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The online shopping experience, so important to ecommerce on the Web, is directly affected by the ease with which Internet shoppers can select their items, keep track of their choices, and move to checkout in the transaction. Understanding how this key component in Internet selling is handled a significant factor in business success. In ecommerce, the electronic “basket” that is used by Web customers for this is commonly called a “shopping cart.” Choosing efficient shopping cart ecommerce software is essential for your business to succeed. In addition to appearing professional and being easy to use, it must offer security and safety to customers.

What is an Online Shopping Cart?
A shopping cart acts in the ecommerce store just like the one you use in the supermarket. It keeps track of customer purchases made in online shopping, storing their purchase information “on the fly” in a database. This is displayable to them and they can “put back” items or choose more products until they’re ready to ‘checkout’ or pay for them.

Getting Rid of the Squeaky Wheel
On the market there are approximately about 130 shopping cart ecommerce software programs. How do you choose which one is best for your business?
Here are some basics:

• Free or premium shopping carts. First and foremost nothing in life is ever really free so, so be leery of companies offering free shopping cart software.
• However, one widely used free ecommerce solution is PayPal. They can set up the shopping cart and paying point because you will be using their institution to collect your online payment, for which you will be charged per payment. The only drawback here is the customers must have a PayPal account in order to make purchases from your online store.
• Keep in mind that most of the selling/buying on the internet is done through impulse buying, so you may want to look into shopping cart ecommerce software that has a “suggest sell/cross selling” function. This feature “suggests” items that are relevant to and will enhance or add to the use of an already purchased item by your customer.
• Quantity discounts & online shopping coupons – we all love bargains and will pay an extra dollar if we can save a few. Also remember, when you offer discount coupons you ensure the return of your customer, even if they only revisit to claim his/her discount.
• Auto responders – this feature is one you should not miss. Customer service is something that a little of goes a long way and autoresponding to inquiries with a quick reply can improve your client follow-up.

These factors, and others, combined have helped the world of ecommerce application development develop software the way Internet merchants need it and continue to ensure them a successful and profitable future on the World Wide Web.

Money Well Spent On A Good Shopping Cart
A good turnkey ecommerce package covering the basics of a shopping cart ecommerce software setup will cost you about $500; after using it for a while, you can decide what features you may need to add as your Internet sales increase.

Online, you can look, research, and more importantly compare packages of shopping cart ecommerce software before you commit to one. The most important issue is, does it help your business run efficiently and in turn make your business more successful
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