The Advantages of an Open Source eCommerce Website / Shopping Cart

Author Justin Smith
by Justin Smith, CEO

When talking with potential clients about eCommerce web design services the topic of open source code often comes up.

These days there are so many different options, from open source eCommerce website platforms to self-hosted eCommerce platforms. With the popularity of hosted platforms, such as Shopify, it gets you thinking, "what are the advantages of an open source eCommerce platform?"

What is an Open Source eCommerce Platform?

Open source means you have full access to the code that runs the website. Typically you own the code, or pay a license for using the code, and any modifications to that code can be made by you or your eCommerce developer. Hosted solutions do not give you access to the code, usually only access to make template and design changes. This can be limiting if you're looking to build a highly customized or enterprise eCommerce website.

Custom eCommerce Design & Unique Layouts

When purchasing a shopping cart you’re often going to run into issues with your website looking like 100 other sites (if not thousands). This image is probably not what you’re looking for in a strong brand and will not place your company where you’d like to be. A customized solution will allow you (and us) to be creative in the way the website looks and is branded creating a customized shopping experience.

Flexibility of Functionality

Adding functionality is a given. You’ll need to at some point. Whether you need to now or not isn't always the question, but what happen when you outgrow your eCommerce cart? Who is going to make modification for you? If you have a custom cart you’ll always have developers available, whether us or another company, that can take over your site and add additional functionality.

Search Engine Marketing & Optimization

Many eCommerce shopping carts really lack on the search engine marketing side, or they have to many clients selling the same items. What happens is 50 websites sell the same items, using the same cart and in return all end up with pretty much the same website. Google doesn't like this. The search engines look to see how unique you are and how you stand out. If you're just like everyone else, you won’t stand out at all. Also, custom designing the site allows us to constantly use the latest in web code trends and the latest SEO techniques. On each project we strive to implement the latest and greatest!

Controlling Your Destiny

Owning your code is huge! With many shopping cart systems you will not own the code, meaning if you’d like to move your shopping cart to another developer or hosting plan, you do not have access. It’s like renting code. You’re stuck with them!

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