An ecommerce platform is integral to running an online store. Having a dedicated ecommerce platform will give you the essential features needed to operate your online store with more convenience.
There are many services that you could choose to host and build your online store. Bluehost is a hosting provider that’s commonly used to host WordPress sites. You can use Bluehost to build an online store for your WordPress website. You can also use it to search domain names and check if it’s available for purchase. Bluehost uses WooCommerce to integrate ecommerce features for turning a WordPress website into an online store.
It’s possible to run an online store with web hosting platforms like Bluehost but it’s advisable to choose a hosting platform that’s dedicated to ecommerce. Shopify is an ecommerce platform that offers many dedicated tools to build an online store. Shopify has a range of point of sale features that will make it easy for you to conduct sales on your online store.
Why You Should Choose A Dedicated Ecommerce Platform
Hosting: Before you start running your online store, you have to arrange for website hosting. If you want to turn your WordPress site into an ecommerce store, you should keep in mind that the ecommerce features are only available for WordPress.org sites. These .org sites are self-hosted, which means you will have to arrange for a third-party hosting service like Bluehost. If you do this, you will have to pay a certain fee to have your ecommerce store be hosted by Bluehost.
If your online store isn’t built on WordPress, you should consider getting a Shopify plan to manage your online store. All Shopify plans, including the cheapest one, comes with free hosting. Shopify also provides unlimited bandwidth, so you won’t be charged extra when there’s increased traffic on your store.
Shopify Is Cheaper: If you choose to host your online store with BlueHost, you might have to use WooCommerce as your ecommerce platform. This is much costlier because even though WooCommerce is free, you will have to purchase separate plugins to add usual ecommerce features. It will cost you $79 for the UPS shipping feature, $79 for credit card payment with Checkout feature, and $49 for the dropshipping add-on.
The Shopify Lite plan costs just $9 per month and it includes all these essential features and more.
Automatic Maintenance: If you’re using BlueHost to manage your online store, you will have to manually perform all the backups. These backups may get permanently deleted if your payment for the website hosting fails or your account expires.
If you’re hosting the online store with Shopify, it will automatically perform backups for you. These will be saved as a CSV file which you can export from the Shopify admin page, to back up the store information.
You can use the CSV files to back up the following kinds of store information:
- Customer Details
- Gift Card Codes
- Discount Codes
Shopify will also let you create a backup of the theme of your online store from the Shopify admin page.
Shopify also updates your website automatically so you can have all the latest improvements and features without having to do it manually.
Website Building: You can use Shopify to create a website that has the layout, subpages, and user interface focused on ecommerce. You can use Shopify’s free brand name generator to find a suitable name for your store or check the availability of a particular name. You can also use Shopify’s domain name generator to search domain names. The brand name generator will also automatically suggest a name for your online store. It will do this based on the word or phrase that you think best describes your business.
After you have a name, you can use Shopify’s free site builder to browse through different themes for your online store. These themes may be free or paid and they’re also customizable. You can use Burst to get royalty-free images for your online store and make it look attractive. The best part is that these themes are compatible with both desktop and mobile.
Shopify has ready-made themes for different types of businesses
If you’re using BlueHost, you can use Weebly to build a website for desktop and use goMobi to build one for mobile. Both of them have an easy-to-use drag and drop feature that will make it simple to build an online store. You can use BlueHost to search domain names and check their availability.
If you want to make your online store a success, you should use the right tools to build a website that’s cost-effective and convenient to manage.