Volusion Review | Key Things You Should Know

Last updated on March 18, 2019
Volusion review

Volusion Review Highlights

Comprehensive e-commerce tools (with almost 80 Apps if you need more tools).

24/7 support (phone, online chat, email) – reachable any time.

No transaction fees at all – so you can keep all your profits.

Volusion review

Rating

Powering
30,000+ Stores

Starting from
$15.00/month

14 Days Trial
Yes

Review by
Last Updated on March 18, 2019

Great analytics tools, but a confusing editor system.

Love data, but not design? Volusion lets you manage and grow your online business easily with some great inbuilt features – but that’s about it. It could be the online store builder for you, but don’t get too excited.

What are the pros and cons of Volusion?

Pros:

  • Lots of payment methods
  • Great analytics tools
  • Mobile app

Cons:

  • Cannot sell digital products
  • No blogging function
  • SSL certificates cost extra

3.9out of 5

Ease Of Use

3 out of 5 stars

Design Flexibility

3.5 out of 5 stars

Customer Score

2.5 out of 5 stars

Help and Support

4 out of 5 stars

Value For Money

4 out of 5 stars

Website Features

3.5 out of 5 stars

Sales Features

4.5 out of 5 stars

Overview of Volusion

Volusion is one of the oldest ecommerce website builders around. Created in 1999, it lets you pay the bills, without the creative frills. What do we mean by this? Well, in summary, it has some great selling tools, but tricky design features.

So how many people are using it? The numbers are pretty respectable: it’s the chosen platform for roughly 30,000 online stores, and has churned through 185 million orders since it first launched.

But in the world or ecommerce, should you respect your elders? In other words, what’s so good about Volusion?

Volusion updates

Most recently, Volusion has updated to ‘V2’, a new operating system that brings with it some UX (User Experience) improvements. Firstly, it has a much clearer inventory system, so it’s really easy to manage your stock.

But, most importantly, it provides tons of useful data, analytics tools, and payment options. So you can see where its strengths are already.

Also, in an attempt to keep pace with ecommerce leaders like Shopify, Volusion has focused on bringing business features and site-creation tools together, by starting the user journey in the storefront editor.

However, while the business tools are ok, they’re nothing too exciting. There’s no niche offering, it doesn’t let you blog, and you need to constantly switch between the front and back end to build your site. Overall, it’s for lovers of data, not design.

How did we come to this conclusion? At Website Builder Expert we combined some of our own expert analysis with thorough user testing, which you can read about here.

Overall, we gave Volusion 3.9 stars. Read on to find out why…

How easy is Volusion to use?

In short, Volusion is pretty easy to use – if you have no interest in designing a website’s appearance.

But – and it’s a big but – if you want to design the actual website first, it’s very challenging. Most users in our testing found it simply too hard to navigate the front end.

And it’s not just us who think that. Here’s what one user had to say about Volusion’s ease of use:

There is just an utter lack of clarity over how to do things. It was just overly complicated.

For example, to edit text boxes, you need to find a strangely secretive blue button on the right hand side. And undertaking simple tasks is, well, not so simple.

We really recommend watching their onboarding video for more clarity.

Feeling inspired? Read our article on ‘how to build an online store‘.

Or learn how to sell online here.

Or, find your perfect ecommerce platform today.

Volusion ecommerce customer satisfaction

The big question here is, what do people actually think of Volusion? Is it the best ecommerce website builder out there?

The answer is not quite. As we’ve said, it’s great for data-driven users, but lacks the actual website building traits. And the people we tested agreed, with one person saying:

Use Volusion for the inventory and analytics features they provide, not the customization or web creation.

Another common flaw that came up was Volusion’s identity crisis. It tries to convince you it can build websites (by starting the free trial at the storefront), but it’s clear Volusion’s strengths are at the back.

One user summarized this issue with a suggestion:

Volusion should just direct you to the dashboard, where all the issues I encountered could be removed. Don’t put someone in the storefront if you are not capable of creating a site like Wix’s.

As we can see, in terms of creativity, Volusion isn’t up to the leading standards of the website builder industry. But it does the ecommerce stuff fairly well. And most of our users felt the same way.

Volusion sales tools and features

We’ve established Volusion is best for purely selling products. So, naturally, the ecommerce tools are very good. Let’s go over our favorite features:

Inventory

First of all, we love the product videos option. It’s a really handy feature provided by no other ecommerce builder. But who should use it? Well, any business with great visuals – such as clothes retailers – would stand to benefit.

Volusion also offers a ‘suggested products’ feature. This is a key win against its rival Shopify, which relies on third party integrations for the same function.

However, with Volusion, you cannot sell digital products. This really narrows down the types of business that should use it for example, if you’re looking to sell ebooks, music, or digital art, you should definitely look elsewhere.

Mobile app

Need to sell on the go? Volusion lets you manage your online store from your phone with its excellent mobile app. So you can check inventory, update prices, or snap product photos straight from your phone!

Third party apps

Best of all, though, Volusion wants you to customize your store as much as possible. How does it do this? By supporting 1,000+ apps through Zapier, covering everything from accounting to customer management.

Payment, transaction fees and shipping

Volusion supports a wide range of payment gateways, including PayPal and Stripe. It also caters for more tech savvy customers with digital wallet options like Amazon and Apple Pay.

However, some options, like Square, need to be integrated with Zapier. But it’s quick and easy to do.

volusion payment gateway options
Adding a payment option can be done in a couple of clicks

Within all of Volusion’s price plans, there are no transaction fees. However, usual credit card charges will be applied per payment.

And let’s not forget shipping. With Volusion, you can personalize invoices and packing slips with your own logo and text. Your customers will definitely appreciate the personal touch!

Blog

One issue with Volusion is that it doesn’t provide a blogging platform, which usually comes as standard with ecommerce builders these days. Why is this a problem? There are a few reasons. Blogs not only let you promote products and services, but they really help you rank higher in search engines.

While you can link your blog through a sub-domain, it’s time-consuming. As a business owner, do you need that added stress? We doubt it.

Looking for more options? Check out our Shopify review.

Or why not read our article on BigCommerce here.

How good are Volusion’s template designs?

Volusion offers 11 free themes, plus 34 paid themes costing $180 each. How does that compare with its rivals? There’s not too much difference: BigCommerce and Shopify both provide 50+ premium designs, costing $145-235 and $140-180, respectively.

But what do Volusion’s themes actually look like? First of all, they’ve been recently polished. They look much better than before the V2 update, but aren’t quite as sleek as those offered by Squarespace.

Also, the templates are very feature-specific. So, unless you find a theme to suit your business, you’ll have to pick a non-industry focused design. It’s not a huge problem, but it’s far from ideal.

volusion templates
Volusion has recently improved its templates, making them more sleek and polished

Another win over Shopify – Volusion lets you change templates anytime you like. This means you can mix up your online store’s appearance without worrying about repopulating your content. They do it all for you!

Volusion help and support

As with all technology, you’re bound to experience some minor issues. And for all your Volusion solutions, you can schedule a call with their support, or simply call them between 7am-10pm CST.

In true Volusion style, they want the experience to be personal. Every price plan except the Personal plan (we’ll get into the prices later) comes with 24/7 personal phone support. They don’t do emails, either, because they want to help you through direct contact.

However, if you’re on the Personal Plan, you can only get help online. This doesn’t include social media either, so don’t bother tweeting!

Volusion pricing - is it good value for money?

Volusion has a 14-day Free Trial, and five price plans:

  • Mini ($15 p/m)
  • Plus ($35 p/m)
  • Pro ($75 p/m)
  • Premium ($135 p/m)
  • Business ($299 p/m)

Strapped for cash? Volusion offers a Prime Custom Plan where you pay just $13.50 per month if you sign up for a year. But, as with all of its price plans, you need to purchase an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate costing $89-99. This protects your site from fraud, but it comes as standard on other platforms. It’s an extra cheeky cost to think about.

In our ecommerce website builder testing, Volusion’s price plans averaged as the most expensive. That said, the customization, control, and business scalability were impressive in all of them. While they’re relatively expensive, they all offer great in-built features, and you can throw in some useful apps.

Volusion review: The verdict

With the most extensive inventory of any website builder, Volusion well and truly focuses on data. While the excellent analytics tools let you manage and scale your business easily, it’s by no means the best ecommerce option. Shopify is the all-round champ.

In other words, it sits in the middle of the pack in all areas, apart from sales. Its standout strengths include product videos, the number of payment gateway options, and the suggested products feature.

However, we’ve only given Volusion 3.9 stars for a reason. It doesn’t let you blog, the storefront is confusing, and you need to buy an SSL separately. It doesn’t have an overall niche, either.

In a nutshell? It’s not one of the best options, but it does the selling stuff well. So if you want a well organized store with some nice inbuilt features, but don’t have time to get creative, give Volusion a go.

Volusion FAQs

Who should use Volusion?

If you’re a data-driven business owner looking for an ecommerce website builder with great analytics tools, Volusion is for you. For everything else, like designing the storefront or writing blogs, you should look elsewhere.

Is Volusion expensive?

Compared to other ecommerce website builders, Volusion is quite expensive, with price plans up to $299 per month. On top of that, you need to purchase an $89-99 SSL certificate. However, it has a $13.50 per month option if you sign up for a whole year.

What can I sell on Volusion?

Inventory is easily Volusion’s strongest feature. You can sell unlimited products, with the help of some excellent tools like product suggestions and product videos (both of which you’ll need to download separately on Shopify). However, you cannot sell digital products on Volusion.

Dan Barraclough

About 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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Dan Barraclough

About 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.

33 comments

  • Avatar
    Kevin
    The new V2 platform is pretty nice, much better than the old one. I run a small ecomm store on Volusion, and it's working great - my data is well-organized and easy to get into and out of the platform, my store is MUCH faster than when it was on Shopify - I live where there's only 3g and Shopify sites take 20-30 seconds to load, while Volusion takes less than 5. Pricing is pretty good, and the support team's been great the few times I've reached out to them. Don't go with Volusion if you want a full website builder, because that's not what it's built for. But if you want a really good ecomm platform with a ton of features you can't get anywhere else, it's a great choice. I've used Shopify and Bigcommerce, and while they are better-polished overall and work better as blogs and sitebuilders, Volusion's just got a much better backend.
    1 reply
    • Lucy Carney
      Lucy Carney
      Hi Kevin, Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with Volusion! The new V2 platform is definitely an improvement on the V1, and I'm glad to hear it's working so well for your store. Totally agree that Volusion isn't suitable for the full website builder package - although it does market itself that way, you're right in saying that's not what it's built for. We always recommend it for its in-house analytics tools. Shopify and BigCommerce scored higher in our research overall, but every business is different - I'm so glad you've found the perfect platform for you! Thanks for reading and commenting with your insights, I'm sure other readers will find it really useful too! Best, Lucy
  • Avatar
    MaryAnna
    It looks like you have reviewed the V1 platform. V2 is the new one and it's much more user friendly , except they are still working out some issues that are frustrating to me mainly because I have a large quantity of products that all require personalizing and have lots of variants. I will say that my experience with their chat support has been mostly positive. Usually I get a response pretty quickly - although in the late evening it has taken up to 5 hours for them to get back to me. I also, at one point, got so frustrated with my ever growing list of issues that they needed to work on that I contacted them via Instagram and one of the lead project managers scheduled a time to speak with me - one of the issues I told them about was addressed within days and he assured me that more adjustments were on the horizon. So all that being said, I'm pretty happy with the V2 platform so far. My shop has a nice, clean look and the ability to very easily integrate outside apps like Mail Chimp, Analytics, etc (for FREE!) has been a definite plus. SEO is automatically filled in as well - which I find sooo helpful. Oh! And it is MUCH cheaper than the V1 platform. BIG plus! I'm hoping I don't run into any bandwidth issues - all the new plans say "unlimited products and file storage".
    1 reply
    • Fred Isaac
      Fred Isaac
      Hi Mary, great to hear you've had a positive experience with Volusion. We regularly update our reviews so watch this space!
  • Avatar
    Tom
    BEWARE! Volusion has been losing saved data ever since it was established. Volusion owners did nothing to address this issue in 15 years! Imagine working hard for many months entering your products into your store and boom some or even all positions or fields are reverted to old unsaved data ir disappear! Can one trust such a store and such a developer?
  • Avatar
    Ann
    Volusion is the worst I ever used!!!! It seems nice on their website but all of it is not real. 1.their functions are really confused to use and many errors that their can't fix it even you will try to inform them. Moreover, if you want to upgrade the function upgrading also error, you have to wait for them sending you the link for upgrade and payment. This is the top ecommerce website? 2. They said they will support you 24 hrs. But actully they will have someone answer you back only office hour. And most of them are not well trained, them answer with stupid answer for example, I ask them to fixing the error on my back office. They reply with thank you and they need my permission to do that????? I ask them why they still need my answer for permission when I asked for your help to fix it??? I asked them to help 2 things on the back office and both of it takes about 2 days to talk and understanding....not include fixing!!!!!! I can't wait for their support so I asked for the refuding, one of the support team said they will do the refund for me but after that the another one said it cannot be refunded and ther just delete my account from their system. So if you want to use this Volusion please think again and again. They really bad both functions and support. It's not real as they said. Hope you will not be victim of them like me.
    1 reply
    • Fred Isaac
      Fred Isaac
      Thanks for the comment Ann, sorry to hear you've had difficulty with Volusion. Hope you've settled on a better builder?
  • Avatar
    Kathryn Rousseau
    Volusion is THE WORST!! We've had them for quite some time and it's time to move and get a new provider, "time" has been an issue but it must be done.Two days ago, all of a sudden our site showed NO prices only descriptions. I spent 6 hours on phone and chat with several "tech's" whom oddly chose to do all I had already done myself, but nonetheless it HAD TO BE FIXED!! We'd spent thousands on a huge campaign/contest for youths ed and here we are hours before going live and our site shows no prices??? and long story short, it was NEVER fixed, and ALL that we planned months in advance went live with people unable to purchase or see prices due to whatever ridiculousness volusion had going on within their system. Sadly, we had no choice, the publicity the week before was expansive and today we just can't apologize enough for volusions lack of accountability. We are out not only thousands of dollars, our would be customers and those that gave so much of their own time in preparing for the contest etc.. it is a horrible feeling, we have lost OUR face due to volusion's disrespect for their customers whom are now apologizing for volusions inability to function, to DO their job and their unethical practice in servicing the needs of their customers whom pay volusions bills and now will have great difficulty paying their own.
    1 reply
    • Fred Isaac
      Fred Isaac
      Hi Kathryn, Sorry to hear you've had a tricky time with Volusion. Have you considered moving to a provider like Shopify? Best, Fred
  • Avatar
    Cory
    If you run any sort of recurring billing/subscription business DO NOT use Volusion. If you ever have the need to switch your customers to a different system, they are unwilling to allow you to migrate your customer credit card info even in an encrypted, 100% PCI Compliant, manner. They will essentially hold your company hostage. Insane lack of care for their customers.
    1 reply
    • Tom Watts
      Tom Watts
      Hello Cory, Thank you for sharing your experiences with the community! That really doesn't sound like a good experience at all. Did you receive any communications from Volusion explaining the issues? - Tom
  • Avatar
    Jasper
    Volusion's customer service is horrendous. To the extend that I'm going to find out all review sites about it and make it known. I'm subscribed to a plan with phone support, and have never been able to get hold of them. I waited for hours for someone to get to the line and gave up. If your phone support is non existent or a problem for oversea users, I don't think it should be advertised in your plans. On top, you need to wait hours for the chat assistant. And whatever pressing issue you may have, after waiting hours for their reply, they reply you with another question than actually helping you resolve your issue. Am hiring someone else to help work on our site currently, and will eventually migrate out of volusion for sure.
    1 reply
    • Tom Watts
      Tom Watts
      Hi Jasper, Thanks for sharing your experiences with the community. I'm really sorry to hear you've had such a frustrating time, hopefully it hasn't impacted your website too drastically. When you decide to migrate from Volusion, have you thought about the platform you're going to move to? It may be worth having a closer look at Shopify, who offer all the mod-cons of Volusion but with more highly regarded support on hand as well as industry leading ecommerce tools. - Tom
  • Avatar
    Eddie
    Thank you so much for the information and the care you took to produce this review. I am just getting into ecommerce and really have been baffled by the multitude of options. Thank you again.
    1 reply
    • Tom Watts
      Tom Watts
      Great, glad you found the article helpful!
  • Avatar
    Ayaz A.
    I am a professional web developer. I have been using almost all ecommerce platforms. According to my opinion Volusion is the worst nightmare for developers and site admins. It is very very restrictive. There are no good tools for bulk data migration if you want to switch to Volusion. It CSV spreadsheets tool for import and export data is full of problems. It does not read product pictures from URLs. Rather you have to upload them via FTP. And the pictures need to be renamed and sized in strict rules. So if you have 500 products and each having 4 pictures. Get ready to rename and resize 200 pictures before uploading them. I you want to assign your product categories you cannot do this via spreadsheets because it consolidates all category numbers in a single column and excel distorts those numbers because of being very long integer. You cannot assign categories in bulk. If your products has variations god help you. It has so complicated procedure to import variations that I ended up creating them manually putting the idea of CSV aside. I would never recommend any client to use this platform. Also I would not suggest any other platforms here because my sincere advise would look like I am marketing for some other companies putting down Volusion.
    1 reply
    • Jeremy
      Jeremy
      Hi Ayaz, Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. Have you considered Shopify or BigCommerce? What are your experiences with them? Jeremy
      1 reply
      • Avatar
        Owner thewhiteroseusa
        We build our store thewhiteroseusa.com on shopify. And we love it. Definitely online eCommerce is not as simple as most sites make it sound. If you are serious about eCommerce solution, consider shopify. It is comprehensive, knowledgeable people. ECommerce involves learning a new channel and also adding some skills in addition to sourcing, curbing, publishing, marketing, fulfilling and servicing. We have done it for a year, and our sales are not exploding as most articles make it sound. It’s a hard work, commitment and passion for excellence for at least 4-5 years before you see your dream coming to reality. Definitely we have now paying customers, all thanks to shopify articles we are fed from time to time.
  • Avatar
    ktb
    SCAM ALERT - Stay away from this bait-and-switch company that's riddled with hidden fees! Basically everything on the Volusion website and everything the sales people tell you is inaccurate and intentionally misleading. Absolutely do NOT sign up for their Merchant Account - it looks like a feature of their monthly plan but it isn't! You're actually signing up for a 3-YEAR contract that's at least $33.50 per month, with a $99 cancellation fee! The term is not in the contract anywhere, it's on a separate page on their website that you will never find until you get the contract. Who reads contract terms, especially when they link to additional terms? No one, and that's what they're counting on. Don't pay them for a website that looks like garbage to start with, and definitely stay away from any contracts with them. They will intentionally mislead you - even if you ask questions about their services, the sales reps know how to avoid giving direct answers.
    2 replies
    • Avatar
      Clint
      Oh it is bogus man have been hitting me over the past month $500 2 $600 and hidden fees joke and then they use a third-party for merchant processing that you don't even use when you any launch the site yet joke salute joke
    • Jeremy
      Jeremy
      Sorry to hear about your experiences, KTB. If you're interested in testing out other ecommerce builders, here is a comparison chart that you might find helpful. Good luck! Jeremy