Posts Tagged "Magento"

Top 5 Ecommerce Website Systems

One of the biggest reasons you might want to get your own web space is for the promise of ecommerce. Ecommerce systems have allowed niche shops to reach wider customer bases than ever before. For more general mass-market businesses, they’ve created enormous success stories by connecting merchants directly to consumers worldwide. In this article, we examine the best ecommerce website systems available right now.

Note: Before you can start using any of these ecommerce systems, you need a web host to install it on. Check out this list of established and reliable web hosts that provide the necessary technical platform for an ecommerce system.


Magento is an open-source shopping cart application, written in PHP and developed by Magento, Inc. It provides you and your users with a stable platform and a robust feature set, including a product search engine, an easy-to-use category system, and a built-in search engine optimization toolkit.

Magento is a scalable solution, one that you can adapt to your needs; the Magento Community Edition is free and suitable for small businesses, while the more expensive Go and enterprise editions provide you with access to Magento’s tech support as well as a few more features that’ll be invaluable in managing a large business storefront.

Modest system requirements mean that even if you’re on a tight budget, your web space should be able to handle Magento. The Go version is hosted, and doesn’t even need independent web space.


nopCommerce is another open-source shopping cart option. Generally, most of the worthwhile options will be open-source; being able to adjust the code to fit your needs is very useful.

nopCommerce  is written in ASP.NET, and is one of a fairly small number of options if your web space is on a Windows server. The feature set is sound, providing full support for even more esoteric things like kits of separate products.

nopCommerce’s full feature set is free; the only catch is that you have to keep a small copyright notice on each page of your site. You can eliminate even that for a one-time payment of $50.


Open-source and written in PHP, PrestaShop provides a fantastic plug-in system alongside a robust overall feature set. The catalog is very manageable, and the SEO features help to get your site new customers; the aforementioned plug-in system lets a large number of community plug-ins patch up any sore spots in the feature set.

PrestaShop has a lot of great features; you can even sell downloadable products completely out of the box. Furthermore, PrestaShop is multiplatform and runs on a wide variety of server software.


Like PrestaShop, osCommerce is an open-source PHP solution. It’s basic, but it does the job, providing your site with a simple and effective shopping system. The community add-ons are what make osCommerce worth your while, augmenting its core feature set with more uncommon or region-specific elements.

osCommerce can be installed in one click on certain web hosts, such as Just Host.

Zen Cart

A fork of the osCommerce project, Zen Cart has a template system which allows it to do a bit more out of the box than its metaphorical parent; it’s also notable for a heavy emphasis on AJAX both in the shop and in the admin panel, giving nice “dynamic” qualities to pages.

The downside is that it’s not able to run on lower-end hardware like osCommerce. The plug-in system is just as solid as that in PrestaShop or osCommerce; do note, however, that Zen Cart isn’t compatible with osCommerce plug-ins despite their shared lineage.

Zen Cart can be installed in one click on certain web hosts, such as Just Host.