E-commerce Systems for SMEs: The Hottest Tips from Our Tool Talk

Chantal Seiter 2/17/2023

What you need to know about shop systems if you want to get started in e-commerce

Table of contents
  1. What do stereo systems have to do with shop systems
  2. And what can shop systems actually do?
  3. From GDPR to SEO: These features you should keep in mind
  4. What the community also wanted to know

There's no such thing as the best shop system. However, there is the best shop system for you and your business. What you need to pay attention to when searching for the right tool? We'll tell you in this recap from the Tool Talk about shop systems for SMEs. Spoiler: there's no way around the GDPR. You don't necessarily have to go that alone.

Missed the talk? No problem: We'll tell you how you can get the whole recording of our tool talk.

What do stereo systems have to do with shop systems

E-commerce is constantly evolving - and so are the Shop systems. Alexander Graf from Spryker. He opened our very first Tool Talk on February 9th with a historical review of online retail and explained the difference between composable shop systems and system suites. Something about stereo systems and cabling. In any case, system suites are particularly suitable for small and medium-sized companies. They come with all the important features and don't require you to have programming knowledge or a high IT budget.

How convenient then that our speakers had exactly such suites or the knowledge about them. Adrian Piegsa, Shopify-expert and CEO of the Shopify-Plus agency tante-e, Marko Staer from spreadshop or SPOD, Alexander Laugomer, product manager at Wix, and Christian Schneider, who drives product development at STRATO SmartWebshop as senior vice president product management. Our host Tobias Kaiser, strategic director of the Hamburg E-commerce agency For Sale Digital, got answers to burning questions about online retail.


What you absolutely need to know? It's no longer enough to just sell good products. Most of us can do that. Instead, it's now about selling better than others. When choosing a shop system, you should therefore make sure that it offers you the opportunities you need for the good, better, best sale of your products.

And what can shop systems actually do?

Construction kit, all-in-one solution, shop system: the providers in our round had very different focuses and are therefore suitable for different requirements and business cases. Wix, for example, presents itself as a design company. The tool has a flexible editor that allows you to design your shop just the way you want to.

What makes Shopify strong? Being able to start easily and not having to stop: With the shop system, you can build your shop easily using templates. If your start into business takes off rocket-like, the tool grows with you and can be expanded, programmed and optimized virtually as needed. By the way, we have selected for you eight Shopify apps that will make your shop launch even better.

Spreadshop, on the other hand, is of a different caliber: Designs spontaneously created at the breakfast table, first T-shirts and mugs sold in the afternoon. Spreadshop offers you a complete solution for your online business. Simply set up your shop directly on the platform and benefit from drop shipping and outsourced customer service. The only limitation: You can't choose unlimited products here. If you also want to sell your own articles, you have to integrate the services into other shop systems, which is also easy.

Whether it's an email address, website or entire online shop: STRATO has been around seemingly since the internet was invented. Here you get everything from one provider and can build your mini online empire from the domain to the completed shop all in one go. A convenient modular system helps you, for which you don't need to bring special programming skills.

From GDPR to SEO: These features you should keep in mind

When choosing your shop system, don't just pay attention to the frontend, our host Tobias advises you. Sure, a great design is important and very fun. But you should also pay attention to how well you get along in the backend of the tool. Features like user roles might also be important to avoid someone messing up your shop, although they were actually just supposed to fill the new subpage.

Our tool talk also addressed the really essential questions: How do the individual providers actually handle the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)? Especially with regard to server locations and company headquarters there was a lot to clarify. Functions like GDPR guides that guide you through the most important points seem to be practical. Some providers also take you by the hand in terms of SEO and help you to make your shop not only pretty but also visible.

What the community also wanted to know

In addition to questions regarding data protection and SEO, our viewers were interested in how many articles they could actually offer with the shop systems. As a rule, this is anywhere from zero to 200,000 or even more. Except at Spreadshop: there, it is around 250. It became more complex with regards to B2B business, multiple warehouse locations, individual shops and different markets. It would be best for you to listen to the capabilities (and limitations) of the individual shop systems in the recording of our tool talk. The link is below.

You'll also learn what the shop system providers and e-commerce experts have to say about the trends for 2023 - yes, AI obviously plays a role here too - and what the situation is with sustainability. It's clear that e-commerce is holding a lot for you this year and shop systems offer great opportunities for SMEs. Both for the start into business and for (nearly) limitless growth.

You missed the tool talk? No need to feel embarrassed. Here's the recording. Enjoy!

Chantal Seiter
Chantal Seiter

Chantal ist Redakteurin bei OMR Reviews. Wenn sie gerade mal nicht in die Tasten haut, betreibt sie Café Hopping oder erkundet neue Städte. Am liebsten beides zusammen. Vor ihrem Start bei OMR Reviews hat die Eigentlich-Kielerin in Kreativagenturen und als Freelancerin gearbeitet. 2022 hat sie außerdem eine Weiterbildung zur Fashion Stylistin abgeschlossen.

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