I looked at a few options to get my own eCommerce site up and running (Shopify, etc), but everything was really out of my price range (for the volumes I’m doing). There are some open source projects that look interesting, but nothing that seemed a clear winner. For my needs, I just wanted something simple, fast, and secure. Static assets with all the logic client-side gives me that.
Static assets are served faster than anything server-side-dynamic, and they require less memory (from the server). Ultimately, the whole site could be thrown on a CDN backed by S3, and I wouldn’t have to manage hosting at all. Because I control the code and the hosting, I have a ton of flexibility for future goals, too (I have several ideas on my TODO list).
I looked at Jekyll (a similar tool for generating static blogs) for this. I have used Jekyll for non-blog sites before, but in this case I found myself not only wanting to skip the blog-specific features, but also add in eCommerce-specific features. I pretty quickly decided that Jekyll wasn’t the right tool for this, so I built Small Store. It takes a list of products and uses a template to generate product pages. It’s very much a work-in-progress, and needs a lot of cleaning up (and additional features). I’ve tried to pull everything specific to my site into config/ but I’m sure I’ve missed some things. Feel free to check it out if it might match your needs.