BigCommerce Review : The only review you need to read
I had the privilege of working on one of the best ecommerce platforms for one of the best ecommerce players in the world. If ever I get a chance to restart my career as an Ecommerce consultant I would suggest BigCommerce to both enterprise and business owners from day one.
Free 15 day trial without any credit card, dead easy UI, good combo of basic and advanced features, built in marketing functionality and detailed video tutorial and support makes BigCommerce one of most popular ecommerce platforms. This BigCommerce review is an attempt to throw light on the good and bad aspects of the software.
The first time I signed up for BigCommerce free trial (credit card not required) three things hit me straight.
- I knew what to do next.
- I was confident of setting up a decent store up and running within 2 hours.
- There is no need to suggest any other ecommerce software to my clients.
15 Stand Out BigCommerce features
There are plethora of BigCommerce features but here are few key features which makes BigCommerce what it is and help it have an edge over its competitors.
Instant Set Up
BigCommerce is one of the few ecommerce software vendors who don’t ask a credit card for a free 15 day trial. Sign up was quick and my control panel and web store links were mailed to me instantly up on sign up. Like most ecommerce software vendor’s setup is free making it easy for the non technical business owners. Quick emails follow up guiding you through a set of video tutorials in setting up your online store. Total time I took for the entire process was 60 seconds.
Easy to use dashboard
The first time I logged in to Magento commerce I was bamboozled with plethora of options the software presented up front. The back end looked daunting and there wasn’t a clue on where and how to get started. This is unlike the case with BigCommerce. The moment you login to the dashboard you are welcomed with a 4 minute “How to get started video?” Run through the 7 steps mentioned and you will be up and running with a good decent store within 30 minutes. Order Management, Customer Relationship management, setting automated inventory control, adding, delete, editing web pages, marketing and analytics are all accessible through the dashboard.
Flexible Pricing structure
You may choose from 5 different BigCommerce plans depending upon the size of your online store. If you are a small retailer with only few products you intend to sell online the Bronze and Silver plans are ideal. For enterprise venture platinum and diamond plans are perfect as you will have an option to upload unlimited products. The pricing starts at $24.95/month and you may upgrade your plan anytime without much hassle.
Automatic Inventory Control
BigCommerce automated inventory control system keeps track of orders and updates current stock levels as and when products are purchased. You can also set a minimum threshold so that you get a notification that the product is running out of stock. So you have no excuse to display that ugly out of stock message to your customers again.
Import products and SKUs
The import functionality in BigCommerce is first of its kind and is suited for small retailers who don’t find the time to work around with the dashboard. By creating and uploading a simple excel file with columns listing product name, product SKU, description, image URL and price you can add or edit multiple products at a time.
Drag and Drop Design functionality
This one is a killer. You can open your store front in design mode and simply around with widgets by dragging them around the site. All design elements including the template files can be accessed using the design section available on top of dashboard.
Integration of Google analytics for ecommerce sites and getting insights from the collected may seem scary to beginners. This issue is taken care by BigCommerce statistics segment. Get customer stats, product stats and measure how your store is performing on overall right from your dashboard. The software lists key insights like top selling products, conversion rates, top 20 customers, best and worst performing keywords and average order value. So just the valuable data is provided and the crap is cut out. A marketer’s delight!!!
Foolproof fraud protection
BigCommerce provides a free SSL certificate with all plans. You may also buy a third party SSL certificate or buy one from BigCommerce itself. Overall there is no issue with when it comes to security as one of the most advanced infrastructures is employed.
Sell on FaceBook and EBay
As an independent online vendor getting the initial boost in sales could be difficult especially in this age of cut throat competition. The sell on FaceBook and eBay feature provided by BigCommerce helps you put your products for sale in front of millions of online customers within few clicks. Also you may export your products catalog to various shopping comparison sites like NextTag, Beso and Shopping.com within 2 clicks from dashboard.
Multi Channel Marketing features
Multi channel marketing reflects a brand’s trust, presence and authority. Various marketing channels like affiliate marketing, email marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Google and Yahoo Advertising, creation of coupon codes and setting discount rules happen in a jiffy.
Integrations and APIs
BigCommerce integrates with over 110 third party payment gateways, shipping services, order management tools, marketing suites, email marketing platforms, live chat offerings, analytics platforms and mobile devices. All integration happens with a click of a button so you save a month of developer work!!!
Zero transaction fees
Unlike Shopify and few other ecommerce software platforms, BigCommerce has zero transaction fees on all its plans. Whether you sign up for a bronze plan or diamond BigCommerce won’t charge a dime for transactions.
Automatic Mobile site setup
Mobile Commerce is the next big thing and not having a mobile site of your site is nothing but a lost opportunity. When you select a theme for your online store BigCommerce automatically creates a mobile version of the site which fits in well with popular mobile internet devices like iPad, iPhone, Android and other popular mobile OS platforms.
Support and Knowledge base
One good thing about BigCommerce I am ready to pay an extra dollar for is the huge database of helpful articles and video tutorials. BigCommerce support has about 70 videos to help you automate inventory and email, design store, marketing, manage products, talking backup and other crucial things you come across while building your dream online store.
Built in Customer relationship manager
As a retailer one may have collected a huge database of customer contacts and email IDs over the years. Import those details to BigCommerce using the customer import function so that your past customers are included in your next promotional email. Understand your customers better by grouping them based on age, gender and location using the view customers and customer groups segment. Not all ecommerce platforms have this functionality and this is what makes BigCommerce a cut above the rest.
Content delivery network often termed as CDN is a web performance technology which boosts up speed. Bigcommerce CDN basically copies all of the photos and other files from Bigcommerce store to over 20 different data centers around the world. Once copied the files are served from the closest data center hence reducing speed and performance of your online store.
With Bigcommerce order sharing your customers have an option to publish their purchase of their product on social networks like FaceBook and Twitter. This in turn increases sales as people are more inclined to purchasing a product if they are bought or recommended by their friends.
This one is a killer. Impossible as it may sound but it is true that Bigcommerce is one of the only few ecommerce hosting providers which give unlimited bandwidth to all its users irrelevant of the plan they have chosen.
5 Reasons I chose BigCommerce
- Flat learning curve – I didn’t care to look in to the video resources and tutorials for the first 30 minutes after logging in.
- Easy to Design and Develop – Thanks to 50+ readymade awesome templates and the cool design functionality you will never need to shell out money over a developer.
- Huge knowledge base and support – BigCommerce Blog, support center, video tutorials and online chat and phone support is great place to look for in case you are stuck. This isn’t the case with Magento and few other software platforms.
- Concrete functionality – When it comes to functionality I see every aspect which an ecommerce site must have. Overall functionality is slightly inclined towards offline retailers than enterprises. But if you see the whole picture both retailers and enterprise owners can have a slice out of this cake.
- Free Trial without a credit card – You will know it when you try it. Go and check the BigCommerce awesomeness by signing up for a 15 day free trial. Very few vendors give you this option.
2 Ways BigCommerce could be still better
- More Built-in features – Agree that BigCommerce has many integrated plugins but many of them need paid access. When a customer buys a software he or she expects to have minimal extra costs. Basic features like free live chat software and dropshipping must and should be integrated in to the software and should be given away for free. I hope this feature will be built-in in the next version of BigCommerce.
- No Affiliate Marketing Feature – No in built affiliate software. Affiliate marketing is a key marketing channel for many online retailers and that is sadly been left out in Bigcommerce.
Real customer reviews
Missouri Medical Supplies tripled their profits in just 5 months
“the 52 clothing” doubled their traffic after shifting to BigCommerce
You will know it when you use it –> Try BigCommerce free for 15 days and once you get a feel of the software you will understand what I am saying. As far as my experience goes I have tried all the top ecommerce platforms (Shopify, Magento, Volusion and 3Dcart) but there is no software currently in the market which has both a flat learning curve and robust functionality.
If you are an independent retailer or planning to start or already own a small or medium level enterprise then BigCommerce is perfect for you. Else open source ecommerce software like Magento is the way to go.BigCommerce Review : The only review you need to read,