The user experience of BigCommerce is not exactly good or bad. In some cases, the site is very easy to use, but upon comparing – it is not as simple as using other shopping carts on the market. Currently, the site has launched a new interface, which is a huge improvement to its previous complex one.
In fact, we noticed that BigCommerce has taken a lot of inspiration from Shopify. In addition, this is rather expected, as BigCommerce’s main competitor is Shopify. Apart from this, attempting to use the BigCommerce dashboard from a mobile browser is hectic.
The experience ranged from “completely debilitating” to “forgivably imprecise”. This means BigCommerce has a lot of work to do on its Mobile SEO. Our recommendation is to set up and manage your store from a full web browser.
Product Options Editor
The product options editor is rather complex to use. While adding varied types of products is relatively easier as compared to other site builders, the product options (such as style, color, and size) are created in a separate interface. This leads to great confusion, especially if a person has never used the site before. A better product option editor would definitely be that of Weebly or Shopify.
Product Option Rules Editor
After creating product options, you may have to change the weight or price of the products added. Again, doing so is rather confusing. Too many options lack appropriate details for use. As a result, things can get confusing fast. Therefore, you may need to keep the customer support tab open consistently.
WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) Editor
In addition to the useless complexity of the site and confusing options, the BigCommerce interface also lacked intuitiveness. For example, the default WYSIWYG editor is rather messy and bloated with the texts appearing too small to read. There is also an option to paste data from Microsoft Word (which is rather useless if you think about it).
Confusing Pop-Up Windows
Perhaps the most irritating thing about using BigCommerce is that it keeps showing you confusing and long pop-up alerts. When we saved a new product, we were displayed with the above 3-paragraph long window alert – just because we had not entered the depth or height of the product.
One of the most useful features of BigCommerce that makes life easier for users is the “App Center”. The platform had previously removed this feature, but upon receiving several complaints launched it again. Regardless of that, the applications listed in the “App Center” prove incredibly useful in adding extra features to your site.
The site lacks several important features lack iOS and Android Mobile Apps, Multi-Lingual Support, and Email Customization. However, there are a few interesting features. These include:
- Digital Products – Downloadable products added to the site can have maximum downloads, expiry dates, and other interesting features. This proves to be incredibly handy, as not many sites offer this feature.
- App Store – The large and convenient app store enables users to connect to third party software and add loyalty programs, enhanced analytics, affiliate programs etc. This feature is necessary for every site-building website.
- Third Party Shipping Integration – Users can install third party shipping apps to receive real-time shipping information and quotes.
- Discounts & Coupon Codes – BigCommerce enables users to set both coupon codes and discount rules.
- Gift Cards – Full gift certificate system that even allows customers to set the denomination— we have never seen this feature before.
Perhaps one of the best things about using BigCommerce is the ability of choosing a good theme from its third party theme store. Typically, Shopify and BigCommerce are the only store builders to offer a huge selection of themes (some paid, others free). Look at the examples below to learn more about each:
Majority of the paid themes prove to be responsive and optimized for both: desktop and mobile. There are also plenty of customization options available, which boost the overall functionality of themes even more.
When compared to the paid themes, we only found two or three themes to be equally responsive. Most free themes lacked the intuitiveness and user-friendliness most users would be expecting.
Theme customization options are limited to free themes. Nevertheless, the basic customization settings allow you to select a number of fonts or colors, letter spacing, border thicknesses, and font sizes. These options are good, but BigCommerce could have done much better.
Pricing and Billing Practices
BigCommerce has poor billing practices and asks you to phone in to cancel your account. The pricing options are good though. There are four plans available: Standard for $29.95 (includes 1.5% transaction fee), Plus for $79.905, Pro for $199.95 per month, and Enterprise (based on your individual business’ needs and requirements).
In addition to offering phone, email, and live chat support, BigCommerce offers several methods to assist you. This includes a resource center, knowledge base, service status, webinars, community forums, social media profiles, design guides, and YouTube channel with video tutorials. However, the sites average customer support reply time is 12 hours and 22 minutes (the Industry average is 6 hours 25 minutes.)
Overall, BigCommerce is not without its wrinkles and features an egregious web copy, unimpressive product variations/options, and questionable customer support), but it still manages to do better than most rookie site builders do. However, if you are just entering the eCommerce market and want to create a site, a better option would be to use Shopify or Weebly.
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We Review. You Decide.
Mike Orozco and Steve Stacy – Hostt’s Review Crew