Home Forums Starting your journey I need a shopping cart for my web page

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  • #970477
    Carodi
    Member
    • Total posts: 11

    Hi

    After selling on ebay for a while now, I’m sick of their fees and have decided to start an online store. I have set up my web page and have incorporated Paypal ‘add to cart’ buttons but realise that I need a shopping cart to pull it all together.
    Can anyone recommend a cheap(ish) and easy-to-use cart or is there another solution?

    Thanks
    Di

    #1044404
    Alan Maddick
    Member
    • Total posts: 410

    I can reccomend a very strong and commercial shopping cart solution, not what i would consider cheap but very good. e-mail me alan@yoursbw.com and i will forward through details (don’t want to put on here without permission)

    #1044405
    NathanC
    Member
    • Total posts: 16

    Hi Carodi,

    It really depends on your specific needs. The bulk of your initial investment in a shopping cart is the visual design.

    A custom visual design varies widely but can cost anywhere from 2k – 20k and up. If you can compromise on the design a little – i.e accept a generic design rather than a custom design then your initial price will reduce significantly since most carts come with a range of templates you can use right away.

    Another decision is whether you wish to host your shopping cart on your own website hosting – or whether you’d prefer to have it hosted by a provider.

    There are fors and againsts for each.

    If you host your own shopping cart then you have greater control over it for example it is easier to have the design and functionality customized. But you are responsible for your own maintenance, backups and also PCI DSS compliance (which is an important consideration).

    X-Cart is a good self hosted shopping cart solution. There are also a number of high quality free carts available inc Magento and OS Commerce.

    If you choose a hosted service then the provider is responsible for all the maintenance and compliance stuff leaving you to focus on selling. The down sides are that you’re up for a monthly fee – and also if you want any special customisations then you’re usually out of luck.

    Big Commerce is a good option for self hosting.

    PayPal is a good way to get started but you’ll likely grow out of it fairly quickly.

    #1044406
    RichardF
    Member
    • Total posts: 13

    I agree with Nathan on this one. If you are looking for a hosted solution then BigCommerce is a good option. I have 2 websites – one sells gym equipment, and the other one sells kettlebells. The gym equipment site uses Oscommerce, which is very good, and there is a lot of good support. However, for my kettlebell site i tried something a little different and wanted a hosted site. i looked around for a bit and found BigCommerce. You even get a 15 free trial. It is quite simple to use.

    Richard

    #1044407
    Stuart B
    Member
    • Total posts: 1,073

    Yeh there’s a lot of options out there. You should be aware though that generally shopping cart solutions will have fees along the way in the form of transaction fees from the bank, or whoever is handling the secure payment stuff etc. They generally have fees that get added on to each transaction.

    We use a particular solution for all our shopping carts (which I don’t want to give away online, you can call me if you want some info on it) which is quite affordable, however it’s true that a lot of the cost involved is customising it to look decent. Otherwise you just end up with a cheap shopping cart that looks crap.

    #1044408
    The Hobbit
    Member
    • Total posts: 308

    Virtue Mart is a very good shopping cart.

    #1044409
    Carodi
    Member
    • Total posts: 11

    Thanks everyone for your suggestions. Really appreciate it!
    I think I’ll go with a hosted service – I had a look at BigCommerce (thanks RichardF) and it looks easy to use and reasonably priced, which is what I was looking for and I can buy my SSL certificate through them. Too easy.
    Once again, thanks so much.

    Di

    #1044410
    RichardF
    Member
    • Total posts: 13

    You will be happy with BigCommerce. I will be interested to see your site when it is up and running.

    Richard

    Carodi, post: 54453 wrote:
    Thanks everyone for your suggestions. Really appreciate it!
    I think I’ll go with a hosted service – I had a look at BigCommerce (thanks RichardF) and it looks easy to use and reasonably priced, which is what I was looking for and I can buy my SSL certificate through them. Too easy.
    Once again, thanks so much.

    Di

    #1044411
    relentless
    Member
    • Total posts: 137

    whatever you do don’t go for Magento. Highly powerful yes but also highly slow as it uses tons of computer resources making the website slow for visitors so you need to invest alot of money into a powerful server which for startups on low budgets is not a good option. Also customizing and upgrading is a nightmare as it uses overly complex code.

    I’ll be using Open Cart on the next ecommerce project it’s newer than OS commerce and well supported too.

    #1044412
    Carodi
    Member
    • Total posts: 11
    RichardF, post: 54529 wrote:
    You will be happy with BigCommerce. I will be interested to see your site when it is up and running.

    Richard

    I’ll post a link when I’m up and running – just have to get rid of the kids for a couple of days so I can spend some quality time working on it!

    Di

    #1044413
    Carodi
    Member
    • Total posts: 11
    Carodi, post: 54571 wrote:
    I’ll post a link when I’m up and running – just have to get rid of the kids for a couple of days so I can spend some quality time working on it!

    Di

    Hey Richard F
    I’m just working on my online store, and have come to a stop at the checkout settings page. Not quite sure what to do here, what is a merchant account, do I need one and where do I get one? The whole ‘payment gateway’ stuff confuses me a bit.
    Can you tell me what you use?
    Look forward to hearing from you.
    Di

    #1044414
    RichardF
    Member
    • Total posts: 13

    I’ll PM you.

    Richard

    Carodi, post: 55032 wrote:
    Hey Richard F
    I’m just working on my online store, and have come to a stop at the checkout settings page. Not quite sure what to do here, what is a merchant account, do I need one and where do I get one? The whole ‘payment gateway’ stuff confuses me a bit.
    Can you tell me what you use?
    Look forward to hearing from you.
    Di
    #1044415
    Pixelo
    Member
    • Total posts: 14

    This one has gotten rave reviews, and it’s pretty cheap:
    http://www.bigcommerce.com/

    #1044416
    Carodi
    Member
    • Total posts: 11

    Finished the online store. Take a look: –

    http://www.carodisclothingcloset.mybigcommerce.com

    HUGE THANK YOU to Richard F

    Let me know if anyone thinks it needs a tweak.

    Di

    #1044417
    RichardF
    Member
    • Total posts: 13

    See, BigCommerce is quite easy to use to set up a store, isn’t it. Just a couple of things to consider:
    1 – i would put in the logo of your payment gateway (in your case PayPal) in either the left or right column (see my site – kettlebells). I think it is important for a customer to know straight away how they will be paying for their goods. And PayPal has a great reputation – so you should promote that.
    2 – you need to add some text to your front page. This is very important for 2 reasons. 1. you need to tell your prospective customers what your shop is all about. you want them to feel comfortable and confident in your store. 2. it is important for Search Engine Optimisation. When google scans your site they will need to find keywords that define and describe what your shop is about – that is one way to rank in google search results.
    3 – I’m sure you know this, but you will need to register your own domain name.

    i will PM you with a bit more info on each of these points i have mentioned above.

    Richard

    Carodi, post: 55184 wrote:
    Finished the online store. Take a look: –

    http://www.carodisclothingcloset.mybigcommerce.com

    HUGE THANK YOU to Richard F

    Let me know if anyone thinks it needs a tweak.

    Di

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