Explore the Best E-commerce Platforms for Small Business

Sneha Hull | January 17, 2022 | 74 views

E-commerce Platforms for Small Business
The internet era has resulted in a sea of change in the purchasing and selling process. The pandemic shifted everything online and spawned E-commerce platforms for the selling and purchase of virtually everything. During the coronavirus crisis, small enterprises integrated the E-commerce platform into their company operations. Thus, a trend of small business online shopping emerged. This blog highlights the best E-commerce platform for small businesses to reach and elevate your business.

“E-commerce isn’t the cherry on the cake, it’s the new cake”

- Jean-Paul Ago CEO L’Oreal

Statista projects worldwide, retail E-commerce sales to reach 4.28 trillion dollars in 2020 and 5.4 trillion dollars in 2022. Additionally, by 2040, studies predict that internet sales will account for around 95% of all transactions. (Cofes)

The growing need for business-to-business (B2B) services has boosted the growth of B2B E-commerce, which comprises online sales and purchases between two firms. Considering the estimates provided by a few leading statistics, you simply cannot afford to overlook investing in this rapidly increasing section of the organization. Let us briefly review the benefits of B2B E-commerce for small businesses and the components that contribute to the success of an E-commerce platform.

Benefits of B2B E-commerce for Small Businesses

Before you get into picking the correct E-commerce platform for small businesses, have a look at the perks. Compelling benefits have driven many small owners to create an online shop for small businesses.

Let us have a glance at the several benefits of an online shop for small businesses.
  • Increased customer acquisition
  • Reduced operational costs
  • Increased revenue
  • Online presence
  • Increased marketing ROI
  • Eased tracking of a product online

An online shop saves time and energy, and with a single click or tap of the finger, you may offer your products and services to a large audience. It levels the playing field for small-medium-businesses (SMBs) and enables them to acquire clients on a global scale. Consequently, E-commerce platforms are critical for establishing your online store.

However, consider these factors before selecting the right E-commerce platform and setting an online shop for small businesses.  A platform should allow for the following:
  • Facilitating and fostering positive customer relationships
  • Allowing integration of an easy-to-use contact system
  • Utilization of an efficient transaction-processing mechanism
  • Ensuring the E-commerce platform's speed and security
  • Digital downloads

The global B2B E-commerce business was valued USD 6.64 trillion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.7 percent from 2021 to 2028. (Big Commerce)

Additionally, a smart E-commerce platform that is well-suited for your business-to-business store gives you a variety of features, market tools, and statistics that may help you increase your customer conversion rate and sales.

Now that you know the benefits of E-commerce and the factors to consider while selecting the best E-commerce platform for small businesses, let us jump to the meat of the blog.

Top B2B E-commerce Platforms for Small Businesses


Shopify

“E-commerce is not an industry; E-commerce is a tactic.”

– Tobias Lütke, CEO and founder of Shopify

Shopify is a software as a service (SaaS) platform that enables businesses to create online E-commerce stores. Shopify specializes in developing, hosting, operating and managing websites in the E-commerce market. It is one of the most extensively used multi-channel content management systems and the finest of E-commerce platforms for B2B firms, with a high percentage of small- and medium-sized businesses utilizing it.

Numerous market leaders, including FitBit, Penguin Books, Hyatt Hotel Corporation, RedBull, Budweiser, The New York Times and Pepsi, rely on Shopify to manage their E-commerce operations. As a cloud-based service, Shopify eliminates the need to deploy any website servers.

Shopify offers numerous benefits to its users:
  • Provides several built-in tools and features that enable businesses to tailor their website to their individual needs
  • Allows users to create, host and manage impeccably designed websites that are suited for smartphones
  • Is an extremely scalable E-commerce platform
  • The userinterface (UI) is simple to use

Shopify is one of the best E-commerce platforms for small businesses due to its automation and customization capabilities. However, the majority of this app's sophisticated capabilities are available for an extra cost. The trial is completely free and is recommended for businesses with a significant number of transactions. In spite of this, it remains one of the best E-commerce platforms for startups.

However, let’s also take a look at the drawbacks of Shopify:
  • Shopify's Content Management System (or CMS) does not support the publication of rich content such as blogs or vlogs
  • Fees can accumulate rapidly

Wix

Wix is popular as a free website builder, and it also offers one of the best E-commerce platforms for small businesses. This platform is primarily for entrepreneurs and offers a free trial. Wix empowers you to have complete creative control over your website. Additionally, Wix offers a slew of features, including a drag-and-drop shop builder, professional store templates, a variety of secure payment choices, the ability to compute global tax and shipping on the back end and access to inventory management.

Pros:
  • Massive template collection
  • Intuitive drag-and-drop interface
  • Market your site easily
  • Good site speed
  • Large selection of apps and plugins

Cons:
  • Inability to select a fresh template upon publication
  • Tracking and analytics are only available with a premium plan
  • Your website cannot be transferred

Magento

Magento is an all-in-one solution that is popular for both business-to-consumer (B2C) and B2B. It's quite professional and completely free. Magento is an open-source platform. Its customization capabilities, freedom to choose a hosting provider, responsive mobile design, SEO friendliness, and third-party connectors set it apart from other E-commerce platforms. Therefore, it is among the best E-commerce platforms for small businesses.

The firm offers enterprise-level solutions that enable you to create a seamless, omnichannel experience. Additionally, omnichannel is the future of retail, which is why a large number of businesses choose Magento E-commerce for their website.

Magento has been named one of Techliance's top ten E-commerce systems for 2021. (Magestore)

However, along with its advantages and promising features, it also carries a few disadvantages:
  • This process is more consuming than customizing other E-commerce platforms
  • Magento site creation demands a significant time and expertise commitment
  • Has a massive and intricate structure
  • You require self-management of your hosting and payment gateways

WooCommerce

WooCommerce is not an E-commerce platform; rather, it is a built-in WordPress plugin. If you already have a WordPress website, once installed, this plugin may effortlessly transform it into an online store. It is easily accessible due to its foundation in one of the most popular content management systems.

Not only is WooCommerce free, but it is also open source. It is completely configurable and designed for mobile use. WooCommerce is a very popular, custom E-commerce platform for small businesses that are already using WordPress. The open-source platform's extension shop features approximately 300 official extensions covering payment processing, shipping, marketing and accounting.

Pros:
  • Excellent scalability and adaptability
  • WooCommerce integrates with warehouse management and point-of-sale systems
  • Numerous customizability possibilities
  • Increased security

Cons:
  • WordPress-specific; cannot be utilized on non-WordPress-hosted websites
  • Certain extensions may require payment in order for your site to run at maximum capacity, resulting in hidden fees

Frequently Asked Questions:


Which E-commerce platform is best for startup?

The best E-commerce platforms for any startup would be the following:
  • Shopify
  • Wix
  • WooCommerce
  • SquareSpace
  • BigCommerce

What are the best E-commerce platforms for a small business?

All E-commerce platforms have their advantages as well as disadvantages. However, Shopify and WooCommerce are the most commonly used E-commerce platforms for small businesses.

What are the three types of E-commerce?

There are three main categories of E-commerce in use: business-to-business (B2B, e.g. Shopify, Alibaba), business-to-consumer (B2C, e.g. Amazon, Walmart), and consumer-to-consumer (C2C, e.g. eBay).

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Rich Media

Rich Media is an award-winning Toronto based digital agency producing many of North America's leading interactive projects. Our services include web sites, mobile, apps, social marketing, video, animation, print, and games.

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Carbon-neutral delivery cuts shipping costs for Canadian small businesses Sendle reduces the environmental impact of shipping by tapping existing shipping providers and filling their vehicles to ensure every trip is as efficient as possible. With this model, Sendle helps its shipping partners make their routes more efficient and profitable, and in turn, passes that savings along to Sendle customers. For example, a small business using Sendle can ship a three-kilogram package from Toronto to Vancouver for $13 – 42% less than if they used Canada Post or they can ship a one-kilogram parcel within Toronto for 30% less than Canada Post. To account for the remaining carbon emissions, Sendle purchases carbon offsets to address the impact of every Sendle parcel sent. Through its partner South Pole, Sendle invests in highly credible environmental projects around the world – including Darkwoods Forest Conservation in British Columbia – that account for carbon by protecting and managing forests and other vital ecosystems. Each year, customers select the project they want Sendle to support on their behalf. No trip to the Post Office requiredSendle handles the end-to-end journey of every parcel shipped, offering dedicated customer service by real people, as well as a powerful online dashboard where customers can track their deliveries, reschedule deliveries, and more. Using Sendle, Canadian small businesses can send a parcel in three easy steps: Sign up for free online (takes less than 30 seconds) Purchase a label and request that Sendle pick up from their front door Track their parcel’s progress from their Sendle Dashboard Small businesses in Canada are long overdue for a parcel delivery option designed for them – one that helps them to serve rising customer expectations in the age of eCommerce. At a time when inflation is high and costs are rising, Sendle’s entry into the Canadian market puts an end to what’s largely been a monopoly in shipping with a solution that’s more affordable, reliable, and more flexible to suit the needs of small businesses in Canada,” says James Chin Moody, CEO and co-founder of Sendle. “We have also been 100% carbon neutral since the day we launched in Australia in late 2014. To date, Sendle has offset the impact of 34 billion kilometres of parcel delivery. We are not only bringing Canadians a 100% carbon neutral way to ship at no extra cost, we are also putting pressure on the Canadian shipping industry to do better on this front, too. About the Survey An online survey of 1509 Canadians was completed between August 26-28, 2022 using Leger’s online panel. No margin of error can be associated with a non-probability sample (i.e., a web panel in this case). For comparative purposes, though, a probability sample of 1509 respondents would have a margin of error of ±2.5%, 19 times out of 20. About Sendle Sendle is the first shipping carrier specifically designed to serve the needs of small eCommerce businesses. Sendle levels the playing field for small businesses by offering affordable, flat-rate shipping, with no hidden fees, subscriptions, or warehousing required. Merchants simply purchase a label and schedule a pickup from Sendle, and their package is picked up from their front door. Sendle is the first 100% carbon neutral shipping carrier in Australia, the US, and Canada, and a Certified B Corporation. The company was launched in Australia in 2014 and has headquarters in Sydney, Australia, Seattle, Washington, and Toronto, Canada.

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FINANCE, SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE

Deltek Announces Newest Program - Deltek Pro™ Bookkeepers - To Help Small Businesses Find Bookkeeping Professionals with Industry and Deltek Solution

Deltek | September 23, 2022

Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, has introduced a new partner program – Deltek Pro Bookkeepers – designed to make it easier for small businesses to find trusted accounting professionals experienced in their firm's needs, who also have expert knowledge of Deltek solutions. Initially launched for small government contractors, Deltek Pro Bookkeepers helps businesses maximize the value of Deltek Costpoint by managing back-office operations faster, more accurately, more cost effectively and within compliance.Deltek identified the additional challenges and needs of its small business customers – unlike midsized and large enterprises, a small business's accounting is typically managed by a small staff with limited resources. The Deltek Pro Bookkeepers partner program helps solve that issue by connecting Deltek Costpoint customers with expert bookkeepers in their industry. "When a smaller firm is ready to graduate from QuickBooks® or similar generic accounting systems to a purpose-built ERP solution like Deltek, the firm may need support running their back-office functions. With Deltek Pro Bookkeepers, Deltek is helping small businesses connect the advisors that know our solutions the best, so customers will get experienced support from experts in their industry who are also experts in their ERP and accounting solutions. Firms will not only accelerate the time to value with their Deltek solution, but also meet their business goals faster,Deltek Pro Bookkeepers will be a game changer for small businesses using Costpoint." Pete Mann, SVP of Corporate Development & Product Alliances at Deltek Deltek Pro Bookkeepers are trained professionals that not only understand Deltek solutions, but also understand small businesses and meeting the needs of the government contracting industry. Deltek Partners Premier Consulting & Integration (PCI), Redstone Government Consulting and CRI are currently participating in the Deltek Pro Bookkeepers program, with additional Deltek Pros anticipated to join in the coming months and years. Firms that take advantage of the services offered through Deltek Pro Bookkeepers will get access to services including journal entry, time & expense processing, accounts payable, month-end close, reporting, and more. While Deltek Pro Bookkeepers has launched for Costpoint customers, more Deltek Pros™ services for other Deltek solutions are planned to launch in 2023. About Deltek Better software means better projects. Deltek is the leading global provider of enterprise software and information solutions for project-based businesses. More than 30,000 organizations and millions of users in over 80 countries around the world rely on Deltek for superior levels of project intelligence, management, and collaboration. Our industry-focused expertise powers project success by helping firms achieve performance that maximizes productivity and revenue

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TECHNOLOGY, SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE

CyberCatch and Arizona Small Business Association Announce Partnership to Help Small Businesses in Arizona Mitigate Cyber Risk

CyberCatch | September 22, 2022

CyberCatch, today, jointly announced with the Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA), a strategic partnership to enable Arizona's small businesses to quickly and easily implement necessary cyber security controls for digital success.According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are more than 590,000 small businesses (those with fewer than 500 employees) in Arizona, and these businesses employ nearly 43.5% of the state's private workforce. Small businesses are the growth engine of Arizona's economy, and this partnership provides a valuable tool for continued success,said Debbie Hann, Chief Operating Officer, ASBA. We are delighted to partner with CyberCatch to keep Arizona's small businesses one step ahead of cyber threats, so they can continue to grow and succeed digitally. Nearly all small businesses are digital these days, and need to stay proactive, said Hann.ASBA is pleased to take a leadership position with this program and announce a new ASBA membership benefit in the form of a subscription to CyberCatch, at a discount. CyberCatch's patented, innovative, cybersecurity Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution is specifically designed for small businesses and enables quick and easy implementation of all necessary controls for continuous cyber security. The SaaS solution automatically and continuously tests cyber security controls to detect security holes for prompt remediation so attackers cannot exploit and ensures ongoing compliance and cyber risk mitigation. "CyberCatch is a one-stop-shop for small businesses. We are honored to partner with ASBA. Our compliments to ASBA for their foresight and forward thinking to recognize cyber risk as a key threat to small businesses in Arizona and to partner with us to craft a valuable and timely solution for their members and prospective members to assure their continued success." Sai Huda, founder, chairman and CEO, CyberCatch. The root cause of data thefts and ransomware is security holes which derive from missing or ineffective cybersecurity controls that the small business is unaware of," said Huda. "Small businesses have limited resources and generally don't know what cyber security controls to implement or how to implement them in order to be secure from cyber threats, and now must comply with new requirements such as Zero Trust. ASBA and CyberCatch aim to fill those gaps in small business knowledge, with this innovative new partnership. This member benefit gives small businesses immediate savings and continual digital compliance and security. To learn more about this benefit, visit website. About Arizona Small Business Association The Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) was founded in 1973 and serves as the collective voice of small businesses in Arizona by driving a better environment for all of us to do business. Today, ASBA is focused on delivering statewide education, mentoring, networking, and advocacy programs, providing innovative entrepreneurs with the resources necessary to grow and evolve in an ever-changing marketplace. For more information, visit website. About CyberCatch CyberCatch is a unique, patented cybersecurity Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) company that protects small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) from cyberattacks by focusing on the root cause why SMBs fall victim: security holes. It provides an innovative cloud-based SaaS platform coupled with deep subject matter expertise to help SMBs implement just the right type and amount of cybersecurity controls. The platform then performs automated testing of controls from three dimensions: outside-in, inside-out and social engineering. It generates the Cyber Breach Score to continuously measure cyber risk and finds security holes and guides the SMB to fix them promptly, so attackers can't exploit any missing or broken controls to break in and steal data or infect ransomware. CyberCatch's continuous value proposition:

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