Find the best Shopping Cart Software
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STEP 1 OF 4
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Shopping cart software is useful for businesses that want to establish or expand their sales in the online space. In the absence of this software, customers may have to directly reach out to the seller via phone or email to place orders. For the seller, this lack could mean having to manually handle tasks such as processing payments or monitoring inventory, which is time-consuming and error-prone.
The software helps automate most of the related tasks to manage online sales efficiently.
It is important to note that shopping cart software is different from ecommerce software. The former is a niche tool primarily focused on online sales whereas the latter has a wider role in the online presence of a business.
In this buyers guide, we will understand the various features and benefits of shopping cart software.
Here's what we'll cover:
What is shopping cart software?
Shopping cart software is a tool that helps set up online stores and process payments for orders. It accelerates the checkout process for customers.
In its basic form, the software allows customers to browse products, add select products to the cart, and make a payment to purchase a product. More sophisticated tools may allow extensive customizations to the storefront or product catalog.
Common features of shopping cart software
The overall capabilities of shopping cart solutions vary by the vendor, however, there are some common features to look out for. Understanding these features is essential for selecting a competent product.
Abandoned cart saver
Display offers and targeted messages to shoppers who have abandoned their carts. The feature helps create, schedule, and allocate budget for follow up emails to such customers.
Organize products in various categories by adding details such as name, price, and keyword-driven descriptions. The feature also allows adding multimedia content such as images and videos to product profiles.
Accept payments made via credit/debit cards, e-wallets, or payment gateways.
Allow discount application to the whole website, specific category, or a selection of products. Define discount expiration date and maximum usage per coupon or user.
Track inventory in the warehouse and update product count when stock replenishes. Monitor the stock for each product and receive out-of-stock alerts.
What type of buyer are you?
There are two broad categories of shopping cart software buyers. Identifying the category you fall into will help you understand which features might be particularly relevant for you.
Small businesses: Small businesses usually have a limited budget and, in some cases, limited requirements. Although some providers offer a host of features for less, a basic pricing plan can meet essential requirements such as catalog and inventory management, abandoned cart saver, and online payments.
However, small businesses should look out for additional fees that vendors may charge in the form of transaction processing fees. Some vendors may require you to purchase the Secure Socket Layer certificate separately, which can cost up to $100 per year.
Midsize and large businesses: Midsize and large businesses often have large-scale and diverse operations. These businesses may look for a tool that, in addition to core features, supports customizations to the storefront and integrations with other tools.
A tool that integrates with customer relationship management (CRM), marketing automation, and point-of-sale solutions can be of great use for such businesses. Moreover, they can also look for customizations to categories, product description fields, inventory details, and HTML/CSS coding.
Benefits of shopping cart software
By now you likely understand the core offerings of shopping cart software and its buyer types. Now let’s look at some key benefits that will help you understand its impact on the business.
Simplified order tracking: Shopping cart software helps you stay on top of your orders. The tool notifies you when an order is placed. It also notifies you about, and in some cases adds, the information needed to process an order, such as shipping details and order numbers.
Improved purchasing experience: Support for online payment options and an updated product catalog help improve user experience. Online payment options provide customers the flexibility to make payment digitally using credit or debit cards. Whereas an updated catalog helps users view a well-organized list of products in stock.
Increased sales: The tool helps capture online shoppers and also helps tap into buyers living in distant states or countries. Whereas the ability to offer discount coupons offers an incentive to shoppers to purchase from your online store.
Key considerations for selecting a shopping cart software
As the last step to selecting your shopping cart software, you need to keep a few additional things in mind.
Deployment: The deployment options available will play a big role in shortlisting products. If you wish to avoid data storage and server maintenance costs, you should consider selecting a cloud-based shopping cart tool, as the vendors host and manage the solution. Whereas, if you wish to store your data within business premises, select on-premise software.
Unique requirements: Your unique business requirements will also help narrow down your product search. These requirements may include the need to integrate the data, resources, and operations of your physical store with your shopping cart tool. Further, you may need to integrate the tool with your email marketing software or financial management system.
Note: The applications selected in this article are examples to show a feature in context and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations. They have been obtained from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.