Custom shopping cart systems can be a painful choice, budget-wise, for the ecommerce entrepreneur. It is hard to deny the beauty of a customized shopping cart, but the bill may leave you in tears. At least, that is what many entrepreneurs believe.
Many new entrepreneurs cringe when they hear the price tag of a bespoke custom shopping cart from their web design team, because costs can run up to thousands of dollars. But there are times when customizing your cart is the perfect choice -- not just for your business, but the perfect choice for your customers too.
1) Many professional web developers can develop a bespoke cart for your budget. Customized carts are often the fruit of a lot of labor because they require custom code. The professional web design team will study your products and create the type of cart that best fits your needs.
This can mean hours hunched over a computer, testing, tweaking and fixing a cart to your specifications. But what most entrepreneurs do not know is that many web developers are willing to work within your budget. If you are willing to give up a lot of frills (or add them on later), you may end up with a functional cart that is just perfect for what you need. For skeleton sites or new businesses, this can mean something as simple as text links.
Ask your team about the budget and how you can work around what you want and what the website really needs. Many web developers will be happy to help you develop open-source software to something more tailored for your site.
2) Bespoke carts are easier to customize and tweak later on. Having customized shopping cart software is a blessing for websites that have fragile identities because it is easier to tweak or fix them later on. It simply means fixing code or having your web developer dive back in for maintenance or updates.
For new entrepreneurs this can be good news because as your business grows, your shopping cart will grow with you. For veteran ecommerce websites, this can mean expanding the shopping cart as you acquire more business or add-ons to make the user experience better for your customer.
The downside to this is tweaking can cost you a little more, especially if your original contract does not contain any clauses for upgrades. In that case, make sure it is included in your package since you never know when you might be in need of it.
3) Customized shopping carts can be tailored to fit your needs. For many new entrepreneurs, half the frustration (and half the fun) is doing everything yourself. Investing in a customized shopping cart can mean you can tailor the software to meet not just your business needs, but to fit your personal working style. Shopping carts are not just about meeting the customer's needs, but also meeting your business needs.
The software can be tailored to send reports, totals or inventory at the end of the day. This automated reporting can be a timesaver, especially if you are at the stage where you still juggling most of the work. If you already have employees, this can help them focus on other areas, such as customer service or product acquisition.
4) It merges perfectly with the site. The problem with some open-source or pay-to-use software is they are often templates made for other, working ecommerce websites who may have different business models from your own. The other issue is that they can be difficult to personalize and a monthly subscription fee can add to your overhead costs.
When you work with a web design team who creates your website from scratch, a customized cart can be completely integrated into your site with no time or trouble because it was built for it. This means that the testing can be done while the site is being built, so you can avoid glitches or errors even before the site has been launched.
The shopping cart can also be tailored to match the look and feel of the site, as well as showcase your products in the best manner suited to them.
Before completely dismissing the notion, take the time to go over the pros and cons of a customized shopping cart. It may be the best business decision of your life.