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X-Cart vs. Shopify vs. BigCommerce for Automotive Aftermarket eCommerce Businesses

Maria Navolykina
Maria Navolykina Author

Like a properly tuned engine ensures smoother drivability under various weather conditions, powerful automotive eCommerce software makes your online business more flexible to adjust to ever-emerging trends and constantly evolving business needs. This is why finding the right eCommerce platform to back your auto parts online store is crucial.

To make your online business successful and competitive, you’ll need an automotive solution that understands the needs of the auto parts retail industry, namely:

  • offers seamless catalog and inventory management;  
  • provides accurate and standardized fitment data;  
  • has direct integrations with warehouse distributors and drop shipping software solutions; 
  • delivers an outstanding purchase experience to keep customers coming back;  
  • provides professional technical support that is prompt and effective.

In this blog post, we’ll compare three popular shopping cart solutions – Shopify, BigCommerce, and X-Cart – focusing on the platforms’ features, tools, and capabilities in the context of the automotive aftermarket.

To help you find the automotive website builder that would be a perfect fit for your auto parts eCommerce store, we have also compiled a complete shopping cart comparison, where we dive into everything from the basic functionality to the pros and cons, exploring software features, design templates, available apps, and customer ratings.

X-Cart Automotive vs. BigCommerce vs. Shopify Plus: Features Overview

To create, market, expand, and maintain their business from a single website, an auto parts online seller needs a platform that would quickly adapt to business demands and pivot to new initiatives while saving time and money with automation.

In other words, your eCommerce software should combine out-of-the-box tools with high-level customization options and be designed specifically for the automotive aftermarket industry.

With this in mind, we’ve made a list of must-have features that an automotive eCommerce solution should have and investigated whether X-Cart, BigCommerce, and Shopify provide all of them.

X-CartBigCommerceShopify Plus
API-driven
eCommerce platform
Complex and unlimited
product catalogs
Website design
optimized for mobile
experiences
Smart search
and filtering options
3P3P
Native Year Make Model
filtering
3P3P
VIN lookup and
‘My Garage’ feature
3P3P
Direct integrations
with auto parts data
providers

SEMA Data,
AutoSync, 
ASAP Network

SEMA DataSEMA Data
Integrations with
automotive warehouse
distributors
Turn 14 Distribution
(native app),
Torqued Distribution
(native app)

Turn 14 Distribution (3P)Torqued Distribution (3P)
Turn 14 Distribution (3P)
Accelerated console
import/export
Payment processing
fees
no
transaction fees
no
transaction fees
payment processing
fees based on the
merchant’s sales volume
Integrations with
various payment
gateways

over 120 payment gateways


over 65 payment gateways

Payment integrations
available via Shopify payments
Marketing and SEO tools
Multiple sales channels
In-house
development service
Technical support
Free trialpersonalized free demofree 15-day trialfree trial, first 3 months for $1/mo.

X-Cart for Automotive eCommerce

X-Cart Automotive is a highly scalable API-driven eCommerce platform designed explicitly for online auto parts businesses. 

Key X-Cart Features

  • The API-driven architecture enables business owners to connect their online stores to the required apps and services flawlessly;
  • X-Cart Storefront API allows for designing a custom look and feel for your online store;
  • Automated complex catalog updates with standardized data from leading auto parts providers. 
  • Guaranteed auto parts fitment accuracy is ensured by real-time search and advanced filtering options;   
  • Accelerated bulk import/export and bulk editing options make catalog management easier. 
  • Dedicated web hosting ensures smooth website performance;
  • Endless customization options with an in-house professional developer team ready to help you tailor your online store to your business vision.

Need a Truly Automotive eCommerce Solution?

X-Cart Benefits for Auto Parts Businesses

Native automotive tools: With a comprehensive set of built-in features, X-Cart minimizes the reliance on third-party apps for automotive-specific functionality, such as Year Make Model filtering and VIN lookup, catering to the requirements of automotive eCommerce, reducing the risk of plugin maintenance issues. 

Scalability: X-Cart Automotive offers adaptable API-driven architecture, which allows for merging ready-made integrations with broad customization options. This provides online store owners with the tools that fit the specific requirements of auto parts eCommerce.

Direct integrations with automotive partners: X-Cart has established strategic partnerships with key automotive aftermarket players: SEMA Data, ASAP Network, AutoSync, Turn 14 Distribution, Torqued Distribution, and others. With these integrations, auto parts businesses can use accurate, standardized product fitment data and connect their stores to specific tools, such as Visual Vehicle Studio by AutoSync.

Technical support: X-Cart provides personalized 24/7 customer support via email and phone to guide you through each stage of building, setting up, and maintaining your online store. Plus, we provide additional onboarding training for our automotive clients, offering four hours of onboarding calls with a customer success manager and a technical support engineer for free.

Downsides

Complex all-inclusive solutions, such as X-Cart Automotive, may have a slower time-to-market compared to SaaS-based website builders, which is, however, balanced by shorter time-to-value.

Selling Car Parts with BigCommerce

BigCommerce is a hosted shopping cart solution that allows businesses to create an automotive online store with essential eCommerce features such as inventory management, custom pricing, and product filtering. Just like Shopify, BigCommerce offers various third-party plugins for automotive retailers, including the Year Make Model search that ensures smooth user navigation across the website.

For a better user experience, you can also configure the look and feel of your online shop; you can use a drag-and-drop page builder to select content blocks, columns, and images and position them on your pages as you see fit.

BigCommerce Advantages

Flexibility: BigCommerce is designed to accommodate businesses of all sizes, offering a wide range of built-in features and allowing automotive retailers to customize their stores by integrating the required tools.

No transaction fees: Unlike Shopify, BigCommerce doesn’t charge credit card processing fees for using non-standard forms of payment.

Multi-channel capabilities: BigCommerce lets sellers control their inventory from one central location. This central inventory management ensures that stock numbers are accurate across all retail platforms.

Multiple apps for auto parts sales: BigCommerce includes third-party apps that can make your auto parts store more manageable. It also integrates with popular marketing tools to help you promote your website.

Downsides

Negative reviews on customer support: Despite relatively good reviews on G2, some merchants mention unprofessional customer service, ineffective support, and the fact that it takes quite a long time to solve an issue.  

Low website performance: The high-SKU catalogs with multiple product pages can slow down website loads, impacting the user experience and hitting your position in Google SERPs. This is why smooth website performance is essential for automotive online stores. Some BigCommerce users have observed slow page loading times, resulting in lower rankings on Google and requiring constant and extensive optimization.

Shopify for Auto Parts Businesses

Shopify can be a good option for starting an online auto parts business. It offers advantages like inventory management, bulk product uploads, and smooth checkout. Due to its low learning curve and user-friendly interface, most start-ups find Shopify attractive.

However, automotive businesses that need to customize their online stores must upgrade to Shopify Plus – the enterprise-level version of Shopify – for more extensive functionality.

Shopify Plus Benefits

Low learning curve: The Shopify interface is simple, making it easy for automobile retailers without any technical background to streamline store setup and management. The only pitfall is that the cookie-cutter approach to managing your auto parts store no longer works effectively when your business starts to grow and scale.

Extensive app store: With over 10,000 third-party plugins and extensions available in the Shopify App Store, automotive sellers can increase their store’s functionality and cater to improve customer experience.

Mobile-friendly automotive design templates: To answer the needs of car parts buyers visiting online stores via mobile devices, Shopify delivers a convenient purchasing experience through various mobile-responsive automotive themes.

Downsides

Transaction Fees: While Shopify offers various pricing plans, auto parts sellers should remember that Shopify charges credit card processing fees for using a third-party payment provider.

Costly customization and maintenance: Adding advanced functionality to your auto parts website may require knowledge of Liquid – Shopify’s proprietary language. This is a potential issue for automotive retailers with specific design and customization requirements. Hiring a developer who will flawlessly integrate the required tool with your Shopify-based online store can be challenging and costly.

It’s Up to You

To profitably sell automotive parts and accessories online, you should think beyond generic eCommerce capabilities, focusing on industry-specific requirements.

Features like streamlined inventory management, fitment data accuracy, seamless integrations with automotive data networks, warehouse distributors, and drop shipping solutions are pivotal for enhancing the overall customer experience.

Ultimately, the best choice depends on your unique business needs, budget, and growth plans. By looking into the features of each platform in the context of automotive eCommerce, you’ll be able to make an informed decision.

Maria Navolykina
Maria Navolykina Marketing Manager

Maria is a marketing manager at X-Cart. Once captured by digital and content marketing in her student days, she keeps living and breathing it ever since.

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