How We Chose the Best Shopping Cart SoftwareShopping cart software is a necessity for any business that sells products online. It allows customers to browse, purchase, and pay for products directly through your website. It also allows them to check where their package is once the order ships. With the number of selections to choose from, it can be difficult to determine which one is the best choice for your organization. We evaluated the most important features of each and chose the top 15 products.
Customer ExperienceYour shopping cart software should be user-friendly to enhance your customers’ experience. Customers should be able to add multiple products quickly to their cart at once, and you need a simple one-page checkout that speeds up the process and reduces frustration. Customers should have the ability to read and leave reviews on products to make it easier to make purchasing decisions on purchases. Order tracking also allows customers to check the status of their order at any time.
Abandoned Cart SaverThe abandoned cart saver sends a reminder email to customers who start an order but leave before finalizing the transaction. Studies have shown that nearly half of all abandoned cart saver emails are opened, which makes them an excellent sales recovery tactic.
What Is Shopping Cart Software?
Shopping cart software is a system that allows online stores to facilitate purchases over the internet. The software makes it possible for a retailer to display products, manage an online store, and complete a sale.
There are several types of shopping cart software available, which include add-ons, full shopping cart platforms, simple integrations, licensed carts, and hosted carts:
- Add-ons let you add a cart to an existing website.
- Full shopping carts are complete sites that are built from the ground up and offer everything you need to run a store, including blogs and static pages.
- Simple integrations are for sites that only have a few products to sell.
- Licensed carts are where a business owns the rights to their shopping cart and the site is fully customizable. The customer purchases the software program, downloads it, and runs it on their own. This option requires more technical expertise and is generally a good idea for larger retailers like big-box chains.
- Hosted carts are those run by third-party providers and are an option for those with little or no technical expertise.
Benefits of Shopping Cart Software
For companies to remain competitive in today’s marketplace, they must follow trends, which means having an online presence. For brick-and-mortar stores, an online storefront lets customers shop from the comfort of home and can help increase the customer base. It can also allow a business to reduce overhead by operating completely online.
Shopping cart software also makes it possible for small businesses to reach customers in other locales or even globally without the added expense of franchising in other geographic locations. It makes it easier for customers to shop when it’s convenient for them.
Plus, shopping cart software allows business owners to track their most popular products and customer purchases easily so that they can monitor sales and judge what might interest individual customers in the future.
Must-Have Features of Shopping Cart Software
With hundreds of available shopping cart software programs to choose from, knowing which features are most important can mean the success of a site. Some of the best shopping cart software programs include the following features:
- Integrations with other software: A shopping cart that integrates with multiple software programs make it possible to organize and automate the site. It can also make it easier to track inventory, streamline shipping, send customer emails, and store customers’ information.
- Easy administration: For maximum productivity, shopping cart software should have a straightforward layout, templates, easy navigation, and adequate tools so that even someone with little programming experience can keep their cart updated.
- Excellent product displays: Large pictures, easy-to-read descriptions, and attached customer reviews improve a user’s experience and ensure repeat business.
- Simple checkout packs:Checkout should be fast and secure and should allow a customer to make a purchase using credit cards without going through a third-party application.
- Live chat: An integrated chat feature can allow customers to ask questions or get additional information and improve their overall experience.
- Abandoned cart saver: An abandoned cart saver makes it easy to reach customers who have shown an interest in your products but left the site before completing a sale.
- Analytics: Excellent shopping cart software should have built-in reporting that allows businesses to track every single detail of a transaction.
The Cost of Shopping Cart Software
Shopping cart software can range in cost from free for a basic add-on to $2,000 a month for a fully functioning e-commerce site. Cost can be a major factor, especially for startups that are on a tight budget, so it’s important to understand how this software is priced and what your company’s needs are.
Shopping cart software vendors may charge a one-time licensing fee or bill on a monthly basis. The cost may also vary according to how many products are in a store’s catalog or the volume of monthly sales. Large companies may benefit from owning a fully customizable licensed cart while a startup may prefer to pay by the number of products in its catalog. In general, costs increase as a business grows.
The cost of shopping cart software can also depend on the platform, including whether it’s web-based, downloadable to Windows or Mac, and if it’s compatible with mobile devices. Plug-ins can also add to the cost of shopping cart software. Many add-ons are completely free while others may require a setup and maintenance fee. The type of support provided by a shopping cart software vendor is also a factor in the overall cost.