Help with hosted shopping cart

by QwnV
13 replies
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I need a hosted cart for my vapor/head shop drop shipping site? I have zero experience with design, building a website or anything so really want to use Bigcommerce.

Is bigcommerce out of the question with my specific niche?

ETA: I looked into hiring out for build up and design, my first and only contact gave me an estimate of $1700 using magento community. 1700 is wayyyy out of my budget
#cart #hosted #shopping
  • Profile picture of the author Solid Commerce
    Magento might be a tough one because it's a bit tough without some intense developing skills.

    Volusion is a bit easier to deal with, but might require that you enlist the help of someone with more a design background.

    I also know that BigCommerce is an option that many sellers like. It's easy to set up, and highly customizable.

    Hope this helps! You're more than welcome to shoot me a PM for some more info.

    _ Sean B.
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    _ Sean B.
    Solid Commerce

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  • Profile picture of the author Anton Louis
    Originally Posted by QwnV View Post

    I need a hosted cart for my vapor/head shop drop shipping site? I have zero experience with design, building a website or anything so really want to use Bigcommerce.

    Is bigcommerce out of the question with my specific niche?

    ETA: I looked into hiring out for build up and design, my first and only contact gave me an estimate of $1700 using magento community. 1700 is wayyyy out of my budget
    Shopify ALL DAY.

    They have free themes that would be perfectly for your store and you can edit everything yourself with 0 knowledge of coding/design. They have extremely easy to use template editors. Give it a try and see what you think. They offer a 14 day free trial (no cc required).
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  • Profile picture of the author QwnV
    thanks all, I will try the free trail of both Bigcommerce and shopify starting this weekend. My only concern would be if my specific content or product goes against bigcommerce or shopify TOS.
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    https://www.purplevaporsuite.com QUALITY SMOKING SUPPLIES AND ACCESSORIES
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  • Profile picture of the author tbk125
    I use bigcommerce & love it, I could be wrong but I think shopify has a few more features available to use some of which I really wish I had.
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    • Profile picture of the author OnlineStoreHelp
      I have seen other ecig shops that use BigCommerce so that should not be an issue. They have some new themes which is a welcome addition to make sites look more professional.

      Shopify is great as well but it all depends what you want to do with your site, whether you need dub-categories, track SKU specific inventory etc, is where I feel Shopify can fall short at times.

      Magento CE will be overkill for you at first. Plus then you have all the hassle and expense of getting hosting, SSL certificates, updates, etc. I am sure the $1700 doesn't include maintenance either.
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      • Profile picture of the author agmccall
        I have used both Networksolutions (formerly monster commerce) and 3dcart Both are easy and affordable and very little skills are needed to get your store up and running and their support is really good

        al
        Signature

        A bar of iron cost $5. Made into horseshoes, it's worth $12. Made into needles, it's worth $3500. Made into balance springs for watches, it's worth $300,000. Your value is determined by what you are able to make of yourself

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        • Profile picture of the author dburk
          Hi QwnV,

          ETA: I looked into hiring out for build up and design, my first and only contact gave me an estimate of $1700 using magento community. 1700 is wayyyy out of my budget
          When you ask someone else to do all of the work for you, then it is only fair that you pay them for your time, right? While Magento CE is an excellent choice as a cart for your web store, it is a full featured shopping cart and it is free (Enterprise editions start at about $12,000). The $1700 was a quote for a custom theme based upon a custom design, right?

          If you don't need a custom design, then sure, going with a hosted cart is an easy choice. However, did you consider going with a pre-made theme for Magento? There are many excellent themes for Magento already pre-built, just install, create your categories and product descriptions, upload your logo and product images, fill in the sales copy, add payment methods, and launch. It's pretty much the same amount of work as you will encounter when you go with a hosted solution.

          It only becomes expensive when you start paying someone else to do the work for you. Did you know that there are many excellent Magento themes that can be purchased for $50-$100, and even a handful of really good themes that are free?

          Themes - Magento Connect
          260+ Magento Themes & Templates | ThemeForest
          Premium Magento Themes | Magento Templates | HelloThemes
          Magento Themes | Magento Templates | Template Monster
          EMThemes - Magento Themes / Magento Templates
          Magento Themes, Magento Templates,Magento Theme, Magento Template
          Magento Themes | Magento Templates
          Magento Themes & Templates | Templates Master
          Magento Themes | Magento Templates | Magento Extensions
          Premium Magento Themes - Premium Magento Templates | GalaThemes
          Magento Themes and Magento Templates by aheadWorks
          Magento Themes | Magento Templates
          Themer (MG) - Products
          Magento Themes and Magento Templates by MageWorld
          FREE Magento Themes – High-quality, Fresh Designs!

          I just built 2 new webstores recently on Magento CE, took less than an hour to setup the hosting account, install the Magento script, purchase ($80) and download the theme, add my logo and store information. I couldn't have done it much faster, or for less money if I had used a hosted solution.

          The point being, just because you can hire a programmer to build a custom theme doesn't mean that you need to, or that you should. I am constantly hearing people say that Magento is an expensive way to go, and it just isn't accurate. The fact is that Magento CE is open source (free) software. Professionally designed themes for Magento are readily available, and very inexpensive.

          The one thing that you do need to realize about Magento is that it is a full featured shopping cart, and since it has many features it does require more learning time to master all of those features.

          The bottom line is that you will likely need only a small fraction of the features that are already built in to Magento, all for free, and you can get everything you need for free or very little money, as long as you are willing to do the work involved. Just ignore what you do not need and Magento will be just as easy as any other platform.

          One thing I sometimes do for clients is I disable all of their user account permissions for features that they are not using. They only see menu items for the features they actively use, and Magento's admin panel is super simple to use this way.

          In the long run, if you are successful in ecommerce, you are going to end up customizing many things in your quest for ever higher conversion rates. So you might as well plan for this and start with a platform that will support you future plans, else it will be like starting over having to learn a totally new cart.
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        • Profile picture of the author darbok
          In comparative shopping, network solutions is a rip off.


          Originally Posted by agmccall View Post

          I have used both Networksolutions (formerly monster commerce) and 3dcart Both are easy and affordable and very little skills are needed to get your store up and running and their support is really good

          al
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          • Profile picture of the author agmccall
            Originally Posted by darbok View Post

            In comparative shopping, network solutions is a rip off.
            In what way??

            I had great success with them

            al
            Signature

            A bar of iron cost $5. Made into horseshoes, it's worth $12. Made into needles, it's worth $3500. Made into balance springs for watches, it's worth $300,000. Your value is determined by what you are able to make of yourself

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            • Profile picture of the author darbok
              I wouldn't say that someone would be unsuccessful, not saying that at all! When I was price comparing for an online store, I looked at a bunch of the more popular ones like volusion, shopify, 1st cart etc... some were just a better bang for the buck, network solution in terms of bang for the buck was a bit on the bottom end... so maybe saying ripoff was too strong a word, maybe more price to value for what you get is lower then others.

              Originally Posted by agmccall View Post

              In what way??

              I had great success with them

              al
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  • Profile picture of the author Shopitpress
    If you "have zero experience with design, building a website or anything"

    Just use WordPress and WooCommerce. It's dead easy to setup even for not technical user. You will be up and running in no time. All what you need is domain name cheap hosting plan and that's it. You will want to get a premium theme for your shop, but that's not mandatory there is plenty of free themes in the market.

    In your situation i would definitely stay away from magento. It's far too complex and hard to setup. And all the premium themes costs a fortune. I don't talk about the development prices. They are high too.

    If you want fast, professional looking solution just go for WP and WooCommerce mate.
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  • Profile picture of the author QwnV
    Hey! Thanks everyone for all the great advice...

    Thanks @onlinestorehelp the info about ecig and BC was the piece I was looking for.. I am going to start the free trial of bigcommerce.

    @dburk yes, I do believe it was custom theme ...you have some good info I will look into those free themes for magento and toy around with that too.
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    https://www.purplevaporsuite.com QUALITY SMOKING SUPPLIES AND ACCESSORIES
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  • Profile picture of the author emidelicious
    @dburk add this site in your list which offers free themes for Magento that are worthy using;

    Free Magento Templates

    @QwnV, keep in mind that Magento is difficult to customize and build so it costs money, but on the other hand it returns way more than any other CMS/shopping cart.
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