If you run an ecommerce Web site, you will need a shopping cart. This is a program that allows visitors to your business Web site to select items for purchase. It also provides access to check out functions, where the customer can pay for the items, as well as arrange shipping. A shopping cart is necessity if you want to run a successful business Web site.
While some shopping carts can get pricey, the good news is that there are plenty of shopping cart applications that are available for free. This can help you get the benefits of providing a service or product for customers, and being paid for it, without having to worry about paying for your shopping cart program. However, it is important to realize that your shopping cart program does not usually include your merchant account or payment gateway. You will have to arrange those separately, and possibly pay for them.
cPanel free shopping carts
One of the best ways to administer your ecommerce Web site is to use cPanel. This is a control panel application that allows you to control aspects of your Web site, including appearance and back end functions. It is a good idea to have shopping carts that are compatible with cPanel. The good news is that there are two free shopping carts made for cPanel:
While OS Commerce is often considered the better program all around, Agora can be easily and flexibly programmed by those who known html and Perl. OS Commerce is pretty much point and click, which is helpful for those who are less tech-savvy than others.
Some of the best Web hosts use cPanel, including BlueHost, HostMonster and LunarPages. If you plan to do your hosting with one of those sites, you can get a free cPanel shopping cart if you don’t want to pay for an inclusive ecommerce hosting package. It is worth noting that many Web hosting companies offer ecommerce Web hosting packages that include shopping carts. However, an ecommerce package generally costs more.
Other free shopping carts
There are other free shopping carts as well. Some of them are even compatible with cPanel. These free shopping carts include:
- Zen Cart
- Precision Cart
You should realize that many free shopping carts also come with paid upgrades. So you can get additionally features if you are willing to pay for them. Many free shopping carts limit the number of items you can have in your catalog, and offer limited shipping and tax options. Most free shopping carts are rather basic.
In the end, you need to consider your needs. Find out whether the programming for your shopping cart matches your platform. You don’t want to be trying to use Perl if only PHP can be used. Check to make sure that the shopping cart is compatible with your hosting platform. The good news is that most free shopping carts are open source applications, and many are compatible with either Linux hosting or Windows hosting.