When you come across the words “e-commerce store,” the first thing that might come to your mind is a long, strenuous process that requires the service of a developer or an IT expert.
Well, with a web-based tool like Ecwid, all it takes to set up a fully functional e-commerce store for your business might be just a few minutes of your time. “How is this possible?” Ecwid is designed to serve various types of businesses, and it can be integrated seamlessly with your existing website or set up as a stand-alone site, all from a cloud-based dashboard that you can easily deploy to run your business as you deem fit.
Got services or products you want to promote and market online? Keep reading to find out everything about Ecwid and how to create your e-commerce store with it.
What is Ecwid?
As aptly mentioned earlier, Ecwid is a cloud-based software backed with SSL-certified security, and that can be fully deployed from any internet-enabled device. Used by over a million businesses across the globe, the software has simple, downloadable extensions and plugins for various CMSs that you can use to create and customize your own e-commerce store. You don’t have to own a website already to use the software, and if you have an existing one, Ecwid will embed effortlessly, be it with a WordPress, Blogger, or Joomla site.
Being fully web-based, Ecwid doesn’t require any software installation, and, as a matter of interest, you can create your preferred e-commerce store without paying a dime; this is because Ecwid’s e-commerce store creation feature is embedded in its free plan.
Additionally, Ecwid has premium plans which come with more robust tools, and their pricing and what you’ll benefit from them will be elaborated later in this article. Pending the time that we arrive at that, Ecwid key features are as follows:
- Seamless shopping
- Payment processing
- Language detector
- Smart shipping calculator
- Inventory tracking
- Social media promotion
- Store management… and a lot more.
How Do You Create Your E-commerce Store with Ecwid?
Setting up your e-commerce store with Ecwid is fairly easy and fast; all you have to do is follow the simple steps below:
Create an Account
This is the first step you need to take on your way to creating an e-commerce store of your own. On the software’s homepage, click on “Get Started” and fill in your full name, email address, and a password you can remember in the window that pops up. Your account should be ready immediately, and you should be able to log in thereafter.
Create Your Online Store
After you’ve successfully created your ECwid account, an intuitive dashboard, which includes all the tools you’ll need for your e-commerce store, will be made available. Click the bar on which “Create Your Online Store” is inscribed. You’ll be asked if you have an existing website or not. If you have a website, click yes, select if it’s a Blogger, WordPress, or other sites, and then follow the instructions.
On the flip side, if you don’t have any site at all, click “No,” and a window will pop up next. On this window, you’ll find a text bar in which you’re required to type your preferred website address. For example, if your business is named “Johnson Wears,” type it in the text bar, and your web address will appear thus: “johnsonwears.ecwid.com.” See the image attached below for more clarity.
Congratulations! You now have your own e-commerce website.
By now, you should be able to launch the website on any browser. Launch it to see what it looks like and test-run it. It should be clustered with demo products and prices, making it appear as a fully functional website.
Add Your Products
Now that you have your own e-commerce store, you can now proceed with adding products to it. To do this, navigate through Catalog (1) -> Products (2) -> and click on “Add New Product” (3) on the dashboard; a window where you’ll be asked to input product name, price, and the image will pop up.
You will have to repeat this process for every product you add. For more details such as product description, size, weight, etc., you’ll have to head to the “Catalog” section on the dashboard and add the respective information accordingly for each product.
In the “Catalog” section, you can also categorize your products to make finding them easy for your customers.
Verify Your Geo Settings
While setting up your e-commerce store, Ecwid will require that you provide information such as your country, currency, and weight measurement used in your country; this is to ensure that items placed on your store appear accurately with the right description and categorization. Click “Verify Geo Settings” to set this up.
Thereafter, under the same section, you’ll be required to provide your company information. This will include your company name, phone number, address, and zip code. This information is vital when processing and generating invoices for your customers, as well as when calculating shipping rates.
Set a Shipping Method
While an e-commerce store for most people translates to selling physical goods, understand that it is also viable for individuals who sell digital products as well. If you offer digital services or products, you might want to skip this step as you’re not expected to deliver any good to any location.
However, if you sell physical goods, click “Set Shipping Method” on the dashboard. Thereon, you’ll be asked to choose your preferred carrier and rate. This largely depends on your region. If you’re in the United States, you will most likely be given options such as the United States Postal Service (USPS) rate. If carriers peculiar to your region don’t appear in the options given, you can simply click “Set Custom Carrier Rates” and follow the instructions.
In addition, for more advanced options, you can click “ Shipping & Pickup” under this same section on your dashboard to set how you want your products to get to your customers. You can choose to have them pick it up at a designated store or receive it through a courier. Also, you can set a handling fee.
Choose Your Payment Method
This is the last setup process you go through to complete your e-commerce store with Ecwid. To set how you want to get paid by your customers, navigate to the “Payment bar” on the dashboard menu, and click on it.
Depending on your region, different payment options will be made available to you. Some of which include ‘Pay by Cash,’ Stripe, Paypal’, Square, Manual payment methods as well as options to choose from available numerous payment processors. Choose your preferred option and follow the instructions.
Make Customizations to Your Site’s Design
Now that you have a fully set-up e-commerce store, you might want to modify some design elements of your site to make it look less generic and more distinctive. To do this, navigate to the “Configurations” section on your dashboard and click on ‘Design” and then play around with the given options.
You can set your site’s theme, as well as design elements such as product alignment, item attributes displayed, and so many others. Should you get lost or tamper with the design, you can choose to revert to the original design by using the “Default” button.
What Do You Benefit From Using Ecwid?
Ecwid will certainly make it into my top list of the best e-commerce site builder out there. The software has a ton of toolset which you can harness to capture more leads, grow your business, and gain insights into your business’ performance. By using Ecwid, you can:
Get Reporting & Analytics:
Ecwid provides you with metrics on which of your products are the most sort after, the number of end-users that visit your store, as well as reports on your business health and finances. You can harness this information to adjust your business and drive productivity.
See What Customers Interact with on Your Site:
Ecwid provides a metrical playback of how users interact with your website. This may include what sections of your website they spend time on the most, how long it takes time to make a payment, and the overall accessibility of your site.
Capture More Leads and Boost Sales:
Ecwid has marketing and advertising toolset, which can expose your products to more audience. This will help boost sales by promoting your product on various social media platforms, some of which are Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, etc.
Some of these options are available as plugins that must be downloaded before usage. Also, note that they are only available on the premium plans.
Ecwid Premium Plans and Features
Ecwid pricing is tailored to suit enterprises of different sizes and structures; for this reason. its subscription plans are as follows:
This plan makes provision for the support of up to 10 products and it includes features such as mobile shopping cart, no transaction fee and many more.
This plan, which caters to 100 products, is priced at $15 per month or $12.5/month when paid annually, and with it, you can build not only website stores but Facebook shops and Instagram stores as well. It also comes with Google advertising, Facebook advertising, Pinterest advertising, etc., as well as a dedicated Android or iOS mobile app to manage your e-commerce store.
The business plan, which caters to 2500 products, is priced at $35 per month or $29.17/month when paid annually, and its sales channels allow you to connect your site with Amazon or eBay and sell directly from there. Also, the plan comes with automated marketing emails that engage your customers with content peculiar to your business. Note that other features on the venture plan are also available on this one.
The unlimited, which is the most robust Ecwid plan, costs $99 per month or $82.5/month when paid annually. In addition to the features also available on the two aforementioned plans, this one comes with a dedicated point of sale (POS) system. In addition, it comes with your own branded mobile shopping app.
This app will be developed for you within 48 hours, and it will be made available on both iOS on Android platforms. The app will work just as effectively as the created web version of your store, and your customers can harness it for easier and quicker accessibility of your services.
In addition, updates and support for the app will be provided by Ecwid’s IT team. Note that each of the Ecwid subscription plans comes with a certain percentage of discount when billed annually, and this does not include the 20% VAT.
Rounding Up Notes
If you’re looking for a very easy and fast means to set up your own e-commerce store, then Ecwid might be your best. Anyone can use the software, irrespective of if they have prior programming knowledge or not. What’s more, it is completely free, and you can set up and start operating your own online store in a matter of minutes. You can only subscribe to the premium plans if you intend to deploy more tools to manage and grow your business.
Given the above, you can simply head to the homepage and set up e-commerce of your own right away.