Having been established already in 1999 Volusion rivals the likes of Shift4Shop (known previously as “3dcart”) as one of the oldest e-commerce software providers that is still around. But how does Volusion stack up in 2021 when compared to its rapidly growing competitors, such as Shopify? Join us on this 2021 Volusion review and you might get at least some idea.
Volusion used to be one of the cheapest e-commerce platforms. However, they have quite recently removed their $15/month plan and now the cheapest Volusion plan (“Personal”) costs $29/month. That is in line with what the cheapest proper Shopify plan costs. And indeed, Volusion’s other two normal plans also match Shopify’s pricing: the medium plan (“Professional”) costs $79/month and the most expensive regular plan (“Business”) costs $299/month.
In addition to those so-called normal plans, Volusion also offers a “Prime” plan. That plan is intended for particularly large customers and it is priced on an individual basis.
Volusion free trial: At the time of writing this Volusion offers a 14-day free trial. That is as long as the normal free trial at Shopify – for a brief period Shopify offered 90-day free trial but that is no longer available.
Volusion discount: Volusion offers all of its regular customers an up to 10% discount, if they pay for a full year in advance. With this discount the monthly price for the “personal”-plan goes down to $26.10/month, for the “professional”-plan it goes down to $71.10/month and for the “business”-plan it goes down to $269.10/month. Shopify also offers a 10% discount for those who pay for a year in advance, but in addition to that they also offer a 20% discount for those who pay for two years in advance.
No extra transaction fees. This is one of the biggest advantages of choosing Volusion: with none of their plans you have to pay additional transaction fees, “additional” referring to the fact that Volusion doesn’t appear to charge extra on top of the usual payment fees that come with, e.g., processing credit card payments.
Turnover limits: While the fact that you can use Volusion with no transaction fees is great, (especially) their cheaper plans do have a few shortcomings. The first one of these is the fact that all of Volusion’s regular plans have a turnover limit – basically a limit on how much you can sell before you need to upgrade to a more expensive plan. With the “personal” -plan that limit is $50,000/12 months, with the “professional”-plan it is $100,000/12 months and with the “business” plan it is $500,000/12 months.
Especially the limits of the “personal” and “professional” -plans are quite modest: with the “personal” -plan you could during a year only sell on average for about $137/day to stay within the limit and with the “professional” -plan you could only sell for an average of about $274/day in a 12 month period. And it is good to emphasize that these are turnover limits, not profit limits.
Product limits: Two of Volusion’s cheaper plans also have product limits. With the cheapest plan you are limited to having at most 100 products in your store and with the $79/month plan you can have at most 5,000 products in your store.
When you combine the above information with the important fact that Volusion’s two cheapest plans don’t support 3rd party gateways, it is easy to come to the conclusion that Volusion really wants people to choose its $299/month or custom plan. That is obviously natural, as they likely make more profit on customers on those plans.
2021 Volusion themes / templates
Volusion’s 2021 theme offering seems pretty solid: at the time of writing this, they offer a total of 45 themes, of which 34 are paid / premium and 11 are free. All the paid themes cost $180 per theme. In terms of categorizing Volusion’s themes, it can be said that the free themes represent traditional store templates and on the other hand the paid themes also include more modern-looking templates.
When comparing Volusion’s templates to Shopify’s, it is difficult to find huge differences in how they look. However, Shopify does offer more templates: at the time of updating this, they have 10 free templates and 71 paid themes. At Shopify the prices for the paid themes range from $150 to $350.
Building a store using Volusion – how easy is it?
The store builder of Volusion is very pleasant to use and it is clearly designed for aesthetically oriented people. And it might be helpful to know that, for example, Shopify’s store builder looks and feels more technical than Volusion’s.
In addition to being visually appealing, Volusion’s store builder also seems to include all the features that are important in a modern e-commerce platform. Although, that is obviously the case with at least pretty much all the leading ecommerce solutions.
Final verdict – who should consider Volusion?
Based on the features and pricing of Volusion’s plans and how its store builder is designed, I would recommend Volusion especially for those who forecast that their ecommerce store will become hugely successful and are looking for a quick and easy way to launch a nice-looking online store. Additionally, as Volusion’s own payment system is only available for merchants who reside in the United States, Volusion might not be a great choice for people who do not live there.