Out of all the eCommerce platforms out there, Ecwid is certainly the one with the most interesting name. Pronounced ECK-wid, it actually stands for ‘eCommerce widgets,’ which is essentially what Ecwid specializes in. In short, Ecwid is an eCommerce widget that can be integrated with any website with the right coding. When in use, it allows merchants to sell products on a variety of websites simultaneously while managing everything from one admin. Talk about convenience.
Ecwid itself was first created back in 2000 by Ruslan Fazlyev shortly after he developed X-Cart, the first eCommerce platform. Since its creation, Ecwid has grown exponentially, and today it is serving more than a million merchants around the globe. In fact, it’s so popular that Ecwid developers are continuously releasing new features every month to keep pace with merchant demand. Let’s take a closer look at some of the reasons why many merchants are choosing Ecwid over other platforms.
Ecwid’s Abundance of Useful Features
For a widget, Ecwid manages to offer a surprising collection of features and more that are created every month. Some of the platform’s best and most popular features include:
- Integrates with social media platforms, including Facebook
- Ability to sell products across many different websites at once
- Language capabilities, including the ability to translate your store into 45 languages depending on the browser settings of individual customers
- Mobile capabilities, including the ability to manage and operate your store from mobile devices
- Real-time quotes for shipping rates
- Ability to create product promotions
- Ability to integrate with apps like Square and PayPal Here, allowing for face-to-face selling
When it comes to ease of use, Ecwid is a notch above the rest. Not only is it seamless to implement, but it’s easy to navigate, especially for those with WordPress or other CMS experience. Just to point out how easy Ecwid is to start up, upon signing up for a free plan, your admin page will pop up and a set-up wizard will walk you through how to build and open your online store.
For those requiring more in-depth assistance with getting started, Ecwid offers a program called Concierge Onboarding, which is essentially where a living human, not a robot, will talk you through the entire setup process.
When it comes to adding products to your store, Ecwid even makes that particular process a breeze and allows users to customize meta descriptions, adjust shipping and tax details, and so much more.
The only downside to Ecwid’s usability is that editing themes are a bit more complicated. Sometimes, to edit a theme, you’ll need to tinker with the CSS, which can be especially troublesome for those who have little to no web design experience.
Lackluster Web Design Options
While Ecwid doesn’t pull any punches where features are concerned, its CSS themes are a bit of a letdown. For starters, it only offers three different yet free CSS themes. Fortunately, if you’re tech-savvy and have the know-how to edit CSS style sheets, you can customize your theme to better suit your store and brand. If that option isn’t appealing either, you can always buy a theme from a third party.
Ecwid’s Growing Collection of Add-Ons
As we said before, Ecwid is always adding new features and add-ons to keep users satisfied. Some of its most popular add-ons include:
- Zapier, a web application connector
- Yotpo and more
Ecwid’s Pricing Options
Unlike some eCommerce platforms, Ecwid does not offer a free trial of any kind. In lieu of a free trial, it does offer a free plan that allows merchants to post up to 10 products on a store page to get it operating. As an added bonus, Ecwid never charges transaction fees. In addition to the free plan, there are three others, all with varying features like bandwidth and storage. Let’s take a look at what each plan has to offer.
- Ability to post up to 10 products
- Access to a Facebook store
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Access to personalized onboarding
Venture Plan, $15/month
- Access to features included in the Free plan
- Ability to post up to 100 products
- Access to discount coupons for customers
- Ability to use PayPal Here or Square to process in-person transactions
- Ecwid’s App Store
- Access to Abandoned cart feature
- Embedded withtax calculator tools
- Access to social media marketing tools
Business Plan, $35/month
- Access to features included in the Venture plan
- Ability to post up to 2500 products
- Access to white glove onboarding and setup
- Ability to sell products on eBay and other major marketplaces
- Access to wholesale pricing options
- Access to phone support
Unlimited Plan, $99/month
- Access to features included in the Business plan
- Ability to post unlimited products
- Access to more customization options
- Ability to build a mobile app for your online store
- Access to priority support services
Convenient Payment Processing Options
As mentioned before, Ecwid won’t charge a transaction fee to process payments, and it integrates with more than 40 different payment gateways, such as Stripe and PayPal.
Technical and Customer Support
No matter what plan you choose, you’ll have access to some sort of customer support. For example, every plan includes access to email support, instructional videos, concierge onboarding, and community forums. One-on-one customer or technical support is available with any of the paid plans, and some plans, like the Venture plan, allow you to chat via live chat with customer support representatives.
Ecwid’s Security Features
Whenever sensitive information is being transferred over the Internet, it’s a good idea to have strong security measures in place. Fortunately, Ecwid always uses HTTPS connections that are secure and is even Level 1 PCI DSS compliant.
After taking a good look at all Ecwid has to offer, it seems better suited for smaller businesses than larger enterprises. While its variety of features and add-ons will make it easy to build a fully functioning store, its lack of theme options may hinder the overall appearance of your store. At the end of the day, it will be up to you to decide what’s more important: a pretty storefront or functionality. If your answer is functionality, then Ecwid is the platform for you.