Best Ecommerce Websites For Small Business: Top 7 Review

The digital landscape continues to experience significant shifts and advancements which present unprecedented opportunities particularly for small businesses.

Over the years the shift to online shopping has grown exponentially.

The surge of mobile ecommerce, social commerce and general ecommerce – attest to this fact.

The good part with these technological changes is that small businesses get a myriad of opportunities to compete with bigger businesses on a global scale.

Best eCommerce Websites for Small Business: Review Overview

In this post we review the best ecommerce websites for small businesses.

The idea is to empower business with key factors that go into evaluating ecommerce websites or platforms and therefore based on those factors be in a position to say:

Which ecommerce website builder is the best for my small business?

Most importantly the guide outlines comprehensively, why we single out Shopify as the best ecommerce website for small businesses overall.

1. Shopify: Best ecommerce website builder overall.

2. WooCommerce: Best for WordPress brands seeking to add ecommerce capabilities to the blogs/websites.

3. BigCommerce: Best for enterprise level online stores looking to scale.

4. Squarespace: Best for creating visually stunning and creative design-focused stores.

5. Wix: Best for user-friendly highly customisable online store designs.

6. Square (By Weebly): Best for beginners looking for a simple ecommerce platform for integrated in-store and online retail.

7. Ecwid: Best for integrating ecommerce capabilities with existing digital properties (websites and social media pages).

Our Rating

Online Store Starting Price

(paid annually)

G2 Rating


Download Shopify Logo in SVG Vector or PNG File Format -









woocommerce-logo | Aysling





Logo Guidelines – Squarespace





WIX Logo, symbol, meaning, history, PNG, brand





Square Online Review | Pricing & Features (2023) - eCommerce Platform

(formerly Weebly)





Ecwid Pricing Plans & Cost 2023 | G2






The Quest for the Perfect Ecommerce Platform For Small Businesses

The choice of an ecommerce website or platform for small business is not merely a matter of technology, it’s a strategic business decision as the choice of a platform can make or break your business prospects.


Choosing an ecommerce website to build and host your online store is as important as the decision for the location of your physical brick and mortar store.

Careful consideration is required to make the right call on this important ecommerce business decision.

To write this guide and review we have scanned dozens of ecommerce platforms and confined the review to seven (7) short listed ecommerce websites as those among the best ecommerce platforms for small business. These are:

Understanding the Unique Needs of Small Businesses

Factors to consider when choosing the best ecommerce website for small business.

(We have also considered these factors in this review)

Identifying Key Business Goals

Your business goals are a major determinant of which ecommerce website will better service your needs.

Questions to deal with include: what are you push or pull factors for going digital?

Is it to increase sales, expand your customer base, increase your revenue or to simply establish a strong online presence? Answering these questions will enable you to clearly refine and define your objectives.

Also deal with these questions: will you be selling products (physical or digital), or you selling services – or a hybrid ( combination of both)?.

Answering these questions enables you to align your business needs and goals with a suitable ecommerce website for small business.

Budgetary Constraints and Cost Considerations

Small businesses often operate on shoestring budgets. As such, it is important to evaluate the pricing and plans of the ecommerce website you are considering against your budget.

Factor In Ongoing Expenses

In doing this you should go beyond looking at the set up costs to factoring in all ongoing expenses, including, monthly subscription fees, transactions fees, hosting and other addons, plugins and integrations you may need to add to your digital store.

Check how these different ecommerce websites accommodate such needs from a cost point of view.

Scalability and Future Growth Potential

While you are starting small, as a small business: is it important to consider ecommerce websites that have capabilities for scaling and growth.

You need to avoid the nightmare of having to migrate and switch platforms amid operations.

This may be risky to your entire business. In this consideration, also avoid settling for unnecessarily big and expensive ecommerce plans.

Plans that put you in a position where you have to pay for features and tools you may not need for a while.

This is another area where Shopify stands out because it has flexible pricing and plans that allow small businesses to start small with the platform and grow with the platform.

Consider an ecommerce website that can adapt seamlessly with the expansion of your customer base and increase in traffic and sales volume.

Inventory Management and Product Variety

Some ecommerce business models such as drop shipping don’t involve any inventory procurement and costs upfront.

The rest of ecommerce models that involve procuring inventory must be run on ecommerce websites with robust inventory management capabilities.

The ecommerce website must offer tools to add, update, track and manage inventory (products). Go for an ecommerce builder that has inventory control and inventory management features that align with the type of your products as well as the size of your business.

Ecommerce platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce have robust inventory management features that enable you to set up alerts and notifications to avoid stock outs and over stocking.

Payment Processing Flexibility

Online payments are the backbone and the driver of ecommerce. If you do not have suitable online payment gateways integrated into your digital store, you are not in ecommerce. Evaluate each ecommerce website you are considering on these factors:

  • Online payment transaction fees
  • Currency support
  • Does the ecommerce website have payment gateways that work in the locations where your target customers are?
  • Does the platform cater to diverse payment options: credit/debit cards and digital wallets?

As a small business, you will do well to go for an ecommerce website builder that offers a variety of online payment options that sufficiently services your customer base.

In the following section we evaluate the top 7 ecommerce websites to help decide which of these could be the best fit for you.

In-Depth Analysis of Top Ecommerce Platforms Suited for Small Business


Shopify Review

Shopify is a leading ecommerce website for small businesses.

The platform has a great suite of features that include a user friendly and intuitive interface, high and professional themes (paid and free) and over 100 payment gateway options.

Below is a review of Shopify features.

Ease of Use: Shopify is a user friendly ecommerce website that makes it easy for non-technical users to build professional online stores in minutes.

Users with zero coding and design skills can set up a Shopify store, customize it, and add products to get their online shop up and running in minutes.

Versatile Design: Shopify has a vast collection of free and premium themes suited for different niches and styles.

With free Shopify themes such as the popular Dawn you can create visually appealing online stores in minutes.

If your budget allows you could go for a premium and high end themes such as Impulse and create a visually appealing storefront within a short space of time.

Shopify enables you to customize themes online with your niche and branding.

Powerful Features: Shopify provides a powerful set of features that you need to drive a successful ecommerce business.

These include:

  • Online store setup
  • Configuration and customisation
  • Secure payment processing
  • Inventory management
  • Order fulfilment
  • Tools for customer engagement tools
  • Etc

Shopify stores also ship with built-in SEO features to help optimize product pages for maximum visibility on search engines.

Mobile-Optimized: The rise of mobile commerce has made it even more important to streamline online shopping for mobile devices.

Shopify digital store builder and templates are designed for mobile commerce.

Shopify stores offer a seamless end user shopping experience across mobile devices, tablets and desktops – this is crucial for reaching a wider customer base.

App Integration: Shopify has a vast collection of apps and third party integrations to help retailers to configure additional features, functionalities as well as look and feel on their app store.

Addons cover several ecommerce essentials such as digital marketing, traffic and sales analytics, CRM, inventory management, email and sms, etc.

Security: Cyber security is a big concern in eCommerce. Shopify implements various cyber security measures to secure its online stores data and transactions.

The platform provides SSL certificates, fraud prevention as well as PCI compliance among other security features.

Scalability: While suited for small businesses, Shopify is designed to scale with your business.

This means that you can start small on Shopify and only pay for features that you need without any worries about switching platforms or experiencing major disruptions to scale and grow your online retail business.

Customer Support: If you are new to ecommerce and to the Shopify platform you can leverage some hand holding and support. Shopify has a 24/7 support channel accessible via email, live chat and telephone.

Cost-Effective: A good ecommerce website must be cost effective. Shopify offers flexible pricing and plans, making the platform a great fit for small businesses.

With Shopify you can start with the Basic plan that goes for $19 monthly (paid yearly).

You can also consider the Starter package (suited for selling through events, social media and messaging apps. The Starter plan goes for $5 per month. See more plans below.

Note that all plans come with a 14 day free trial – after which you will pay only $1 per month for the first 3 months.

This way, the platform ensures that you have ample time to test your ecommerce business model while also test driving the ecommerce website without any financial risk.

Success Stories: There are many brands and businesses that have been successful on the Shopify platform. The platform has turned many ecommerce ideas into profitable ventures.

Big brands such as Tesla, Kylie Cosmetics, Budweiser, Nestle, Red Bull, Gymshark and Allbirds plus many others sell some of their merchandise on Shopify.

Shopify Pros & Cons


Easy to use
Professional free and paid templates
Mobile responsive
Vast App ecosystem
Various Secure Mechanisms
Over 100 payment options
Robust inventory Management
SEO tools
24/7 customer support


Limited design cusotmisation
Transaction fees
No access to email storage


WooCommerce is a highly customisable ecommerce website solution tailored for WordPress.

The solution is renowned for its flexibility and integration capabilities and as such has been a popular option for those seeking to add ecommerce capabilities to their online content platforms.


WordPress Integration: WooCommerce integrates seamlessly with WordPress websites, allowing for high customisation over design and content.

Customization: The solution has a sizable ecosystem of plugins and addons, some free and some premium. These enable retailers to extend the functions as well as look and feel of their online stores.

Scalability: The solution scales well and also supports different product types.

SEO-Friendly: As a blog friendly solution tailored for WordPress, WooCommerce has robust SEO options to enhance the visibility of product pages in Search Engines.

Pricing: WooCommerce is free however you will incur costs to get the solution hosted in your custom domain. Also, there are costs associated with certain themes as well as premium plugins. Generally: costs vary according to different business needs.

What We Like: The solution integrates seamlessly with WordPress- making it an excellent choice for content driven businesses that run a blogging strategy as part of their ecommerce strategy.

Best For: WooCommerce is best suited for online retailers who need a customizable solution that integrates seamlessly with their existing WordPress blogs or websites.

WooCommerce Pros & Cons


Integrates seamlessly with WordPress
Professional templates
Mobile responsive
App ecosystem
Secure and reliable


Cost of hosting, security and customizations & implementing payment integrations
It’s a plugin
It resource intensive


BigCommerce is solid and one of the best ecommerce websites. While the solution is suited for enterprise level ecommerce businesses that are focused on scaling, BigCommerce caters to small businesses as well.


Robust Feature Set: BigCommerce has a comprehensive set of features that includes multi-channel selling, payment processing and SEO tools.

Scalability: BigCommerce caters to both small and big businesses that want to scale their ecommerce retails.

Multi-Channel Selling: The solution has capabilities for selling on social media integration and various marketplaces.

Mobile Responsiveness: BigCommerce ecommerce website builder produces mobile-friendly digital stores that ensure a seamless online shopping experience across different devices.

Marketing Tools: The platform also offers marketing tools to boost online visibility.

Pricing: BigCommerce offers various pricing plans that come with a free 15 day trial. Costs vary based on your business needs.

What We Like: BigCommerce is a solid ecommerce platform with a comprehensive set of features suited for enterprise level ecommerce.

Best For: Small to medium-sized businesses seeking features of an enterprise level ecommerce website built for growth and scalability.

BigCommerce Pros & Cons


Customization options
Built-in features
No transaction fees


Learning curve
Limited support for digital products
Price may be higher for larger businesses
Smaller app ecosystem compared to Shopify


Squarespace eCommerce Review

Squarespace is another emerging ecommerce website remarkable for its stunning templates as well as user friendly design.


Design Aesthetics: The platform has a user friendly digital store builder that enables beginners to set up professional stores within minutes.

Elegant Templates: Squarespace offers stunning and elegant templates for showcasing different product types.

Integrated Blogging: Squarespace also accommodates blogging, a great feature for businesses that want to plug content marketing to build their ecommerce brands.

Mobile Optimization: Squarespace’s templates are mobile responsive to allow for a seamless shopping and user experience across the board.

Basic Ecommerce Tools: The platform provides essential features and tools for small businesses seeking to go cyber with their retail business.

Pricing: Squarespace has flexible pricing options across the Personal, Business, eCommerce Basic and eCommerce Advanced pricing plans and options. The ecommerce features kick in with the Business plan that goes for $23 per month paid annually.

What We Like: Squarespace tops the charts for design. The platform is a great fit for businesses that are big on aesthetics and branding.

Best For: Squarespace is best suited for small businesses focused on creating visually appealing digital stores and content.

Squarespace Pros & Cons


Easy website building
Stunning templates
Integrated hosting
Mobile-responsive design
All-in-one platform


Limited e-commerce features
Limited third-party integrations
Less customization compared to some platforms


Wix Ecommerce Review

Wix is a versatile website builder with ecommerce capabilities and plans. The platform is reputable for its intuitive and user-friendly drag-and-drop website and digital store builder.


Drag-and-Drop Builder: User friendly website that enables users without technical skills to build and customize professional digital stores.

Ecommerce Templates: Provides templates specifically designed for online stores.

App Market: Wix has a vast apps ecosystem that stores builders can leverage to extend the look and feel and functionalities of their online stores.

Mobile Optimization: The ecommerce website produces mobile-responsive digital stores that allow for a seamless shopping experience across different devices.

SEO Tools: Wix has SEO features to enhance the visibility of product pages on search engines.

Pricing: Wix flexible ecommerce plans start from the Business Basic ($17 per month), Business Unlimited ($25 per month), Business VIP ($35 per month).

What We Like: The Wix‘s website builder affords retailers the simplicity to design professional digital stores. The platform is suited for entrepreneurs who are new to ecommerce as well as digital retailers with micro ecommerce needs.

Best For: Wix is best suited for small businesses that want a beginner friendly ecommerce website builder for micro to small ecommerce needs.

Wix Pros & Cons


User-friendly website builder
Diverse templates
App market for extensions
Free plan available
Wix ADI for automated design


Advertisements on free plan
Limited e-commerce capabilities on lower-tier plans
Template switching limitations
Difficult to change templates

Square (By Weebly)

Square is another well performing ecommerce website builder. The platform is renowned for its payment gateway options.


Seamless Payment Integration: Square offers seamless payment gateway integrations for its online stores.

Customizable Templates: The platform has a generous collection of templates for high customizations of features and aesthetics of online stores.

Inventory Management: The platform offers essential tools for inventory management and for handling product catalogues.

Mobile Optimization: The platform produces mobile friendly digital stores to ensure seamless shopping experience across the board.

In-Person Sales Integration: Square integrates ecommerce and in personal sales- making a considerable option for those seeking to sell offline and online.

Pricing: Square has a free plan – with the free plan the platform only deducts processing fees from each sale.

For advanced ecommerce Square has the Plus plan which is suited for restaurants, retailers and appointment based businesses.

Square has a Bespoke plan for custom ecommerce needs. With this plan you get custom processing fees.

What We Like: The platform’s remarkable feature is Square‘s set of features and seamless integration with the platform’s payment processor.

Best For: Square is a convenient ecommerce website for small businesses that want to take their physical sales business online.

Square Pros & Cons


Easy to use
Integration with Square payments
Simple pricing
Free plan available
Built-in features like curbside pickup


Limited design customization
Limited third-party integrations
May not be suitable for large e-commerce businesses
Transaction fees on lower-tier plans


Ecwid Review

Ecwid is another emerging and versatile ecommerce website builder. The ecommerce solution can be integrated with existing websites and social media in a manner that offers flexibility and simplicity.


Easy Integration: Ecwid can be integrated into existing websites, blogs and social media quite easily and seamlessly.

Mobile Optimization: Produces mobile-friendly online stores that ensure a user friendly shopping experience across different devices.

Inventory Management: Has essential tools for tracking inventory.

Multi-Channel Selling: Allows multi-channels selling beyond blogs and websites to various platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.

App Market: Ecwid offers addons, plugins and integrations through its app marketplace to extend your online store functionality.

Pricing:The ecommerce website builder has flexible pricing and plans that include a free plan and three premium plans: Venture ($14 per month), Business ($29.08 per month), Unlimited ($82.50 per month) – all paid annually.

What We Like: Ecwid integrates easily with various online platforms making it a convenient choice for small businesses seeking to implement ecommerce with omni-channel selling capabilities on existing online presence.

Ecwid Pros & Cons


Easy integration with existing websites
Multichannel sales support
Mobile responsive
Free plan available
Abandoned cart recovery


Limited e-commerce features on free plan
Limited design customization
Transaction fees on free plan
Smaller app ecosystem compared to some platforms

Final Thoughts

I hope the overviews of the different ecommerce websites above can enable you to choose the best ecommerce website for your small business.

Shopify is an easy winner overall with a user friendly and intuitive drag and drop ecommerce builder, vast collection of professional and highly customisable free and paid themes, vast app marketplace, addons for content marketing, over 100 payment gateways options, multiple cyber security measures, etc.

It’s easy to see why the platform is a leading ecommerce website builder for small and big businesses with about 25% market share in ecommerce platforms globally.

That said, your choice for the best ecommerce website for your small business must be informed by the unique needs of your business, the product types you want to sell, and your budget.

Wishing you all the best in your entrepreneurial journey!

Photo of author

Gugulethu Nyoni

Gugulethu Nyoni is a seasoned ICT entrepreneur, a full-stack developer with a portfolio of proprietary SaaS solutions under his name. His expertise span conceptualizing and developing digital solutions, including bespoke eCommerce applications. Gugu is also a proficient eCommerce and Whitehat SEO consultant.