how to choose website design for your business

You’re here because you want to build an eCommerce store. eCommerce is absolutely exploding right now and it’s a very hot industry to be in. Whether you’re trying to ride the trend, or you have a product you’ve been working on for years, starting your own online store is definitely within your reach.

But, there are a lot of moving pieces when it comes to creating your own virtual storefront. You not only have to worry about developing your own product, testing it, manufacturing it, handling packaging shipping, and more. But, you need a way to sell your product too. Usually, that means you’re going to create your own digital storefront or eCommerce site.

Creating a business website from scratch can be an intimidating task, especially if you don’t consider yourself especially technical. The last thing you want is to add a ton of other website tasks to your plate as well.

If you’re looking to get your eCommerce website online quickly, without having to learn to code, and you want tools that’ll actually help you grow your site, then using an eCommerce website builder is going to be the way to go.

Below you’ll learn what an eCommerce website builder actually is, how it can benefit your business, and finally, you’ll learn about the best eCommerce website builders for beginners and what to look for throughout your search.

start your business with gator website builder from hostgator

What is an eCommerce Website Builder?

eCommerce website builders are similar to classic website builders, except they have integrated tools which make selling products online much easier.

A typical website builder acts as a one-stop shop for your website. You don’t have to worry about your registering a domain, web hosting, or other website management tools. You just pay a monthly fee and all of it is taken care of for you.

Plus, you have the website builder, which is built for beginners. Just choose a theme and use the drag and drop builder to customize your site however you see fit. When you’re satisfied, publish it to the web.

An eCommerce builder uses this same process, but also comes equipped with additional tools to help you manage and grow your eCommerce store.

First, all or most of the templates will be eCommerce oriented, so you don’t have to take a random template and force it to do eCommerce. Second, you’ll have built-in inventory management tools that make it easy to keep track of the products you’re selling.

ECommerce website builder software will make your life much easier and take the headache out of trying to build your own eCommerce store.

Benefits of Using an eCommerce Website Builder

Even if you have an incredible product it’s going to be difficult to build a business around it without a great website to help you sell it. Learning how to build an eCommerce website from scratch can be a lot of work, and there are a lot of technical tasks that need to be accomplished.

On top of all this, you have all kinds of other tasks related to selling and managing your products and inventory.

A Business website builder will help you streamline the process of building your website and processing online transactions, so you can focus on everything else.

Here are a few of the biggest benefits an eCommerce website builder will bring you:

1. Easy to Build a High-Converting Website

Most eCommerce website builders have templates and themes that are designed to help you sell. Since a lot of these platforms power many successful online stores they have the data and team to create website templates that work.

Website builder templates

An eCommerce site will look and function differently than other websites. The main focus is on selling your products and encouraging your visitors to place an order.

This means you’ll need to integrate product placement with the rest of your site, have product category pages, individual product pages, and a lot more.

A lot of eCommerce stores also opt to have a regular blog where they can educate their potential customers about issues and information related to their product or niche.

2. Help With Marketplace Integration and Payment

Beyond just showcasing your products in a way that makes visitors want to buy, you’ll also need to offer them multiple ways to pay you on your business website. Most eCommerce builders give you the option of integrating multiple payment processors. It’s always better to offer more options for your customers to pay, as you don’t know how they prefer to pay for goods online.

Some eCommerce website builders also integrate with other large merchants such as Amazon. This gives you the option to list your inventory on these sites and let users order your products from there as well.

This will help to expand your potential reach and attract new customers all without having to do that much additional work.

3. Tools to Help Manage Your Inventory

Are you still using a pen and paper to manage your inventory? Most eCommerce website builders make it incredibly simple to manage and set up your business inventory from a single dashboard.

You’ll have the ability to offer product customization options, as well as real-time inventory updates, so you always know how much you have in stock. Having all of this automated makes it much easier to know when you need re-stock products, or even run discounts to help move the rest of your current inventory.

Finally, most eCommerce website builders are also equipped to help you handle high-traffic days. Any time your site is offline it will actually cost you money, especially if it’s during an especially busy time of the year, like the holiday shopping season.

What to Look for in an eCommerce Website Builder

There are a lot of eCommerce website building  software options out there. So, let the list of eCommerce features below help you sort through the noise. You might have different requirements based on your store needs, but the features below should be must-haves.

1. Easy to Use

Whatever builder you end up choosing it needs to be easy to use. There’s no point in pulling your hair out over a tool that you’re using to make your life easier.

If possible, play around with the free version of the tool to make sure it’s up to your standards. The store builder should be easy to figure out, but so should the consumer-facing side of your site.

Even with an easy website builder, always run through the payment and checkout process to ensure there aren’t any hangups that will deter your visitors from completing a transaction.

2. Inventory Management

A solid eCommerce builder will have built-in inventory management tools. These exist to make your life easier and make sure that you always have the necessary inventory to cover the sale.

Keep an eye out for features like, alerts that will tell you when inventory is getting low, the ability to enter product stock, and the option to stop selling products when there’s no inventory left.

3. Templates That Suit Your Store

Even if you’re selling an awesome product, you’re going to run into trouble if you don’t grab your visitors’ attention with your storefront.

Spend some time browsing through the theme or website template selection, and make sure there’s a variety of themes that suit your niche and web design goals.

4. Mobile-Friendliness

Mobile-friendly websites are here to stay. Today people are buying products directly from their mobile devices, so you can’t afford to miss this segment of the market.

The eCommerce builder you choose must offer responsive themes with a mobile-friendly design. These will help to ensure that your store looks good and functions no matter the screen size it’s being viewed upon.

responsive web design

Choosing the Best eCommerce Website Builder for Beginners

There are a ton of different eCommerce builders out there. There is no best eCommerce builder for everyone, just the best eCommerce builder for you.

Before you fire up a business website builder make sure to take stock of the kind of store you’re trying to build. Your choice of niche, the kind of products you want to sell, and the way you’re going to market your store will all influence your web design decisions.

One of the easier to use tools you’ll have available is the HostGator eCommerce builder. Here are some of the features you’ll have access to with the HostGator website builder for eCommerce:

1. A Diverse Selection of Mobile-Friendly Templates

What if you could find the perfect template with a user-friendly interface that seems like it was built just for you? With HostGator, you can.

You’ll find over 100 different website templates with a mobile-friendly design that are built to cater to a ton of different niches. You can select from one of the eCommerce specific themes, or you can add eCommerce functionality to one of the niche-specific themes.

2. PayPal Payment Integration

PayPal is one of the most popular payment processors in the world. Right out of the box you’ll have the ability to integrate PayPal payments into your site.

With PayPal, you can accept a wide variety of payment types, and users can make payments without having to create an account first. By working with a trusted payment processor you’ll help reduce buyer friction.

With the higher subscription levels, you’ll have the ability to add even more payment options to your site and even add a shopping cart.

3. Integrated Marketing Tools

“Build it and they will come” is a nice idea. But unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Building your store is just the first step. If you want to create a successful online business, then you’re going to need to market your store.

With this builder, you’ll have integrated marketing tools that allow you to share your store across social media and optimize every aspect of your site for SEO.

4. A Dead-Simple Site Builder

Finally, you’ll get access to an intuitive drag-and-drop builder. There’s no point in using a website  building software if it’s going to take forever to build your site. Or, you waste time trying to figure out how to customize your template.

With this builder, all you have to do is select your theme, drag and drop your way to the perfect site, add your content and products, and you’re ready to start selling. There’s even an integrated tutorial that’ll walk you through the process of building out your site.

If you want to start selling products online as fast as possible, then you’ll want to try out the HostGator Site Builder. Sign up today and you can have your store online in a single afternoon.

With HostGator, you also have the option to further expand your eCommerce empire. In time you might want to upgrade to a more robust eCommerce solution, like WordPress hosting and WooCommerce, Magento, PrestaShop, and a lot more.

You can install all of these quickly within the provided cPanel, and transform your existing store, or start a new one from scratch.

If speed is what you’re looking for, then give this website builder software a go. Just look for the Website Builder tool within your HostGator control panel, and turn on the eCommerce options.

Build Your Online Store with an eCommerce Website Builder

If you’re not using an eCommerce website building software to build out your eCommerce store, then you must be crazy. These tools give you a serious leg up. You can focus on running your store and marketing to get new customers, while you let your website builder handle the rest.

Hopefully, you’ve found the information above useful in helping you find the top eCommerce website builder for your needs. Once you’ve found the right platform for your web hosting needs, then start building and launch your store.

Kevin Wood writes about technology and human potential. You can find him at his virtual homes Wooden Writing and Counter Culturist.