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How to Set Up an Online Shopping Cart

You can expand your business by setting up an online shopping cart which will greatly increase the marketing potential of your products or services by making them globally reachable.

Choose cart provider

As a first step, you should sign up for an online shopping cart account with some of the big providers like DesignCart, for example. You may also choose a company like PayPal, Ecommerce, or another cart provider. If you already have a high volume of sales, you can purchase shopping cart software. You need to enter your company’s information, together with your bank account details so that the service deposits all transactions into the account. You have to also pick a user name and password. Write them down and keep in a safe place, just in case you forget them.

Configure settings

Having created an online shopping cart account, you have to now log in and configure your cart settings. The easiest way to do that is to install a special cookie that will be sent to you by the cart provider. Note that this cookie has nothing in common with the cookies you clean with Spybot or some other malicious software removal tool. Therefore, it will not compromise your privacy or security in any way. Most online shopping cart providers have a privacy statement, where they vow not to keep a record of your browsing history or use cookies to collect personal information. In case your system does not support cookies, some providers will use your IP address for reference when processing your order.

Customizing your online shopping cart

Before you start configuring your cart’s settings, take into consideration the fact that most of these have quite useful defaults. This is especially important for inexperienced internet users. The cart supplier should have supplied you with a manual and user information that explain the functioning of the shopping cart. If still unsure of how to proceed, call the company and ask for assistance.

Once you get some experience, you may customize your cart according to your personal preferences. Most shopping cart providers have installed a ‘preview cart’ button, to let the users see how their cart will look like and decide if its appearance matches their expectations.

Test HTML page

Having configured the basic setting of your shopping cart, you should now set up a test HTML page and upload it on your site. For a start, you can set up just one button and adjust it according to your preferences.

You can use the copy and paste option and add the button information onto your site. Alternatively, you can add a hyperlink leading to the cart. After you upload the website to the server, you are almost done.

Add-to-cart button

Next, you have to use the button-building tool to create an add-to-cart button: it will help visitors select the products they want to buy. It is equally important to accurately calculate your shipping costs and list them clearly on your website. Make sure shipping prices invariably show up when you click the ‘check out’ button. Update items and prices on the website of the cart service or by using the software of your cart. The latter can be updated anytime.

View-cart button

Finally, you can create a ‘view-cart’ button which will allow your customers to see what they’ve put in their online shopping cart and how much it will cost them. The ‘check-out’ button will take them to the payment processing page. Finally, you can change layouts and colors with some shopping carts. Experiment and make your shopping basket look attractive to potential customers.