If you've been looking for an affordable ecommerce platform with all of the needed features packed in, EKM might just be the system you want. In this EKM review, we'll outline how the UK-based development and support team make it rather advantageous for some online stores. We'll also talk about the features that make it stand out.
Not only is EKM affordable, but it has an in-house support team, a focus on built-in features (as opposed to apps,) and an interesting service that scans your website for outdated information.
One of the things that EKM has going for it is the fact that the users are given tons of ecommerce features after a simple setup. An the surface, you gain access to tools for building your website, designing certain elements of the site, and marketing to your customers. Uploading products takes just a few minutes, and converting your visitors is done with marketing features and funnels.
The payments are secure and included with EKM, and all order management is handled within the EKM dashboard. Another thing to consider is hosting. The website hosting is included with all EKM pricing plans, so you know that you're getting a secure and fast server. Along with great customer support, you can't go wrong with the features inside of EKM.
Let's take a look at some of our favorites:
One of the more difficult parts about running an online store is ensuring that all of the content is up-to-date. Are your promotional banners old? Is some of your inventory out of stock? Do you have broken links?
All of these situations cause your customers to enjoy your interface less. That's why EKM has a completely unique program where it scans your website for outdated information. This is all done by the employees at EKM, so you can sit back and relax, knowing that you'll get notifications when something looks off.
Beautiful Designs with Solid Building Tools
EKM has dozens of themes for you to get your design started. They are all categorized in different industries, such as furniture stores or clothing shops. Some of the main categories include Fun, Modern, Corporate, Artistic, and Minimal. The themes are easy to work with and you don't have to pay for them as an EKM subscriber.
All of the EKM shops are optimized for mobile screens. You can also quickly customize for your own brand and set up items like product filters and galleries.
A Built-in Banner Maker
In my experience building online stores, I've found that designing promotional banners takes a surprising amount of time out of your day.
I typically work in Photoshop, but EKM provides an awesome built-in banner builder without any additional cost. You're able to make perfectly sized and optimized banners with customizable text on each one. It allows you to upload your own images or choose from the many stock images in EKM. This is sure to save many ecommerce professionals time in the long run.
Email Marketing and Loyalty Points
For the most part, EKM cuts out the need for third-party marketing tools. For instance, instead of using MailChimp or CampaignMonitor, you can utilize EKM's email marketing tool. It syncs with your store for quick product insertion, and you can send emails with new blog posts or exclusive offers.
The loyalty points system is also included within EKM. This way, your company awards points to customers whenever they buy items, all without the need for a third-party tool.
Live Chatting and Abandoned Cart Saver
There are several tools to convert your visitors into paying customers. One of them is a live chat that pops up for your customers and shows you the items being looked at by those customers. This way, you can guide them along their way and answer any questions they may have.
Another conversion feature involves reducing abandoned carts. EKM automatically retargets the customers that have left their carts with some items in there. This is done with simple emails showing the shoppers that they can still check out later.
Finally, back-in-stock notifications can be sent out to your customers that may have missed out on an item because you ran out of inventory.
EKM Review: The Pricing
The EKM pricing is only shown in British Pounds. You can make your monthly payments in other currencies, but you'll have to check Google to understand the current exchange rate for that currency.
In addition, each EKM plan comes with a 14-day free trial. This gives you the freedom to play around with the features and understand if it's the right solution for your online store.
Another thing to keep in mind is that EKM doesn't take a cut of your sales–it sticks to the monthly payments for using the system. In addition, there's no contract, so you can stop paying for EKM whenever you want. The only additional fees you have to worry about involve your payment gateway.
Luckily, EKM has an online checkout system included–but you do have the option to connect your own payment gateway (just make sure you know everything about the fees involved).
As for the pricing plans, here's what you can choose from:
- Basic Plan – For £29.99 + VAT per month, you receive all of the primary features (most of which are outlined in the previous section,) support for up to 500 products, a domain name, SSL certificate, basic account manager, UK-based support, shop health analytics, and a single user account. This plan is recommended for shops with up to £50,000 in sales per year.
- Standard Plan – For £59.99 + VAT per month, you receive everything in the previous plan, support for unlimited products, priority customer support, full analytics, and five user accounts. This plan is recommended for shops with up to £150,000 in sales per year.
- Advanced Plan – For £179.99 + VAT per month, you receive everything in the previous plan, support for unlimited products, an ecommerce consultant, 24/7 emergency support, a high-performance server, and up to 15 user accounts. This plan is recommended for shops with up to £1,000,000 in sales per year.
- EKM Pro Plan – For £499.99 + VAT per month, you receive everything in the previous plan, support for unlimited products, a custom website build, exclusive payment rates, a strategic account manager, marketing account management tools, and enterprise level performance on your website. This plan is recommended for enterprise-level stores.
As you can see, there are quite a few options depending on how large your store is. You get pretty much everything you need to run your small to mid-sized store at the Basic plan level, with plenty of options for upgrades as your store grows.
Keep in mind this is a UK-based company, so there is the matter of converting your payments to Pounds (if your company is outside of the UK,) and also worrying about being able to speak with a support representative if outside of the UK.
Overall, the pricing is fair for the number of features you receive from EKM. Just the fact that your store can have 500 products, an SSL certificate, and a basic account manager is enough to justify that Basic Plan's price.
EKM Review: The Customer Support
As we mentioned earlier in the article, the EKM customer support team is based in the UK. This could be a huge advantage for you if you live in the UK. Also, in my opinion, in-house support teams like that are almost always much better than outsourced teams. So, you can rest easy knowing that your support reps are well-trained and ready to answer all of your questions along the way.
I also like that some of the plans have more advanced account managers, along with a full website customization for those on the Enterprise plan.
In terms of the online resources, EKM provides a blog for an email newsletter to learn more about the features and gain tips about ecommerce in general.
The knowledge base is filled with user guides on topics like themes, building your shop, and setting up your marketing strategy.
A community forum is there for you to chat with other EKM users, and the video guides are great for those visual learners out there. Other than that, you have access to a nice quick start guide, and you can contact the customer support team through email, phone, or a Facebook message.
At the time of this article, the phone lines for EKM are open Monday through Friday, 8AM to 6PM and Saturday through Sunday, 9AM to 5:30PM. Once again, these are UK-based times.
Who Should Consider EKM for an Online Store?
First thing's first: UK-based companies should immediately consider EKM as one of your top options for an ecommerce platform. The local, dedicated support is some of the best in the business, and you have the opportunity to receive all the features you need for a store.
I also like EKM for companies all over the world looking for a system without a bunch of third-party apps. Managing all of those apps is tedious, so it's nice to have all of your features included.
If you have any questions about this EKM review, share your thoughts in the comments below! And don't forget to check out our EMK tutorial if you wish to create a store using this platform.