If you're planning to create an online store or migrate an existing one to a new ecommerce platform, it would certainly be a good idea to research various platform options before taking a decision, since ecommerce store creation is not a trivial task by any standards.
PinnacleCart – as a popular, hosted ecommerce platform, is a good contender for your consideration. Here is my review of this platform.
PinnacleCart – Features
Basic online store functionality – all plans provide comprehensive and easy to use basic functionality to create, operate and maintain an ecommerce storefront..
Inventory management – All the PinnacleCart packages allow you to add an unlimited number of products to your store.
Calculation of shipping charges – this – one of the most basic features for any ecommerce platform – is available on all plans.
Provision for discount options – all PinnacleCart plans allow you to create and handle discount offers, coupons etc.
Payment gateway options – With support for 30 payment gateways, this is one area where PinnacleCart is found to be lagging behind major competitors like Shopify (70+ gateways) and BigCommerce (60+), while ending up in a tie with Volusion (30+ gateways).
Themes and Templates – here again, PinnacleCart can be said to be at a disadvantage over major competitors, with a limited choice of some 33 (free) templates, while many competitors offer a much larger number of templates. On the plus side, all the templates are free, look quite professional and are mobile-friendly.
SEO capabilities – the various SEO features and capabilities provided by PinnacleCart can be said to be better-than-average. If SEO is a consideration for you, you should also study this article that compares the SEO capabilities of some 16 popular ecommerce platforms.
Customization capabilities – all PinnacleCart plans allow you to customize your online store via an easy interface called ‘Design Mode' while advanced level customization can be achieved by directly editing the HTML/CSS code.
PinnacleCart – Other Notable Features
Two other features provided by PinnacleCart are highly noteworthy:
Powerful Multi-lingual capabilities – this is an area where PinnacleCart really shines so if you wish to sell to many parts of the world, you should give it a close look.
Easy ability to sell drop-shipped products – PinnacleCart provides a very easy yet powerful way to integrate DOBU – a drop-ship products market place with over 2 million products – with your store, allowing you to sell any number of products without incurring any costs and troubles associated with procurement, storage, shipments etc.
Thus, with a PinnacleCart store, you can start selling without actually having any products – something many entrepreneurs would find lucrative indeed.
PinnacleCart – Ease of use
As I stated near the beginning of this review, the overall ease of use provided by PinnacleCart is fairly good, pretty much in line with competing ecommerce platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, SquareSpace etc.
PinnacleCart – Costs
Setup fees – no setup fees are charged by PinnacleCart. In fact, they offer a 14-day free trial to let you check out their ecommerce platform's capabilities and functionalities.
Monthly fees – PinnacleCart offers four different plans with monthly fees ranging from $29.95 to $149.95 as follows:
- Start Up Plan: $29.95/mo.
- Small Biz Plan: $59.95/mo.
- Entrepreneur Plan: $94.95/mo.
- Enterprise Plan: $149.95/mo.
Start a free PinnacleCart trial by clicking here.
In addition to these 4 packages that they call Hosted Solutions, they also offer another category of packages called Enterprise Level Solutions, aimed at high-traffic stores needing a lot of server resources. The two packages under this category are called VPS1 ($249/mo.) and VPS2 ($349/mo.). However, for the purpose of this review, I'm going to look at mainly the 4 Hosted Solution plans.
Bandwidth charges – PinnacleCart does not charge any bandwidth usage fees on any of their plans.
Transaction fees – no transaction fees are charged for any PinnacleCart plan – another plus for them.
PinnacleCart – Conclusion
PinnacleCart is a standard, above-average ecommerce platform. While somewhat restrictive in terms of design templates offered – a drawback that is offset by good customization capabilities – the robust multi-lingual capability can make PinnacleCart a good choice for you if you sell to different countries, while the powerful DOBU integration makes it a great choice for entrepreneurs who don't have any products to sell.
To get started with a free trial of PinnacleCart, click here.