One of the big trends in web and site-platforms in the past two to three years has been the integration of commerce capabilities. While WordPress has made real progress in this regard largely on the backs of third-party plugin and premium service providers, other platforms like Shopify and Squarespace, with commerce as part of their core offering, have ridden the wave of small and medium businesses increasingly turning online as a way to sell product.
Today’s announcement by Shopify illustrates how the rapid growth in small and medium online businesses has fueled the company’s own upward trajectory. They’ve reached one hundred thousand stores open, which is about 5x what the company’s total store count was just about two years ago. A hundred thousand stores, who are nearly all paying customers, means Shopify is becoming a seriously big player in online e-commerce. Consider that not only does each store owner pay monthly or annual fees for their store, but they are also hit with a transaction fee of up to 2% for each purchase made on their storefront.
This announcement comes on the same day that WordPress acquired Scrollkit. While Scrollkit isn’t a commerce play, I have no doubt that the company is increasingly looking to offer new features and appeal to user who are increasingly being attracted to the Squarespace and Shopify’s of the world.
Disclosure: Gigaom is venture funded by True Ventures, which is an investor in Automattic.