Opensource PHP ecommerce platforms have completely revolutionized the online shopping industry.
Using most of these platforms makes starting an ecommerce store a piece of cake. You may have next to no knowledge about coding, and you’ll still be able to start your own online store with most of these platforms. With some, however, you may need certain technical knowledge.
But, nothing too complex that can stop you from getting into the ecommerce scene.
Down below, you shall find a list of 13 of the most popular PHP ecommerce platforms. Each of them has its pros and cons. Go through them and decide which platform clicks the best with you.
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List of Opensource Ecommerce Platforms and Shopping Carts
Here’s a compilation of some top ecommerce website builders to create an online store that are totally free:
WooCommerce is one of the best free ecommerce platforms that’s based on PHP programming language.
It’s an ecommerce plugin that works as an extension to WordPress CMS. According to webtribunal, 28.19% of all ecommerce stores globally are built using Woocommerce. You can easily set up the Woocommerce plugin in less than a few minutes. This plugin can be set up in just a few minutes on WordPress. However, if you’re considering alternative CMS platforms for ecommerce, ExpressionEngine is an excellent option. It offers robust functionality and flexibility, particularly for customized ecommerce solutions. For hosting, ExpressionEngine Hosting provides a tailored environment that optimizes the performance of ExpressionEngine sites, ensuring a smooth, secure, and efficient ecommerce experience.
You can even optimize the store with top-notch Woocommerce plugins for the best results. Woocommerce is a powerful ecommerce builder capable of running SaaS ecommerce businesses.
All that’s then left is to power the store with optimized Woocommerce hosting. Usually, hosting a Woocommerce store can be challenging for beginners. But with Cloudways, you can take your store online in just a few clicks.
Our platform is simple, beginner-friendly, and offers optimized Ecommerce web hosting that can contribute to your store’s online growth.
- Highly scalable
- Drag and drop store builder
- Users don’t need to know HTML and CSS to build a successful store
- Tons of free and paid themes and plugin options are available
- You may need technical help as the store scales
- You don’t get native hosting services, but you can solve this issue by getting optimized Woocommerce hosting by Cloudways.
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Magento is one of the most trusted ecommerce platforms and shopping carts available for individuals and enterprises alike.As per builtwith 0.86% of the top 1 million ecommerce websites worldwide are built on Magento.
After 2021, Magento commerce is officially called Adobe Commerce though the opensource Magento platform is still under Magento’s name.
This ecommerce platform is based on a PHP-based framework that lets you easily build scalable online businesses.
It has multiple extensions allowing easy integration of relevant third-party apps with the ecommerce store.
It’s a little complex to use Magento, and you may need help from a professional Magento developer to set up a store. However, with little understanding of PHP, you can also manage things on your own.
- A highly customizable and scalable platform
- Offers advanced SEO tools and solutions which can assist with store’s ranking
- Open-source ecommerce platform with a large community of developers
- Requires a high budget to set up the store
- It’s a little time-consuming to set up a Magento store
- Incompetent hosting solutions can hinder the store’s scalability
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Drupal commerce keeps an organized track of orders, receipts, payments, and invoices, along with integrating different shipping and payment options.
This platform is based on a Drupal content management system and offers a complete administration system, including checkout forms and multi-currency.
It also offers third-party integrations for social networks, fulfillment, and accounting services.
- Drupal has a huge active community which makes it easy to solve common store problems
- Third-party integrations make Drupal a highly customizable platform
- Users can access marketing and SEO tools that can help boost their online presence
- It’s not suitable for absolute beginners
- Managing a Drupal site can be challenging without a managed hosting platform like Cloudways.
Joomla is another amazing PHP-based solution when it comes to creating an Ecommerce store. The platform can handle several fronts for you, from SEO to inventory management tools that can assist you in growing the store.
Setting up the store is also pretty simple as Joomla has a strong and active community ready to help people facing inconveniences. There are already more than 2.5 million live websites on Joomla.
- Joomla has a tight-knit community of developers that’s ready to offer support when needed
- It’s heavily customizable, and you can even sell digital products on your Joomla stores
- Very easy to use and make edits
- Some useful plugins are beginner-incompatible
- Sometimes, you’ll need to use paid plugins
- Your store will only work best with web hosting for Joomla. Incompetent hosting solutions and shared hosting can negatively impact the store.
OpenCart is a very popular free PHP ecommerce shopping cart and platform.
It’s easy to set up a basic ecommerce store using OpenCart. But the default features of the platform are limited. For instance, you don’t get much freedom in customizing the store. Plus, the SEO options are limited.
It’s best for those looking to start a store without any assistance, but once the store grows, you may face some challenges.
- Easy to use and manage for beginners
- Several inventory management options are available
- Best for Cash on Delivery online store
- Limited payment gateway options
- Optimizing the store for search engines can be challenging. There are very few reliable SEO tools that are compatible with OpenCart.
Prestashop is a PHP-based ecommerce shopping cart and platform built on the Smarty template engine.
Prestashop offers hundreds of features, including on page-checkout, downloadable products, features cross-selling and one-page checkout.
Prestashop is used in 160 countries and is accessible in 63 different languages. Prestashop also comes with customizable themes and feature add-ons.
- It doesn’t pull much cash out of pockets to a Prestashop store
- Very easy to install, which makes it a beginner-friendly platform
- Comes wrapped with all the essential features required to run an ecommerce store
- Limited support available
- Scaling the store can become an issue in the future
Limited number of Prestashop hosting options available that can deliver great performance for Prestashop stores.
Bonus Tip: Always choose an optimized ecommerce hosting to ensure your store loads with lightning speed.
Bagisto is an opensource eCommerce platform powered by PHP’s Laravel framework.
This platform offers a wide range of basic to advance eCommerce enabling features that make it a go-to platform for startups and small to medium business owners.
With Bagisto, you can make a multi-vendor marketplace with RTL Support and powerful SEO features. You can also control multi-channel inventories from a single website, link your store with multiple inventory sources, and easily monitor your product stock in a given inventory.
- Several customization options are available
- Suitable for those who want to avoid complex versions of coding and frameworks
- Open-source platform with a decent number of active community members
- The community is limited when compared with Woocommerce
- Finding solutions to problems can become challenging sometimes
- Installing new modules is challenging for users who are new
Yii2 is one of the most straightforward ecommerce store builders based on PHP. It comes with great features and is sufficient for small to medium-sized online businesses.
A sizeable number of business owners are choosing to build their online stores on Yii2. The thing is that it’s not really friendly for those who don’t know how to code. You may need assistance from Yii2 development service providers to set up a store.
- It’s a secure platform for developing an online store
- It’s very easy to learn
- Convenient to make changes
- Developers of this framework are slow to roll out new updates
- Not something as common as Woocommerce, and the number of active community members is relatively small.
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Another ecommerce opensource platform based on PHP is Zen Cart, which was branched in 2003.
Zen Cart became quickly popular because it was developed keeping absolute beginners in mind. Setting up your Zen Cart store is very easy.
The platform isn’t a mainstream one due to its limitations with customizations, but still, it’s kept afloat and has over 150,000 active community members worldwide.
- Beginner-friendly interface
- It’s not technical to set up the store
- Managing products in your store is very easy with Zen Cart
- Many free and paid templates are available
- Zen Cart stores aren’t the most beautiful ones
- Limited options for scaling and customizing the store
- Advanced users may feel strangled by the lack of options
10. Craft Commerce
Craft Commerce is another PHP-based ecommerce store builder to consider when building your online store in 2023.
It’s a relatively newer platform and was released in 2015. Stats from BuiltWith show that nearly 2,422 live websites are built using this platform.
Although new, Craft Commerce is fast gaining popularity because of its beginner-friendly interface and customization options. You can read more about Craft Commerce in our blog here.
- The solo version is free for use
- It’s easy to build a customizable website with a responsive design
- Several SEO tools are compatible with Craft Commerce which can help your store achieve better rankings
- Limited community members
- A limited number of themes available for Craft Commerce
- You’ll have to pay for advanced packages
Codeigniter is another brilliant ecommerce platform built on PHP that’s gaining traction lately.
It was released in 2006 and has rolled out many updates since then. The admin panel is easy to navigate, and generally, it’s not a hassle to run a store built on this online store builder.
- Stores built on Codeigniter are fast and offer high performance
- It’s friendly for beginners and advanced coders alike
- Offers decent security for the stores
- Maintaining the store can require professional help as Codeigniter doesn’t support modular code separation
- Doesn’t offer exhaustive libraries, which limits its usage
12. Symfony 3
It’s a great platform to build your ecommerce store. The security is good, the community is active and helpful, and the customization options are endless.
- The websites built on Symfony 3 are fast and secure
- It’s a reliable platform and doesn’t crash easily
- Stores built on Symfony 3 are just as safe as Magento or Drupal because they use the same PHP elements for security.
- You will need technical assistance to build a Symfony 3 store
- Beginners can feel a little lost when managing a Symfony 3 store
Zeuscart is another PHP ecommerce platform that is very easy to use.
Zeuscart supports many features that can help you increase sales and promote your business very well.
It is a customized ecommerce solution that even a non-technical person can start using to build an e-store with minimum effort.
- Fast loading stores
- Beginner-friendly interface
- Good customer support mechanism in place to help store owners and developers
- You may require professional help with advanced options
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The above-mentioned PHP Opensource Ecommerce Platforms are some of the best options available today.
Remember, all of them offer a different set of benefits. You just have to choose the one that fits your business need the best. Most of them are beginner-friendly, but some of them can require professional help.
Also, not all of them offer the tightest security, but with PHP hosting by Cloudways, you can get an additional layer of security for your online stores!
I'm a digital content producer at Cloudways. I'm also a hodophile- always ready to explore new places and cultures. Other than that, I play guitar and love to indulge myself in deep, meaningful conversations. Always looking for opportunities to learn new things.