCommerce screenshot

Already selling stuff in an online marketplace, and want to also have your own eCommerce site? BigCommerce can add your existing product listings to your new site in minutes. Just set up your BigCommerce store, then you can import your product listings from eBay, Shopify, Volusion, Amazon, and other eCommerce platforms.

BigCommerce includes everything you need to run a successful store: over a hundred themes, live shipping price quotes, a point-of-sales interface to run a real-world store, and more. It then integrates with everything else you might use, connecting to popular accounting and support tools to manage your finances and customers.

Want to still sell stuff on Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Googe Products, and other marketplaces? BigCommerce can cross-list your products, maintaining your inventory and listings between all the places you're selling. You can add products to BigCommerce once, and they'll be listed everywhere you want to sell automatically, complete with your photos and product listings. Run as many stores as you want, from one app.

BigCommerce Pricing: From $29.95/month Standard plan for up to $50k/year in sales

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our BigCommerce review .

See BigCommerce integrations on Zapier


Best for following up with potential customers via email

3dcart screenshot

Most online store tools pull your product listings, orders, and landing pages together in one app, but 3dcart does even more. It also includes a detailed CRM that lists your customers' contact info, orders, product reviews, and even their ranking among your customer base.

You can organize your customers into lists, then send targeted email newsletters based on their preferences. Perhaps you could send one email to everyone who purchases one category of products and another to all customers who haven't bought anything in awhile. You can also build drip emails to follow up with customers who added items to their cart but didn't purchase, remind people when products are back in stock, or upsell related products to customers who did make a purchase. And you can reward purchases with points to build a loyal customer base.

Then, to manage orders, 3dcart can print shipping labels, process returns, and even integrate with shipping services to ship your products via Amazon or other services. Need help setting up your store? 3dcart also includes 24/7 phone and chat support.

3dcart Pricing: From $9.99/month Nano plan for 10 products

Connect your 3dcart store with hundreds of apps using Zapier's Vextras integration

Add a Store to an Existing Site

Already have your own site and just want to add a store to it? Some of the self-hosted store apps let you add a store with an extension or plugin, but let's start with tools that are even simpler and will easily blend in with your site's brand and design.

These tools are similar to the simple store tools we looked at above. The difference is, they don't create a store page separate from your current web pages. Instead, you'll embed their buttons and widgets into your existing pages to turn any blog or website into a store. They're the simplest way to build a store that looks exactly the way you want.


Best for adding simple checkout tools to any web page

SendOwl screenshot

Instead of building a full store in its SendOwl, you'll only add product pages on for each thing you want to sell, along with settings for shipping rates and business info.

You'll then get embed codes for Buy Now, Add to Cart, and View Cart buttons that you can add to any page on your existing blog or website. Just make pages on your blog or website for each thing you want to sell, then add the Buy Now or Add to Cart button code from SendOwl for the correct item to each page. Put the View Cart button code somewhere prominent on your site—perhaps in your site header or sidebar—and the shopping cart and payments screen will show up in a popover on your site whenever it's clicked. Customers will never know that your site isn't a "real" eCommerce site.

It's a surprisingly simple way to turn any website into a store, without switching to a new content management system. A full-featured eCommerce site could be worth the extra time and trouble for a larger store, but for smaller stores, SendOwl's buttons could be all you need.

SendOwl Pricing: From $9/month Basic plan for 10 products

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our SendOwl review .

See SendOwl integrations on Zapier


Best for embedding a full store into your existing site

Ecwid screenshot

Want to embed a full store into your site, instead of just adding product buttons? Ecwid is the tool for you.

You'll add product listings as on the other tools, and manage everything inside Ecwid—it's a full web store. The only thing you won't have to worry about is your site's theme, as Ecwid just blends into your existing site. You can publish your store directly to your Facebook page, or copy the embed code to add the store to your website or blog. The embedded store will include your products organized into categories, a search tool to look through products, and more—everything you'd expect in a full eCommerce site.

Want to sell products on the go? Ecwid's $99/month Unlimited plan also lets you use their white-label mobile app to turn your store into its own store app. That lets customers buy your products without visiting your website—and lets you use Ecwid as a point-of-sales system, too.

Ecwid Pricing: Free for up to 10 products; from $15/month Venture plan for 100 products and extra features

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Ecwid review .

See Ecwid integrations on Zapier


Best for adding a shopping cart to any website or blog

E-Junkie screenshot

With an interface reminiscent of the '90's, E-junkie isn't quite as modern as the other eCommerce apps. But if you want to build a store on any site—including a Medium blog or other site that won't let you add standard embed codes—it's the store builder for you.

You'll add your digital or physical product listings inside E-junkie, with options for item variations, thank-you emails, and inventory management. Then, you can copy embed codes for Add to Cart buttons, which will open a simple shopping cart popover on your site. For sites that don't let you use JavaScript code, you can copy button images and links to add to your page. When customers click those buttons, their E-junkie checkout cart will open in a separate window. It's a full shopping cart that works anywhere.

Then, to drive more visits to your store, E-junkie includes affiliate codes that your best customers can share on their own site. It also can add watermarks to PDF files, create software license keys, and manage subscriptions for a convenient way to sell anything you want on any site.

E-junkie Pricing: From $5/month for 10 products with core features

E-junkie Zapier integration coming soon; use Zapier's Webhooks integration to integrate with other apps for now

Run a Self-Hosted Store

Want the most powerful, full-featured eCommerce store you can have? A self-hosted store is the way to go. They're similar to the hosted store apps like Shopify, but let you run your store on your own server. You can design your own theme, tweak the store with plugins and extension, and even even dig into the store software's code and database if you want.

These tools are often free, though you'll need your own server and the skills to set up the software and keep it secure. For that extra investment, you'll get a fully customized store without any monthly service fees.


Best for building a detailed store inside WordPress

WooCommerce screenshot

If you already have a WordPress blog or site—or have used WordPress in the past and know your way around it—WooCommerce is the best way to add a fully customizable store to your site. Just install the WooCommerce plugin as you would any other WordPress plugin, and you'll get a new section on your site for products and orders.

The Products listings in WooCommerce work much like any other post on your WordPress blog—only with extra fields for product description, pricing, sizes, and more. They'll show up on your site's new store page, where visitors can search through products, sort them by categories and tags, and add them to their shopping cart. You'll then manage their orders inside WordPress, with a similar page that this time shows private info about their purchases.

Need more features on your store? WooCommerce has its own extensions, which let you add your favorite payment services, integrations, and other features to your store. Or, check the standard WordPress plugins page—chances are you'll find a tool that fits your needs, even if it isn't specifically designed for stores.

WooCommerce Pricing: Free for core features with on a self-hosted WordPress site; extensions from $49 each purchased separately

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our WooCommerce review .

See WooCommerce integrations on Zapier


Best for building a self-hosted store on your own

Magento screenshot

When you want to run a store on your own server, without having to manage blog-focused features, Magento is the app to use. It's an eCommerce tool that includes the main features you need to run a store and control everything about it.

You'll start out with core product pages and order management tools that show reports on your sales volumes. Then, Magento's scheduling tools let you automate tasks so your store isn't so hard to run. For example, you can schedule promotions, change your site's theme on specific dates, and send email newsletters right from your site. Its marketing tools are also handy, with SEO options to redirect old product links to new pages and show promotions to customers based on what they've ordered.

Magento itself is focused on the core tools you need to sell stuff. For more, the Magento Marketplace likely has what you're looking for, with extensions to add a blog to your store, create barcodes, let customers comparison price, and more. It's a great way to build a store with exactly the features you need.

Magento Pricing: Free community edition; paid Enterprise edition with dedicated support available

For a deeper look at features and pricing, see our Magento review .

See Magento integrations on Zapier


Best for building a self-hosted store for selling in-person or on eBay

X-Cart screenshot

Want a self-hosted eCommerce site that can also help you sell stuff in-person or cross-list your products on eBay? X-Cart has that and more, with its advanced eCommerce tools.

Ideally, you'll sell products to the same customer more than once. X-Cart lets your customers create accounts when they first order a product and then login with a click using their social network account (available on X-Cart paid editions). You can offer promotions based on how many items customers have ordered, or include wholesale pricing for store members who purchase over a set number of that item. X-Cart integrates with a wide range of payment and shipping services to calculate total cost and route customers to the best payment service for their location.

If you want to sell products in a real-world store too, X-Cart's mobile interface works with PayPal Here, so you can process in-person orders and swipe credit cards on your phone. It can also import and sync product listings with eBay, all while managing your listings and inventory right from your own X-Cart install.

X-Cart Pricing: Free to build a self-hosted store with core features; from $495 one-time purchase Business edition for product variants, social media sign-in, and more.


Best for starting a free hosted or self-hosted store with the same software

Prestashop screenshot

Perhaps you want to host your own store someday, but for now would rather start without needing a server. PrestaShop is the eCommerce tool for you. Similar to WordPress, where you can start a free blog on or install WordPress software on your own server, PrestaShop lets you use the same tools in their cloud or on your own. Either way, it's still free.

You can start your store with all of PrestaShop's core features, listing products with popovers so customers can quickly browse through everything you're selling without having to visit multiple product pages. Other features include filtered search and custom pages, email marketing to keep customers coming back, and detailed analytics about how each part of your store is performing. PrestaShop even lets you run multiple stores from the same admin account.

For everything else, you can buy dozens of modules and hundreds of themes to customize your store or buy training and support services to help you get the most out of your store. And if you want to move to a self-hosted PrestaShop store, you can install PrestaShop on your server, export your products and order info, and import them into the new site. It'll be easier than starting over from scratch.

PrestaShop Pricing: Free Cloud or self-hosted store; paid Addons from $20+ each.


Best for coding your own product listings

Foxycart screenshot

Still haven't found the eCommerce app that has everything you need for your store? Perhaps you want something that will let you design and code all of your store's site, using simple code snippets to add products to your cart. Foxycart is the tool for that.

Instead of managing product listings inside Foxycart, you'll just list your store's default settings for tax, shipping, language, and more inside the app. Add categories for your product types along with their default weight, and set up confirmation email settings for each category. Then, on your site, you can code your product listing pages as normal, and add a Foxycart button including the product name, price, variation and more encoded in a link like

Add the cart and checkout snippets to your site, and Foxycart will handle all of the transaction details, automatically calculating shipping and tax, as well as sending out confirmation emails. It handles the hard part of building and running a store while giving you the tools to code your online shop the same way you built the rest of your site. It's an advanced app—and Foxycart's own onboarding suggests using another tool if you're not a developer—but with a bit of coding, you'll be able to build the most customized store possible.

Foxycart Pricing: From $20/month plus 15¢ per sale Standard plan for full features, with first 100 sales per month included

Use Foxycart's data feeds and API with Zapier's Webhooks integration or Developer Platform to connect your sales to hundreds of apps

The Other Tools You'll Need for a Store

Tools to print labels, manage finances, and more will help you run your store more efficiently

An eCommerce app gets you a website for your store, along with tools to list your products, log inventory, and manage orders. That alone isn't all you'll need for a store.

Most importantly, you'll also need a payment processing service to accept credit card and other payments through your store. Some of the apps above include their own payment services; with the rest, you'll need to choose between PayPal, Stripe, Braintree, and other services. Be sure to check out our comparison of the best payment processing services to help you decide.

Then, you may want a tool to help you ship products and find the best rates on postage. Logistics tools like ShipStation or Shipwire can help, letting you print shipping labels in bulk or use logistics services and Amazon to store and ship products automatically. Or you could use Zapier integrations with your eCommerce app to print invoices automatically with Google Cloud Print.

You'll also need to market and support your products. Zapier's free eBooks can help there, with guides to email marketing and customer support with the tools and tricks you need. And if you need to brush up on your spreadsheet skills to manage inventory and accounting, Zapier's Ultimate Guide to Google Sheets is the crash course for you.

Starting an online store doesn't have to be that hard. With most of these tools, you can get the first version of your store online in an afternoon at most—and perhaps in just a half hour if you're only listing a few products.

Then comes the hard work of promoting your products, supporting your customers, and running the store. That's where your main focus should be—and each of these apps let you worry more about your products and your customers than the store software you're selling them with.

But first, you need to decide how you'd like to get paid. PayPal's an easy and obvious choice, but they're far from the only one. So, in the next chapter, we'll look at the best credit card processing services, and see what each one offers for your business.

And then, in chapter 9, we'll come back to your store and see how to successfully juggle your orders, keep your site up-to-date, and build automated workflows to help you do more in less time.

Go to Chapter 8!

Published October 20, 2016

Written by Matthew Guay.

Image Credits: Online Store photo by Negative Space.


Take the Work out of Workflow

Zapier is the easiest way to automate powerful workflows with more than 1,500 apps.