Support » Plugin: Ecwid Ecommerce Shopping Cart » Depends On How You Look At It

  • While at first Ecwid seems like a great deal, I have to say that they strive in some areas. After this, it’s all downhill. First let’s get the bad stuff out of the way because I think that this is what most people are looking for in a review.

    1. Your entire store will be at the mercy of Ecwid. Your shop is pretty much 100% hosted on Ecwid’s website. This means that if their website goes down, yours goes down. If their database is down, your shop is closed. It’s bad enough that we often deal with downtime on our own servers but that downtime percentage is increased when you consider that it also includes the downtime of remote services like Ecwid. Even worse, what guarantee do you have that Ecwid will always be in business? If they ever decide that one day they would like to move on to something else, everyone who owns a store that is hosted by Ecwid will no longer have a store.

    2. What you get for $35 a month, you can also get by simply making a one time payment through some script marketplace and a free WooCommerce plugin. What you get for $99 a month, you can also get with a one time payment to a web developer for close to the same cost by creating some additional plugin options for WooCommerce. I know because I am a Developer and do this for some clients.

    3. If all your going to do is offer people 10 items in their store with the free version, then at least have the common courtesy of allowing people a few extra features that every respectable store has. Allowing some basics like “Mobile point-of-sale” or “Automated tax calculations” should be kind of a given at any level. Who is going to want a store where they can’t even add tax to their items? And if people aren’t satisfied with a few basic options that every store in the world should have, how would you ever expect them to think that a paid version of your store is going to satisfy them… especially when they see you as nothing more than a cash grabber?

    4. Priority support should be for ANY PAID VERSION. By saying that only your highest plan has priority support, you are basically advertising to all of your other paying customers that they aren’t worthy of your time as long as your higher paying customer are too ignorant to run their own store with a drag and drop interface. This is also like saying “Sure your store is not running properly right now. Pay us more money for options that you don’t even want or need and we will consider that our problem.” Priority support for people who just happen to pay MORE money because they need options that we don’t currently need has always been a HUGE TURN OFF for me; and I assume many others as well. A paying customer is a paying customer. If you want more money for priority support then make “Priority Support” its OWN add-on product/service. This way anyone with any shop level can just add priority support for a small additional fee. Even a free version user can pay just for priority support. But adding it as an overall shop level option is an INSULT TO OUR INTELLIGENCE. THIS ALONE cost you 3 stars on my rating where I would have normally given your service 3 or 4 stars based on weighing the options of everything else. Every paid customer (especially paying you monthly, no less) is still a paying customer.

    Now let’s look at the good stuff. Here is where Ecwid excels above the other alternatives.

    1. I have not yet found, in all my years of building eCommerce sites for people, a shopping cart solution that is easy for newcomers to use than this one. It’s seems like even a child can have a store up and running in less than a couple of hours or less. Even for the more tech savvy store owners, plugins like WooCommerce is a huge headache just to maintain, let alone set up. Ecwid makes it simple from setup to general maintenance especially when it comes to adding product variations and shipping options. If you’re not worried about unnecessary costs and just want something simple to use with all the features of BigCommerce without the hassle of trying to figure out complicated settings, then you’re definitely not going to find anything better. Trust me; I’ve been a developer for more than 26 years and I know this for a fact.

    2. Ecwid is akin to having a free VPN with your store. The number one reason I have seen most of my clients have their web hosting accounts locked is due to excessive CPU loads on their site. This happens when you have a lot of content that increases the hard drive usage on shared hosting accounts. And limits on CPU usage is one of those things that most hosting providers don’t even tell you about until you find your account disabled (unless you look closely at the teeny tiny fine print below the tiny fine print below the fine print). Ecwid eliminates most of this problem because it hosts virtually everything to do with your store on their own servers. Sure this has it’s down side as mentioned earlier but it is also a plus for BigCommerce shops on shared hosting accounts.

    What You Should Fix On Your Plugin:

    Add an Alt-Shop (or “alternate page”) option to the plugins. This would be a page that users are redirected to if your shop happens to be down or inaccessible due to servers being unresponsive or Ecwid accounts being halted.

    Don’t preload generic shop data. I have noticed that sometimes you see generic shop items (clothing) if the Ecwid account shop loads too slowly. Not only does this make things a little unprofessional, it’s also not good at all for SEO reasons. We don’t need your generic clothing line showing up in our search results.

Viewing 1 replies (of 1 total)
  • Plugin Support Ecwid Customer Care

    (@ecwid_team)

    Hello,

    This is Anastasia from Ecwid Support team.

    Thank you for such a detailed feedback. We really appreciate you taking the time on this! I’d like to comment on some of your points, so users who do not know Ecwid would understand it.

    As I get it, you prefer to store your data on your own servers, since you see it as a downside that Ecwid is hosted with us. Basically, Ecwid is a hosted SaaS shopping cart, so all the code and store data is hosted on our servers and delivered to you and your customers in the background by means of AJAX. We store our data on Amazon Web Services.

    So there are two different approaches: one is when you use your servers for site/store and another one is SaaS solution — everything is stored on our servers. Each of these solutions has its pros and cons, so everyone can decide which one works for them. One of the pros of SaaS (which I do love to post here) is that we take care of security breaches, software updates, and do other routine tasks to make sure Ecwid servers are stable.

    We definitely do not have any plans to discontinue Ecwid service. Anyway, we’d take care of our customers and make sure they have a solution to migrate their store to another platform. Also, if you need your store data (customers’ info, products, orders), you can download it on your computer in a CSV file any time in your Ecwid Admin.

    What comes to the pricing for Ecwid, you can check our plans and what features they include at https://support.ecwid.com/hc/en-us/articles/207100729-Ecwid-plans-and-features

    I’d want to provide more information on our Free plan. Indeed, the Free plan has a limit on features, just like any other services. You can add up to 10 products (including options, by the way) and 2 categories. Though there are all the basic features to start selling:
    — Set up different payment methods: manual (offline) methods or online payments with a card.
    — Add shipping methods: custom rates based on subtotal/weight, automatic rates from carriers like USPS, UPS, FedEx, etc, in-store pickup, and others.
    — Change storefront design
    — Complete checkout: customers can add products to the cart, select a shipping, pay, and complete their order. Email updates to admin and customers, invoices, etc, including.

    So basically you can sell on the Free plan.

    Also, we try to find a workaround for a paid feature that can be used on the Free plan. For example, instead of automatic tax calculation, you can set up different tax % depending on a customer’s location with the manual taxes on the Free plan, see how: https://support.ecwid.com/hc/en-us/articles/207099899-Setting-up-taxes#Manual_taxes

    I understand your point on support and the approach when you have to pay to get it. We choose another way for now. Additionally, we try to develop Ecwid as simple as possible, contribute a lot to self-help service and knowledge base, — all these should help users set up and manage Ecwid stores on their own. Besides, our Support team provides help to all users. If you have any issues, we will help no matter what plan you’re on. You’re right, every paid customer is a paying customer. Every customer deserves to get help.

    Just in case, support options by plan:
    — Email support – available for all plans including the Free one
    — Immediate help in live chat – all paid users
    — Phone support on Business and Unlimited plans. It’s a dedicated service: an online meeting with a targeted and dedicated talk, allowing to solve questions of almost any tier.

    Further to generic shop items that are shown to you sometimes, I think it might be a cache of the page. The thing is Ecwid has a special option called “Static Page”, which saves a static version of a page in your store and displays it while your store is loading in the background. It might not work correctly in your case, thus, generic shop items are shown instead of your products when you load the store.

    You can disable this option in the hidden settings at yourdomain.com/wp-admin/admin.php?page=ec-params (change yourdomain.com to your actual WordPress site) > change the option “ecwid_static_home_page_enabled” to N (screenshot). Then save the changes and publish the site.

    If it doesn’t help, please, send us a link to your WordPress site to support@ecwid.com. We’ll look into this.

    We’re thankful for your feedback! I shared it with our team so they can consider adding the features you mentioned to Ecwid.

Viewing 1 replies (of 1 total)
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