Big Cartel vs. Shopify: Which is Best for Online Store 2023?

Are you looking to start an online store?

Two popular platforms that come to mind are Big Cartel and Shopify. Both platforms offer excellent features and services for creating an online store.

In this article, we will do a side-by-side comparison of the two platforms, their features, ease of use, pricing, and more.

By the end of this article, you’ll have a clear understanding of which platform is better suited for your business.

Main Difference Between Big Cartel and Shopify

The main difference between Big Cartel and Shopify is their target audience. Big Cartel is designed for small businesses and artists who require a simple and affordable solution for selling their products online. On the other hand, Shopify is designed for businesses of all sizes and provides advanced features and functionalities for scaling your business.

Comparison Table

FeatureBig CartelShopify
Ease of UseEasyEasy
Design andLimitedExtensive
CustomizationBasicExtensive
PricingMoreLess
Payment OptionsLimitedWide
Apps and IntegrationsBasicExtensive

Overview of Big Cartel and Shopify

Big Cartel and Shopify are both e-commerce platforms that allow businesses to create and manage online stores.

Both platforms provide various features and tools to make it easy for users to build a website and start selling products online. Here’s a brief overview of each platform:

What is Big Cartel?

Big Cartel is a platform that focuses on providing a simple and easy-to-use solution for small businesses and artists. It’s designed for users who don’t have a lot of experience with building websites or managing online stores.

Key Features of Big Cartel

  1. Ease of Use: Big Cartel is easy to use and requires no coding experience, making it accessible to users with limited technical knowledge.
  2. Design and Customization: While Big Cartel has limited design options, users can still choose from various customizable templates and modify them to match their brand.
  3. Pricing: Big Cartel offers a free plan and affordable paid plans, making it a budget-friendly option for small businesses and artists.
  4. Payment Options: Big Cartel integrates with popular payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe, but it doesn’t offer a built-in payment processing option or support third-party payment gateways.
  5. Apps and Integrations: Big Cartel has a limited app store that offers basic integrations, including shipping and marketing tools, but it doesn’t support third-party apps.

What is Shopify?

Shopify is a comprehensive e-commerce platform that offers a wide range of features and tools for businesses of all sizes. It’s known for its flexibility, scalability, and ease of use.

Shopify provides everything businesses need to build and manage an online store, from website design to payment processing.

Key Features of Shopify

  1. Ease of Use: Shopify is user-friendly and offers a drag-and-drop interface, making it easy to set up a store.
  2. Design and Customization: Shopify offers extensive design and customization options, with over 70 customizable templates and a drag-and-drop editor.
  3. Pricing: Shopify’s pricing is higher than Big Cartel but offers more advanced features and functionalities, making it a suitable option for medium to large businesses.
  4. Payment Options: Shopify supports over 100 payment gateways, including built-in payment processing and third-party gateways. The platform also offers a secure checkout system for customers.
  5. Apps and Integrations: Shopify’s app store offers a wide range of third-party apps and integrations, including marketing, shipping, accounting, and more.

Let’s take a look at how Big Cartel and Shopify compare in terms of ease of use.

User-friendly Interface

Big Cartel Big Cartel is known for its user-friendly interface and simple setup process. Users can choose from a range of customizable templates and easily add products to their store.

The platform also offers basic inventory management, making it easy to keep track of stock levels.

However, Big Cartel may be limiting for businesses that require more advanced features.

Shopify Shopify is designed to be user-friendly and easy to use, even for beginners.

The platform offers a drag-and-drop interface that allows users to customize their websites without any coding knowledge.

Shopify also provides extensive inventory management features, including product variants, SKUs, and inventory tracking.

Additionally, Shopify offers a wide range of third-party apps and plugins that can add even more functionality to your store.

Winner: Shopify

Design and Customization When it comes to creating an online store, design, and customization are essential factors to consider.

Let’s take a look at how Big Cartel and Shopify compare in terms of design and customization.

Big Cartel Big Cartel offers a range of customizable templates that users can use to create their online store. However, the number of templates available is limited compared to other platforms.

Additionally, customization options are relatively limited, making it difficult to create a unique website design.

Shopify offers a range of customizable templates that users can use to create their online store. The platform also provides extensive customization options, including the ability to modify CSS and HTML.

Shopify’s app store offers a wide range of third-party themes and plugins that can add even more functionality and customization options to your store.

Winner: Shopify

Big Cartel vs. Shopify: Pricing

Pricing is a significant factor to consider when choosing an e-commerce platform. Let’s take a look at how Big Cartel and Shopify compare in terms of pricing.

Big Cartel Pricing & Plans

Big Cartel Big Cartel offers a free plan that allows users to sell up to 5 products. For businesses that require more features and functionalities, there are three paid plans available:

  • Platinum: $9.99 per month, 25 products, and basic customization options.
  • Diamond: $19.99 per month, 100 products, and more customization options.
  • Titanium: $29.99 per month, 300 products, and advanced customization options.

Overall, Big Cartel is a more affordable option for small businesses or artists with limited products and basic needs.

Shopify Pricing & Plans

Shopify offers a 14-day free trial, after which users can choose from various pricing plans, including:

  • Basic Shopify: $29 per month, includes a website, blog, and unlimited products.
  • Shopify: $79 per month, includes advanced reporting and gift cards.
  • Advanced Shopify: $299 per month, includes advanced reporting and third-party calculated shipping rates.

Shopify’s pricing is higher than Big Cartel, but the platform provides more advanced features and functionalities that are suitable for medium to large businesses.

Winner: Tie (depending on your business size and needs)

Payment Options

Payment options are a crucial factor to consider when choosing an e-commerce platform. Let’s take a look at how Big Cartel and Shopify compare in terms of payment options.

Big Cartel Big Cartel integrates with popular payment gateways such as PayPal and Stripe, making it easy for businesses to accept payments online. However, the platform doesn’t support third-party payment gateways or offer a built-in payment processing option.

Shopify offers a wide range of payment options, including third-party gateways, built-in payment processing, and even cryptocurrency payments.

The platform supports over 100 payment gateways, making it easy for businesses to accept payments from customers worldwide.

Winner: Shopify

Apps and Integrations

Apps and integrations are essential for adding additional features and functionalities to your online store. Let’s take a look at how Big Cartel and Shopify compare in terms of apps and integrations.

Big Cartel Big Cartel has a limited app store that offers basic integrations, including shipping and marketing tools. However, the platform doesn’t support third-party apps, making it difficult to add more advanced features to your store.

Shopify’s app store offers a wide range of third-party apps and integrations that can add even more features and functionalities to your store. The platform integrates with various tools, including shipping, marketing, accounting, and more.

Winner: Shopify

How to Set Up a Store Using Big Cartel

  1. Get a free account: To set up a store on Big Cartel, sign up for a free account and choose a pricing plan that fits your needs.
  2. Customize your store: Select a customizable template and modify it to match your brand. Add your products and set up your payment options.
  3. Launch your store: Once you’re happy with your store’s design and functionality, launch your store and start selling your products.

How to Set Up a Store Using Shopify

  1. Sign up: To set up a store on Shopify, sign up for a free 14-day trial and choose a pricing plan that fits your needs.
  2. Customize your store: Choose a template to customize, and use the drag-and-drop editor to customize it as you want. Quickly add the products you want to sell, and set up your payment options.
  3. Launch your store: Once your store’s design is great, it’s time to launch it and start selling your products.

Big Cartel vs. Shopify: Summary

In summary, both Big Cartel and Shopify have unique features and functionalities, making them suitable for different types of businesses.

Setting up a store on both platforms is easy, with no coding experience required.

Ultimately, the choice between Big Cartel and Shopify depends on your business size, needs, and budget.

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