Volusion Web Builder Review 2017

In this age of the eCommerce boom, it is hard to stay away from the temptation to create an online store for yourself or for your business and start selling online.

 

This has been made even easier with do it yourself (DIY) eCommerce site builder software. DIY online store builder tools enable you to create a shopping cart website where you can sell your products and services while ensuring secure transactions to the end customers.

 

If you have checked out the list of top eCommerce site building platforms on different websites, you would definitely have read about Volusion.

 

The Volusion website builder is fully loaded with eCommerce features that are suitable for creating online shopping websites.

 

However, you need to know whether this DIY site building tool is easy to use even for those who do not have any programming or technical knowledge.

 

In this article, we provide an in-depth review of the Volusion site builder by analysing its features, plans and pricing, pros and cons, and so on.

 

This review will help you make an informed decision about whether Volusion is the ideal eCommerce site builder for your requirements.

 

 

Volusion Company Background

Kevin Sproles founded Volusion in 1999 and, since then, it has grown by leaps and bounds to become one of the leading eCommerce platform providers.

 

Till date, it has helped online merchants establish over 40,000 online stores and earn more than $18 billion in sales and this is quite an achievement.

 

Volusion Inc. is based in Austin, Texas, with more than 500 employees working to offer you the ability to build a great website with a shopping cart and products, hosting services, and so on.

 

This company is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with a rating of A+, which is the highest possible rating for a company.

 

It is no wonder that this company has managed to fulfil eCommerce site requirements for businesses of all sizes and types.

 

The websites of a few universities, tech companies and even local restaurants have been powered by Volusion.

 

Going by the thousands of customer reviews and considering our own experience of using Volusion, it can be safely said that you can build a great eCommerce site using this tool.

 

In order to understand the skills that you will require to be able to create an all-in-one eCommerce store, we will go through the features of Volusion in extreme detail.

 

You can rest assured that this tool allows you to focus more on selling your products rather than worrying about hosting your site or integrating the shopping cart.

 

 

Ease of Use

This online shop builder software is user-friendly. However, it is definitely not the easiest website builder tool you will ever use. It will take you some time to start using this software to build your site as per your needs.

 

If you are a non-technical person looking for simple click, drag and drop functionalities, then Volusion does not offer them. Instead, you will have to go through their “Getting Started” guide (after logging on to the dashboard) and follow the instructions.

 

Once you understand the initial settings and how to use Volusion, you will enjoy using the tool. In addition, there is enough help available as you look around your dashboard with demos, video tutorials, a knowledge base, and so on.

 

Being an eCommerce portal building tool, you may have to add plenty of products and related details using Volusion. So, you will also be glad to learn that you can do all this with complete ease.

 

 

Admin Interface

This tool offers a clean admin interface that allows you to easily navigate around the admin panel. You will find the odd flaw when considering the sticky menus, especially when you are accessing this tool on a mobile device.

 

However, apart from those flaws, you will have a smooth experience of using the Volusion admin panel.

 

 

Volusion Editor and Website Design

With Volusion, you get access to a wide range of templates for your eCommerce site. There are approximately 80 free templates and about 280 paid templates (the price ranges from $50 per template to $895 per template).

 

You will also be pleased with the variety of great looking templates on offer by Volusion.

 

However, Volusion does not provide you with lots of flexibility to modify or customise your site’s design with its text editor, WYSIWYG editor or navigation editor.

 

Also, you may like the fact that there are different editors for different purposes. However, if you dig deep, you will realise that they only complicate matters without meeting your requirement of customising your site with ease.

 

For example, you have the text editor, but you cannot stylise your text to make it “bold” or “italics” with this. In order to stylise your text, you need to use the WYSIWYG editor.

 

If you love playing around with the HTML or CSS code, then Volusion is ideal for you because it gives you the complete liberty to edit the code and customise the site.

 

 

Website Mobility

As the number of smartphone and tablet users around the world is increasing exponentially, you would want to create an online store that empowers your customers to easily shop from their mobile devices.

 

While Volusion does offer mobile responsive features, they also limit your choices. For example, out of the huge amount of templates offered by Volusion, only about 25 templates are mobile-friendly at the moment.

 

However, these mobile responsive templates are very good and you will find one that suits your site requirements.

 

Also, the different plugins provided by this tool work well with a wide range of mobile devices. So, there are no major compatibility issues with mobile devices.

 

Moreover, it is possible for you to create a separate mobile-friendly version of your online store, if you choose one of the other non-responsive site templates.

 

 

Volusion Customer Support

Being in the business for more than 16 years and still being featured in the list of top site building platforms for online shopping, Volusion does know a thing or two about customer service.

 

It offers round-the-clock customer support for all your queries, issues or doubts related to creating and online store, managing products, managing customers, and so on.

 

You can contact the Volusion customer support team via telephone or live chat to get quick resolutions for any queries with minimal wait duration.

 

You can even create a support ticket through their online portal at MyVolusion or simply contact them via email.

 

However, you may want to check out their comprehensive knowledge base tutorials, FAQs, webinars, “how to” guides, and more, since you are likely to find answers to most of your queries here.

 

 

Volusion eCommerce Features

Let’s take a quick look at some of the key features offered by Volusion that could potentially give a boost to your eCommerce business:

 

  • It offers integration with the eBay and Amazon stores (you can sell on Amazon.com).

 

  • You have the ability to add unlimited products.

 

  • It provides support for gift cards, daily deals, coupons, discount voucher creation, and so on.

 

  • It gives you the capability to receive customer reviews and suggestions.

 

  • Its affiliate management system attracts other affiliate marketers to earn profits for reselling your products.

 

  • It provides loyalty rewards programs for loyal or repeat customers.

 

  • Reports related to web analytics, product views, category views, orders, CRM tickets, and more are made available.

 

  • Direct integration with Twitter and Facebook for announcements of exciting deals, sale periods and so on are possible.

 

  • It has the rare feature of recurring billing suitable for sites that offer membership or subscription type services.

 

  • It gives you the ability to create orders manually with a built-in Point of Sale (POS) system.

 

 

Volusion SEO Tools

Volusion also offers several built-in SEO features, including customising meta data, generating XML sitemaps, creating URLs that are search engine friendly, and creating customisable 404 error pages (to appropriately inform customers landing on any erroneous page).

 

You can increase the organic traffic for your site and thereby boost your revenue by making use of the SEO plans and audits.

 

 

Volusion Website Builder Plans and Pricing

You can try out the Volusion site builder tool on a 14-day free trial to get a better understanding of its features. The Volusion tool is also offered along with other services, such as hosting in four different paid plans. Some of the common features included under all these plans are listed below:

 

  • Mobile commerce
  • Automatic tax rates
  • Facebook store (to enable you to sell your products from your Facebook business page)
  • No transaction fees for any plan (even the lowest priced one)
  • Unlimited storage

 

We will compare these four plans in terms of the unique features offered by them in the table below.

 

  Pricing Number of Products Phone Support Priority Support Import/Export CRM and API access Dedicated Account Manager eBay and Amazon Integration
Mini $15 per month (monthly subscription) 100 No No No No No No
Plus $35 per month (monthly subscription) 1,000 Yes No Yes No No No
Pro $75 per month (monthly subscription) 10,000 Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Premium $135 per month (monthly subscription) Unlimited Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

 

Volusion Website Builder Advantages

  • This tool offers you the flexibility to switch templates from its library, even after you have already selected a particular site template.
  • This software offers several advanced features. However, they have made sure that you have to dig around to find them. You are not directly bombarded with an array of features or settings that could make it pretty confusing for you if you are building relatively simpler websites.
  • It offers great mobile-friendliness features for your site. For example, it is possible for you to generate a sitemap, even for your mobile webpage, and further enhance the experience of your mobile customers.
  • You are provided with a Volusion mobile app and even a smartwatch app. So, you can now easily manage your online store from any mobile device.
  • The software makes use of Smart Match technology to identify which of your products are in stock and only displays them on the front end.
  • You are empowered with the “abandoned cart” or “live cart” features to identify which customers have not completed their checkout process and still have products left in their cart. This gives you the option to inform them and remind them about their pending shopping activity.

 

 

Volusion Website Builder Disadvantages

  • Even though Volusion is a DIY site builder tool, it does not support drag-and-drop capabilities like many other easy-to-use site builders do.

It takes time to get used to this tool with the help of their “Getting Started” guide.

  • To carry out large modifications or customisations on your chosen site template design, you need to know programming skills (HTML and CSS).

As a non-technical person, your ability to edit is pretty limited with Volusion.

For example, you need to manually modify the HTML code, even if you want to edit the footer of your site and this is something not desirable from a popular site builder.

  • It does not offer you unlimited bandwidth and charges you for additional bandwidth once you have used up the allocated bandwidth for your plan.

There is no transparency on the extra charges for the additional bandwidth and it seems like a trade-off for the “no transaction fees” advantage offered by this tool.

  • It charges separately for SSL certificates to ensure secure transactions by your customers and the prices are pretty expensive since they start at $90 per year.

Many popular eCommerce site builders, such as Shopify, include these SSL certificate charges in the packages itself.

  • It does not offer a built-in blog feature, which is necessary these days to promote your site and your products to a different set of audience.
  • You need to create a separate blog, for example, with WordPress, and then connect it to your eCommerce website.

 

Verdict

If you are a medium- or large-sized business with the services of a few site developers at your disposal, Volusion could be the ideal tool to build a great online store.

However, if you are an individual or a small business with no technical skills and a small budget, you may want to try out other popular eCommerce site building platforms, for example, BigCommerce or Shopify.

We hope that the information shared in this article proves useful to you or your business while selecting an appropriate online store builder.

So, have you ever used Volusion or plan to use it soon? Do you have any questions? Please feel free to leave your comments below and thanks for reading!