Volusion: Best for advanced performance
- Strong and diverse eCommerce features
- Excellent support and helpful resources
- Impressive apps integration for full functionality
- Offers a 14-day trial
- Expensive compared to competitors
- Not as user-friendly as top rivals
- Integrations with Amazon and eBay restricted to higher-tier subscriptions
Introduction: What is Volusion?
Welcome to our Volusion reviews! Given the paradigm shift from brick-and-mortar establishments to online retail, several companies now offer website builders for merchants making the significant shift from analogue to digital.
The Volusion website builder is one such product. So, let’s get into it: what is Volusion doing right? And, conversely, what is Volusion doing wrong? What about Volusion pricing – does it offer value for money?
Overview: Our Volusion reviews could be the solution to your eCommerce needs.
What is Volusion, you may ask? It’s one of the oldest – if somewhat underrated – online website builders currently available, having started its run in 1999 and boasting of hosting over 30,000 stores as of January 2021. It’s not a bad record as these things go, but it did pique our curiosity why the numbers aren’t higher for the platform. Indeed, it doesn’t seem to have the same critical mass as site builder standby Wix or the equally webstore-focused Weebly.
Ease of use:
What is Volusion's user-friendliness? Comparing Volusion vs Wix, the platform is not as easy to use. It is certainly usable, but we should note at this point that this Volusion review covers V2, the current and revamped release for the platform. One of the most frustrating things about Volusion v1 was that you would practically stumble blind into it as there were just a couple or so “getting started” guides to help you set things up and navigate through the platform.
Volusion v2, on the other hand, makes things so much easier: starter guides and tutorials – several of which are in video format – are included in the dashboard, which makes Volusion website builder quicker to learn and figure out.
Features and Flexibility:
One of the things you notice right at first is that the Volusion website builder is easy to set up, though it may take time for those who are just starting to get into eCommerce. Likewise, the builder is intuitive, and you can start building right out of the gate with a MyVolusion account.
Themes and Templates:
The Volusion website builder offers a minimal selection of themes and templates to work with. (Again: this isn’t a design-centric platform to work with.) Currently, there are 45 available templates, of which only 11 are free. The other 34 will set you back $180.00 each. Given that other platforms offer premium templates within a similar price range, users will find Volusion pricing for these templates a head-scratcher: not only are they pricey, but most of these are industry-specific, which is to say certain functions only apply to certain businesses. If you manage to find a template that matches your line of work, well and good; unfortunately, you might find yourself falling back on a non-industry-specific template that will not be so effective and will require a lot of tweaking to work properly.
As we said in the earlier part of our Volusion reviews, there are few options for customising your Volusion site aesthetically. However, what Volusion lacks in the looks department, it tries to make up for in the functionality department.
Volusion website builder offers an array of proprietary tools with which one can customize their sites and online stores' functionality. To illustrate, these are some tools to expect:
- Document generation tools for in-store and service policies;
- Business calculators;
- Barcode generator; and
- Business domain name generator enables users to check out the availability of appropriate domain names for their online businesses.
3rd Party Integrations:
In our Volusion reviews, integration with popular social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram is already built into Volusion’s user experience. As a result, it's easier to link your online store with social retail platforms like Facebook Marketplace.
Indeed, Volusion website builder integrations include numerous third-party developed apps that run the gamut from payment processing to incorporation and marketing. Its most popular – and most frequently used integrations – include:
- Paypal and GlobalPayments for multinational/multicurrency payment;
- AccessiBe for AI-driven website accessibility;
- Justuno for conversion rate optimization;
- IncFile and MyCorporation to facilitate company incorporation processing;
- RocketLawyer for drawing up contracts and policies; and
- Answerbase for adding question-and-answer bots as a means of engaging and educating website users about products and services.
What is Volusion's hosting capability?
Volusion webstores are all hosted on the platform’s own servers, but users have the option to host their sites on a subdomain or a totally different DNS host altogether.
Volusion has its own Import/Export facility, enabling users to back up vital information into external files. However, this function is not available for users on Volusions’s Personal subscription plan.
For those moving their sites to Volusion from a different platform like Shopify or BigCommerce, many solutions are currently available online such as Optimum7, LitExtension, and Diztinct.
It should be noted at this point of our Volusion reviews that a significant number of platform users migrated their sites to competitor platforms after a serious data breach and Volusion’s declaration of bankruptcy in mid-2020.
What is Volusion's standout eCommerce functionality?
The platform's key features include the following:
- Promotional and discounting facilities
- Product visualization facility
- Smooth checkout procedure
- Multi-currency and language support
- Shipping and delivery management
- Taxation support
- Data-driven customization
- User management
- Provisions for online and transactional security
There is a bit of an issue regarding Volusion’s eCommerce tools. Those on the Personal and Professional plans can’t use them.
Moreover, integrations with leading online retail hubs Amazon and eBay are only available for those with subscriptions to the two top-tier plans. The same goes for numerous functions like SSL certificate generation (which is actually pro forma for other eCommerce platform-built sites), advanced report builders and analytics, and marketing tools.
SEO and Mobility:
In this Volusion reviews, what is Volusion's SEO functionality? Is it mobile-friendly?
The pro: SEO-enhancing features are already built into Volusion’s user interface (UI). Therefore, it’s easy to prep your metadata and keywords before site deployment. While most website builders have this as an optional (and often paid-for) feature, Volusion’s SEO capabilities are available for anyone to use from those on a Personal subscription to its plans for larger businesses.
The con: Unfortunately, Volusion's mobile responsivity is a bit limited. Unlike other platforms, only a fraction of Volusion's templates uses responsive design. Hence, if you choose a non-responsive template, you'll need to create a separate mobile-friendly version of your online store.
Volusion implements image caching and also offers a content delivery network (CDN) to boost page speed.
Support and Resources:
The Volusion website builder offers an extensive array of start-up guides, onboarding materials for would-be e-entrepreneurs and marketing teams. It also features a regularly updated info blog for everything from basic usage to more advanced concerns like international shipping and taxation processes.
The Volusion team also runs an active help centre and live online support. Note, however, that only those with top-tier subscriptions can avail of priority technical assistance.
One word to describe Volusion pricing in our Volusion reviews: steep. While the Personal plan is well within the range of most competitors, the $50 jump from Personal to Professional is enough to make a potential user stand back and take stock of things before deciding to upgrade.
Note that all Volusion pricing packages include the following:
- Secure checkout facility;
- Access to and use of template collection;
- Volusion website builder;
- Built-in SEO tools; and
- Social media integration.
All things considered, Volusion pricing isn’t such a bad deal. However, if you’re a startup or a small business that isn’t ready to scale up, you may need to think twice before upgrading.
Free trial/refund policy/money-back guarantee:
Volusion offers a free 14-day trial period, after which, the user will need to upgrade to a paid subscription. In our Volusion reviews, note that Volusion claims that all sales are final and the platform does not issue refunds under any circumstances. However, they do make an exception if the platform’s network fails to perform 99.9% in any month, but Volusion will only refund 5% of the total monthly fee for every 30 minutes of network downtime.
Conclusion and Recommendation:
Therefore, to wrap up our Volusion reviews – here are our conclusions:
What is it best for?
Given how many of the perks for Volusion are only available for premium accounts, the platform works best for veteran online store owners or stores scaling up into bigger and more complex markets.
What is it not best for?
The somewhat prohibitive nature of Volusion pricing automatically excludes start-ups and small business owners from taking advantage of all the benefits the platform offers.
Wix. If you're looking for the most accessible site builder out there, Volusion vs Wix should be compared as Wix is the platform to beat. If you’re just starting out with an eCommerce platform or learning how to set up an online retail hub, you may be better off using Wix as the platform has an eCommerce-specific website builder that is much easier to use. Also, its aesthetic template options are far more extensive than that of Volusion’s.
Shopify. But what if your focus is an online store? Then you should consider equally intuitive (and more cost-effective) online shop builder offered by Shopify. Indeed, in the ongoing battle of Volusion vs Shopify, most users will not hesitate to join the latter’s bandwagon as it offers a more extensive selection of design options, along with other business-building capabilities.
BigCommerce. However, if you want a less pricey option, BigCommerce is it. In a Volusion vs BigCommerce match-up, BigCommerce offers better value for your money.
Volusion has a lot going for it when it comes to eCommerce site-building. While it may be daunting for novices, it’s worth a try for those with some experience in setting up and running online stores.
Therefore, take this platform out for a spin with the Volusion free 14-day trial through this link.
Can I use Volusion for free?
Yes, but only for a fourteen-day trial period. Afterwards, you will need to select a paid subscription plan.
I want to do business on Facebook Marketplace; can I use Volusion for that?
Yes, Volusion has social media integration built-in and will help you sell your products on social e-commerce hubs such as Facebook Marketplace and Instagram’s retail.
That’s all for now:
Thanks for reading our Volusion reviews. Don’t forget to keep an eye out for our ever-growing blog of review and comparison articles of eCommerce platforms, SEO software, screen capture tools, webinar and conferencing software, education platforms, website builders, and more such as;
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Not only the best tea/coffee maker on the team Sophie keeps the many marketing projects flowing ensuring completion on time. Skilled across multiple marketing skill areas Sophie is our all rounder and a great asset to the team. Sophie is a website building trainer and tech writer who takes pride in helping small businesses and startups build their websites and launch their eCommerce platforms. Sophie is also the practical joker of the team and always wears a smile on her face. In her spare time she likes to spend her time with family. She loves going on holidays and spending time with friends.