BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Choose Best for Your Business in 2024

Written By:Callum
Last Updated: March 01, 2024
Reading Time: 9 minutes

Wondering to take your business online but confused about how to do it? E-commerce platforms are software solutions that enable businesses to create and manage online stores, allowing them to sell products and services over the Internet. Shopify and BigCommerce are two famous examples of e-commerce platforms that help with the best responsive web design in Sydney.

In my ten years of web design experience, my team and I at Creato (a top-rated web design agency in Sydney) have designed several websites for various industries in Sydney. To question which e-commerce platform is right for my business, I square down to 2 recommendations.

Shopify. It shines in B2C businesses that are consumer-focused and strictly through an online mode, while BigCommerce is more appropriate for large businesses focusing on B2B, having both online and offline channels working in parallel.

Shopify is renowned for offering user-friendly interfaces, rapid setup, and mobile adaptability. Brands like Redbull and Kylie Cosmetics benefit from its seamless customer experience and quick deployment. Conversely, BigCommerce stands out for its versatility and robust features, catering more to B2B needs. Brands like Mahindra Automotive and Toyota find their scalability, customisation options, ability to handle complex requirements, large sales volumes and tailored features invaluable.

BigCommerce vs. Shopify: Which One is better for your Business?

BigCommerce vs. Shopify




Ease of Use Very user-friendly, drag-and-drop interface, extensive app ecosystem Slightly more complex, requires some configuration, and built-in features for common needs
Scalability Highly scalable, suitable for high traffic and large product catalogues Highly scalable, can handle significant growth
Features Limited built-in features, relies heavily on apps for additional functionality More built-in features, including abandoned cart recovery, coupons, and product reviews
Customisation Flexible with app ecosystem and theme options Highly customisable with code and APIs
Integrations Extensive app ecosystem with thousands of integrations Numerous native integrations and app marketplace
Target Audience Beginners, small businesses, fashion/beauty brands Growing businesses, B2B, brands with complex needs
Transaction Fees Yes, except for Shopify Payments No, on any plan
POS System Optional add-on Primarily focused on online sales, limited POS integration options
Customer Support Lite plan: 24/7 live chat and email; All other plans: 24/7 live chat, email, and phone All plans: 24/7 live chat, email, and phone
Mobile-Friendly Yes Yes
Security PCI-DSS compliant, SSL certificates, fraud protection PCI-DSS compliant, SSL certificates, fraud protection
Additional Staff Users Unlimited staff accounts on all plans Two staff accounts on the Standard plan, 15 accounts on the Plus plan, and 40 accounts on the Pro plan
Dropshipping  Has its own dropshipping app, and also supports other third-party dropshipping apps.  Less options for dropshipping applications available. 
SEO  Provides multiple SEO optimisation features.  Customisable URL slugs, and other SEO optimisation features available. 
Page Load Speed Offers faster page load time.  Has slower page load time. 
For Small Businesses  A better scale-up option for small businesses.  A good option for businesses with revenue lower that $50,000/year. 
Theme and Design  Offers a wider selection of modern and customisable themes.  Has lesser theme options available as compared to shopify. 

Shopify and Big Commerce – Transaction Fees

Transaction Fees

Shopify charges no transaction fees if you use their Shopify Payments option, which has rates of 2.4% + $0.30 per online transaction. However, if you want to use a third-party payments gateway, Shopify charges an additional 2% transaction fee.

On the other hand, BigCommerce does not charge any transaction fees regardless of what payment provider you use. Their Standard plan costs a similar $39/month to Shopify’s basic Shopify plan but lets you use external gateways like PayPal for free.

Shopify vs Big Commerce – Small Businesses Preference

Small Businesses Preference

Both Shopify and BigCommerce offer great e-commerce platforms, but Shopify is likely the better choice for small businesses making less than $50,000 in annual revenue. Shopify’s basic plan starts at $29/month compared to BigCommerce’s $29.95/month plan. Shopify also powers over 1 million small businesses globally.

With its simple interface, scalable plans, and low starting cost, Shopify enables small merchants to set up shop quickly. BigCommerce has more advanced features but a higher learning curve. For an affordable, easy-to-use platform, Shopify is ideal for small e-commerce businesses starting out.

Shopify vs BigCommerce – Page Load Speed

Page Load Speed

Both BigCommerce and Shopify are known for having fast page load speeds. Shopify offers automatic image compression and caching to make sites faster. BigCommerce uses a CDN and optimises images to improve speed. However, Shopify has a slight edge, with an average page load time of 1.3 seconds, while BigCommerce sites’ average is 2.2 seconds. Both enable decent speeds, but Shopify is a bit faster for image-heavy sites.

Shopify and BigCommerce – Drop Shipping Ease

Drop Shipping Ease

Shopify has over 300 dropshipping apps, including its app called Oberlo. Oberlo lets you quickly find suppliers, import products to your store, edit listings, and process orders.

BigCommerce only has around 24 dropshipping apps, all from third-party suppliers. So, the fulfilment process is outsourced.

Shopify is better for dropshipping because it has more apps and options.

Additional Differences Between Shopify and BigCommerce

Product Type

Shopify excels for fashion, beauty, and lifestyle brands, providing visually appealing templates and user-friendly tools. It suits consumer goods with customisable catalogues. Conversely,

Due to its scalability and advanced inventory management, BigCommerce accommodates industrial goods, bulky items, and intricate catalogues. Its robust tools handle diverse inventory types effectively, making it ideal for businesses with complex product listings.

Sales Volume

Shopify has worked well for businesses with moderate to high sales. It’s a good fit for medium-sized businesses. But, when sales get really high, its performance is sometimes affected due to the need for extra apps or might hit some limits in your plan.

On the other hand, BigCommerce has been great for handling many sales without any problems. It’s perfect for businesses that are growing quickly. It can deal with sudden increases in sales, especially during busy times, without slowing down. This makes it a good choice for businesses that always have a lot of transactions or are growing fast.

SEO and Marketing Needs

As we know, Shopify is ideal for online-only sales and running basic SEO or e-marketing strategies. Our clients have been able to create both multi-channel and international sales through Shopify, but only with additional configurations. BigCommerce, on the other hand, has extensive built-in features, ideal for businesses focusing on multi-channel and international sales and those with advanced SEO and marketing needs.

  • BigCommerce has built-in SEO features like optimised URLs, unique product URLs, embedded product data, and automatic URL adjustments when products are renamed.
  • Shopify allows adding keywords, editing meta descriptions, and customising blog post URLs. However, advanced SEO requires third-party apps.
  • For sales reports, BigCommerce includes professional reporting in all plans. Shopify only has basic reporting in the mid-tier plan, while advanced reporting requires the most expensive plan.
  • Both platforms can integrate Google Analytics for detailed website analytics.


Shopify and BigCommerce offer tiered pricing plans for businesses of varying sizes. Shopify’s costs encompass monthly subscriptions, transaction fees, and potential app expenses. BigCommerce, though slightly pricier in some tiers, emphasises more built-in features, potentially reducing reliance on additional apps.


Shopify and BigCommerce offer responsive themes designed for optimal viewing on all devices. Shopify has 8 free customisable themes that work for various industries. BigCommerce provides 12 free customisable themes.

Shopify has over 70 options for premium themes ranging from $150 to $350. BigCommerce has around 150 premium themes, costing between $150 and $300.

While both platforms focus on mobile-friendly adaptive themes, Shopify is often considered ahead in terms of the design and usability of their themes. Shopify continuously improves its themes to optimise the user experience.

Shopify and BigCommerce Cart

Online shoppers are easily distracted and may abandon their carts if checkout is confusing. So a smooth, easy checkout is crucial for making sales.

Shopify uses third-party apps to enable cart-level discounts, bulk order discounts, tiered pricing discounts, and automatic coupon codes for customer groups. BigCommerce has built-in tools to create cart discounts, coupon codes, and automatic customer group discounts without needing extra apps.

For payment options, Shopify connects to over 100 different payment providers to support all major payment methods like credit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay, etc. BigCommerce has 65 different payment options pre-integrated, so the most prominent options are covered.

Technical Expertise

Shopify boasts a user-friendly interface perfect for users with limited technical expertise, offering easy setup and management through its drag-and-drop tools. In contrast, BigCommerce demands moderate technical knowledge, providing advanced customisation options and features that require a deeper understanding.

While Shopify simplifies tasks with a user-friendly approach, BigCommerce offers greater flexibility but has a steeper learning curve due to its extensive feature set.


Shopify offers seamless integration with diverse third-party apps, enabling customer relationship management (CRM), marketing, and inventory management integrations through its vast app ecosystem. Its app store expands store capabilities with specialised tools.

Conversely, BigCommerce prioritises built-in functionalities, particularly for B2B, reducing reliance on third-party apps. With inherent ERP (enterprise resource planning) and CRM integrations, it caters to B2B operations, potentially needing fewer external integrations, simplifying setup and minimising additional costs.

Details about the Subscription Model and Set Up Time

Subscription Model and Set Up Time of BigCommerce  and Shopify

Feature  BigCommerce  Shopify 
Setup Time  Between 3 – 7 Days, depending on the number of products. 7-14 Days, depending on the website’s structure.
Pricing Shopify Plan – $44 AUD/Month (Billed Annually)

Plus – $121 AUD/Month (Billed Annually)

Pro – $459 AUD/Month (Billed Annually)

Basic for Solo Enterpreneurs – $42 AUD/Month (Billed Annually)

Shopify for Small teams – $114 AUD/Month (Billed Annually)

Advanced  – $431 AUD/Month (Billed Annually)

Retail – $129 AUD/Month

Transaction Fees  2.4% to 2.9% + $0.30 0.5% to 2.9% + $0.30
App Costs  Optional Often required for additional features.

The monthly costs for basic plans on Shopify and BigCommerce are similar – both start at $39 per month if you pay monthly. With Shopify’s Basic plan, you get a buy button, online store, 2 staff accounts, credit card processing fees of 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction, and up to 4 warehouse locations for your inventory.

BigCommerce’s Standard plan gives you mostly the same features, except with unlimited staff accounts instead of just 2. One difference is that Shopify charges a 2% transaction fee if you don’t use their Shopify Payments system, while BigCommerce has no transaction fees.

At the $79 per month level, BigCommerce’s Plus plan adds some extra tools to help get more sales, like storing customer credit cards for faster checkout, recovering abandoned shopping carts, and rewards programs for loyal buyers. Shopify’s $79 per month mid-tier plan has 5 staff accounts, 5 warehouse locations, lower credit card rates, and lower transaction fees.

Shopify’s most expensive Advanced plan at $399 per month includes advanced sales reports, 15 staff accounts, 8 warehouse locations, special pricing for international sales, and further reduced credit card and transaction fees. BigCommerce’s Pro plan at the same $399 price unlocks customer reviews, custom product filtering, and discounted credit card rates.

One key difference is that BigCommerce limits plans based on your annual sales revenue. The Standard plan is for stores selling up to $50,000 yearly, the Plus plan is up to $180,000 in sales, and the Pro plan is for shops with up to $400,000 in yearly sales.

Shopify also has a Lite plan for $9 per month that lets you sell through your own website using a Buy button and their Point of Sale app, without needing a full online store. This summarizes the key pricing differences between the two platforms in simple terms.


The distinction between BigCommerce and Shopify for your e-commerce platform lies in their integration, customisation, and suitability. Shopify excels in its expansive third-party integrations, ideal for diverse tools and apps, while BigCommerce emphasises inherent features, especially beneficial for B2B operations, potentially reducing reliance on additional apps.

Both Shopify and BigCommerce allow beginners to create attractive online stores. For total e-commerce beginners, Shopify is typically easier to use right away. One reason is that BigCommerce has more built-in advanced features. These powerful tools provide a lot of capability but require more learning to master.

In contrast, Shopify’s core platform is simpler and more beginner-friendly. It relies heavily on its app store for added functionality.

So the basic Shopify system is less intimidating for first-time users. BigCommerce gives you more sophisticated tools out of the box, but there is a steeper learning curve. Ultimately, the best way to decide is to try both platforms yourself with a free trial. Hands-on experimentation that will show you which one suits your needs as a beginner best.

At Creato, we’re more than a Sydney-based web design team—we’ve been passionate about crafting top-notch digital experiences since 2015. Our mission? Blending creativity and technical smarts to build websites that truly represent your brand. We focus on making sites that look fantastic and work great, with easy-to-use features and mobile-friendly designs. Plus, we’re here to guide you through making updates—keeping things hassle-free.

Join forces with Creato for a website that stands out, engages your audience, and reflects your unique story. Check out the benefits of choosing Creato, and let’s create something awesome together! Contact Us Now!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I migrate from BigCommerce to Shopify?

Yes, you can migrate from BigCommerce to Shopify using a migration service or app.

2. Is BigCommerce good for e-commerce?

Yes, BigCommerce is a robust, enterprise-level e-commerce platform with powerful built-in features.

3. Do I need a developer to build a BigCommerce or Shopify store?

No, both platforms are designed for beginners with no coding skills needed to create a store.

4. What are the main alternatives to Shopify and BigCommerce?

Top alternatives include WooCommerce, Squarespace, Wix, and Magento.

5. Is BigCommerce good for beginners?

BigCommerce has a steeper learning curve compared to Shopify but provides helpful education resources for beginners.

6. Is selling on BigCommerce free?

No, BigCommerce requires a paid subscription plan starting at $44 AUD/month.

7. What language is BigCommerce written in? 

BigCommerce is built using Ruby on Rails and AngularJS.

8. Does Shopify take a percentage of sales?

Yes, Shopify charges a transaction fee ranging from 0.5% to 2% depending on the plan.

9. Does Shopify charge GST in Australia?

Yes, Australian Shopify merchants are charged 10% GST.

10. How often do you get paid from Shopify?

Shopify payments are deposited into your bank account every 2-7 days.

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About callum

Callum is the founder of Creato, a Sydney based design agency that specialises in creating holistic brands for Aussie businesses.

With a talent for crafting memorable and effective branding solutions, Callum has built Creato into a respected and successful agency. His work has been featured in various publications, including The Huffington Post, BuzzFeed, and Entrepreneur.

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