open source symbol on a desktop with an awning for open source ecommerce platform

10 Best Open Source Ecommerce Platforms [2021]

This is the ultimate list of open source ecommerce platforms. It contains 10 best open source ecommerce platforms along with almost two dozen more open source ecommerce platforms and software recommendations. I also cover a couple of FAQs related to open source ecommerce solutions.

With ecommerce platforms hitting big, the monthly subscription prices of ecommerce SaaS products like Shopify and BigCommerce have also risen. Sure, there are marketplaces like Amazon to sell your products, but having your own ecommerce platform saves you from the hefty commissions and leverages you as a standalone brand.

So, is there a better solution than going for expensive ecommerce software (and invite the scorned look of your accountant)?

Well, there is!

Let me introduce you to open source ecommerce platforms.

Open source ecommerce platforms can be a great option to run ecommerce MVP projects for a new solution in your product line. Find the best below—and what makes each one great.

The Best Open Source Ecommerce Platforms List

Here’s a shortlist of the best open source ecommerce platforms:

  1. Drupal Commerce
  2. Solidus
  3. OpenFreeway 
  4. Quintagroup
  5. Reaction Commerce
  6. Broadleaf Commerce 
  7. Spree Commerce
  8. Magento Open Source 
  9. Kartopia
  10. Acro Media 

Open Source Ecommerce Platforms: Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best open source ecommerce platforms? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI):  Is it clean and attractive? Is the interface clutter-free and organized? Is its arrangement optimized to execute key features quickly?
  2. Usability: Is it easy to learn and master? Does the ecommerce software company offer good tech support, user support, tutorials, and training? Since Open source ecommerce platforms do not usually offer support, this criteria becomes all the more important to distinguish different tools.
  3. Integrations: Is it easy to connect with other tools? Any pre-built integrations? How smoothly does the tool work with other plugins, extensions, and add-ons?
  4. Value for $: How appropriate is the price for the features, capabilities, and use case? Is pricing clear, transparent, and flexible? Since these are open source ecommerce platforms, the criteria will be about the number of features and ease of use provided for the free price tag.

Open Source Ecommerce Platform: Key Features

What key ecommerce features make the best open source ecommerce platforms? I specifically searched the web for these important features and functionalities:

Increased Flexibility 

Does the platform offer a higher level of customization and flexibility? With open source ecommerce platforms, you can do an unprecedented level of customization due to it being free from the generic SaaS model. I searched different tools for the level of customization they allow and came up with the list below.

Advanced Security 

Does the platform offer a strong security module? Open source ecommerce platform code is analyzed and implemented by a community of focused developers. So any code implemented is filtered through a different set of checks. This gives them security leverage. 

Site Speed 

Does the platform load fast? Does it offer average page-speeds? Site speed is a critical metric to measure when making your ecommerce business go live. Slow speeds can result in drop-offs, lower conversions, and a fall from Google rankings. Based on that, I tested the platforms for their site speed.

Community Support

Does the platform offer any sort of community support? Is there a community offering helpful guides, tutorials, and updates to back the product usage? An open-source ecommerce platform usually does not offer direct 1-on-1 support due to the costs involved in managing it. Having said that, without helpful guides, documentation, and an active community, even the best feature-rich open source ecommerce platform will become a dud.

Also, due to the high-level of technicalities involved, community support is a must. With an active developer community behind the product, the product can see faster evolution and better adaptation to new trends and technologies.

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Overviews Of The 10 Best Open Source Ecommerce Platforms

Here’s a brief description of each of the 10 best open source eCommerce platforms on my list showing what it does best, plus screenshots to showcase some of the features.

1. Drupal Commerce – Best open source eCommerce platform for feature updates

Screenshot Of Drupal Commerce Open Source Ecommerce Platform
Though Drupal open source is a trimmed down version of the paid subscription product, it still packs a punch with the essential features packed in an easy-to-use interface.

Drupal is one of the most common and trusted technologies used for building formidable ecommerce platforms. 

The product comes with in-built caching, leading to super fast speed and search-engine-optimized performance. This SEO-friendly feature makes your ecommerce site rank higher on Google for your target keywords.

The active community behind the project ensures a high-level of development standards. It has its own security system that’s constantly updated due to an active developer community behind the technology. In terms of inventory management, there are modules for order management, product customization, along with shipping and fulfillment for your online shop.

Extensions include software like Avalara, Mailjet, PayPal, and other top complementary business apps. In terms of support, the platform has extensive blogs, social pages, and a community forum. 

There are extensive user guides and a video library that further help you in understanding the various steps in building a robust ecommerce platform. Having said that, one needs to have a good level of developer knowledge to maneuver through the learning curve.

2. Solidus – Best for high volume retail store owners

Screenshot Of Open Source Ecommerce Platform Solidus
The Solidus interface keeps going through updates and improvements via a tightly knit community of dedicated developers.

This open-source platform is built on Ruby on Rails. This gives you the advantage of managing changes easily and leveraging flexibility. In terms of security, it has automated security fixes, a clear disclosure policy, and strict code reviews. The product comes with a stable API and easy extensibility. 

Solidus integrates smoothly with PayPal, Stripe, Chargebee, and TransferWise (Cha-Ching!). It also integrates with TaxCloud, AngularSpree, Sentry, and other related business apps. Support is available via documentation and an active community on Stack Overflow. There is also a Slack community that you can join.

3. OpenFreeway – Best for selling events and subscriptions

Screenshot Of Open Source Ecommerce Platform OpenFreeway
Open Freeway is a great tool for selling event-based packages and monthly subscriptions.

Open Freeway is perfect for those who want to sell subscriptions and events along with products. Use it for time-based bookings, selling subscription packages, and appointments. The product has built-in marketing and SEO tools that can help you reach your customer faster. 

In terms of customization, its modular architecture enables making changes super easy to implement without any interference with the mainstream source code. Support is available via documentation and a contact form page where you can report bugs.

4. Quintagroup – Best open source content management system to run product catalogs

Screenshot Of Open Source Ecommerce Platform QuintaGroup
Quintagroup’s interface has clearly laid out functions, with a menu that consists of options like edit, security, view mode, and interfaces.

Quintagroup offers a rich tool for online product catalog management. Apart from that, it enables you with simple online payment functionality with Plone development services. The Plone service comes with ecommerce integrations like PayPal, PayFlowPro, Google Checkout, and Salesforce. 

You can implement functionalities like registration of conferences, room booking, prepaid access to certain sections, and more.The platform offers basic customization but nothing too special to write about. Support is available via a contact form.

5. Reaction Commerce – Best open source eCommerce platform in terms of flexibility at scale

Screenshot Of Reaction Commerce
The new UI leverages a lot of white space. In the example above, you can see an organized interface for catalog management.

Reaction Commerce allows you to add new features and capabilities without migrating to a new platform. Its event-based architecture helps you get more out of product event data and unlock insights across the catalog.

The platform is extremely flexible with commerce capabilities and microservices. These features can be used alongside or instead of your existing tech stack. The product is built for scaling with 1 million SKUs, capability for millions of inventory changes, and the ability to handle 1000s of orders per day. 

The platform has a lightning-fast speed of 225 ms average response time. Reaction Commerce works out of the box with ERPs, OMS, payment providers, and other services. Support is available via basic documentation and a contact form.

6. Broadleaf Commerce – Best open source eCommerce platform for multi-store needs

Screenshot Of Open Source Ecommerce Platform Broadleaf Commerce
The catalog management feature of Broadleaf Commerce represents the straightforward interface found throughout the product.

Running on headless ecommerce technology, Broadleaf’s multi-site solution uses a microservice-based framework to provide clients the ability to manage their data and experience. This means that aspects like performance, privacy concerns, and infrastructure costs are catered by individual microservices. These microservices are separated from other solution components.

You can combine an ‘n’ number of Broadleaf microservices into a single container and database. Alternatively, you can decompose services into their bounded text. These modular features provide a lot of deployment flexibility and are great for scalability.

Its ecommerce functionality helps support B2C, B2B, multi-tenant, multi-site, and marketplace focused-needs. In terms of customization, it comes with the same high-level of total customization that comes with platforms running on a headless commerce engine.

Broadleaf integrates with WordPress, Magento, Django CMS, Zendesk, Zapier, and other mainstream eCommerce apps. Trusted by pop culture brands like Major League Baseball, you can be sure of hitting a home run or two with the product. 

Feature requests and bug reports can be submitted via the contact form. There is a slight learning curve and difficulty level. Having said that, once you get a hang of the product, this can become a very cost-effective ecommerce solution for your business.

7. Spree Commerce – Best open source eCommerce platform for security features

Screenshot Of Open Source Ecommerce Platform Spree Commerce
The Admin Panel of Spree Commerce has a clean and clearly laid-out interface, which makes executing different tasks fairly easy.

Usually featured among the top open-source projects, Spree Commerce is a safe bet when it comes to building a formidable ecommerce platform. Built on Ruby on Rails, Spree Commerce comes with flexibility and customization features like managing remarkable changes to the data model relatively fast.

Also, site security is pretty high for such platforms. Spree Commerce comes with strong password encryption and token-based REST API. The available payment gateways enable PCI-DSS compliance.

Having a mobile-first approach and fully customizable UX, the product fulfills all the checkmarks for running a modern ecommerce business. The UX is smooth on any device – iPhone, iPad, Android, or Desktop.Spree Commerce loads fast and with the ability to scale based on needs.

Like most open source eCommerce platforms, Spree Commerce has its own learning curve. Support is available via documentation, guides, and an active Slack community of developers.

8. Magento Open Source – Best open source eCommerce platform with basic functionalities

Screenshot Of Magento Open Source
The Magento community edition offers a data-rich dashboard that provides you with real-time analytics on how your store is performing.

Magento is an open-source ecommerce platform offering from Adobe.

The open-source version comes with features like site search, catalog management, integrated checkout, payment, shipping, and other basic features. These features help you get your ecommerce business off the ground.

The template customizations need an expert-level of developer knowledge to do it smoothly. 

Also, the various customizations do take a toll on the site speed, making it slower compared to other open-source platforms. Support is available via documentation. For technical support, you need to upgrade to Magento Commerce.

Overall, Magento open source comes as a good starting point if you want to go with a free eCommerce solution from a famous brand. But if you want to go for feature-rich solutions, then Magento Commerce is the way to go.

9. Kartopia – Best open source ecommerce platform for B2B and B2C retailers

Screenshot Of Kartopia
The Kartopia backend interface is clean with a straightforward approach to executing basic ecommerce management tasks.

Kartopia offers an ecommerce platform solution for B2B and B2C retail. 

Its modular build can be leveraged to offer higher levels of customizations via an imaginative level of customer experience with targeted personalizations. The product easily integrates with your existing IT infrastructure.

It offers a single view of customers, inventory, and orders, along with flexible order fulfillment to suit custom delivery models. Serving different geographies, Kartopia comes with multi-country, multi-currency, and multilingual features.

It also has order management features with complete order fulfillment functionality. This can be very useful for your ecommerce store. Kartopia smoothly integrates with third-party ERP, payments, logistics, marketing, and analytics systems.

10. Acro Media – Best ecommerce development agency for Drupal-based projects

Screenshot Of Acro Media
Acro Media has 10+ years of experience building Drupal projects.

Acro Media is an ecommerce solution development agency that specializes in Drupal technology. You can consider using them to fine-tune and customize your Drupal projects as per your needs.

The agency comes with 10+ years of open source ecommerce experience and uses agile methodology to build collaborative partnerships. The developer team is skilled in building headless ecommerce platforms that optimize workflows. 

The 50 member developer hit squad also helps in integrating with 3rd party vendors and improves customer experience with attractive frontends. Customer support is available via phone, email, and chat. The pricing is based on your custom needs and scale.

Other Open Source Ecommerce Platform Options

Here are a few more open-source ecommerce platforms that didn’t make the top list. 

  1. OroCommerce – Best open source ecommerce platform for wholesalers
  2. ScandiPWA – Best open source PWA theme for Magento
  3. Bootsmart – Best ecommerce development agency for building shopping application platforms
  4. Laravel E-Commerce – Best ecommerce platform for hotel reservations
  5. Moonami – Best open source ecommerce platform with 1-on-1 phone support
  6. WooCommerce for WordPress – Best for customizations
  7. Ymple Ecommerce – Best multi-channel ecommerce platform for small businesses
  8. Sylius – Best open-source headless ecommerce platform for mid-market and enterprise brands
  9. Online Merchant – Best for integrations and add-ons
  10. X-Cart – Best ecommerce shopping cart platform for multi-vendor management
  11. Pimcore – Best open source ecommerce platform for Product information management (PIM)
  12. Auro CRM –  Best open source CRM software for ecommerce business
  13. Odoo – Best open source ecommerce platform for scalable usability
  14. PrestaShop – Best for storefront design customization
  15. AbanteCart – Best for feature-rich page checkout
  16. OpenCart – Best open source PHP-based shopping cart software for small businesses
  17. Joomla – Best open source website builder to create design-rich store templates
  18. OsCommerce – Best open source online store builder for small businesses
  19. VirtueMart – Best open source ecommerce platform in terms of trust and experience
  20. Zen Cart – Best open source online store management system using MySQL database and HTML components
  21. Nopcommerce – Best open source ASP.NET-based shopping cart using Microsoft technologies
  22. Square Online – Best open source ecommerce platform with unlimited products capability

Open Source Ecommerce Platforms FAQ

Start here to address some of the common FAQs related to open source ecommerce platforms.

What Is An Open-Source Ecommerce Platform?

Open source ecommerce platforms are basically free ecommerce frameworks that are managed by an active developer community. This developer community constantly collaborates to update the platform with user-focused features and extensions that make the platform feature-rich.

As a user, you have more creative control over such platforms and how the online store operates. You can determine the WordPress plugins, hosting, and themes that would go to operate your online store.

On the downside, open-source ecommerce platforms are not for beginners and need a higher level of developer knowledge and technical know-how. Business owners usually do not have that level of technical knowledge to create customizations via CSS and other tech work. One needs a developer to manage such platforms and use them to their fullest.

Also, you need to go scouting for a good server to do self-hosting for the program. All the site security, optimization, and maintenance features have to be self-managed by you.

Seems a bit daunting? Check this article out for some simpler solutions: 10 Best Ecommerce Platforms For Small Businesses in 2021

What Is The Best Open Source Ecommerce Platform?

Drupal Commerce, Spree Commerce, and Magento open source are some of the most popular open-source ecommerce platforms based on standalone features, updates, and community strength behind the products.

Looking for more high-performance ecommerce platforms and tools? Check out this list of top ecommerce platforms.

What Do You Think About These Open Source Ecommerce Platforms?

These are my top picks for open source ecommerce platforms. Now, tell me your opinion on them. What do you think about these tools? Which one will fit your use case the most? Any tool I missed? Let me know in the comments.

Know any ecommerce business owner who can benefit from these open source ecommerce platforms? Share the article with them on social media and be their new favorite person.

Not sure if an open source e-commerce platform is what you need? Check these articles out:

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