Custom E-Commerce Website vs. Shopify

If you run an e-commerce store online, it’s vital to consider the different options available to you when it comes to the design and execution of your website’s shopping cart functionality and your customers’ experiences. For many years, Shopify has been a mainstay of e-commerce, providing online retailers with an easy and functional means of creating shopping cart tools for their websites.

For many new and small businesses, Shopify can offer the basic features and functions they need to get their products into their customers’ hands efficiently. However, as your business grows, you may want to consider investing in the development of your own e-commerce platform instead. The reality is that sticking with the easier option will ultimately cast your brand into the same pool as every other brand who chooses the easy route instead of positioning your organization as a leader in your market niche.

Why Is Shopify So Popular?

Shopify is a prime example of software-as-a-service (SaaS). The SaaS business model has grown and evolved tremendously over recent years because it provides modern companies with an easier means of achieving their operational goals. If a company needs a more robust in-house payroll system, there is a SaaS option for that. If the company needs an e-commerce platform, Shopify has been one of the most popular SaaS options due to the ease of use and range of functionality it offers. However, there are limits to what Shopify can offer.

Ultimately, when you choose to implement a SaaS e-commerce platform like Shopify, you are somewhat limited from a design standpoint. Your website’s shopping cart will look very similar to every other site using the Shopify SaaS, and this can diminish your brand authority and uniqueness. While Shopify is relatively scalable, you’re also likely to run into issues in the future as your business evolves and outgrows the capabilities of the Shopify e-commerce platform.

Since Shopify aims to suit as many e-commerce websites as possible, there is also an inherent lack of complexity with this SaaS that you won’t need to worry about if you are willing to invest in the design and implementation of your shopping cart functions. This is especially true if your organization provides B2B services, as the Shopify system is inherently designed around B2C e-commerce operations.

Why You Should Develop Your Own E-Commerce System

Shopify and other e-commerce SaaS options ultimately offer ease of use, scalability, and quick implementation as their main selling points. While implementing your own proprietary e-commerce portal may be a more challenging process, it can be much more rewarding in several different ways.

First, you will inherently gain complete control over every aspect of your e-commerce platform. You will not need to contend with the design and functionality limitations of Shopify and can adjust your e-commerce site’s shopping cart system to your exact specifications.

Second, your in-house e-commerce site will convey greater brand authority to your customers. Instead of them seeing the same shopping cart system they have likely seen on dozens of other sites, your customers will notice that you have invested in a unique online shopping experience for them to enjoy. You can limit visual distractions and make their shopping experiences more streamlined, intuitive, and enjoyable.

Third, your in-house e-commerce platform inherently cultivates brand loyalty. Once your customers start having positive experiences with the e-commerce system you’ve developed and implemented, competitors’ sites that all follow the same cookie-cutter Shopify design will pale in comparison. Your investment in your e-commerce system will pay off because your target market will take you more seriously than your competitors. They will remain loyal to your brand due to the better online shopping experience your site offers.

How to Design and Implement Your Own E-Commerce System

Shopify may be the easier route if you’re looking for a fast way to offer e-commerce options to your customers. Still, the time, money, and effort you invest in the creation of your in-house e-commerce system will pay off tremendously in the long run. However, you should be aware that the process requires careful planning, thoughtful visual design, and tight programming.

Consider the initial investment into the development of your own e-commerce platform as a more-than-suitable replacement for the monthly fees you would otherwise spend on a SaaS e-commerce solution like Shopify. Instead of paying for a limited system that looks just like your competitors’ e-commerce platforms, you can develop something true to your brand authority and generate better customer experiences.

Hiring the right web design team to help you develop your e-commerce platform is the best way to approach this challenge. The team at Imagine Monkey can help you develop a functional and visually compelling online shopping experience to offer your customers, and we will guide you through every step of the design and implementation processes.

Contact the Imagine Monkey team today and tell us about your goals for your e-commerce brand, and we will let you know how our services can help you achieve your business goals

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