Read on to find out more about the best eCommerce platforms in South Africa.
See, when e-commerce first became popular, it was only available to a niche group of people. Fast forward to today, and that niche group has expanded to include everyone.
Everyone who has access to the internet and everyone who has access to a smartphone.
Now, everyone has access to e-commerce.
That means it is no longer a niche industry. It’s a mainstream one that is expected to grow at an even faster rate in the coming years.
However, with so many e-commerce platforms available, which one is right for your business?
If you are thinking of starting an e-commerce business in South Africa, you are in the right place.
In this article, we will walk you through the various factors you should consider before making your final choice.
After reading through the information below, you should know whether e-commerce is right for your business.
What is E-Commerce?
E-commerce is the process of buying and selling products and services online.
You can also use e-commerce to refer to the business model that involves operating an online store. Products that are directly sold online are known as “digital goods.”
E-commerce platforms are centralized locations where businesses can sell their goods online.
Some of the most popular e-commerce platforms in South Africa are OLITT, Shopify, Wix, Volusion, and WooCommerce.
Why Use E-Commerce?
The benefits of using e-commerce are numerous.
If you are thinking about selling products online, here are just a few reasons why you should choose e-commerce over traditional brick-and-mortar retail.
a). You can reach customers all over the world
There are now millions of people who have Internet access, so you don’t need to focus just on your local market anymore. If your product or service is superior, then you will be able to reach global customers.
b). E-commerce lets you set your own hours
During the year, not everyone has the time to be open during traditional business hours.
For those people, allowing e-commerce to run your business would allow them to run their business when they’re busiest.
c). You can easily expand your business
Once you have started selling your products online in South Africa, you can easily add more products and expand your company’s reach at a faster rate than you could with a brick-and-mortar store.
d). E-commerce is cost-effective
You don’t have to set up a massive warehouse where you store all your products.
Online, you only need to invest in the platforms in South Africa that you use to sell your products.
e). E-commerce gives you total control
With traditional business models, you have to work within a certain set of rules and regulations.
By selling online in South Africa, you have the power to customize your business model to fit your needs.
Which eCommerce Platform in South Africa is Right for You?
When it comes to choosing an e-commerce platform in South Africa, there are many factors to consider.
For example, you will want to consider the cost of hosting your store, the ease of use of the platform, and the support offered by the company.
Another factor to consider is the type of products you will be selling.
Is your product line focused more on digital goods, such as e-books and digital downloads, or are you mostly selling physical products, such as clothing and household items?
Finally, you should consider what your target market looks like, as well as where they reside.
You may find that a specific country would be a better fit for your products.
6 Best E-Commerce Platforms in South Africa
That said, let us look at some of the best eCommerce platforms in South Africa.
OLITT is a tool that allows you to create an online store without touching the code or any other technical jargon.
With this tool, you can launch an eCommerce website in South Africa within minutes, upload products, set up shipping, and promote your store easily.
At the same time, you can integrate your store in South Africa with popular tools like Stripe, Paypal, and Flutterwave.
In a nutshell, OLITT Shop is a simple digital storefront that can be launched in 3 minutes. It supports connection to a custom domain, social commerce catalogues, multiple payment gateways, shipping channels, marketing tools, and support tools including Livechat and helpdesk applications.
You can give it a try here, it is free.
If you are looking for a simple and straightforward option, Shopify is a solid choice.
This Canadian e-commerce platform in South Africa is easy to set up and use, and it’s free to create your store. Shopify includes everything you need to get your store up and running.
From design templates to e-commerce software, it has everything you need to get your store up and running.
Shopify’s emphasis is on simplicity, so don’t expect a lot of bells and whistles on this platform.
What you will find, though, is a straightforward e-commerce platform that is designed to serve smaller business owners.
If you are looking for a platform that makes it easy to launch your e-commerce business, Shopify may be the right choice for you.
Wix is another popular platform that is used for building eCommerce websites in South Africa.
What sets Wix apart from other website builders, however, is that it is also a full e-commerce platform.
You can use Wix to build a website, but you can also use it to create online stores.
As a website builder, Wix includes many of the features you’d expect from a website builder, such as the ability to create a website with photos and videos, add an e-commerce store, build a blog, and manage your social media posts.
Wix also includes many of the features you’d find on a full e-commerce platform, including the ability to create product pages and manage sales, inventory, and shipments.
If you are looking for a platform that can do both website building and e-commerce, Wix may be the right choice for you.
Another major e-commerce platform that is used in South Africa is Volusion.
Like many eCommerce platforms in South Africa, Volusion offers both a self-hosted and SaaS (Software as a Service) version of the platform.
If you opt to use Volusion’s self-hosted versions, you can choose between two different deployment options.
You can either install Volusion on your own server or you can use Volusion’s cloud-hosted platform, which is similar to Shopify’s hosted version.
Whichever option you choose, you will be able to manage your Volusion account from your smartphone. You can also create personalized dashboards for each department within your business.
If you are looking for a platform that offers both website building and e-commerce, Volusion is a solid choice.
WooCommerce is another popular e-commerce platform that is used in South Africa.
The main advantage to using WooCommerce is that it gives you the option of building your e-commerce site on either WordPress or Joomla.
One of the major benefits of using WordPress in South Africa, however, is that it is a very user-friendly platform. WordPress is one of the most commonly used content management systems (CMS) in the world, and it’s very easy to use.
Another major benefit of using WooCommerce is that it is very customizable. You can modify the core features of the platform, such as adding shipping options.
You can even modify how orders are handled, such as whether orders are fulfilled manually or automatically. If you are looking for a platform that allows you to choose between two different web platforms, WooCommerce is a solid choice.
Magento is another popular e-commerce platform that is used in South Africa. The main advantage of choosing Magento is that it is very customizable.
The platform has a wide range of features, so you can customize the way your product pages look to fit your brand perfectly. The other advantage to choosing Magento is that it comes with a wide range of pre-built templates.
It can take some time to build a new website from scratch, but you don’t have to spend time building a new e-commerce platform from scratch. If you are looking for a platform with a lot of pre-built features, Magento is a solid choice.
In this overview of the best e-commerce platforms in South Africa, we’ve covered the top three choices.
Shopify is a good option if you are looking for a simple and straightforward platform. Wix is another solid choice if you are looking for a platform that can do both website building and e-commerce. Volusion is another popular choice, and it’s a good option for businesses that want a platform that can do both website building and e-commerce.
When choosing an e-commerce platform, you should focus on the following four factors: – Cost of hosting your store – Ease of use – Support offered – Target market.
These four factors should help you choose the best e-commerce platform for your business.
Try OLITT now.