If you’re in search of the most suitable adult e-commerce solution for your adult toy business, you will come across numerous options that claim to be the best.
However, you would discover that many of them lacked the crucial SEO features necessary to ensure the store’s optimal ranking.
In the absence of such features, you may end up choosing one of the popular choices, Shift4Shop. But still, there may be doubts lingering in your mind about whether Shift4Shop is a good place to create your online adult toy store.
If that’s the case, then worry not. Our review on Shift4Shop will assist you in making an informed decision in and out so that you can sell sex toys online easily and effectively.
What is Shift4Shop?
Shift4Shop, previously known as 3dcart, is a top-tier e-commerce software provider that offers a wealth of features and customization options.
Its robust platform includes powerful tools for search engine optimization, website template selection, sales tracking, and domain name registration.
Image Source: Shift4Shop
The best part? The platform’s free End-to-End plan (available only to U.S. merchants) enables businesses to run a fully functional website without any additional costs other than credit card processing fees.
Who can use Shift4Shop?
Shift4Shop is a versatile e-commerce platform that caters to the needs of both small and large businesses alike. Whether you’re a newbie to the world of online selling or a seasoned entrepreneur looking to expand your reach, Shift4Shop offers a user-friendly interface that enables you to set up an online store with ease.
With a wide range of customizable features and tons of software automation, Shift4Shop provides sellers with numerous tools to optimize their online storefronts. Whether you’re looking to track your inventory or streamline your shipping process, Shift4Shop offers specialized features to cater to your needs.
What does Shift4Shop offer?
With over 17,000 people utilizing its services, Shift4Shop has become one of the popular choices for those looking to sell sex toys, anything from sexual health supplements to high-end and trending sex toys.
What sets it apart from other adult ecommerce website builders is its wide array of features, which are designed to help your business succeed while also being optimized for SEO.
With over 200 built-in features, a vast range of free templates, and support for over 100 payment gateways, it’s clear that Shift4Shop has tons of amazing features to offer.
Now that you know what Shift4Shop is all about, let’s review them layer by layer through their pros and cons.
Shift4Shop: Pros and cons
Shift4Shop includes an impressive number of features at no cost and without relying on integrations, such as single-page checkout, a built-in blog, product and customer reviews, and digital downloads. But, at the same time, it also comes with some drawbacks.
Here are some pros and cons of Shift4Shop based on our research:
- Shift4Shop offers a free End-to-End plan that allows businesses to run a fully functional website while only paying credit card processing fees.
- The platform is customizable and has dozens of features, including search engine optimization, website templates, sales tracking, and domain name registration.
- Shift4Shop has Level 1 PCI security compliance, the same level used by banks and large financial institutions, along with search-engine-optimized templates and no transaction fees.
- Some users have reported a lack of plugins and customization compared to other platforms like Shopify and xMarketplace.
- Shift4Shop’s free plan is only available for U.S. merchants.
- Some users have reported that the platform can be difficult to use for beginners.
How Easy Is Shift4Shop To Use?
If you’re thinking about signing up for Shift4Shop to build your sex toy website, you might want to know what it’s like to use it. Keep in mind that Shift4Shop is not available in any country other than the U.S.
First of all, they offer a 15-day free trial, which is nice. After you sign up, they’ll send you an email with all the important info you need to get started, like your site’s URL and login details.
The dashboard is pretty simple, with a helpful tutorial video right there in the center. There are ten options in the navigation menu, which is easy to use. Overall, it’s not bad.
But here’s the thing: when we asked our testers to test out Shift4Shop, most of them found it really tough to use. The typography and color scheme weren’t consistent, and there were no “undo” button or keyboard shortcuts. One tester said it felt “all over the place.”
On the plus side, they found it easy to add products, and they liked the live chat support. The navigation menu is okay, with drop-down options for each category.
But the transitions aren’t very smooth, and you can’t duplicate product categories. That means more clicking and less money-making.
And if you want to offer a buy one, get one free promotion, you’ll have to fill out a bunch of fields across multiple pages. It’s a hassle.
Overall, we’d say there are better options out there, like xMarketplace by Adent.io, which can offer more to your online sex toy store. Shift4Shop is just okay, but not great.
Shift4Shop Pricing – Is it worth the money?
If there’s one aspect you should be aware of when choosing Shift4Shop is its pricing. Because the cost to start a sex toy business primarily depends on its online foundation. The better the foundation, the better the profit.
So let’s analyze whether Shift4Shop pricing plans are worth your time and money, and, of course, your sex toy business.
With no monthly subscription fees, no setup fees, and PCI compliance included, it’s a great option for U.S.-based merchants.
The only cost you’ll incur is per-transaction payment processing fees, which can be processed through Shift4 Payments, PayPal, or other integrated payment processors. And if you’re already using a different adult e-commerce platform, Shift4Shop will migrate your setup for free.
If you need more advanced features for your sex toy website, then Shift4Shop still offers three paid plan tiers with increasing capabilities.
However, since the free plan offers all available features with unlimited users and no sales limits, there’s little reason for most U.S. business owners to consider a paid plan.
International users, on the other hand, will need to select a paid plan starting at $29 per month since the free plan is only available to U.S.-based merchants.
These paid plans, called Basic Store, Plus Store, and Pro Store, have no additional transaction fees and offer a range of features such as auto-shipping, autoresponder email campaigns, pre-orders, and back-in-stock notifications.
The Shift4Shop Plus, at the cost of $79 a month, offers high-quality product, loyalty and shipment tools.
The highest-priced plan, Shift4Shop Pro, at $229 per month, offers even more advanced tools for automation and management.
For high-volume merchants whose sales exceed $1 million in 12 months, Shift4Shop Enterprise, starting at $1,999 per month, may be the best option. This plan offers advanced shipping modules, product management, and automation tools to accommodate your business’s needs.
How Good Is Shift4Shop as an Online Adult Toy Store Builder?
Shift4Shop, as an ecommerce platform, offers a whopping 110 templates for its users, which is the most extensive range available. These templates cater to every industry, including the sex toy sector. Therefore, if you are looking to create your own online adult toy store, then you can do it seamlessly.
One of Shift4Shop’s selling points is its ability to reformat your content if you change templates automatically. This feature is not available on other platforms, such as Shopify.
How do the templates look? Most of them are sleek and designed in line with your sex toy brand’s aesthetics. However, in some cases, there may be design issues, such as navigation menus that don’t scroll down with you.
When choosing a template for your adult toy store, you need to be cautious as they all support different features. Some templates offer a quick view feature, while others may remove product reviews.
Unfortunately, creating something creative without apps on Shift4Shop may be challenging. This is also true for other adult ecommerce builders, which prioritize management tools over creative capabilities.
On the other hand, all-around adult ecommerce solutions such as xMarketplace offer greater flexibility with more intuitive and personalized design.
You have the option to select from more than 100 themes to customize your online sex toy store. If you want to keep the costs low, you can opt for the free themes that are available.
However, if you want to have access to premium features, you can choose to purchase a premium theme, which would cost you anywhere between $99.99 and $199.99, depending on the theme you select.
Additionally, you can enhance the functionality of your adult toy store by selecting from numerous free and premium apps that are available.
For instance, you can add a live chat feature to your store by paying either a $15 monthly fee or a $195 one-time fee. Similarly, you can purchase analytics information for your site for the same price.
Alternatively, you can opt for extra fraud protections at the cost of $9.99 per month to safeguard your online sex toy store from false transactions and chargebacks.
You can count on receiving assistance around the clock, every day of the year with our 24/7 support. Shift4Shop’s dedicated customer support team is based in the USA and can be easily contacted through phone, email, or live chat.
While phones are the fastest solution solver, they understand that sometimes you may experience longer waiting times when using their live chat service. If you are short on time to make a phone call, you can submit a web ticket, which is a quick and easy alternative.
They also offer support via social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So overall, based on our Shift4Shop reviews, their customer support is satisfactory.
Shift4Shop: Tools & Features
Payment Processing and Shipping
Ship4Shop is one of the top picks as an adult ecommerce solution for many top sex toy businesses that stands out for its wide range of payment options.
With over 100 payment methods available, it offers more than any other builder on the market. What’s more, these payment options are integrated into your store, so you don’t need to worry about coding anything.
Shipping costs are customizable from the product inventory page, and you can choose from a variety of shipping providers, including UPS, Fedex, DHL, and more.
Shift4Shop also offers several app integrations, such as Address Verification and ShippingEasy, which make the whole process easier and remove the added stress of PayPal payments.
This adult ecommerce builder is committed to its users’ success and doesn’t charge transaction fees for any of its price plans. However, credit card charges will still apply based on the payment gateway used.
Search engine optimization
For adult toy marketing, having a robust SEO is indispensable. Shift4Shop provides an adult ecommerce platform with strong SEO features to increase the visibility and sales of your sex toy site.
You can easily optimize URLs by customizing page names, hiding headers and footers, and generating canonical URLs.
The built-in 301 redirect editor makes it easy to point old URLs to new and improved pages, whether you want to redirect an old product page or change your website domain completely.
Through Shift4Shop’s interactive data visualizations, you can effortlessly monitor the performance and overall health of your online sex toy business.
These user-friendly analytics and reports empower you to make informed, data-driven decisions that propel your business forward. With valuable insights at your fingertips, you can reward your loyal customers, fine-tune marketing campaigns, and anticipate surges in product demand with ease.
One of the most critical aspects of running an ecommerce platform is managing your inventory and products. Fortunately, Shift4Shop makes it simple to upload, categorize, and market your products.
Plus, you can easily make changes to your inventory to keep up with fluctuating demand or to introduce new products.
One of Shift4Shop’s standout features is the shopping cart, which is designed to streamline the checkout process for both you and your customers.
With single and multi-page checkout flows available, you can choose the option that best suits your needs. Additionally, the shopping cart offers real-time shipping rate calculations, which means your customers can get accurate shipping quotes before finalizing their purchase.
Payment options and tax displays are also included, ensuring a seamless and transparent transaction process for everyone involved.
If you’re searching for an adult e-commerce solution that offers the same features as Shift4Shop, we would highly recommend considering xMarketplace by Adent.io.
This adult ecommerce website script offers a comparable set of features at the most affordable price point, as well as a dropshipping sex toys feature that is more advanced than Shift4Shop
In case you are looking to have complete ownership of your adult toy website for an indefinite period of time without having to pay any monthly fees, then Shift4Shop might not be the ideal platform for you. However, xMarketplace could be the best option for you to consider.
With xMarketplace, you will be the boss of your sex toy website, as you’ll get 100% software source code after you purchase the script. In addition, with an in-built adult payment processor, CCBill, you can start transactions in a matter of time.
Is Shift4Shop Worth It For Your Online Adult Toy Store?
Shift4Shop is undeniably a highly sought-after adult ecommerce website builder, with a large number of members attesting to its popularity.
However, despite its merits, navigating the platform can pose a challenge, especially for those who lack extensive technical knowledge. Consequently, it comes as no surprise that Shift4Shop has been rated as the ‘least likely to recommend‘ adult toy website builder.
On the other hand, xMarketplace does it so much better, striking a balance between adult ecommerce functionality and creative control that is sorely lacking in Shift4Shop.
In case you are considering implementing a business model like dropshipping, xMarketplace should be on your radar. This platform provides a comprehensive solution that includes an integrated international dropshipper API, specifically Inventory Source and Sex Toy Club.
This feature allows you to access a vast selection of products, boasting over 20,000 options, with the added benefit of discreet shipping. With these capabilities, you can streamline your business operations and improve your customer experience.
With this note, we can conclude our Shift4Shop reviews. Shift4Shop may give you amazing website templates and sales tracking options, but if you need a powerful platform that you can be in control of, the xMarketplace is the place for you.