Top shopping cart features for today's ecommerce operators

Convenience for customers is the foundation and lifeblood of ecommerce.  Without convenience, an ecommerce site is destined to become an online graveyard.  Convenience should be the ecommerce operator’s number one concern, particularly when it comes to the shopping cart function which manages payments, inventory, site search, product reviews, wish lists, order tracking and more.  An inconvenience in any of these functions could render your site obsolete and seriously harm your profits.

Let’s discuss the top considerations to take when you’re evaluating must-have features for your shopping cart.

  1. 1. Flexible payment options:

    Consumers want choices.  Most online shoppers use credit cards to make purchases, but it’s crucial to offer alternatives as well.  Consider alternative ecommerce payment providers like PayPal, Amazon Payments®, and Google Wallet®. 
  2. 2. Robust site search:

    Customers need to be able to find what they’re looking for quickly. If they cannot find their item within a couple of clicks, they’re likely to move onto another site.  Make sure you can index your items or services in multiple ways to facilitate accurate searching. Your inventory should interact with your search function to ensure customers see what’s available in real time.
  3. 3. Express checkout:

    No one likes to wait.  In person, or online.  Keep customers moving forward toward the final purchase with an easy to use, streamlined checkout process. Having customers create a profile to check out can offer benefits as far as tracking customer data and capturing email addresses for promotional purposes, but it’s a good idea to also offer an express checkout for customers who don’t want to create an account.     
  4. 4. Order tracking:

    Customers want to be able to track their packages and be informed of delivery dates without jumping through hoops.  Enable customers to sign up for automated shipping notifications so they’ll know when their order has been placed and shipped.  
  5. 5. Payment security:

    The average consumer is very aware of the risks involved with using a credit card online.  A built in SSL data encryption feature is a must have for every ecommerce site.  Without it you risk losing business, and worse, a data breach replete with fines, penalties, and a damaged business reputation.