Looking for ecommerce software? Here's how 3dcart and Ecwid stack up.
Matthew Taylor and Daniel Adams
Last updated 2o July 2020
Best for3dcart is one of the “big boys” of hosted ecommerce platforms, catering to businesses of all sizes.
Best forAll retailers that need a powerful store added to their existing site - without the need to change their CMS (content management system), site design, or hosting - will find Ecwid an attractive option.
Can't decide between 3dcart and Ecwid?
Find the best platform for you with our side by side comparison of 3dcart and Ecwid. See how each platform stacks up across ease of use, design, support and value for money.
Let the comparison begin. Don't worry, we'll guide you.
3dcart is a widely-used and fully-hosted ecommerce platform that comes with an extensive set of features.
Like Shopify, 3dcart offers packages for retailers of all sizes. Smaller online sellers can take advantage of a site-builder and straightforward management dashboard. Larger retailers, on the other hand, can choose from a comprehensive premium plan or several enterprise options (for stores turning over millions of dollars).
For retailers that want to start on a smaller plan but are expecting to scale, 3dcart will be particularly attractive.
On the negative side, absolute beginners may benefit from a more intuitive, streamlined platform like Weebly or Squarespace. The themes aren’t the most visually-pleasing that we’ve seen, either.
Use if you’re a large retailer looking for a fully-hosted solution with a wide feature set, extensive customizability, and excellent customer support. Equally, smaller retailers that are expecting to scale should consider 3dcart.
Ecwid fills a clear gap in the ecommerce solution market. It’s a fully-fledged platform for retailers that want to add a store to their existing site, whether it’s hosted on WordPress, Adobe Muse, Wix, Weebly, Squarespace or even Tumblr. Other platforms are also supported.
Ecwid also offers a number of industry-leading features. These include support for over fifty languages, in-built omnichannel selling (Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, eBay, etc.), and a raft of advertising and promotional features.
Ecwid ensures that your new store fits exactly with your current design and branding. If, however, you’re looking for a fully-hosted solution to build a new ecommerce site from scratch, alternatives like Shopify or BigCommerce are more feasible.
Looking for a robust ecommerce platform to add to your existing site? If you're also in the market for a solution that offers support for multiple languages along with in-built functionality for multi-channel listings, then Ecwid is a great option.
Our first comparison criteria, ease of use. Why? Because it’s the most important.
Think about it. You don’t want to invest a lot of your precious time setting up an online store and tweaking the design only to find out that it’s a pain in the butt to manage day to day.
We take a look at how simple the 3dcart and Ecwid platforms are to run.
3dcart offers a site-builder and collection of ready-made themes for beginners, along with an advanced editor for developers. Setting up a store for the first time is a straightforward process.
Because 3dcart has a huge array of features, the interface can feel a little overwhelming at first. And it doesn’t boast the same level of intuitiveness as some other platforms.
That said, once users are familiar with the various features, store-management becomes easy. Extensive video and written tutorials are also provided.
I like it. At first it was a bit over whelming. I am self taught, so just had to figure things out my self.
I would never use another shopping cart software. I started using them in 2010. They have always been light years ahead of the others.
I like 3Dcart. I have been using them for about 10 years.
Ecwid’s central dashboard, from where users manage product listings, inventory, and shipping, is straightforward and intuitive. Because Ecwid is designed with multi-channel selling in mind, it’s also easy to list and manage products on third-party platforms like Facebook, Instagram, eBay, Amazon, and others. Installation on platforms like WordPress and Wix is also very streamlined.
Clean and easy to interface with our website and Square for payment processing.
I have really enjoyed using Ecwid. Their customer service is very speedy and things are easy to use.
I've liked it so far. It's easy to use, and easy to add on new products.
Powerful features are great, but we all know first impressions count. So, do 3dcart and Ecwid templates actually look any good? See for yourself. We outline each platforms design options, plus showcase a few real life examples.
Generally speaking, 3dcart excels when it comes to design flexibility. Developers and designers that are seeking a solution that balances a high level of customizability with the benefits of a fully-hosted plan should definitely consider this platform.
Retailers will little design experience will also benefit from a solid website builder that allows them to make changes to their site’s look-and-feel and layout options. The one downside is that the free templates are a little lacking in terms of visual appeal.
Experienced developers can take advantage of the theme editor. A REST API is available for the creation of apps to add extra functionality to 3dcart’s existing feature-set.
Because Ecwid integrates with existing sites, users don’t have access to any templates or a site-builder. In terms of look-and-feel, your Ecwid store will sit in the “wrapper” of your current design.
You can adjust individual page settings - such as the size of product images and the layout of elements like the “Buy Now” button and the product description - from the “Design” tab in Ecwid. It’s also possible to make CSS changes via the CSS editor.
Ecwid offers a library of apps which further extend the functionality of the Ecwid editor. A straightforward site-builder is available on the free plan (which is the only option that is fully hosted on Ecwid).
Everyone’s favourite topic - pricing. Let's dive in to see if 3dcart or Ecwid offers better value for money.
3dcart is very competitive when it comes to pricing. The lowest-priced “Startup” plan, which has everything you need to run an online store (unlike some other ecommerce platforms where the entry-level plans have limited feature-sets), costs $19/month. There are no extra transaction fees on any of the packages. New users can also sample the software with a 15-day free trial.
The top “Pro” plan, which is suitable for stores making up to $1 million in sales per year, and comes with omnichannel sales, 24/7 support, and unlimited bandwidth and product listings, costs $229/month. There are significant discounts for a yearly subscription across all plans. 3dcart is also one of the few ecommerce platforms to publicly show it’s enterprise options, which begin at $499.99 a month for stores making up to $5 million a year.
Ecwid is generally very competitive on price. The entry-level “Venture” plan is $15/month, and the top-tier business plan costs $99/month. There are discounts for paying annually.
What’s more, the “free forever” plan, which includes hosting by Ecwid (the other plans do not), is one of the best on the market.
Just remember, because Ecwid is an integration, rather than a fully-hosted solution, you will have to take care of hosting, domains, bandwidth, etc. This will certainly add extra costs to the overall price.
The one downside of Ecwid is that some features - like POS (point of sale), unlimited products, and priority support - are only available on the top plan.
If things go wrong (and they often do) you need to know someone’s there to help get you back on track. So, how does 3dcart's and Ecwid's support measure up?
3dcart offers one of the best support packages on the market. All plans include live chat and help tickets. All but the lowest-priced option also offer 24/7 phone support. Customer reports regarding the quality of support are very positive.
Furthermore, users have access to extensive documentation and an active community of fellow retailers and developers.
The support options available depend on the plan that you subscribe to. Only support tickets are offered on the free plan (with a 24-hr maximum turnaround). Live chat is available on the “Venture” plan, and phone callbacks are included on the mid-tier “Business” plan. The “Unlimited plan” provides priority support which pushes your request to the front of the line. It’s a slight drawback that Ecwid doesn’t offer more support options on the lower plans.
The final say. Let's wrap up our thoughts on each platform.
Overall, we were very impressed with 3dcart. Pricing is competitive, the feature-set is comprehensive, and there are plans to suit every type of online outlet, from small boutiques to international enterprise-level stores.
Features include support for multiple staff accounts, omnichannel sales, advertising automation, unlimited products and bandwidth, access to hundreds of payment processors, and more. Beginners can take advantage of a robust site-builder. And more experienced developers will find it easy to make deeper backend changes via the code editor or through the use of the REST API.
With all of that in mind, there are a small handful of downsides. Costs for apps can run into hundreds of dollars per month, there’s no support for multiple languages, and the quality of themes isn’t as high as some other providers. Smaller retailers that aren’t expecting to grow significantly might also prefer a more streamlined solution.
Our advice? If you’re looking for a powerful hosted solution that won’t break the bank, give 3dcart a whirl and see how the features work for you.
Overall, we were very impressed with Ecwid. It targets a clear section of the retail market - businesses that want to add a store to their existing site while maintaining their current design and backend - and offers a feature-rich, intuitive platform. It’s also difficult to argue with the “forever free” plan.
We also like the high degree of functionality for omnichannel sales, with native capabilities for Instagram, Facebook, Amazon, eBay, Amazon, and a host of other third-party marketplaces. Support for over fifty languages is another added bonus.
Finally, the central dashboard is intuitive and easy to use. While the overall look-and-feel of the store will be determined by the “parent site” (Wix, WordPress, Squarespace, etc.), making edits to templates for product listings, category pages, or the store homepage are simple processes.
So what about the downsides? While support options could be more varied, and certain features are not available on the lower-priced plans, there aren’t any major issues. Just remember, if you’re looking for a fully-hosted solution that allows you to build a new site from scratch and manage everything from one central dashboard, Ecwid isn’t suitable. If, however, you have an existing site, or you want to use your favourite CMS or website editor, then Ecwid is well worth considering.
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