Most likely you have found this page, because you are interested in building an online shop. So if you are planning to sell products or services online via a shopping cart, and you are especially interested in doing it with iPage, read this article to find out the pros and cons.
Ipage is one of my favorite hosting companies and have been recommending them to my friends who were looking to build a small website. In my iPage review I have enumerated numerous possibilities to build your website with this hosting company, but I did not relay went into talking much about building an online store. In this article I will reveal if iPage is a good choice to host your eCommerce website.
WooCommerce shop and Ipage hosting
WooCommerce is a free shopping cart plugin for WordPress. Ipage allows you to install and host WordPress on your account and also allows you to install any plugin you want. The WooCommerce plugin will not be installed automatically with your WordPress installation, you will have to upload it manually via FTP and enable it in the Plugins manager.
Ipage servers are working great with small websites; they do ok with WordPress as well, having an average response time of 600ms. WooCommerce however is a resource heave plugin. So if you install this plugin to your WordPress site hosted with iPage, it will slow down your site significantly. Adding more than 20 products to it will increase loading time and your shop will provide a very poor user experience. With a slow and unreliable website, you won’t be able to sell anything.
Although you can set up a WooCommerce shop with iPage, I would not recommend wasting your time with it. Instead I recommend hosting your WooCommerce shop with BlueHost.
Hosting VirtueMart with iPage
VirtueMart is one of the most popular shopping cart extensions for Joomla. Ipage offers you the option to one-click install Joomla to your domain. VirtueMart is not included in the core installation; you will need to install this extension via the Joomla admin panel.
Joomla requires more resources than WordPress, so a Joomla website will always be slower. Considering this fact, the response time will be over 600ms. From my testing resulted an average 900ms response time for my Joomla website hosted with iPage. Now if you install VirtueMart, this number will increase and your shop will be even slower.
If you are looking to build your online shop using Joomla and VirtueMart, iPage is not the right choice. I recommend InMotion hosting for this purpose.
Install a shopping cart to your iPage account
The SimpleScript application includes multiple shopping cart scripts you can install to your website. This script enables you to install PrestShop, osCommerce, CubeCart, ZenCart, AgoraCart, OpenCart or other shopping cart software automatically.
The good thing about building your online store using shopping cart software is that your website will have the exact features you need. Depending on the shopping cart script, it might use less resources compared to Joomla. However if you want additional features to your website such as custom pages or a blog, a shopping cart might not be the best option for you.
You should also consider the fact, that the Essential Plan, offered by iPage is a shared hosting with a shared IP address. If you want to install a dedicated SSL certificate to your site, you will need a dedicated IP. This is simply not possible with iPage shared plan. For this you will need at least a VPS hosting plan, or you can choose a cheaper option: BlueHost’s BusinessPro package, which includes a dedicated IP, SSL and domain privacy. Perfect for hosting shopping carts.
iPage hosting and Ecwid shopping cart
The last option you have with iPage to build your online store is to use their premium shopping cart software, Ecwid. For an additional $4.95 per month cost, you can create an online store with up to 20 products. This plan can be upgraded to add unlimited products to the store.
The Basic Ecwid plan can be integrated with your existing WordPress, Weebly or Joomla website. The Professional plan integrates with Facebook, while the Unlimited plan integrates with eBay, Amazon, Yahoo, Google and other sales channel feeds.
Summary: Is iPage good for eCommerce?
If you already have an iPage account and want to create an online shop to extend the functionality of your website, the best option is to go with Ecwid shopping cart. This however will involve additional monthly cost.
For small websites iPage is perfect option. But if you are planning to sell online, I do not recommend using their Essential Plan. Instead you should check out BlueHost Business Plan or InMotion Hosting for reliable eCommerce hosting solution.
If you have any questions or suggestions, let’s talk bellow in the comment section.