Tag Archives: Shopify

Cosmetics eCommerce 5 Platforms For Website Development
COSMETICS ECOMMERCE: 5 PLATFORMS FOR WEBSITE DEVELOPMENT

Cosmetics eCommerce is currently developing into a fresh and promising sales channel for companies in addition to the traditional sales channel. Businesses must work hard to sustain and achieve breakthrough growth through eCommerce platforms, though.

As a result, numerous cosmetics companies started developing online cosmetics business websites and found surprising success, such as Kylie Cosmetics, Hasaki, and Guardian,…

These websites’ success can be attributed to their early selection of an adequate and suitable eCommerce platform. Which platforms are appropriate for the cosmetics industry, then?

Salesforce Commerce Cloud

Salesforce Commerce Cloud (SFCC) is a highly flexible SaaS eCommerce platform that allows companies to offer the best B2B and B2C shopping experiences. Moreover, Salesforce gives Commerce Cloud access to Einstein AI to further enhance this system’s intelligence.

Top cosmetic brands currently using Salesforce Commerce Cloud to deploy eCommerce include L’Occitane, Lancôme, Loreal, Nars, Neutrogena, NYX Cosmetics, and Shiseido,…

Cosmetics eCommerce 5 Platforms For Website Development
Salesforce commerce cloud

Pros:

  • SFCC offers a flexible and scalable hosting infrastructure as a cloud-based SaaS platform, and this vendor will be in charge of configuration, updates, maintenance, security, etc., helping users save time and money in these areas.
  • Since SFCC is practically a ready-made solution, businesses only need to express their ideas, and SFCC’s IT team will develop them in a matter of weeks.
  • The amazingly functional system supports cosmetic eCommerce businesses by allowing customers to select product sizes, purchase items in sets, take advantage of shock deals and flash sales, and receive new customer discounts and loyalty points.
  • Unlike other SaaS platforms, SFCC scales and manages traffic spikes for sales seasons and other unplanned events with ease.
  • Synchronizing sales channels, reaching, and serving clients across many channels are made possible by omnichannel solutions for the cosmetics industry.

Cons:

  • Developers and businesses are required extensive SFCC understanding.
  • SFCC charges users on a revenue-based model. Depending on the selected plan package, customers will pay 1 or 2% GMV (Gross Merchandise Value) to preserve website ownership. This means that the higher the revenue, the more expenses must be paid to SFCC.
  • Limited integration with 3rd party services.

=> SFCC is suitable for B2C and B2B cosmetic businesses.

Magento

Magento is a popular open-source commerce platform in the field of eCommerce, with nearly 200,000 websites in use. Currently, Magento has 2 versions: Magento Open Source (free), and Magento Commerce (paid).

Cosmetic eCommerce websites built successfully on the Magento platform with high brand awareness include Laneige, Sigma Beauty, and Hasaki,…

Cosmetics eCommerce 5 Platforms For Website Development
Magento

Pros:

  • Many cosmetics themes from the global developer community and Magento website developers so businesses can use existing themes which easy to customize or use self-designed themes.
  • Functional systems from basic to advanced, specialized for the cosmetic industry such as choosing product size, buying in sets, exclusive deals, product suggestions, viewed products, member incentives, etc.
  • Due to its comprehensive customization options, Magento enables businesses to fully own, control, and customize the source code, facilitating the efficient operation of systems. Moreover, Magento may be customized to fit the eCommerce requirements of enterprises of various sizes.
  • Highly scalable, beneficial for future system expansion, and featuring multiple sites, stores, languages, and currencies.
  • Because Magento is a complete eCommerce system, it can guarantee smooth operation and minimize potential dangers from data systems and transaction processes, resulting in high security. As a result, the reputation of the website, system safety, and user rights are all improved.
  • There is a huge skilled Magento developer community present worldwide, ready to help with technical issues as well as provide assistance in creating eCommerce solutions appropriate for each business model.

Cons: 

  • There is no repository of themes from Magento to support businesses.
  • Implementation typically takes three to six months, but it might take up to a year due to a sophisticated functioning system.
  • Although the platform is free to use, the cost of implementing eCommerce with Magento is quite high, about $50,000-$100,000 depending on the complexity of the project.

=> Magento is appropriate for a range of cosmetics business types, including B2B, B2C, and B2B2C, as well as for various business sizes, including start-ups, SMEs, and major companies. However, large organizations use Magento because it is frequently relatively expensive to deploy.

WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin that allows businesses to transform a regular WordPress website into a professional eCommerce website with full features and easy customization with just a few simple steps.

A few good examples of big brands that have built successful eCommerce websites with WooCommerce and generated huge sales such as: MOI Cosmetics, Bo Shop, Nuty Cosmetics, AB Beauty World, Beauty Garden,. ..

Cosmetics eCommerce 5 Platforms For Website Development
WooCommerce

Pros:

  • There are many free and premium themes from the WordPress and WooCommerce communities for the cosmetics sector which are easy to customize or businesses can use self-designed themes.
  • Functional systems from basic to advanced for cosmetic eCommerce business such as similar product suggestions, viewed products, discount vouchers, and new customer incentives,…
  • Easy integration with a variety of 3rd party services.
  • The cost of building an eCommerce website is not too high compared to other open-source platforms like Magento, with total annual costs ranging from $110 to $1,500+ for domains, hosting, themes, extensions, plugins, etc.
  • eCommerce website implementation time with WooCommerce takes about 1 to 3 months to complete.

Cons:

  • The functional system is still limited in terms of features specific to the cosmetics industry.
  • The scalability is not as high compared to other open-source platforms such as Open Cart, and Magento because it depends on the WordPress system.

=> WooCommerce will be suitable for cosmetics businesses that are familiar with the WordPress platform and want to develop an eCommerce system.

Shopify

Shopify is a popular SaaS platform in the world that provides a variety of solutions for businesses of all sizes to successfully build eCommerce websites. After being in the market for about 20 years, Shopify has gradually grown to become one of the top eCommerce platforms in the world, trusted by many Vietnamese and foreign companies. 

Kylie Cosmetics, Innisfree, Sulwhasoo, Cho Tinh Cua Boo, Guardian, and Ofélia are some examples of companies in the cosmetics industry leveraging Shopify for eCommerce websites and enjoying great success.

Cosmetics eCommerce 5 Platforms For Website Development
Shopify

Pros:

  • Available and diverse themes for the cosmetics industry.
  • Functional system from basic to advanced, supporting eCommerce business such as similar product suggestions, viewed products, discount vouchers, and new customer incentives.
  • The initial cost is quite reasonable with a variety of options for businesses from $29/month to about $2,000/month.
  • The time to build an eCommerce website is quite fast from 1-7 days, or more depending on the complexity of the system.
  • Shopify has a large developer community to serve businesses.

Cons:

  • The layout of existing templates causes duplicating, and it’s challenging to alter themes or create your own interface because doing so will have an adverse effect on the entire system.
  • The system of specific functions for the cosmetics sector is still limited.
  • A wider range of 3rd party services but still only integrated with services available in Shopify’s app store.
  • Deployment costs are both advantages and disadvantages of Shopify when the initial cost is quite reasonable, but in the long run, businesses have to pay the cost of using the platform, interface, application, etc., regularly every month. This makes it difficult to manage cash flow.
  • Because it is a SaaS platform, it will be difficult for Shopify to expand its website in the future.

=> Shopify is considered suitable for start-ups or SMEs with global operations.

Haravan

Haravan is a leading technology firm in Vietnam, that was founded in 2014, with the intention of eventually extending to many other Southeast Asian nations.

It specializes in offering businesses and merchants in Vietnam solutions for eCommerce, engagement marketing, and omnichannel retail.

Haravan has gained the trust of many companies in the cosmetics industry as a result of the efficiency of the website system that the business has created and the ground-breaking online retail sales.

The Face Shop, The World of Lipsticks, The World Skin Food, and Lam Thao Cosmetics are some well-known cosmetics companies in Vietnam that have launched eCommerce websites using the Haravan platform.

Cosmetics eCommerce 5 Platforms For Website Development
Haravan

Pros:

  • Available and diverse themes for the cosmetics industry.
  • Wide range of applications, from basic to advanced to start an eCommerce business.
  • Reasonable eCommerce deployment cost, various packages from 200,000 VND/month to 3,000,000 VND/month, making it easy for customers to choose.
  • ​​The time to build an eCommerce website is fast, only about 30 minutes for businesses to own a website with all the necessary features to get started. However, for the website to work effectively, businesses need to spend more time researching and developing the system.

Cons:

  • The layout of existing templates causes duplicating, and it’s challenging to alter themes or create your own interface because doing so will have an adverse effect on the entire system.
  • The system of specific functions for the cosmetics sector is still limited.
  • Only integrated with services/utilities located in Haravan’s ecosystem.
  • Because it is a SaaS platform, it will be difficult for Haravan to expand the website in the future.

=> Haravan is suitable for start-up cosmetics businesses or SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) with operations mainly in Vietnam.

An extremely critical first step in developing a cosmetic eCommerce website is selecting the appropriate platform. Businesses may develop websites more quickly and affordably while enhancing their competitive advantage and sustainable growth by choosing the right eCommerce platform.

The improper platform, on the other hand, will cost firms a lot of money and effort to adopt and switch platforms repeatedly. Therefore, in order to select the best platform, organizations must take into account the objectives and issues with the current model.

With many years of experience in successfully implementing eCommerce for many customers in many countries, SECOMM specializes in providing consulting services with comprehensive and professional eCommerce implementation solutions. 

Contact SECOMM today for free support and advice.

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5 eCommerce platforms for the furniture website development
5 ECOMMERCE PLATFORMS FOR THE FURNITURE WEBSITE DEVELOPMENT

eCommerce is currently developing into a fresh and promising sales channel for furniture companies in addition to the traditional sales channel. Businesses must work hard to sustain and achieve breakthrough growth through eCommerce platforms, though.

As a result, numerous furniture companies started developing online furniture business websites and found surprising success, such Sieu Thi Noi That va Trang Tri Baya, Nha Xinh, Cozy, or Noi Phat Hoa Phat.

These websites’ success can be attributed to their early selection of an adequate and suitable eCommerce platform. Which platforms are appropriate for the furniture industry, then?

Main aspects of the eCommerce furniture industry

UI/UX standard furniture eCommerce website interface

5 eCommerce platforms for the furniture website development
UI/UX standard furniture eCommerce website interfaces

​​The first criterion businesses set when developing an eCommerce website is a standard UI / UX interface, friendly to users who enjoy shopping for furniture online and other home goods to increase customer interaction.

Similar to eCommerce websites in other sectors like fashion, electronics, etc., websites in the furniture sector must feature stunning and high-quality photographs and videos.

This makes it simpler for companies to communicate product information to customers, especially with banner advertisements that have an easy-to-use interface and a pleasing style that will pique shoppers’ interests.

Businesses also need to consider other concerns including call-to-action button placement, cross-device compatibility, and layout designs that display a range of product designs from the navigation bar to page-by-page details.

Comprehensive functional system

5 eCommerce platforms for the furniture website development
Comprehensive functional system

Furniture firms need a functional system from basic to advanced to fully meet consumers’ buying expectations and maximize the user experience. This system should include:

  • Catalog Management: Manage properties, pricing systems, inventory, photos, and videos to keep them running
  • Content Management: Content development for CMS pages, image hosting, theme customization, and website design
  • Customer Management: Control information, behavior, and consumption habits to build strategies for each specific customer group
  • Sales Management: Set up and operate sales, order, payment, and shipping processes
  • Marketing Management: Implement and optimize programs to attract potential customers with built-in support tools
  • System Management: Seamless supply chain response with shipping navigation and automation management tools
  • Store Management: Navigate and maintain your eCommerce business from online to offline
  • Cart & Checkout: Manage shopping carts and process the next payment steps for customers
  • Analytics and Reports: Monitor and measure eCommerce performance to give detailed reports to improve business efficiency

Businesses also need to develop some additional specialized features to address the furniture industry’s “own challenge,” such as:

  • Omnichannel to track customer footprints across all channels from eCommerce platforms, and social networks, to eCommerce websites and mobile apps to deliver a seamless shopping experience.
  • VR/AR or 360-degree view brings a visual experience and realistic visualization of the product, thereby enhancing the online furniture shopping experience.
  • Customers who request customized products can specify the colors, materials, and sizes they want and pay a deposit. The supplier will then continue to produce the furniture items in accordance with the requirements and deliver them to the customer once they are finished. The consumer will then pay the supplier the balance at that time.

Integration with a variety of third-party services

5 eCommerce platforms for the furniture website development
Integration with a variety of 3rd-party services

Furniture businesses frequently integrate a range of payment options, shipping services, management software, and business analysis tools to optimize eCommerce business systems in order to provide customers with a comprehensive shopping experience.

Some popular payment methods businesses can integrate on the website to diversify payment methods to help customers have many choices such as card payment; eWallet; payment gateways.

Businesses might take into consideration software like ERP (SAP, Salesforce, Oracle), among others, when integrating back-office administration and operation software.

Finally, incorporating BI tools like Tableau, Looker, etc. will aid in the long-term analysis of business plans.

Scalability of the website

5 eCommerce platforms for the furniture website development
Scalability of the website

Businesses that are just starting to use eCommerce won’t concentrate on the website’s scalability in the future because platforms that provide this feature are sometimes hard to find. But tactically, spending money on a platform that facilitates this function will provide organizations an advantage over rivals in the market.

These aid furniture companies in making necessary adjustments, creating new features, and expanding their online systems to support several stores, languages, and currencies in the future.

Top 5 eCommerce platforms for furniture website development

Haravan

Haravan was founded in 2014 and is a very popular and popular eCommerce deployment platform in the Vietnam market with a variety of solutions for businesses and individual sellers.

Pros:

  • Available and diverse themes for the furniture industry
  • Wide range of applications, from basic to advanced to start an eCommerce business
  • Reasonable eCommerce deployment cost, various packages from 200,000 VND/month to 3,000,000 VND/month, making it easy for customers to choose.
  • ​​Time to build an eCommerce website is fast, only about 30 minutes for businesses to own a website with all the necessary features to get started. However, for the website to work effectively, businesses need to spend more time researching and developing the system.

Cons:

  • The layout of existing templates causes duplicating, and it’s challenging to alter themes or create your own interface because doing so will have an adverse effect on the entire system.
  • The system of specific functions for the furniture sector is still limited.
  • Only integrated with services/utilities located in Haravan’s ecosystem.
  • Because it is a SaaS platform, it will be difficult for Haravan to expand the website in the future.

=> Rating: 2/4

Haravan is suitable for start-up furniture businesses or SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) with operations mainly in Vietnam.

Shopify

Shopify is a popular SaaS platform in the world that provides a variety of solutions for businesses of all sizes to successfully build eCommerce websites.

Pros:

  • Available and diverse themes for the furniture industry.
  • Wide range of applications, from basic to advanced to start an eCommerce business.
  • The initial cost is quite reasonable with a variety of options for businesses from $29/month to about $2,000/month.
  • The time to build an eCommerce website is quite fast from 1-7 days, or more depending on the complexity of the system.
  • Shopify has a large developer community to serve businesses.

Cons:

  • The layout of existing templates causes duplicating, and it’s challenging to alter themes or create your own interface because doing so will have an adverse effect on the entire system.
  • The system of specific functions for the furniture sector is still limited.
  • A wider range of 3rd party services than Haravan but still only integrated with services available in Shopify’s app store.
  • Deployment costs are both advantages and disadvantages of Shopify when the initial cost is quite reasonable, but in the long run, businesses have to pay the cost of using the platform, interface, application, etc., regularly every month. This makes it difficult to manage cash flow
  • Because it is a SaaS platform, it will be difficult for Shopify to expand its website in the future.

=> Rating: 2/4

Shopify is considered suitable for start-ups or SMEs with global operations.

ZielCommerce 

ZielCommerce is an eCommerce platform with ready-made solutions specialized for the furniture industry.

Pros:

  • Many themes are specific to the furniture industry, allowing businesses to customize according to their needs, helping to reflect the characteristics of the industry and position the brand image.
  • Detailed internal eCommerce website construction challenges can be solved with the help of a comprehensive system of functions that combines the fundamental, sophisticated, and niche aspects of both customer and business needs, such as the best order processing system.

Cons:

  • The ability to integrate with 3rd party services is still limited. This platform only supports add-ons available in its ecosystem, so businesses will not be able to link with the ERP, POS, CRM, BI, etc. Therefore, when using Ziel Commerce, businesses need to transfer all existing data to the platform’s servers.
  • Although highly appreciated for the ability to expand the website system, this is still the disadvantage of Ziel Commerce in the long run. Accordingly, this platform will not support businesses to expand or develop new features because businesses cannot own the source code, so when affected, it will destabilize the entire website system.
  • Ziel Commerce is not yet popular in the Vietnam market, so there is no Vietnamese version yet.
  • Deployment time will depend on the complexity of the system, the average time is from 3-6 months.
  • High implementation cost of about $50,000 per project.

=> Rating: 3/4

ZielCommerce will be the optimal choice for B2B, and B2C furniture businesses to deploy eCommerce websites or build mobile apps. However, this platform is not really popular in the Vietnamese market but is especially favored by foreign furniture retailers such as Frampo, Zeyka, etc.

WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin that allows businesses to transform a regular WordPress website into a professional eCommerce website with full features and easy customization with just a few simple steps.

Pros:

  • There are many free and premium themes from the WordPress and WooCommerce communities for the furniture sector which are easy to customize or businesses can use self-designed themes. 
  • Functional system from basic to advanced for eCommerce business.
  • Easy integration with a variety of 3rd party services.
  • Because it is an open-source code platform, businesses can plan to expand their website in the future.
  • The cost of building an eCommerce website is not too high compared to other open-source platforms like Magento, with total annual costs ranging from $110 to $1,500+ for domains, hosting, themes, extensions, plugins, etc.
  • eCommerce website implementation time with WooCommerce takes about 1 to 3 months to complete.

Cons:

  • The functional system is still limited in terms of features specific to the furniture industry.
  • The scalability is not as high compared to other open-source platforms such as Open Cart, Magento because it depends on the WordPress system.

=> Rating: 3/4

WooCommerce will be suitable for furniture businesses who are familiar with the WordPress platform and want to develop an eCommerce system.

Magento

Magento is a popular open-source commerce platform in the field of eCommerce, with nearly 200,000 websites in use. Currently, Magento has 2 versions: Magento Open Source (free), and Magento Commerce (paid).

Pros:

  • Many furniture themes from the global developer community and Magento website developers so businesses can use existing themes which easy to customize or use self-designed themes.
  • Easy integration with a variety of 3rd party services.
  • High scalability: multi-language, currency, easy future feature development.

Cons:

  • There is no repository of themes from Magento to support businesses.
  • Implementation typically takes three to six months, but it might take up to a year due to a sophisticated functioning system.
  • Although the platform is free to use, the cost of implementing eCommerce with Magento is quite high, about $50,000-$100,000 depending on the complexity of the project.

=> Rating: 4/4

Magento is appropriate for a range of furniture business types, including B2B, B2C, and B2B2C, as well as for various business sizes, including start-ups, SMEs, and major companies. However, large organizations use Magento because it is frequently relatively expensive to deploy.

5 eCommerce platforms for the furniture website development
Furniture eCommerce platforms in comparison

Choosing the right platform is an extremely important first step when building an interior eCommerce website. Choosing the right eCommerce platform will help businesses save budget and time to build a website while increasing competitive advantage and sustainable growth. On the contrary, when choosing the wrong platform, it will cost businesses a lot of time and budget to deploy and switch platforms many times. Therefore, businesses need to consider the goals and problems in the current model to be able to choose the most suitable platform.

With many years of experience in successfully implementing eCommerce for many customers in many countries, SECOMM specializes in providing consulting services with comprehensive and professional eCommerce implementation solutions. 

Contact SECOMM today for free support and advice.

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WEIGH UP SIGNIFICANT PROS AND CONS OF USING SHOPIFY IN 2022

Today, for businesses of all sizes, eCommerce websites play an essential role in reaching and buying products for a wide pool of potential customers on the Internet.

Thus, choosing the right platform to build an eCommerce website is incredibly important. A good eCommerce platform will make it easy for businesses to provide Omnichannel experiences, personalize customer experiences, offer a variety of services, products, and more to increase conversions and drive online sales.

Some commonly mentioned platforms for building eCommerce websites are Magento, Woocommerce, Bigcommerce, etc. Definitely, each business will have its considerations, but one platform that always appears as a top choice is Shopify. In spite of the fact that the platform is highly rated, businesses should still weigh the pros and cons of this platform before making a final decision.

As a result, SECOMM has prepared this review, helping businesses understand what Shopify is, how it works, implementation costs, and especially the pros and cons of using this platform to build a comprehensive eCommerce website.

What is Shopify?

Before becoming one of the most popular eCommerce platforms globally, Shopify started as an online ski store called Snowdevil in 2004. Later, the company transformed into an eCommerce platform named Jaded Pixel.

In 2006, Shopify was officially founded in Ottawa by young programmers Tobias Lutke, Daniel Weinand, and Scott Lake. Since then, Shopify has gradually affirmed its position as a reliable and fastest-growing eCommerce platform in the last two years when most companies faced many difficulties because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Up to now, the number of Shopify users has increased significantly. As reported by StoreLeads, there are currently about 2 million websites using the Shopify platform to build and develop online businesses. In the second quarter of 2022, the number of newly opened stores reached 150,928, an increase of 10.8% compared to the same period in 2021. In Vietnam alone, there are about 2,000 websites using the platform in operation, up 9.8% in the second quarter of 2022 over the same period in 2021.

Total revenue in the second quarter of 2022 reached $1.3 billion, up 16% over the same period in 2021, corresponding to a compound annual growth rate for three consecutive years of 53%. Gross profit in the second quarter of 2022 increased by 6% to $655.6 million compared to $620.9 million in the second quarter of 2021 (According to Shopify’s report).

While Shopify is one of the most popular and user-friendly eCommerce platforms available today, businesses still need to determine if this is what they need to expand their business, all the advantages and disadvantages of the platform, mostly the cost issue.

Pros of using Shopify for an eCommerce website

weigh-significant-pros-and-cons-of-using-shopify
Pros of using Shopify for an eCommerce website

Cost-effective Deployment

For a start, businesses can enjoy a 14-day free trial without a credit card requirement. When the free trial ends, businesses are encouraged to opt for one of the solution packages with suitable features and appealing promotions.

Packages

Price

Main Features

Unique Features 

Ideally suited for 

Starter

  • $5/month.
  • 5% transaction fee.
Create product pages and get shareable links with product information, then send those links to customers via social platforms or message apps.  Merchants that sell on social platforms or message apps with no website in demand

Lite

  • $9/month.
  • 2.9% transaction fee for credit card.
  •  2.7% transaction fee for offline sales with Shopify Payment.
  • 2% for external payments.
– Shopify Buy Button.

– Invoicing. 

Merchants that sell on an existing website or social platforms. 

Basic

  • $29/month.
  • 2.9% transaction fee for credit card.
  •  2.7% transaction fee for offline sales with Shopify Payment.
  • 2% for external payments.
– Customizable website editor.

– Website hosting and free TSL certificate.

– Unlimited number of products.

– Analytical reports

– Localization: currency conversion, website translation, regional domains. 

– Inventory Management.

– Shopify POS.

– Shopify Email.

-Shopify Payment.

– 24/7 Customer service. 

– 2 staff accounts.

– 4 inventory locations.

– Basic reports.

Businesses who have just entered or intend to enter the eCommerce world and look for comprehensive eCommerce solutions.

Shopify

  • $79/month.
  • 2.6% transaction fee for credit card.
  • 2.5% transaction for offline sales with Shopify Payment.
  • 1% for external payments.
– 5 staff accounts.

– 5 inventory locations.

– Standard reports. 

Steadily growing eCommerce businesses.

Advanced 

  • $299/month. 
  • 2.4% transaction fee for credit card. 
  • 2.4% transaction fee for offline sales with Shopify Payment. 
  • 0.5% for external payments. 
-15 staff accounts.

-8 inventory locations.

– Advanced reports.

– Automation tools. 

Large-scale businesses that sell internationally

Plus 

Từ $2000/month. However, businesses can contact Shopify for a custom estimate.  – 9 expansion websites.

– Up to 100 themes. 

– Exclusive Shopify Programs: Merchant Success Program, Shopify Plus Academy, Shopify Plus Partner Program, Shopify Plus Community on Facebook 

Enterprise-level businesses that manage and operate multiple eCommerce websites.

Table list of price, and features of Shopify solution packages.

First and foremost, because Shopify is a SaaS platform, the cost to get started is usually quite low. Despite the fact that businesses must pay monthly fees, transaction fees, theme fees, and extension fees, Shopify is still significantly less expensive than open-source platforms such as Magento, WooCommerce, and others.

The development of an open-source platform necessitates the assistance of experienced programmers and takes a long time to deploy, whereas the SaaS platform is the inverse. That is the reason why starting with a SaaS platform, specifically, Shopify, will save businesses both time and expense.

Another cost highlight is that SaaS platforms, in general, and Shopify in particular, require an ongoing monthly fee rather than a one-time purchase fee to use the platform. This reduces the risk of businesses investing too much money in the Shopify platform but not meeting their expectations during the implementation process.

Furthermore, the Shopify platform is appropriate for different-sized businesses in the market. The Starter, Lite, and Basic packages are appropriate for SME businesses engaged in eCommerce. Shopify, Advanced, and Plus packages are ideal for large-scale businesses that require advanced features to run an effective eCommerce website.

Ease of Use

The only way to adapt to the ever-changing market and quickly reach a wide pool of potential customers is for businesses to deploy eCommerce websites as soon as possible to avoid being left behind in the competition of the digital transformation race. One of the important factors when building an eCommerce website is choosing the right platform.

In particular, the top goal to consider when choosing an eCommerce platform is the ease of use. If a platform takes users too long to learn and implement or makes users dependent on external support, then the platform is not easy to use

Shopify has an easy-to-use interface for users with little programming knowledge. Moreover, Shopify is a SaaS eCommerce platform with a pre-designed system that offers hosting, interface, features, and technology infrastructure maintenance, allowing businesses to easily build and operate the website system with just drag and drop without worrying about technical issues.

Simple steps to get started with the eCommerce website implementation with Shopify:

  1. Choose from one of the solution packages depending on the business needs
  2. Choose a business domain
  3. Choose an appropriate theme and template
  4. Choose essential features
  5. Optimize the eCommerce website and add products
  6. Go-live

24/7 Available Customer Support

This is one of the most crucial factors influencing users’ decision to use Shopify. Difficulties and obstacles are inevitable when building an eCommerce website, so Shopify has assembled a reliable and trusted team to assist users.

As a result, if your business requires assistance, assistance is available 24/7. Businesses can reach Shopify via email, chat, and a hotline worldwide. What’s more, users can access community forums and useful documents for developing eCommerce websites on this platform, mostly through the Shopify Support Center.

Security and Data Backup

The Shopify platform runs on PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) compliant servers, allowing merchants to accept credit card payments. Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption is enabled on all Shopify websites to secure visitor data, while a backup system allows businesses to store and save data regularly by exporting data to a CSV file.

As an outcome, the platform encourages the addition of an advanced backup solution from the Shopify Store, such as the Rewind app, as it is seen as a lifesaver if users accidentally delete content such as products or images or a video demonstration. To keep your eCommerce website secure, simply back up your data on a regular basis and use a strong enough admin password.

Variety of Themes

The interface is the appearance of a business’s eCommerce website. The more appealing the website interface, the more likely it is to retain customers, attract more visitors, as well as generate more conversions.

Shopify understands the importance of a website interface, so it has made a host of available themes, both free and paid, suitable for a wide range of businesses and fields, making it simple for businesses to choose from.

The free Shopify themes are ideal for startups, small and medium-sized businesses, and individuals. Businesses can customize their eCommerce website according to their needs and brand features by using features such as responsive web design, product filters, and product color display templates.

However, free themes have some downsides, including a limited number of themes, limited design, and a lack of advanced and specific features, which makes website customization difficult.

In fact, free themes are great for launching an eCommerce website. Premium interfaces, also known as paid themes, will be more suitable for large-scale businesses or businesses on the rise, with an average cost of around $140-$180/theme.

Shopify’s paid themes include advanced integration features such as live chat support, newsletter popups, upsell features, faster page loading, and much more. Thereby, businesses can run an eCommerce website automatedly and smoothly.

The Cons of using Shopify for an eCommerce website

weigh-significant-pros-and-cons-of-using-shopify
Cons of using Shopify for an eCommerce website

Not Easy to Keep Track of Expenses Incurred

The cost of using Shopify, besides the notable pluses, the platform has a small but enough minus to make some businesses hesitate to start.

In addition to the monthly fee for using the enterprise platform, businesses must pay for other costs such as themes, applications, extensions, marketing features, sales, and SEO on a monthly basis with no long-term possession.

For example, to use the Free Shipping & Hello Bar application that offers free gifts, free shipping, or other types of promotions, users will buy for $8.95/month, which means ongoing monthly in regards to other expenses, businesses will pay an additional $8.95 for this app until it is no longer used. 

When there are small expenses incurred each month, it is difficult to control cash flow for large-scale businesses that have to manage and operate many websites at the same time.

Meanwhile, open-source platforms require a one-time purchase fee rather than an ongoing monthly fee. Although the features are not yet available and take a long time to program, businesses can possess those features for eCommerce websites in the long run. Thereby, it makes cash flow management more convenient and effective.

Difficulty with Content Marketing

It is a great way to promote your eCommerce website. Users can use Shopify to blog and optimize SEO, drive free traffic, and improve brand positioning.

However, this blogging feature on Shopify is not as user-friendly as WordPress. Some of the criteria Shopify can improve regarding blogging and content writing include:

  • The outdated editor.
  • The blog layouts are inflexible
  • No categories force users to use tags
  • Cannot add related blogs
  • Cannot embed products in blogs
  • Not easy to integrate third-party add-ons

This will be a barrier for businesses when using Shopify to promote eCommerce websites by optimizing SEO if the content is a core element of the business’s marketing strategy.

Limited Customization

Another limitation of Shopify is that the platform’s interface is customized using the Shopify Liquid setup. Meanwhile, many website developers are already familiar with the PHP programming language to customize the themes and templates of the website, it is a common technique used by WordPress.

Therefore, users who do not have much experience in programming will face many obstacles when using Shopify’s tools to customize the interface of the eCommerce website.

However, businesses of all sizes can still use other useful Shopify features like Shopify Themes, Shopify App Store, Shopify Blog, 24/7 support team, and more to set up an eCommerce website quickly and effortlessly.

Cannot Possess Source Code and Data 

Because the entire business’s website system is hosted on Shopify’s server, the ownership and control of the website source code will belong to Shopify, not the business. Similar to other SaaS platforms such as BigCommerce, Squarespace, Wix… Shopify has a Lock-in feature, which means that when converting a website from one platform to another, businesses will no longer be able to use the old website source code and have to rebuild from scratch on a new platform.

Similar to the source code, business data is also stored on Shopify’s servers, so data ownership and control are quite limited. This makes it difficult for businesses to connect data among internal departments or users’ personalization, etc. Especially when switching platforms, data loss or misalignment is often unavoidable.

Shopify will not assist in the event that businesses stop using the platform for any reason. The only asset businesses can keep and take away is a CSV report containing website information.

Hence, before starting an eCommerce website on the Shopify platform, businesses need to carefully consider the benefits and disadvantages of stopping using it to conclude whether Shopify is the best fit for business in the long run. 

Going by this article,  Shopify is one of the eCommerce platforms that many businesses would love to choose when deploying an eCommerce website. However, besides the outstanding advantages, there are still certain downsides, so businesses need to carefully consider and compare with other platforms before starting out. 

With many years of experience in implementing eCommerce in many countries, SECOMM provides free consulting services with professional eCommerce solutions.

Contact us today for free support and advice!

 

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Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery
TOP 5 ECOMMERCE PLATFORMS FOR EGROCERY

With the boom in recent years, ecommerce is a potential business form pursued by many businesses, especially egrocery stores. According to Statista, the grocery ecommerce market in the United States is likely to exceed $24 billion by 2023.

Realizing the potential of the egrocery market, several businesses have deployed grocery ecommerce websites early and experienced breakthrough growth, such as Grofers (Blinkit) and BigBasket in India, Bach Hoa Xanh, An Nam Gourmet, Farmer’s Market, WinMart, and Organica in Vietnam.

The common thing that makes the success of the above brands lies in the ecommerce platform. Therefore, to develop and operate an effective ecommerce website, the role of platforms is enormous.

So which ecommerce platforms are suitable for the grocery industry?

Platform selection criteria

User interface and administration interface

For the website interface, in addition to meeting basic needs such as UI/UX standards and showing the brand’s characteristics and the eGrocery industry, businesses also need to focus on the presented product images. Therefore, on the website, everything needs to be synchronized and precise.

The administrator interface (admin) must be easy to use, navigate, control, and manage all data in the system.

Functional system

With eGrocery, the system of ecommerce features needs to be diverse from basic to advanced, solving complex characteristics of the grocery industry such as products with multiple units, weight difference, and price volatility, export-import complex warehouse, and synchronized data throughout the system.

Some functions required in a grocery ecommerce website system such as:

  • Primary functions: Meet the most basic needs when operating an ecommerce system, such as order management, checkout, payment, shipping, etc
  • Advanced Functions: Functions that enhance the consumer experience and accelerate the shopping process such as order tracking, abandoned cart recovery, similar product recommendations, product search fast products, multi-layered product portfolio, etc
  • Specific functions: Functions that help to thoroughly solve the difficulties of implementing specialized grocery ecommerce, meeting the needs of customer segments and businesses such as fast delivery, choice of time delivery point, etc

Integration capabilities

To have a seamless online volatility store system with multiple sales channels, businesses must integrate their ecommerce website with other payment services, shipping services, management software, analysis, report, and distribution systems:

  • Payment: Integrate various payment methods from domestic cards to international cards, such as payment gateways (Paypal, Stripe, OnePay), e-wallets (Momo, ZaloPay), etc.
  •  Shipping: Integrate with international shipping providers like DHL Express, Fedex, Ups, USPS, and popular shipping providers in Vietnam like Fast Delivery, Economy Delivery, Ninja Van, etc. With order tracking applications to help process and operate the delivery processes
  • Management software: Easily integrate CRM, ERP, and POS software to get a seamless connection on all supply channels from offline to online
  • Analysis and reporting: Integrate analysis and reporting software such as Business Intelligent, Google Analytics, Facebook Pixel, etc.

This integration helps businesses overcome the limitations of the “rice-powered” process, increase the automation of the system, limit business mistakes, and ensure high accuracy and performance.

Ability to extension

To accompany businesses to develop over time, from startups, and SMEs (small and medium enterprises), to large corporations, from B2B, B2C, and D2C business models to B2B2C, commerce electronics platforms must be highly scalable. High scalability helps meet all future business growth needs, such as multi-site, multi-country, and multi-currency, all manageable on “one screen.” Not only that, but highly scalable platforms also support businesses to operate the system stably regardless of the traffic in promotion campaigns.

Evaluate 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery business based on each criterion

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery
Some platforms that support egrocery business: Ziel Commerce, Shopify, Haravan, WooCommerce, Magento

Ziel Commerce

Ziel Commerce is a readymade grocery ecommerce platform with all the features designed to support an online grocery store business.

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery ZielCommerce
Ecommerce platform Ziel Commerce

Website interface

Ziel Commerce provides a repository of themes specifically for the grocery industry, allowing businesses to customize according to their needs, helping to both reflect the characteristics of the industry and position the brand image.

Remarkably, the interface for administrators is also invested by the founders to make it most accessible for businesses to use. But currently, Ziel Commerce is not popular in the Vietnamese market, so there is no Vietnamese version for businesses.

Functional system

As a platform designed specifically for the eGrocery industry, Ziel Commerce can meet all the most specialized needs of businesses, including fundamental to advanced functionality systems and existing industry-specific solutions.

Integration capabilities

Ziel Commerce has a significant drawback in integrating the website system. In addition, this platform only supports add-ons available in its ecosystem, so businesses will not be able to link with the ERP, POS, CRM, BI, etc., systems in use. Therefore, when using Ziel Commerce, companies need to transfer all existing data to the server of this platform.

Ability of extension

Although it does not own the source code, Ziel Commerce is still a highly appreciated platform for its scalability compared to SaaS platforms. Ziel Commerce supports businesses to expand their ecommerce website system from one to many stores/websites, multi-language, multi-currency without many obstacles. However, in the long run, Ziel Commerce cannot support businesses to expand or develop new functions because firms cannot affect the source code; if it affects it, it will cause instability for the commercial website system. 

→ Rating: 3/4

Ziel Commerce provides an almost comprehensive online grocery store website building solution for businesses, from website interface and functional system to scalability. However, the implementation cost is relatively high, about $50,000/project in 6 months. Therefore, Ziel Commerce is only popular with retail chains, has high functional demand, and operates mainly abroad. However, when using Ziel Commerce, businesses should consider adding the platform’s integration, limiting instability in the operation when 3rd party systems are not compatible with the platform.

Shopify

Shopify is a SaaS ecommerce platform favored by the international ecommerce business community because of its fast implementation time and reasonable starting cost.

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery Shopify
Ecommerce platform Shopify

Website interface

Shopify provides a variety of interfaces, including grocery industry and UI/UX standards, but cannot be edited according to the characteristics of the business.

Functional system

Shopify’s functional system is relatively complete, meeting the basic needs of businesses. But to use advanced functions, companies have to pay a certain amount of money every month, leading to an increased cost of using the functional system. In addition, even Shopify can barely provide eGrocery industry-specific resolution functions.

Integration capabilities

Because it is a SaaS platform, businesses cannot affect the source code, and it is not easy to integrate with many 3rd parties. Companies can only integrate utilities provided by Shopify or a platform partner.

Some utilities that companies can integrate with Shopify include:

  • Payment: Paypal, Stripe, SagePay, AliPay Global, etc
  • Shipping: DHL Express, USPS, UPS, etc
  • Administration: Microsoft Dynamic 365 (ERP), Oracle NetSuite (ERP), Acumatica (ERP), etc
  • Marketing: Google Tools, MailChimp, Facebook Pixel, etc

Ability of extension

Similar to the ability to integrate, the scalability on Shopify is not high because businesses cannot influence the source code to edit and upgrade the website. Therefore, online grocery businesses can only use Shopify for the first time.

→ Rating: 2/4

Shopify is only suitable for businesses new to the ecommerce market, startups, or SMEs (small and medium enterprises) because of the reasonable development cost and time to deploy an online grocery store business website.

Haravan

Founded in 2014, Haravan is an ecommerce platform based on Shopify. Currently, Haravan is a popular platform in the Vietnamese market with more than 50,000 business people and trusted brands.

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery Haravan
Ecommerce platform Haravan

Website interface

Haravan has many standard UI/UX interfaces suitable for the grocery industry, including free and paid. At the same time, the interface for administrators supports Vietnamese and is easy to use, so businesses do not face many difficulties when using it.

Functional system

Haravan provides many utilities – functions for online grocery stores in Vietnam.

In addition, similar to Shopify, to use more advanced functions, businesses have to pay a monthly application fee of about 100,000 VND/month/app.

However, businesses can’t find parts that deal with the grocery’s specifics in Haravan’s app store and can’t develop in terms of specific functions. Enterprises can only use the functions included in the package and app store.

Integration capabilities

For integration capabilities, Haravan can integrate with Haravan’s partners such as transportation (Economic Delivery, Fast Delivery, Ahamove, GrabExpress, etc.), payment (Ngan Luong, VNPAY, Napas, PayPal, etc.), etc.).

It is difficult for businesses to integrate for 3rd party utilities outside Haravan’s ecosystem on their ecommerce website.

Ability of extension

As for the extension of the ecommerce website system, Haravan can only support the multi-language – currency but cannot expand from one to many websites/stores. It is challenging to manage all the data on a foundation.

As the business gradually grows and expands, Haravan will no longer be functional enough to maintain an online grocery store business. As a result, companies are forced to switch to more specialized platforms such as Magento, WooCommerce, and OpenCart. But, of course, switching platforms will create many other problems such as costs, time, personnel, etc.

→ Rating: 2/4

Similar to Shopify, Haravan is only suitable for businesses new to the ecommerce market, startups, and SMEs. But Shopify can support online grocery business globally, and Haravan only stops at the Vietnamese market.

Woocommerce

WooCommerce is an open-source platform in the form of a WordPress plugin, allowing businesses to use it completely free.

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery WooCommerce
Ecommerce platform WooCommerce

Website interface

WooCommerce and the community provide businesses with various themes designed for the grocery industry. At the same time, this platform also allows influencing the source code to customize according to needs, helping businesses quickly convey brand messages and images.

Since WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin, the admin will continue to manage the website on the WordPress interface itself. This makes it easy for businesses using WordPress to adapt, use, and navigate on the WooCommerce dashboard.

Functional system

WooCommerce supports a variety of features, from basic to advanced. However, this platform has some limitations on features specific to the grocery industry because interfering with developing these functions will easily cause instability for the website system.

Integration capabilities

Thanks to the advantages of the open source platform, WooCommerce has flexible customization capabilities and supports integration with many 3rd party utilities.

In payment, businesses can use amount plugins such as Stripe, PayPal, Apple Pay, and Square to their ecommerce website system with high security and safety. In addition, companies can integrate with many shipping providers such as Fedex, Ups, USPS, and DHL Express. The WooCommerce platform also allows businesses to integrate with management software such as Odoo, Square POS, WP ERP, and Marketing software such as Google Listings, Google Ads, and Facebook Pixel to support businesses in effective business management. More fruitful.

Ability of extension

Contrary to the integration capabilities, the extensibility of WooCommerce is not appreciated. Because the system is easily overloaded with plugin themes, and the number of products does not exceed 2000 SKUs (Stock Keeping Unit). Therefore, businesses wishing to expand their website system need to consider when using this platform in the long run.

→ Rating: 3/4

WooCommerce is the right platform for grocery businesses that use WordPress and are looking to develop an ecommerce system. But when using WooCommerce, companies should consider the limitations of integration, extensibility, and customizability of specific features.

Magento

Magento is a popular open source commerce platform in ecommerce, with nearly 200,000 websites in use. Currently, Magento has 2 versions: Magento Open Source (free) and Magento Commerce (paid).

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery Magento
Ecommerce platform Magento

Website interface

Although Magento does not own a rich theme store like other ecommerce platforms, businesses can look to the developer community, market (Envato), or design their own. Having many options when designing the interface helps Magento websites to have their uniqueness, avoid overlapping the interface with many different websites and bring a higher shopping experience.

Previously, the admin interface on Magento 1 was often considered difficult to use and took a long time to adapt. As a result, Magento publishers developed Magento 2 with a more intuitive and easy-to-navigate dashboard to overcome this problem.

Functional system

The Magento platform has a highly diverse system of features from basic and advanced to industry-specific to help grocery businesses quickly build and develop a sustainable system.

A basic functional system, including catalog management, product management, customer management, report analysis, etc., helps meet the basic needs of a convenient online grocery store business.

In particular, Magento also has many advanced functions for ecommerce, such as multi-language support, multi-currency, multi-store, PWA, MSI, ElasticSearch, etc. Shopping happens faster.

Magento does not have built-in features only for the grocery industry regarding specific features. Still, businesses can quickly build a system of particular features such as category classification, quick search, and delivery time selection thanks to flexible customization on open source code.

Integration capabilities

Thanks to the advantages of the open source platform, the Magento website can be easily integrated with any 3rd party utilities, from payment, shipping, and business administration.

Regarding payment, Magento easily connects with today’s popular payment methods such as card payments (domestic cards, VISA, Mastercard), e-wallets (MOMO, Zalopay), and payment gateways (OnePay, VNPay, etc.) PayPal) or COD, which helps to diversify payment methods.

Magento can integrate with shipping providers such as Fast Delivery, Economy Delivery, Viettel Post, and order tracking applications.

Magento can be integrated into back-office management software (ERP, CRM, POS) such as SAP, Salesforce, and Oracle to help operate all resources and processes seamlessly in the enterprise.

In addition, Magento also supports integration with business analysis tools such as Power BI, Tableau, and Looker and analysis and reporting utilities such as Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, and Facebook Pixels to exploit all data from the system. As a result, Magento plans to improve its business strategy.

Ability of extension

Magento allows businesses to expand from one website to many different websites on the same system to meet the needs of business development. In addition, with the available support for language and currency conversion from Magento, businesses can build a grocery ecommerce system with content suitable for a diverse audience of customers around the globe.

In addition, open source customization enables Magento developers to build functional solutions specific to the grocery industry. This advantage makes Magento expand the system of capabilities according to each business size, from small businesses to large-scale corporations.

→ Rating: 4/4

Because Magento possesses many outstanding advantages, from website interface and functional system to the ability to integrate and expand, Magento is suitable for a variety of grocery business models from B2B, B2C to B2B2C, a multiform of enterprise-scale such as startup, SME, enterprise (large corporation). However, the time to deploy ecommerce on Magento is usually long – from 6 months to 1 year, with high construction costs of about 50,000 – 100,000 USD/project. At the same time, businesses also need to have a professional team or cooperate with experienced units to develop an effective grocery ecommerce system. Therefore, Magento is popularly used in the community of large-scale businesses that need many functions to increase user experience.

Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery
Top 5 ecommerce platforms for egrocery

Choosing the right platform is the first and most significant step when building a grocery ecommerce website. Selecting the right ecommerce platform will help businesses save budget and time in building a website while increasing competitive advantage and sustainable growth. On the contrary, choosing the wrong forum will cost businesses a lot of time and budget to deploy and switch platforms. Therefore, companies need to consider the goals and problems in the current model to choose the most suitable platform.

With experience in successfully implementing complex grocery ecommerce systems like An Nam Gourmet, SECOMM understands grocery businesses’ obstacles.

Contact SECOMM now for a free consultation on detailed ecommerce system development solutions!

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