For most people, the question of which is better between hosted and self hosted e-commerce, comes up as a logical step in the development of Internet-based businesses.
Shopify is one of the leading hosted e-commerce platforms.
In the world of e-commerce, your online store can either be hosted or self hosted.
Under the self hosted model, you are responsible for downloading or developing the software that you need to successfully launch and run your store.
If that is the case, then the hosted e-commerce option is your best bet. This model simplifies life because you don’t have to worry about taking care of the software side of things. Every technical detail is taken care of by companies that provide e-commerce hosting services. All that you need to do in order to get your store up and running is sign up, pay the required fee and start selling. There are a number of companies that provide these services. These include:
Hosted e-commerce comes with a number of advantages:
Let’s face it, we all want life to be simple. And what could be simpler than not having to worry about the technical side of your online store?
Unless you have a team of cyber security experts at your disposal, the hosted e-commerce option is probably the best option for you.
Though this may seem counterintuitive, hosted e-commerce actually turns out to be much cheaper, when compared to the self hosting option. It eliminates a number of cost parameters, most of which could actually turn out to be substantial, should you decide to take the alternative route. Those who decide to self host their online stores have to contend with the following costs:
With sites such as Shopify and Stripe, you do not have to worry about your website’s maintenance. That is taken care of by the hosted e-commerce services provider. As mentioned earlier, you don’t have to worry about the security, maintenance and other technical aspects of the store.
Along with the simplicity of choosing the hosted option, comes a key disadvantage: hosted e-commerce has limited customization options. This pretty much spells out the major disadvantage that comes with hosted e-commerce.
So, who is hosted e-commerce best suited for?
The options, when it comes to self hosting your online store, include WooCommerce, Magento, Solidius and many more.
WooCommerce powers 39% of all online stores
Websites are all about aesthetics. Ask yourself, would you buy from a site that does not look professional? A hosted e-commerce website has that side covered, simply because all the templates and themes are designed by professionals. All you need to do is buy or choose one, and you can begin setting up your store.
A second reason why hosted e-commerce remains the best is the issue of cost. While, with a service such as WooCommerce, setting up is free, you actually need to pay more in order to get your online store up and running.
Finally, the speed at which your pages load is another important component that you need to consider when deciding whether or not to go for the hosted e-commerce option. Research has shown that people are more likely to buy from shops that have faster load times.
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