Shopping Cart Software
Shopping Cart Software

Shopping Cart Software for Your Online Business

Finding the proper shopping cart software for your home based business can be a difficult task. I had spent hundreds of hours talking to software vendors when I started my first online business. When starting an e-commerce site your shopping cart software is vital to your online business success.


The online shopping cart will take and process orders, help promote specials, allow for newsletter signup, track inventory data, integrates with your merchant account and calculates shipping charges and sales tax.   

Shopping Cart Software Questions:

  • Will the shopping cart software allow me to add my own designs or do I have to use the pre-made templates that come with the software?

  • How flexible are the templates? Can they be changed later on without affecting the website and orders?

  • Does it handle various shipping modules? Such as flat rate, charge by weight, UPS calculator or FedEx.

  • Can I add a shipping calculator up front for my customer or will they have to wait until check out before knowing what the cost of shipping is.

  • Will the shopping cart allow me to use coupons, gift certificates and special promotions?

  • Does it have a decent search engine so my customers can find their product?

  • What about being able to send my customers newsletters? Does it allow new customers to sign up for the newsletter?

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  • Does it have a module to send out the monthly newsletter? Can I use my own designs for the newsletter?

  • What gateway (merchant account link) does it link to? Remember your merchant account must work with the shopping cart. Can it also link to PayPal?

  • Do I have to buy it or can I lease it?

  • What about updates? Will the product be updated constantly and if so, will I receive the updates automatically?

  • Can I purchase other modules as I grow? If so how do I go about it?

  • How easy is the shopping cart software to add and remove products?

  • Can I change the way the products are laid out?

  • Does the software allow me to keep inventory?

  • What type of reports can I receive? Sales list by product, inventory, product lists, customer lists, affiliates and stats as well as traffic to the website are extremely important for your business.

  • Does the software have a module for affiliate signup and login?

  • Does the online shopping cart keep track of inventory? (This question is very important if you are planning on stocking inventory)

These questions will save you hundreds of hours of research and allow you to spend your valuable time working on your home based business. You may think that today you don’t need to have all the above items in your online shopping cart. That is fine, but as your online business grows you will need to be able to incorporate these items into your storefront as the need arises. You don’t want to be caught off guard believing that the shopping cart software can do all the above things and then find out that it can’t.

I have found in my experience that changing online shopping carts and a hosting provider midstream were very disruptive and extremely time consuming and costly. I recently found  Store Build it! and it is an incredible shopping cart. I wish I had found it many years ago!

There are different companies that offer free shopping cart software if you host with them. You may want to do some research on the web. Use the keywords Web hosting and you will find a slue of providers. Whether you are just starting out or a pro, I would suggest finding a host that may supply all your needs, the online shopping cart and the hosting all in one such as Site Build It!

 Shopping Cart Software


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