8 Best BigCartel Alternatives: What Else is Out There?

big cartel logoThis article will show you eight BigCartel alternatives, and help you decide which platform would be best for you.

BigCartel is the only ecommerce website builder that lets you sell for free. In that sense, it’s a unique product. However, it scored really poorly in our research and user testing – so poorly, in fact, that it finished last overall.

Out of all the platforms we tested, it’s the hardest to use, and requires some coding knowledge. The website features lack quality, too, so you can already see why BigCartel might not be for you.

That being said, BigCartel is best suited to small businesses looking to stay small, and it’s good for selling individual products like art pieces.

How does it compare to other ecommerce platforms? Well, to make things easier for you, we’ve done our research and asked some everyday folk to try each platform. So, we’ve really got under the skin of every website builder, and found eight of the best BigCartel alternatives out there. These are:

  1. Shopify – best overall ecommerce platform
  2. Wix – great value for money
  3. BigCommerce – best built-in features
  4. Squarespace – best designed templates
  5. Weebly – the one to watch
  6. Volusion – great analytics features
  7. GoDaddy – fastest to build an online store
  8. 3dcart – good, but there’s better out there

We’ll take you on a whistle-stop tour of each platform, giving you quick insights into each one and ultimately helping you choose the best alternative.

Excited to learn? Excellent. Let’s start the tour…

For more information, Compare Each Ecommerce Platform.

Or, check out our Best Ecommerce Website Builders page.

And why not read our review of the Best Ecommerce Platforms?

Best BigCartel Alternatives

Our independent research found the best ecommerce platforms on the market. Here’s a  list of the top BigCartel alternatives.

The best BigCartel alternatives are:

  • Shopify – best overall ecommerce platform
  • Wix – great value for money
  • BigCommerce – best built-in features
  • Squarespace – best designed templates
  • Weebly – the one to watch
  • Volusion – great analytics features
  • GoDaddy – fastest to build an online store
  • 3dcart – good, but there’s better out there

We should clarify that while some of these platforms are specifically for ecommerce, others are website builders with ecommerce functionality. The latter is best if you want to build a cool website first, then sell a few products, but for bigger online stores, the ecommerce-specific platforms are what you need.

Shopify

Best all-around ecommerce platform

Best All-Around Ecommerce Platform

4.7 out of 5

Top Choice
Ease Of Use

4 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

5 out of 5 stars

Shopify is our top rated ecommerce website builder. It grabbed the number one spot for Sales Features and Customer Score, and rated highly in other areas like Ease of Use and Help and Support. In short, Shopify is the best solution for your online store.

Pricing: $21.75/month – $299/month

Wix

Great value for money

Great Value for Money

4.3 out of 5

Ease Of Use

4 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4.5 out of 5 stars

The best ‘generic’ website builder on the market, Wix is definitely not a quick fix when it comes to building an online store. Thanks to its drag-and-drop design, you have the most creative control of any platform, too.

Pricing: $15.00/month – $45.90/month

BigCommerce

Best built-in features

Best Built-In Features

4.2 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3.5 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

3.5 out of 5 stars

BigCommerce has everything you need for building an ecommerce empire, all in one place. It’s the best platform for fast-growing businesses, offering the most scalable tools. If you have grand ecommerce ambitions, BigCommerce may be just what you need.

Pricing: $29.95/month – $249.95/month

Squarespace

Best designed templates

Best Designed Templates

4.2 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3.5 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4 out of 5 stars

Squarespace creates sleek, sumptuous-looking online stores, providing the finest templates on the market. Naturally, it’s the best choice for photographers and business owners selling visually impressive products. It also has some brilliant ecommerce tools, so it’s not just a pretty face.

Pricing: $18.00/month – $46.00/month

Weebly

The one to watch

The One to Watch

4.1 out of 5

Ease Of Use

4 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4 out of 5 stars

Money on your mind? Not only is Weebly easy to use, it’s great value for money. Create your awesome online store quickly, without breaking the bank. Weebly isn’t quite up to the mark when compared to its ecommerce competitors, but it’s a good all-around choice.

Pricing: $5.00/month – $46.00/month

Volusion

Great analytics features

Great Analytics Features

3.9 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

3.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

2.5 out of 5 stars

Love crunching numbers? Volusion has all the analytics features to keep you entertained. While creating your Volusion website may not be the smoothest ride, you can really sink your teeth into some tasty inventory tools, payment gateways, and data reports.

Pricing: $13.50/month – $299.00/month

GoDaddy

Fastest to build an online store

Fastest to Build an Online Store

3.7 out of 5

Ease Of Use

4.5 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

2.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

2.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4.5 out of 5 stars

Don’t have time to click, drag, and build? GoDaddy is the easiest way to kick start your ecommerce career. Using GoCentral, an ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) tool, you can have a GoDaddy online store ready to go live within a few minutes.

Pricing: $19.99/month

3dcart

Good, but there’s better out there

Good, But There's Better Out There

3.7 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

3 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

2 out of 5 stars

3dcart may rank quite poorly in our research, but it does have a really impressive backend. The inventory gives you lots of control, and you benefit from SEO (Search Engine Optimization) prompts when adding products. Sure, it’s hard to use, but if you love data, you could do a lot worse.

Pricing: $17.10/month – $229.00/month

We’ll now go into more detail on each BigCartel alternative…

For a quick overview, you can Compare Online Store Builders.

#1 Shopify

Best all-around ecommerce platform

Best All-Around Ecommerce Platform

4.7 out of 5

Top Choice
Ease Of Use

4 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

5 out of 5 stars

Shopify is the best platform for building your online store. Not only does it have the most comprehensive range of sales tools, but it’s really easy to use.

In fact, Shopify ticks all the boxes. It provides 24/7 customer support, and lets you sell across multiple channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. The platform loses points for enforcing transaction fees if you don’t use its own payment gateway, but overall, you can’t really do much better than Shopify.

shopify best bigcartel alternative
Shopify is powerful and easy to use, making it the best all-around choice for your online store

Shopify Pros Shopify Cons
  • Multichannel selling
  • Brilliant inventory system
  • No free domain for the first year
  • Enforces transaction fees when using alternative payment methods

Why choose Shopify instead of BigCartel?

  • Best overall ecommerce platform
  • More comprehensive set of sales tools
  • Easier to use

Like the sound of Shopify? Check out our full Shopify Review.

Or, for a comparison piece, read our BigCommerce vs Shopify article to help you make the right choice.

#2 Wix

Great value for money

Great Value for Money

4.3 out of 5

Ease Of Use

4 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4.5 out of 5 stars

Wix is a website builder first and foremost – the best one out there, in fact – but it’s now one of the better options for ecommerce websites. Its intuitive drag-and-drop design makes building your online store a breeze, and can help develop your brand image as well.

It may lack some ecommerce features – like abandoned cart recovery, which sends an email to customers who leave your site before finalising a purchase – but overall, the Wix ecommerce experience is an enjoyable one.

Wix also came first in our testing for Customer Support and Value for Money, so you can see why it’s so popular.

wix bigcartel alternative
Wix is suitable for tech beginners because it gives you creative freedom with its drag-and-drop design

Wix Pros Wix Cons
  • Really easy to use
  • Add product videos
  • No abandoned cart recovery feature
  • Cannot sell on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest

Why choose Wix instead of BigCartel?

  • Much easier to use
  • Most creative control of any platform
  • Better customer support

#3 BigCommerce

Best built-in features

Best Built-In Features

4.2 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3.5 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

3.5 out of 5 stars

As the name suggests, BigCommerce is for large online stores. It’s the most scalable platform of the bunch, offering all the features you need for quickly growing your business, all in one place.

BigCommerce is harder to use than Shopify or Wix. Its interface is covered with jargon, but that’s to be expected from such a powerful platform.

There’s no mobile app, so you can’t manage your store on the go. However, once you climb over the initial BigCommerce learning curve, you can dive into its depth of features: these include multi-channel selling, 40+ payment gateways, and the ability to sell digital, physical, and service-based products.

bigcommerce homepage
BigCommerce has everything you need for a successful online store built-in, saving you money on integrating apps

BigCommerce Pros BigCommerce Cons
  • Best and most built-in features
  • Fantastic SEO features
  • Editing interface is hard to navigate
  • No mobile app

Why choose BigCommerce instead of BigCartel?

  • Best built-in tools on the market
  • Best for businesses looking to scale
  • Only platform letting you sell physical, digital, and service-based products

For more detail on BigCommerce, read our in-depth BigCommerce Review.

#4 Squarespace

Best designed templates

Best Designed Templates

4.2 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3.5 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4 out of 5 stars

With Squarespace stores, your products take center stage. The builder has the best designed templates of any platform, so you’ll have a beautiful website to match your products.

Squarespace is tricky to use compared to other non-ecommerce specific builders. It has no app store, but overall it has real strength and depth in its features. Some of our favourites include the social media integration and in-depth analytics reports.

It’s not the cheapest option out there, with price plans starting at $18 per month, but the builder does provide a 14-day free trial.

squarespace ecommerce
Squarespace lets you build a beautiful ecommerce store with the best designed templates around

Squarespace Pros Squarespace Cons
  • Best designed templates
  • Great inventory system
  • Lacks numerous payment options
  • No app store

Why choose Squarespace instead of BigCartel?

  • Best designed templates
  • Better quality of features
  • Social media integration

#5 Weebly

The one to watch

The One to Watch

4.1 out of 5

Ease Of Use

4 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

4 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4 out of 5 stars

Cost conscious? You can stop spending time and effort searching for a budget friendly website builder, because Weebly is the one for you.

With monthly price plans starting from just $5, you might be worrying that Weebly lacks real strengthbut fear not. Having recently been bought by payment processors Square, it’s becoming a better player in the ecommerce field, and offers some of the best blogging features on the market.

That said, Weebly doesn’t provide any big data tools, so you can’t manage your store inventory or update stock levels. You can’t sell across social media, either.

On the plus side, Weebly is a really easy builder to use. And thanks to this classic combination of ease of use and great value for money, Weebly presents itself as a good choice for most small businesses.

weebly ecommerce
Weebly is the best value for money platform, ideal for budget-conscious business owners

Weebly Pros Weebly Cons
  • Really easy to use
  • Best value for money
  • Cannot customize checkout page
  • Cannot sell across multiple channels

Why choose Weebly instead of BigCartel?

  • Much easier to use
  • Better for blogging
  • Users aren’t required to code app integrations

Like the sound of Weebly? Read our in-depth Weebly Ecommerce Review.

But how does Weebly fare against Shopify? Click here to find out.

#6 Volusion

Great analytics features

Great Analytics Features

3.9 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

3.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

2.5 out of 5 stars

Volusion sits somewhere in the middle of the ecommerce platform park. It has some really good data features and analytics tools, and provides plenty of payment gateways, but it has no real niche. It’s also hard to use.

There’s no blogging feature and you can’t sell digital products, meaning Volusion can’t match the likes of Shopify or BigCommerce in terms of features.

However, it offers plenty of analytical insight to help you grow your business more easily, and it has a mobile app so you can sell on the go. Overall, Volusion is an average product with some redeeming features.

volusion homepage
Volusion gives you plenty of data insights, so you can easily keep track of your site’s performance

Volusion Pros Volusion Cons
  • Lots of payment gateways
  • Great data analytics
  • Cannot sell digital products
  • No niche feature

Why choose Volusion instead of BigCartel?

  • More payment gateways
  • Better data tools
  • Clearer inventory system

You can read our full Volusion Review here.

#7 GoDaddy

Fastest to build an online store

Fastest to Build an Online Store

3.7 out of 5

Ease Of Use

4.5 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

2.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

2.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

3 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

4.5 out of 5 stars

Got a need for speed? GoDaddy is the quickest way to build an ecommerce store. Using ADI to create a website with cheetah-like speed, it may indeed feel like cheating, but it’s the best option for time conscious users.

GoDaddy sacrifices creative freedom for speed, so if you have a keen eye for design, you should look to Wix or Squarespace. The platform also lacks quality in its features (there’s no blogging or social media integration), but for overall ease of use, GoDaddy makes building a website child’s play.

There’s no confusion when it comes to payments, either. With a flat price of $19.99, it’s easy to manage your invoices and checks at the end of each month. It also offers a one month free trial.

godaddy ecommerce
Thanks to its ADI, GoDaddy is perfect for business owners looking to get online as quickly as possible

GoDaddy Pros GoDaddy Cons
  • Easiest to use
  • Supports most industries of any platform
  • Some features lack quality
  • Cannot sell digital products

Why choose GoDaddy instead of BigCartel?

  • Easiest platform to use
  • Fastest way to build an ecommerce store
  • Supports wider range of industries

For more information, check out our GoDaddy Ecommerce Review.

#8 3dcart

Good, but there’s better out there

Good, But There's Better Out There

3.7 out of 5

Ease Of Use

3 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Website Features

3 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

2 out of 5 stars

3dcart is the iceberg of our list. It’s tricky to navigate around and doesn’t look like much on the surface, but dive a little deeper and there’s much more to it. In short, 3dcart has a really impressive backend, but it’s really hard to use.

However, despite its poor rankings in our testing, 3dcart actually has a fantastic inventory system. You can change themes anytime, which gives you lots of flexibility, and it comes with an excellent third party app installation tool named Zapier.

3dcart homepage
3dcart has some of the best SEO features of any platform, helping more people find your online store

3dcart Pros 3dcart Cons
  • SEO prompts when adding products
  • Lots of inventory management control
  • Hard to use
  • No mobile app

Why choose 3dcart instead of BigCartel?

  • Better for SEO
  • Easier to integrate apps
  • More extensive backend

Check out our 3dcart Ecommerce Review for more information on this platform.

What about open-source ecommerce platforms?

Website builders aren’t the only option for creating an online store. There are open-source platforms to consider, too.

Also known as self-hosted softwares, these platforms give you much more freedom than website builders, but they’re harder to use. Why so difficult? There’s just more to do, and they require a solid grasp of tech – for starters, you need to code the website and organise web hosting yourself.

Two of the most popular open-source platforms are Magento and WooCommerce. Both offer you unlimited customization because you can code your store to your heart’s content, making them ideal for tech savvy perfectionists.

While you can build any type of ecommerce store with Magento, WooCommerce is slightly different. It’s a WordPress plugin, so, unsurprisingly, you’ll need a WordPress site to use it.

How to choose a BigCartel alternative

When looking for a BigCartel alternative, there are some things to consider:

  • Is it easier to use?
  • Does it have more built-in features?
  • Am I required to code anything?
  • How expensive is it?
  • Do the templates look good?

We understand it’s a difficult choice, particularly with so many options out there. So it’s worth knowing that each platform in our list of eight has a free plan or free trial, so you can try before you buy.

Is BigCartel right for you?

Still undecided? No big deal – BigCartel might even be the best option for you! After all, it does have over 250,000 trusted users around the globe.

BigCartel has a brilliant niche: it’s the only platform on the market that lets you sell for free. In contrast, while a builder like Wix lets you build a store at no cost, to actually sell products, you need to upgrade to a paid plan.

However, there are reasons why BigCartel came last in our independent research. Some of these include:

  • Hardest platform to use
  • Coding knowledge is required
  • Poor theme designs
  • Features lack quality

Despite these flaws, BigCartel is a good option for small businesses looking to stay small. Better still, if you have some coding knowledge, you can watch your BigCartel store blossom into something more beautiful.

Best BigCartel alternatives: Summary

You’re looking for a BigCartel alternative, and we’ve introduced eight candidates. You should now have a better understanding of what else is out there, and what other platforms are best at.

Hopefully it’s still fresh, but let’s quickly recap the best BigCartel alternatives:

  1. Shopify – best overall ecommerce platform
  2. Wix – great value for money
  3. BigCommerce – best built-in features
  4. Squarespace – best designed templates
  5. Weebly – the one to watch
  6. Volusion – great analytics features
  7. GoDaddy – fastest to build an online store
  8. 3dcart – good, but there’s better out there

For a more numerical insight, check out the final rating scores of each platform as per our independent research.

Platform Research Rating

Shopify

Wix

BigCommerce

Squarespace

Weebly

Volusion

GoDaddy

3dcart

BigCartel

94%

85%

84%

83%

83%

78%

75%

74%

57%

You can’t base your decision purely on percentages, though. When choosing a BigCartel alternative, you must consider the pricing, ease of use, design, and quality of features available. Each online store is different, and so are the platforms.

Remember, each platform on our list either has a free plan or free trial, which means you can test each one before spending a single dollar.

Sure, BigCartel does let you sell free of charge, but its quality could ultimately cost you in the long run.

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About Dan Barraclough

Dan Barraclough

I used to think website design was just for professionals. Because maybe like you, I have no coding or design experience. But, with the help of our expert researchers (and after testing every website builder myself), I can confidently guide you through on how to get the most out of each one.

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