An online shopping cart is a necessity for any successful web based business site. Most sites, particularly those of small and average size businesses, rely on outside services to host their shopping carts: The software is simply too intricate, and the program’s needs too many, for each business to create their own cart from scratch. As the saying goes, there is no need to reinvent the wheel.

There are many different services available, each of which offers several different plans to choose from. Here are a few features to see when determining whether or not this service is right for your business.

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Part sign-In: These days, customers expect some sort of members system where they can sign in, store billing information, and track orders. Customers especially appreciate not having to type their address and credit card information without fail, and being able to track their orders shop & ship helps by making customers have a sense of safety. Your shopping cart should also offer a password recovery system, so that a customer does not have to start another account in the event that they happen to forget their password.

Multiple payment options: Not each customer will want to pay the same way, so your service should make certain to offer multiple payment options. For example, you should make sure the system can handle the major credit cards: at least Visa and MasterCard, but you should also consider shopping carts that can process American Express and Discover, as well. Also, don’t forget about online payment systems such as PayPal. Many customers like being able to pay without giving out their bank or credit card information.

In the event that your product requires customers to pay in installments for example, monthly or yearly membership renewals, you should take a gander at software that can be set up to handle recurring billing automatically.

Tax and shipping calculation: In order to tell your customer the total cost and give checkout in real-time, your system will need to have the option to accurately calculate the appropriate taxes, as well as shipping and handling charges. A decent shopping cart program will allow you to enter several different tax options, depending on the customer’s billing address. Also, your service should have the option to calculate the shipping charges for the total order, based on either the dollar amount or the actual weight.

Discounts, coupons, and gift certificates: Coupons and discounts are great ways to increase sales, so you will want to make sure your ecommerce storefront software can handle these things. Gift certificates and gift cards can also boost business, so be sure yours has a way to allow customers to redeem them.

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