The growth rate of online stores has been so high in recent years and is still increasing that it has led to the creation of various online store building systems. The desire of people to buy products online and save time has intensified this issue, and stores are trying to outdo each other with the help of various internet marketing tools.

This excessive growth of online stores in our country is also increasing strongly and has caused all kinds of traditional businesses to think about entering the online space. It doesn’t matter how much your products are or what the services you provide include, in any case entering this field will cause more sales and progress in your business. In this regard, the first question that will arise for you is how to build an online store?

If you are one of those people who have products or services to offer online to customers, you will definitely need a store and service website. To have a store site, the first thing you should pay attention to is choosing the best store builder system so that you can manage the products and their sales.

In order to use this system, various ways will be available to you, including the exclusive design of the online store site, but you should know that the cost of building a store site in the beginning is very high and you may not be able to afford it. But there is a low-cost way that we are going to introduce in this article.

What is Prestashop?

Prestashop is an online store builder system that is available for free. This system is designed and programmed with PHP programming and MySQL database, by installing it on the host, you can create your store in a short time.

Similar to other systems such as WooCommerce, this system is designed in such a way that you can use all kinds of templates for the store, and with the help of its modules, you can develop the features of your online store.

Using PrestaShop will allow you to implement the essential features that an online store needs in your online store, some of which include the following.

1- Relatively simple and easy management of the online store

2- Has a variety of formats

3- Ability to sell in all countries or assign to a specific country

4- The possibility of using different bank payment gateways

5- Ability to view complete details of purchases and customer orders

6- The possibility of inserting a discount code and holding sales festivals

7- Possibility to review products by buyers or visitors

8- The possibility of placing infinite products with the ability to insert images as a gallery

9- And…

What do you need to use PrestaShop?

To build an online store, first of all, you need to buy a host and domain, and by installing Prestashop on the host, you can launch your own online store. Therefore, if we want to make a general estimate of the cost of using Prestashop during one year, you should bear the following costs.

1- Buying a domain, which costs between 10 and 500,000 Tomans depending on the choice of domain extension.

2- Buying a suitable host for Prestashop, which costs between 300 and 2 million tomans per year.

3- Prestashop template design, which costs between 600 and 1 million if you use a ready-made template and between 5 and 50 million tomans if you use a special template.

4- Adding required features and customizing the store, which is generally created by the plugin. This option, like template design, will cost between 600 and 1 million if you use a ready-made plugin and between 1 and 5 million tomans if you use a dedicated plugin. Of course, the cost in exclusive mode depends on the facilities and volume of the project, which may be more than these.

5- Hiring a support person to solve the store’s problems will cost an average of 150 to 800,000 Tomans per month.

6- Hiring a developer to add facilities, depending on the amount of work, can cost between 1 and several million tomans per month.

Now, in addition to these expenses that you have to spend on your store, consider that with the increase of products and the number of sales that your store is getting bigger day by day, other expenses are included and some of these current expenses are also The reason for the lack of resources will increase, and finally it can be concluded that using Prestashop in a state that provides all the needs of your store will cost something around 5 to 10 million tomans.

Pros and cons of PrestaShop store builder

Similar to any other system, PrestaShop also has various advantages and disadvantages that you should pay attention to when choosing a suitable store builder system.

1- Free and simple to use

Prestashop is available for free. It means that after buying your hosting and domain, it is enough to go to the official site of Prestashop or its Persian support and download it. Then proceed to install PrestaShop on your host and use its free version that provides the basic facilities of a store. Using and installing PrestaShop is also simple and you will be able to work with it with the help of some tutorials that you can find by searching the Internet.

2- Access to different formats

3- Regular updates and updates

Like any other free system, PrestaShop also has dozens of developers around the world who are updating, updating and fixing the problems of this system. In every update that is released, you can update the system and use the latest changes and new features implemented on it.

4- Increasing features with the help of plugins

Prestashop, like other systems, has a module section (such as a WordPress plugin) through which you can increase the features of the store. Modules are a series of additional software packages that will be added to the store by installing them on the system.

For example, sharing products in some social networks may not be available by default. In this case, with the help of the module, you can add sharing buttons on different product pages to enable their sharing.

5- SEO suitable for online stores

Every system needs to have a special focus on SEO in order to be successful. PrestaShop has also paid attention to this issue from the very beginning and has tried to optimize SEO as the core of the system as much as possible. But compared to store systems like WooCommerce, it has weaker SEO. Of course, you don’t have to worry about this issue, because with the help of SEO modules, you can implement any feature that helps the SEO of the online store on your site.

6- Need to hire backup

Since this system is available for free, it will be time consuming to be able to support it when you need help. Because system support in official agencies is for those who use Prestashop paid and commercial products such as modules and templates.

In this case, the only possible way is to use the help of others, which is also available with the help of support forums, and you have to wait for about 24 hours to get the answer. For this reason, when your store is big enough, you need to hire a support person to solve the problems, for which you have to pay something from 150 to 1 million tomans and more (depending on the working hours of the support person) every month.

7- Security problems because the system is free

Due to the relatively good and high popularity of Prestashop and on the other hand its free and open source, it has made hackers to be completely familiar with the core of this system and can hack it more easily than a SAAS or proprietary system. If you use any free system, for this reason, it is necessary to always avoid all kinds of security methods to prevent hacking and intrusion into your store. Since your site is an online store and financial information is exchanged in it, the importance of this matter will be twofold.

8- Low number of templates compared to other systems

The number of prestashop store templates is less than other systems and you need to pay a fee to have a professional heart. Since there are only a limited number of providers of this system in Iran, the cost of a ready-made template may cost between 300,000 and 1,000,000 Tomans. So, if the appearance of the store is very important to you, and on the other hand, you are not able to pay high costs for using the template, using Prestashop cannot be a suitable option.

9- Problems with plugins and their low number

Just like templates, Prestashop modules are also limited and in some cases there may not even be a module that you can use. As an example, one of my friends who used PrestaShop needed a redirect module to transfer customers from the previous domain to the new domain due to the change of store address, if such a module did not exist in PrestaShop and he had to pay for it. relatively high to prepare this module exclusively.

Should we use Prestashop or not?

If you’ve been with us up to this point, you’re probably pretty familiar with PrestaShop and can decide whether or not to use it based on your needs.

In general, our opinion is that if you are familiar with e-commerce tools and solutions and have connections in this field, Prestashop can be a good choice.

If you have a basic knowledge of web design and development, the high customization capability of this platform will allow you to set up an ideal online store in the shortest time and at the lowest cost.

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