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Shopping Cart Software Options and Features

There are many choices when it comes to shopping cart software or services, but it's very difficult to know which one to use until after you've committed and spent a lot of time and effort setting up and working with your ecommerce site. Unfortunately, many people make the wrong choice and we hear horror stories fairly frequently, especially about ecommerce/shopping cart services that went out of business and left their customers without working websites, software written in ways that leave them virtually unsupportable, and services that fail regularly and provide inadequate support to enable customers to run a business.

In the past 12 years we've used many different services and software applications to set up ecommerce websites, most of them good to excellent. A few have gone out of business and many have been surpassed by more recent generations of database-driven applications, especially utilizing an open source programming language called PHP and an open source database called MySQL.

While we continue to recommend different solutions for different customers, one particular product stands out as an outstanding choice for many of our customers. It's a PHP/MySQL application that can be installed on nearly any shared hosting system, does an excellent job in terms of presentation, ease of use, and features, and, since it's written in a common language, it can be customized readily by programmers who are readily available. Normally this will never be needed, but it's great insurance in the long run.

Following is a list of features and capabilities to give you an idea of what can be done with reliable software and at a highly affordable cost:

No programming required
Complete and ready-to-run e-commerce storefront software
MySQL, PostgreSQL, ODBC, DB2 support
97% open source PHP code
Works on Windows, UNIX, Linux, FreeBSD, MacOS
User friendly storefront
Easy to use web-based administrative panel
Multiple languages support
Multiple currency support
SEO facilities
Secure facilities
E commerce features
Integrated Content Management System (CMS)
Integrated manual system
System's upgrade option
System support

Products and Categories
Unlimited number of products
Unlimited number of categories and subcategories, nested as many levels deep as you like
Each product can be placed to an unlimited number of categories
Customizable list and details pages layouts
Ability to change category order
Ability to change product order
Enable/disable products
Import/export of categories from/to CSV files
Import/export of products from/to CSV files, possibility to export only filtered products
Google Base Exporting Feature
Moderated product reviews and ratings
Products types, default options and specification groups
Ability to duplicate products with the same characteristics
Related products/accessories and cross selling
Downloadable product releases
Ability to use predefined serial numbers for downloadable products
Products comparison
Ability to show product only for selected languages
List price markdowns: list price (listed MSRP) and current price (your price)
Product full/short HTML/plain text description
META keywords and description for each product and category
Ability to add product to special offer section on the main page
Main product images in four sizes (tiny, small, big and super sized)
Unlimited number of product images
Customizable product appearance
Products can be shown to all/logged/non logged customers
Prices can be shown with/without taxes or both with and without taxes at the same time
Products predefined prices
Tax exemption of products
Can show product code on products list page, product details page, cart page, orders/checkout pages
Ability to hide 'Add to cart' button on products list or details pages
Ability to hide 'View cart' button on products list or details pages
Ability to hide 'Check out' button on products list or details pages
Ability to hide weight information on products details page
Product stock accounting
An option to reserve/release stock levels when status changed
Ability to hide or disable off limits products
Support for non tangible down-loadable products with activation options
Affiliate programs with direct links
Product handling (shipping freight) charges
Customizable shipping modules and methods
Real time shipping quotes with major shipping companies (UPS, USPS, FedEx and CanadaPost)
Discount coupons and gift certificates
Enable/disable discounts
Quantity based discounts
User friendly simple and advanced product search
'Tell a friend' option
Product report generation system
Email and SMS notification setting per product
Image resizing functionality
Test data population option
Default product image
Restricted delivery by countries
Percentage price for product options
Ability to import already uploaded files
Settings for Google Analytics
Affiliates Module
Merchant Module
Banned and allowed credit card numbers per payment gateway
Credit and Rewards functionalities support
Bonus Points Functionality
Watermarks support for products images
Wish-list functionality and possibility to create wish-list types
Dependable product options
Pre-order button
An option to select what columns to show on cart, orders, checkout and invoice pages
Subscription functionality
Ability to set order restrictions for total products cost and weight
Ability to automatically place zero orders without submitting payment details

Sales Orders
PHP based shopping cart
Different types of controls (label, listbox, textbox etc.)
Adjustable settings for adding product process
Order maintenance system
Online orders tracking
All orders are stored in the database
Export/import of all/newest orders
Comprehensive orders search engine (with numerous search filters)
Orders email notifications for administrator and customer
A three step checkout
Ability to support different payment systems
Fully customizable order profile, payment details, final checkout and confirmation pages
Ability to use SSL on order profile and payment details pages
Ability to use custom fields
Adjustable order statuses
E mail notification for user if status is applied
Ability to use special tags in email body and email subject
Customizable printable packing slips in two formats: HTML and PDF
Customizable printable invoices in two formats: HTML and PDF
Tax rate system based on product types
Comprehensive orders statistics
Comprehensive orders report system
Call center module
Recurring Payments
Reports for tracking visits
Save/retrieve cart functionality
Option to prevent customers from repurchasing the same products within a specified period of time
Possibility to use product and manufacturer codes to show their barcodes on packing slips

Supported payment systems
Google Checkout API
PayPal Pro (Express Checkout)
PayPal Pro (Direct API)
VeriSign PayFlow Link
Authorize.Net SIM
and 44 others...

CMS (user updateable content)
Fully customizable appearance of the whole storefront
META data and HTML description of the main page
Nine basic layout schemes
Full CMS support on all pages
Filtering system
Customizable listing and details pages
Customizable site navigation
Ability to post articles
Six default articles categories: News, Links, FAQ, Image Gallery, Events, Knowledge Base
Unlimited number of custom articles categories
Enable/disable category
Unlimited number of articles
Moderated articles reviews
RSS feed support
META data for each category
Small and full sized images for each category
Ability to set up templates and fields properties
Customizable articles statuses
File manager
Ability to upload zip files
Single/multiple choice(s) opinion polls
Customizable custom pages
META data for each custom page
Custom page can be opened in the main window or in a pop-up window
Ability to create new custom pages
Ability to create custom blocks
Banners Management
Related products functionality for articles and articles categories
A new Layouts block which enables your customers to switch among different active templates
A secondary menu can be now displayed under the top header menu
Ability to specify the depth level of visible menu items in navigation menus on each page separately
Ability to show text and images for top menu links

Customers' Accounts
Comprehensive customers support system
Customers' personal accounts
Ability to use SSL on customer's account page
Comprehensive customers search engine
Full registration statistics
Customers can/cannot order without registration
Import/export customers
Customer types
Customer discount types
Customer's personal/delivery information
Customer's image support
E mail notifications for administrator and customer
Ability to use special tags in email body and email subject
'Forgotten password' option
Two kinds of passwords: non encrypted and MD 5 encrypted
Tax free option per customer or a group
Possibility to upload or specify customers e mails for sending newsletter
Reminder functionality for site customers
Set birthday greeting messages to customers

System Administration
Secure password protected access
Unlimited number of administrators
Ability to use personal signature
Unlimited number of privilege groups with different permissions
Ability to assign privileges to another group
Newsletters management system
Static tables
Option to use SSL for administrators login
Personal bookmarks for administrators
SMTP and PGP encryption support
Database Management
SEO Friendly URLs functionality and possibility to create custom friendly URLs
Black IP list

Integrated Customer Support System (Optional HelpDesk)
Integrated multi level moderated forum (Optional Forum)
Integrated bulletin board (Optional Classified ads)


Contact Us to Discuss Your Needs

If you would like to discuss your ecommerce needs further, please contact us for a free initial consultation. We can help to explain the various options and considerations, and we can suggest the most appropriate solutions for business and your website.


We guarantee the lowest prices in the Bay Area for quality web design, ecommerce, and search engine optimization services.

Call or email us today for a free quote or just to ask us any questions you have on your mind. We're happy to help in any way we can, whether you ever become a customer or not.

Give us a call today and let us show you how friendly and helpful a web design company can be!  (888) 283-8829

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