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BigCommerce vs. Shopify Overview

BigCommerce and Shopify are two great e-commerce platforms, ranking highly on our list of the best e-commerce platforms. These services are comparable in price, features, and security options.

If you look at our individual review scores, it’s easy to see that Shopify has an early leg up with a higher overall rating of 4.6 compared to BigCommerce’s score of 4.4. However, each service does some things a little better than the other — the service that will work best for you will depend greatly on your personal preferences.

Which e-commerce platform should you get? Let this BigCommerce vs. Shopify face-off help you make that decision.

Review factorWinner
Plans and pricingShopify (4.8)
FeaturesShopify (4.8)
SecurityBigCommerce (5.0)
SupportBigCommerce (5.0)
ImprovementsShopify (5.0)
Best overallShopify (4.6)

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Specs

Password managerDetailsBasic plan features

Overall rating: (4.4)

Read our full BigCommerce review.

Starting price: $29.95 per month
Multichannel Sales: Yes
  • Unlimited products
  • 24/7 support (phone, email, chat)
  • Reporting tools
  • Marketing tools
  • 0% transaction fee

Overall rating: (4.6)

Read our full Shopify review.

Starting price: $29 per month
Multichannel Sales: Yes
  • Unlimited products
  • 24/7 support (email, chat)
  • Marketing tools
  • Shipping tools
  • 2% transaction fee

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Plans and Pricing

Plans and pricing winner: Shopify

BigCommerce (4.0)Starts at $29.95 per month
Shopify (4.8)Starts at $29 per month

Shopify and BigCommerce cost essentially the same amount per month — about $30 — with two higher plans that scale to your business needs.

What set Shopify apart here was the standard features that come with each plan — All plans come with an online store, unlimited products, 24/7 support, and features for sales support, order management, reporting, and marketing.

Shopify pricing table

This doesn’t imply that BigCommerce isn’t also feature-rich for the price — far from it. However, the plan structure scales automatically depending on your yearly revenue, which I found pretty off-putting. Revenue isn’t always dependable; the large jump in monthly rates per tier could put some in a bad spot if they’re not paying attention.

Because of this, I have to give the win to Shopify.

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Features

Features winner: Shopify

BigCommerce (4.0)
  • Limitless storage
  • Performance analysis
  • Order management and processing
Shopify (4.8)
  • Reporting and analytics
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Mobile support

Both BigCommerce and Shopify have great SEO implementations and other marketing features that make reaching your audience easier. They also make scaling easy with useful reporting and analytics to help you grow your business and an abandoned cart feature to maximize orders.

Abandoned Checkouts

However, Shopify takes the win by offering better mobile support and store design. While BigCommerce does have free themes, they are very limited and pretty restrictive in how much you can customize them. Meanwhile, Shopify offers some of the most modern and professional-looking themes. You’ll find more than 100 themes in both free and paid versions. They’re also customizable, so you can fine-tune your chosen theme until it’s right for you.

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Security

Security winner: Big Commerce

BigCommerce (5.0)
  • Certified Level 1 Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)-compliant
  • Ability to install SSL certificates
  • Fully managed cloud hosting
Shopify (4.5)

BigCommerce takes the security category by offering a fully managed hosting solution with cloud hosting against Shopify’s shared hosting.

BigCommerce Uptime and Security features

While shared hosting isn’t necessarily insecure, Shopify subscribers share the host servers with millions, making data loss a genuine concern. If you choose Shopify, I suggest backing up your product data by exporting CSV files regularly.

BigCommerce is fully managed, and ensures that you get a backup to your last known safe configuration even if malware affects your data. The platform is always on top of the latest security updates and deploys best practices at all times.

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Support

Support winner: BigCommerce

BigCommerce (5.0)
  • Live Chat
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Community Forum
Shopify (4.0)
  • Chat
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Community Forum

Shopify loses points for making phone or live chat support difficult to access – it buries these options through multiple nested links instead of making them front and center. While it has the same kinds of support as BigCommerce on paper, those options aren’t super helpful.

BigCommerce support links

Support at BigCommerce was easy and responsive — the wait time for live chat and phone support is under one minute, so you don’t have to wait long. BigCommerce also has extensive tutorials and lessons under BigCommerce University to help you get started. Overall, you’ll get all the needed support in as many different ways as possible, some albeit more time-consuming than others.

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Improvements

Improvements winner: Shopify

BigCommerce (4.0)
  • Centralized multi-storefront management
Shopify (5.0)
  • Linkpop is now available
  • Ability to add shipping speed status
  • The ability to automate international tax calculations

While both platforms are stable and vetted, it feels like Shopify is a little more on the ball when it comes to implementing new features and fixes. Where BigCommerce has only announced one noteworthy feature over the past year, Shopify has released three within the past few months.

linkpop banner

To be sure, a centralized, multi storefront management dashboard would be a great feature, it’s worth emphasizing that it’s not yet been released – only announced. Meanwhile, Shopify has added a slew of quality of life improvements over this year and is clearly listening to user feedback.

Shopify takes the win handily.

Should You Get BigCommerce or Shopify?

Bottom line winner: Shopify

BigCommerce (4.4)
  • Great managed service
  • Responsive customer service
  • Competitive plans

Best for: Enterprise-level companies wanting to scale

Shopify (4.6)
  • Wide range of apps
  • Robust customer service
  • Mobile-responsive themes

Best for: Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) looking to go national or global

Shopify and BigCommerce are two of the most powerful e-commerce platforms on the market. They make it easy for anyone to create, market, grow, and maintain a highly profitable business from one website. These two e-commerce rivals host thousands of online retailers generating billions of dollars worth of business. Both are relatively beginner-friendly, offer a variety of easy-to-use features, and provide responsive, mobile-friendly templates. Still, each has its strengths and weaknesses, depending on your goals.

Shopify offers more than 8,000 paid and free third-party apps in its app store, while BigCommerce offers more built-in features. Because BigCommerce is more feature-rich, those features are scalable — however, this creates a steeper learning curve. Meanwhile, Shopify offers an easier base platform that can scale by integrating some of the thousands of apps available in the Shopify app store.

At the end of the day, each is targeting a different audience — BigCommerce is courting bigger businesses, while Shopify makes things easy for beginners. While we prefer Shopify, BigCommerce could be a great option for your business.

How I Evaluated BigCommerce vs. Shopify

I test web hosts based on the following factors:

  • Plan value: What plans are available, and do they offer a good value?
  • Ease of use: Is the dashboard easy to navigate?
  • Support: How fast can you get help when needed, and is support genuinely helpful?
  • Features: What features does the host offer, and how do they compare to similar competitors?
  • Security: Does the host offer SSL certificates, Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack protection, backup services, and scans for viruses and malware?
  • Recent improvements: What has the host done lately to update its technology and services?

Learn more about our review methodology.