Volusion brands itself as the ultimate one-stop-shop for all things eCommerce. And in the eyes of the customers, this seems to have worked. After all, Volusion has processed over 185 million orders, totaling an enormous $28 billion.
And although it was founded by a 16-year-old entrepreneur in 1999, there is no dispute regarding the veteran status it now has.
But under the hood, what exactly is Volusion? And despite its experience and popularity, is it a worthy choice over its competitors?
What even is Volusion?
In short, Volusion is a subscription-based eCommerce platform that claims to provide everything you need under one roof. It contains a drag-and-drop store/website builder, sales tools, marketing features, and 24/7 live support.
Some additional highlights include:
- Zero transaction fees
- Around 80 apps ready to install
- 1,000+ third-party apps through Zapier
- Inclusive web hosting
- 11 free themes to choose from
- 34 premium themes you can purchase
And some significant disadvantages are:
- There are no blogging options
- No free domain included with any of the paid plans
- You have to purchase an SSL certificate separately (these are essential for online stores)
But beneath the surface, Volusion is a competitive beast that isn't afraid to express the confidence it has in its edge over competitors.
It states that it offers the fastest option available for building your store. According to Volusion, you won't get a quicker store-building experience anywhere you go.
Volusion, I accept your challenge.
Building a Volusion Store
When it comes to building a store on an all-in-one platform, things should be as easy as 1, 2, 3. That's what all-in-one platforms are for - to make things easy and convenient.
However, I was actually quite disappointed with my experience attempting to build a Volusion store.
First things first, when I try to save something, I get this error repeatedly...
After troubleshooting, there seems to be no known error. Literally, all that had been entered was a store title of 'Hosting Review' and then I had hit the 'save' button.
Unexpected error, indeed.
Giving it the benefit of the doubt and moving on, it turns out there is more bad news.
There is no live preview.
This means that when you are editing text, etc., you don't see it change in the preview. Instead, you must wait until you proceed to the next step. This is super inconvenient when you don't know which part of the design each text field is linked to.
And if that wasn't enough hassle already.
Once I do proceed, I'm hit with this...
No image. And my text is in a completely different style with no readily available option to change it or revert it.
It's baffling, honestly.
But it's not that it's impossible to resolve any of these issues; it's just that issues like these shouldn't exist. Things should be much easier for new users.
For a platform to truly be intuitive, anyone that knows how to log in to their computer should be able to operate it. That just isn't the case with Volusion.
So, is Volusion really the fastest store builder available?
While Volusion did meet its claim to provide a faster building experience than its competitors (the first attempt was constructed in 12 minutes), it ended up taking over 90 minutes to get something remotely worthy of using.
That being said, it definitely is quick. It's just that there's so, so much more room for improvement.
The customer support needs to be sharper
The Volusion customer service experience isn't much better than the experience you have building a store with them. Let's not sugarcoat it - it's dull and confusing.
When testing the live-chat support, my concise and simple question was greeted with a glorious wall of text.
My question was, "The 'Site Content' page doesn't seem to let me click into each section of content to edit it. How can I access them?"
The simple answer would've been "Click the number of each section on the left-hand side of each section's title and you will be taken to a page on which you can edit the content".
Instead, the response to a basic question took up a solid 223 words. (The image displayed is only a portion of the support agent's message...)
Fortunately, I already knew this (as I only asked this question as a testing method) and so analyzing the lengthy reply wasn't necessary.
While Volusion is a paid service only, it does offer a 14-day free trial for those who would rather test it first. Once upgraded, though, there are 3 plans ranging from $29/month to $299/month. The subscription you need mainly comes down to a matter of how many products you sell per month and how much you earn.
|Price per month||$29||$79||$229|
|Sales/year||Up to $50k||Up to $100k||Up to $500k|
|Customer Support||Live Chat||Live Chat + Phone||Priority|
|Ratings & Reviews||No||Yes||Yes|
|Amazon & eBay Integrations||No||No||Yes|
While the highest sales-per-year limit of any of the above plans is $500k, there are also custom 'Prime' plans available. You have to contact Volusion directly and request a custom quote.
Concluding My Volusion Review
After putting Volusion to the test, the outcome is quite mixed.
While the features available look great on paper, they're not executed perfectly. The store builder should be redesigned for better ease of use, and the absence of internal blogging functions is just disappointing.
If blogging and a simple dashboard are key to your eCommerce store, look elsewhere. If you're looking for an alternative to Shopify or Wix, however, you may be to give Volusion a try. There's always a 14-day trial!
So that settles it! But if you've also used Volusion and have reviews of your own, please feel free to share them down below.
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