BigCommerce and Shopify are both website builders and eCommerce platforms that enable merchants to sell both physical and digital products online. Both BigCommerce and Shopify are ‘software as a service’ (Saas) tools. There is an ongoing monthly fee to access the software.

Design & User Experience (UX)

If the front-end is a mess, customers will bounce faster than you can say ‘tacky’. Because that’s exactly how a messy design looks: tacky. 

Shopify

Shopify doesn’t disappoint when it comes to design. There are more than 100 designs/themes to choose from with custom development an option. Our team are Shopify Experts and can work some truly marvellous Shopify magic. With a focus on user experience and usability, Shopify base designs and the ability to customise the perfect store, Shopify knock design out of the park. This focus on user experience is not only for customers in the front-end but also transfers to back-end functionality. The Shopify Dashboard is clean and easy to use. 

BigCommerce

BigCommerce also offers many store themes to choose from and a clean user dashboard interface. BigCommerce also offers a drag-and-drop interface that allows merchants to manipulate the content of pages. 

Shopify Plus vs BigCommerce Enterprise

Each of these offerings are enterprise-level versions of the respective platforms for merchants with large-volume sales. We’ve found that Enterprise-level brands are increasingly making the switch from BigCommerce to Shopify Plus. There’s a less frequently discussed ‘dark side’ to high-volume selling. More problems appear, ones that had previously never arisen, due to the strains of scale. 

BigCommerce boasts 28% year-on-year growth, twice the industry average. Merchants on Shopify Plus are growing 126% year-on-year on average – this figure alone has us recommending Shopify Plus as the optimal solution. The degree to which the platforms help merchants grow is the standout figure and the obvious difference. 

In terms of performance and functionality, page speed is three times faster on Shopify Plus than BigCommerce with industry-leading uptime and zero Black Friday Cyber Monday outages. Third-party systems such as open API and push webhooks are easily integrated and the front-end is fully customisable. 

The more sophisticated the merchant and more complex their business, the more likely they are to choose Shopify Plus as a Saas solution. 

Shopify Plus

A well established SaaS eCommerce platform based on the core Shopify platform. Shopify Plus has been growing rapidly over the last few years and has built a strong ecosystem with many high profile brands and high volume retailers moving to the platform including Gymshark, Steve Madden, Dr. Ace, and Kylie Cosmetics. 

  • Scalable SaaS-based eCommerce platform with a low cost of ownership
  • Incredibly strong technology partner ecosystem and lots of existing integrations with complimentary systems. 
  • Very strong integration partner network / ecosystem
  • Proven in the enterprise bracket – lots of big brand retailers already use the platform

Shopify Plus is more proven at different levels and boasts an exceptionally strong ecosystem around the platform. 

BigCommerce Enterprise

Designed for higher volume and more complex retailers, BigCommerce Enterprise has a number of features that aren’t available on the lower tier versions of BigCommerce. 

B2B

Shopify Plus has improved their wholesale offering. We recommend watching this wholesale walkthrough for a comprehensive overview. 

BigCommerce is focused on pushing into the B2B and wholesale markets, with a strong native feature-set and a number of APIs. 

Apps & Integrations 

Shopify offers over 2000 aps and a large number of integrations compared to BigCommerce’s 500+ apps in its store.

Shopify has the benefit of offering the Google customer reviews integration on all plans, whereas BigCommerce only includes that integration on the $299.95 plan. Both platforms offer built-in integration for services such as Amazon, and allow store owners to sync their Amazon, eBay and social media stores to their website storefront. Merchants can manage multiple channels from a single dashboard on both Saas platforms. 

Shopify offers an edge with its many apps and more options for integrations. This means greater flexibility, better user experience and improved functionality. 

Integration Partner Ecosystem

Shopify Plus has a robust integration partner ecosystem with certified app technologies working seamlessly with the platform, reducing complexity so businesses can focus on growth. 

Automation

Each with a wide selection of eCommerce business apps and integrations, both BigCommerce Enterprise and Shopify Plus enable automation of various business processes. Shopify Plus has the added advantage of offering Shopify Flow, an automation solution connecting eCommerce systems and tools with seamless integrations. 

BigCommerce

BigCommerce enables businesses to connect to email marketing and automation software like HubSpot, automate shipping processes by integrating with providers such as ShipStation. Bicommerce has partnered with Avalara to put taxes on autopilot while customer and order data can be automatically synced. As you can see, automation comes primarily through the integration partners. 

Shopify Flow

Simple workflows help businesses automate the most complex processes. Shopify Flow is the first eCommerce automation solution that connects your eCommerce systems and tools with seamless integrations. Instead of disconnected apps, third-party tools, and manual workarounds, Flow is built right into your commerce platform. 

Features of Shopify Flow automation: 

  • Tag and segment customers based on buying behaviour
  • Automate inventory management for low-stock products
  • Standardise merchandising and product organisation
  • Track and reward customers based on lifetime spend
  • Automatically cancel high-risk orders or prompt a review
  • Create custom workflows with a simple trigger-condition-action formula

Shopify Flow supports a wide range of triggers from the Shopify Plus platform and also now integrates with technology partners. 

Additional Considerations

Shopify offers 1-click upsells whereas BigCommerce does not have post-purchase 1-click upsells. This is a beneficial feature to increase customer lifetime value. BigCommerce also automatically moves you to higher pricing if you are selling more, so you are charged based on transactions per month. 

Shopify also recently announced the Shop app, the Instagram of businesses that we anticipate will revolutionise the way customers shop on their mobile devices. Shopify is also joining forces with Facebook to bring the all-new Facebook Shops to Shopify merchants, a new shopping experience that lets merchants create customisable storefronts on both Facebook and Instagram. 

Read more about Shopify’s latest announcements, new releases and upgrades in our reunite recap

Written.

by Sequoia Painter
June 25, 2020

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