The internet provides a wealth of opportunities for businesses and consumers alike. There is nothing like having the ability to visit stores, discover new products, and compare prices right from the comfort of your own home. With today’s stumbling economy and fuel prices at an all time high, shopping online beats out traditional brick-and-mortar shopping. Indeed, the internet is a shopper’s dream come true and a potential gold mine for the e-commerce business owner. Listing and selling your products or services online is all made easy with a program known as the shopping cart.
Similar to the big basket on wheels that accompanies you throughout the store, the online shopping cart allows internet users to select their items, take them to checkout, and make a purchase. Just like in the grocery store, they can pick a few items, keep them organized, and put them back if they change their minds. After they are done shopping, the customer can view all of their items, choose a shipping rate and checkout from there. The shopping cart offers a level of convenience neither the consumer nor business owner can experience with offline commerce.
How Important is Your Shopping Cart?
It doesn’t matter what business you’re in; after hopping online, you will find that the competition is heavy with several companies trying to one-up each other. Without a sound strategy and the proper tools to back it up, you’re liable to get swallowed in the world of e-commerce and forgotten as quickly as you came. While attaining success entails various aspects, your products don’t stand a chance without a shopping cart.
The shopping cart is an absolute must in e-commerce, as it offers numerous benefits to power your business. One of its greatest benefits is all the customizable features, enabling the program to be set up to the meet the needs of you and your customers. Whether it’s something as simple organizing your products in a catalogue or choosing how payments will be processed, the shopping cart grants complete authority over your online store.
Most shopping cart software is simple to set up and even easier for customers to use. The process is automated, and thus, it handles all the important details, such as calculating totals, factoring in shipping fees, and allowing instant updates to be made with a simple click. Borrowing a real world shopping concept, the shopping cart has made the experience even more fulfilling for the customer, and it allows the business to make easy sales.
Even though you might shut down the home office at a certain time every day, your e-commerce business never has to close, as the shopping cart is always available. The internet is the network that never sleeps, and there are always millions of people surfing online. By having a shopping cart, consumers in different time zones can access your business at any time and purchase whatever they want. When purchases are made, the program will send notification via email, and from there, you can take the appropriate action. Whether you’re enjoying a meal, walking the dog or sleeping, your business can still thrive thanks to the shopping cart.
Multiple Shipping Options
The best thing about e-commerce is having the power to run the store your way. You can create a greater presence by giving your customers some flexibility with their shipping options.
Some may want their products right away with next day delivery, while others might be fine with the standard 3 to 5 day delivery.
Custom configurations allow the shopping cart to calculate shipping according to weight, destination or price and can generate tax rates by state, zip code or country. Shipping rates can be changed at any time and easily adjusted to reflect any discount sales you may be running.
Multiple Payment Options
Aside from giving your customers the option of how their items are shipped, the shopping cart also gives them flexibility with payment methods as well. With a payment gateway and merchant account, you can accept payments in various ways, including a number of different credit cards and eChecks. Accepting and processing payments on your site is made easy with services such as PayPal, which ensures that the transactions of your customers are secure. Providing customers with a variety of ways to make payments gives your business a huge advantage.
Let’s be honest; if a customer doesn’t enjoy their shopping experience, they probably will not spend any money and are liable to never return to that store. People want to shop in an environment where they can pick out the items they want and buy them with as few hassles as possible. In the world of e-commerce, the shopping cart is an essential tool. Although it’s a very simple concept, this solution can pave the way for your success online. There is much more to running your business, but a good shopping cart will increase the likelihood of satisfied customers coming back.