Implementing BigCommerce for Your Headless Storefront

BigCommerce, with its robust ecommerce platform, offers a user-friendly environment for brands looking to enhance their online presence. However, as brands evolve and their content management needs become more complex, they may find a more advanced solution to deliver richer front-end shopping experiences. This is where headless commerce comes into play.

Headless Commerce with BigCommerce

What is Headless Commerce?

Separating Backend and Frontend

Headless commerce is a concept where the backend ecommerce functions of a store are separated from the customer-facing frontend experience. Traditionally, ecommerce platforms provide an all-in-one solution where the backend and frontend are tightly integrated. However, with headless commerce, brands have the flexibility to choose the best front-end technology or CMS to deliver personalized and immersive customer experiences.

In the case of BigCommerce, going headless means decoupling the frontend design and user experience from the backend ecommerce functionality. This separation allows brands to control their frontend presentation completely while leveraging the reliable and scalable backend services BigCommerce provides.

Leveraging APIs for Data and Services

Application programming interfaces (APIs) are crucial in connecting the backend and front end in a headless architecture. BigCommerce provides a comprehensive set of APIs that give developers access to almost all its ecommerce services. These APIs enable developers to retrieve data, manage orders, process payments, and perform other essential ecommerce functions.

By leveraging APIs, brands can integrate BigCommerce’s backend services with their chosen frontend technology or CMS to create a seamless and personalized customer experience. The flexibility of headless commerce allows brands to select the best tools for each aspect of their ecommerce ecosystem, resulting in a more tailored and efficient solution.

Why Consider Headless BigCommerce?

As your brand grows and evolves, the out-of-the-box solution BigCommerce provides may only meet some of your content management needs. While BigCommerce offers a user-friendly and scalable backend ecommerce platform, going headless with BigCommerce can provide several benefits that enhance your online presence.

Enhanced Flexibility and Customization

One of the primary reasons to consider headless BigCommerce is the increased flexibility and customization it offers. With headless commerce, you can choose the front-end technology or CMS that best suits your brand’s requirements. Whether it’s React.js, Vue.js, or other frameworks, going headless allows you to build a highly customizable frontend while keeping the reliable backend services of BigCommerce.

By decoupling the front end from the back end, you have the freedom to design unique and immersive shopping experiences for your customers. You can create custom page layouts, interactive elements, and tailored customer journeys that align with your brand’s vision. This level of flexibility and customization sets you apart from the competition and allows you to deliver a truly exceptional online shopping experience.

Access to Third-Party Backend Services

In addition to frontend customization, going headless with BigCommerce opens up a world of possibilities when it comes to backend services. While BigCommerce provides a comprehensive suite of ecommerce functionality, you may have specific requirements that can be fulfilled by third-party backend services such as product information management (PIM), customer relationship management (CRM), and order management tools.

With headless BigCommerce, you can seamlessly integrate these third-party services into your ecommerce ecosystem. This allows you to leverage the best tools for each aspect of your business, providing a more tailored and efficient solution. Combining BigCommerce’s reliable backend services with specialized third-party tools allows you to optimize your operations, enhance customer experiences, and scale your business effectively.

Leave BigCommerce Themes Behind

While BigCommerce offers a range of themes to customize the appearance of your online store, going headless provides greater design freedom. With traditional BigCommerce themes, you may need more design flexibility and customization options. However, by decoupling the front end from the back end, you can create a unique and on-brand design for your online store.

Instead of relying on BigCommerce themes, you can leverage frontend frameworks like React.js or Vue.js to build a highly customized and visually stunning frontend. These frameworks offer a wide range of design possibilities and allow you to create captivating user experiences. Whether showcasing product details, implementing interactive elements, or designing immersive landing pages, going headless with BigCommerce will enable you to bring your creative vision to life.

Faster Site Load Times

Site speed is critical in delivering exceptional customer experiences and driving conversions. With traditional ecommerce platforms, the frontend and backend are tightly coupled, which can impact site performance. However, by going headless with BigCommerce, you can significantly improve your site’s load times.

Decoupling the front end relieves it from the burden of shared processing power, resulting in faster site performance. Additionally, by using progressive web app (PWA) technology or static site generators like Gatsby, you can create lightning-fast sites that load almost instantly. These fast-loading sites enhance user experiences, reduce bounce rates, and boost search engine rankings, ultimately driving more revenue for your business.

Excellent WordPress Integration

If you already have a WordPress site or prefer using WordPress as your CMS, you’ll be pleased to know that BigCommerce offers excellent integration with WordPress. BigCommerce has developed a BigCommerce for WordPress (BC4WP) plugin that allows you to combine the features of the BigCommerce platform with the flexibility of the WordPress CMS.

With the BC4WP plugin, you can leverage BigCommerce’s ecommerce services while maintaining your WordPress site and using its CMS capabilities. This integration provides a seamless experience for managing your catalog, orders, and other ecommerce functions within the familiar WordPress environment. Whether you’re migrating from WooCommerce or looking to enhance your existing WordPress site, BigCommerce’s integration with WordPress offers a powerful solution for headless commerce.

Manage Multiple Storefronts and Channels

Managing inventory, sales, and other ecommerce functions can be complex for brands with multiple storefronts or channels. BigCommerce’s multi-storefront capabilities make it easy to manage numerous storefronts and channels from a single dashboard. This centralized view allows you to monitor sales, inventory levels, and customer data across all your storefronts, simplifying operations and reducing manual tasks.

Going headless with BigCommerce enables you to create rich and super-fast shopping experiences across all your storefronts. Whether it’s different versions for different regions, sub-brands, or specialized customer journeys, you can tailor each storefront to meet the unique needs of your target audience. This level of control and flexibility allows you to deliver personalized experiences and optimize conversions for each channel, ultimately driving growth for your business.

Faster Testing for Better Marketing Optimization

In the competitive ecommerce landscape, continuous testing and optimization are crucial to staying ahead of the competition. However, conducting tests on different customer segments can take time and effort with traditional ecommerce platforms. Making changes to the frontend often requires the involvement of backend developers, leading to longer turnaround times.

With headless BigCommerce, you can separate the frontend layer from the backend, allowing marketers and designers to test and iterate quickly without relying on backend developers. This faster testing and optimization process enables you to make data-driven decisions, implement changes more efficiently, and improve marketing performance. Whether it’s A/B testing, personalization, or implementing new marketing strategies, the decoupled nature of headless commerce empowers your marketing team to drive growth and optimize conversions more effectively.

FAQs about Headless BigCommerce

Is BigCommerce Headless?

Yes, BigCommerce is a fully capable headless ecommerce platform. With its comprehensive suite of APIs, BigCommerce allows brands to decouple the frontend and backend, giving them the flexibility to choose the best frontend technology or CMS for their online store.

What Should You Know Before Pursuing a Headless BigCommerce Build?

Before embarking on a headless BigCommerce build, it’s essential to understand your business goals and the specific challenges headless commerce can solve for your brand. Work closely with different areas of your business to identify the benefits of a headless site, estimate the financial impact, and justify the initial investment. You can ensure a successful implementation by aligning your headless commerce strategy with your overall business objectives.

Is BigCommerce a Headless CMS?

BigCommerce offers a CMS as part of its ecommerce platform, but it is not a headless CMS in the traditional sense. However, BigCommerce can integrate with a wide range of third-party CMS options, including WordPress, allowing you to leverage the CMS of your choice alongside BigCommerce’s ecommerce services.

Can You Use a CMS of Your Choice?

Yes, one of the advantages of going headless with BigCommerce is the ability to use the CMS of your choice. Whether you prefer WordPress, Prismic, Contentful, or other CMS options, BigCommerce provides the necessary integrations to connect your chosen CMS with its backend ecommerce services. This flexibility allows you to leverage the CMS that best suits your content management needs.

Does BigCommerce Integrate with WordPress?

Yes, BigCommerce has developed a BigCommerce for WordPress (BC4WP) plugin that allows you to integrate BigCommerce’s ecommerce services with your WordPress site. This integration provides a seamless experience for managing your catalog, orders, and other ecommerce functions within the WordPress CMS.

Is WordPress a Good Option for a Headless BigCommerce CMS?

While WordPress can be used as a headless CMS in conjunction with BigCommerce, some brands may have better options. While WordPress offers a range of features and integrations, it may introduce additional complexity and security concerns to your tech stack. Consider evaluating other headless CMS options that can be externally managed without compromising functionality or security.

By understanding the answers to these common FAQs, you can make informed decisions when implementing headless commerce with BigCommerce and choose the approach that best aligns with your business goals.

Moving Forward

By implementing headless commerce with BigCommerce, you can unlock a world of possibilities and take your online store to new heights.

Headless commerce is about flexibility, customization, and delivering unforgettable customer experiences. By combining the powerful backend services of BigCommerce with the frontend technology of your choice, you can create a truly unique and high-performing ecommerce store that stands out in the crowded online marketplace. Our development team at MageMontreal is ready to help you implement your headless storefront. Contact us today.

So, embrace the power of headless commerce and take your BigCommerce store to new heights. Your customers will thank you, and your business will thrive in the digital age.

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