The Top 10 Best Online Shopping Carts For Merchants (And How To Choose The Right One) - Small Shopping Cart Next To Computer

What separates a regular website from an online store? The humble online shopping cart.

This functionality allows customers to select and store items before heading to the checkout and committing to a purchase. If brands want to offer their customers a seamless shopping experience, the shopping cart is a key touchpoint to build trust and confidence.

Shopping cart software comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, from full-fledged customer loyalty management solutions to basic plugins. The right shopping cart for your needs will depend on a range of factors, from transaction volume to preferred payment methods. We’ve rounded up the top 10 online shopping cart systems to help you find the perfect solution for your business.


  • The online shopping cart is a crucial feature for eCommerce stores, allowing customers to select and store items before making a purchase.
  • Selecting the right shopping cart depends on factors like transaction volume, preferred payment methods, and additional features needed.
  • By choosing the perfect shopping cart solution, your business can lower cart abandonment, increase customer satisfaction, and gain greater insight into consumer behavior and preferences.

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Why You Need a Quality Online Shopping Cart

Increased efficiency and time savings

Today’s eCommerce shoppers have high expectations for a streamlined online shopping experience. Whether it’s an impulse buy or a high-ticket purchase, consumers expect to navigate the checkout process with ease. According to Baymard Institute, nearly a fifth (17%) of online shoppers abandon their cart due to a long or complex checkout experience.

High-quality shopping cart software helps to streamline the shopping experience and enables customers to complete purchases with minimal effort. Shoppers can add products to their cart with a single click, apply promotional codes, and set up an account quickly. In turn, this minimizes shopping cart abandonment rates and improve conversion rates.

Improved customer experience

If shoppers don’t get a positive shopping experience, they’re unlikely to make future purchases. A well-designed shopping cart solution offers customers an intuitive, user-friendly interface that guides them through the shopping journey step by step. For example, customizable experiences enable brands to provide shoppers with personalized product recommendations, creating an engaging experience that increases the likelihood of repeat purchases.

Increased sales and revenue

It’s a well-known fact that the majority of online shopping journeys are abandoned before a purchase takes place, causing business owners to miss out on valuable sales.

An eCommerce shopping cart is your best tool to boost order volume by providing you with a valuable set of marketing tools. This includes abandoned cart reminders, personalized promotions, and in-depth reporting to gain insight into customer behavior.

Top 10 Best Online Shopping Carts for Merchants

1. Shopify

One of the most popular eCommerce platforms globally, Shopify has become to go-to option for small and large businesses alike to set up an online store. With a wide range of templates and integration available, Shopify makes it easy for brands to hit the ground running.

Best suited for: Businesses who want to stay within the Shopify system for eCommerce management.


  • Level 1 PCI compliance and 256-bit SSL certificates
  • Responsive checkout design
  • Tax calculations for different states/countries
  • Multiple shipping options at checkout


Basic: $39 per month

Shopify: $105 per month

Advanced: $399 per month


  • Massive thirty-party app marketplace makes it easy for brands to find plugins that address other business needs, such as digital marketing.
  • Suitable for a wide variety of eCommerce businesses.
  • Great ease of use for startups and small businesses.


  • The basic Shopify shopping cart comes with very few features.
  • Businesses will need to pay a fee to use payment gateways other than Shopify Payments, which has high credit card processing fees.
  • Additional plugins can make it hard to estimate monthly fees accurately.

2. WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a popular eCommerce platform built as a shopping cart plugin for WordPress. This enables WordPress site owners to turn their existing website into a fully functional online store. As an open-source eCommerce solution, it offers one of the most flexible shopping cart options.

Best suited for: Businesses using WordPress who want greater customization options.


  • Secure payment system
  • Order management
  • Detailed documentation and knowledge center
  • Unlimited product variations
  • Real-time reporting and analytics


Although WooCommerce is a free plugin, businesses need to have a WordPress site already set up in addition to web hosting and a registered business domain.


  • Designed to be fully compatible with WordPress systems.
  • A good selection of paid and free website themes.
  • Robust abandoned cart recovery system.


  • Businesses need to research/add other capabilities from scratch, which can be a lot of hassle for small businesses.
  • Hard to use without some developer expertise.

3. Magento

Magento is an open-source eCommerce platform for building and managing online stores. Although originally developed by Magento Inc., and later acquired by Adobe in 2018 and now forms part of the Adobe Commerce suite. Magento offers merchants a highly scalable and customizable shopping cart solution.

Best suited for: Large businesses that need enterprise-level shopping cart software.


  • Guest checkout and customer account options
  • PCI DSS certified and 3D Secure transactions
  • Multi-storefront management
  • App marketplace for extensions and add-ons


Magento Open Source: Free (with limited features)

Magento Commerce: $22,000 per year


  • Highly flexible and offers great customization.
  • Allows customers to pay in multiple currencies.
  • Strong product management tools, including product bundling and downloadable products.


  • Finding experienced Magento developers can be challenging.
  • Not cost-effective for small to medium-sized businesses.

4. BigCommerce

Like Shopify, BigCommerce is an all-in-one SaaS platform that supplies businesses with all the tools they need to set up an eCommerce site. BigCommerce offers a decent amount of customization in their shopping cart functionality, as well as an intuitive backend and a variety of payment options supported.

Best suited for: Brands looking for an affordable shopping cart that supports lots of payment methods.


  • Abandoned and persistent cart tools to save cart contents across devices
  • In-depth shopping cart analytics
  • Remarketing campaign tools


Standard plan: $39

Plus plan: $105

Pro pan: $399


  • Doesn’t charge transaction fees on any of their plans.
  • Offers a variety of one-click checkout options, including Amazon Pay and PayPal One Touch.
  • Website themes have advanced SEO features built in.


  • Payment plans are capped to a certain transaction volume.
  • No social media or email marketing tools are available via BigCommerce.
  • The app store has relatively limited options.

5. Square

Best known for its affordable POS system, Square also offers merchants a shopping cart solution via Square Online. Square Online is an all-in-one eCommerce system that is added to an existing website to manage online orders, fulfillment, and shipping.

Best suited for: Businesses who are accepting orders for home delivery and in-store pickup.


  • Accepts a range of payment options, including PayPal and Apple Pay
  • Displays real-time shipping rates at checkout
  • Online tax calculator
  • Customizable checkout fields


Free plan: $0

Plus plan: $29 per month

Premium plan: $79 per month


  • Offers a great free option for startups and small businesses.
  • The ability the configure smart tipping options for pickup, local delivery, and self-serve orders.
  • Manage online orders for multiple storefronts.


  • High transaction fees for online payments.
  • Difficulties with accessing timely customer support.

6. Wix eCommerce

Wix eCommerce is a feature within the wider Wix website builder that allows business to convert their website into an online store. Brands can simply use the Wix Editor to add the shopping cart widget to their website and then customize according to their needs.

Best suited for: Wix users who need to quick solution to start selling online.


  • Selling via social media channels
  • Customize the look and feel of your checkout
  • Abandoned cart recovery tools
  • Set shipping costs, coupon codes, and tax calculations at the checkout


Business Basic: $17 per month

Business Unlimited: $26 per month

Business VIP: $35 per month


  • Very easy to add and configure to an existing Wix site.
  • Responsive mobile design.
  • Subscription billing available for all business plans.


  • Third-party apps or plugins outside of Wix cannot be added to your website.
  • Limited storage space for large product catalogs.

7. 3dcart

3dcart is an all-in-one solution for building an eCommerce website and selling products online. It offers a wide range of customizable website templates, as well as product catalog management and credit card processing.

Best suited for: Established online retailers looking for scalability.


  • Integrations with eBay, Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Shopzilla.
  • Live chat and phone customer support
  • Upselling/cross-selling tools
  • Return management
  • POS system for brick and mortar transactions


Startup Store: $19 per month

Basic Store: $29 per month

Plus Store: $79 per month

Pro Store: $229 per month


  • Offers a 15-day free trial and 30-day money-back guarantee.
  • Supports a wide range of payment options, including PayPal,
    Venmo, Pay Later, Apple Pay, and Google Pay.
  • Unlimited product listings.


  • Only available to U.S.-based merchants.
  • Not designed for beginner-level eCommerce stores.

8. PrestaShop

PrestaShop is a free open-source eCommerce platform designed for both small and large businesses. It also provides an extensive marketplace where businesses can find additional themes and integrations to expand the functionality of their website.

Best suited for: Brands with in-house development expertise who want a lot of flexibility.


  • Redeem coupons, promotional codes, or time-based discounts at the checkout
  • A streamlined one-page checkout option
  • Pre-installed web hosting available for purchase
  • Integrates with payment processors including PayPal, Stripe, Square, and Authorize.Net.


Free to use, but businesses will have to pay for web hosting, customization, add-ons, and developer expertise if needed.


  • High level of customization, with over 3000 templates available.
  • No additional transaction fees.
  • Optional customer support plan is available for personalized help.


  • The free version without plugins has very limited functionality.
  • A lengthy set-up period is usually required.

9. Ecwid

Ecwid by Lightspeed is a multi-channel eCommerce solution that integrates with a variety of websites to create an online storefront. Instead of being designed for creating standalone eCommerce websites, Ecwid is focused on adding online store functionalities to an existing website.

Best suited for: New businesses who want to set up an online store quickly.


  • Create shopping apps for iOS and Android
  • Oder and shipping management
  • Multilingual storefronts
  • Tax calculator
  • SEO toolkit


Free: $0 per month

Venture: $19 per month

Business: $39 per month

Unlimited: $99 per month


  • ‘Instant Site’ tool allows brands to create a basic one-page standalone store while they are getting their business set up.
  • Integration with a number of other eCommerce platforms, including Wix and Squarespace.
  • Fully- customizable checkout API.


  • Free plan comes with very few functionalities.
  • Plans are more expensive for non-U.S. users.

10. Volusion

Volusion is one of the oldest eCommerce platforms and shopping cart solutions on the market, having been founded in 1999. It offers merchants a good mix of reporting, customization, and site management tools at an affordable price point.


  • PCI Level 1 Certified and 3D-Secure payment gateway
  • Mobile app for managing your storefront
  • Centralized dashboard for sales reporting
  • Accept payments in 135+ currencies
  • Built-in CRM system


Personal plan: $35 per month

Professional plan: $79 per month

Business plan: $299 per month


  • Premium Checkout feature option available for higher conversion rates.
  • Strong analytics/monitoring toolkit.
  • No payment gateway maintenance fees.


  • Cannot sell digital products.
  • Design interface isn’t very intuitive to use.

How to Select the Right Online Shopping Cart for Your Business

Identify your needs and objectives 

Before you commit to a particular shopping cart integration, access the demands of your eCommerce business to help you select the most appropriate option. Consider your business’s niche, the eCommerce platform you’re using, and the breadth of your product catalog.

Consider the features and functionalities you require

Many online shopping carts come with additional eCommerce solutions such as order management, payment gateways, email marketing, and SEO management. Make sure to prioritize solutions that offer these tools to avoid needing separate subscriptions later.

Check pricing plans and decide what suits your budget

Most shopping cart software will offer multiple plans at different price points, depending on what functionalities you require. However, different plans will include transaction fees or additional monthly/annual charges for add-on features. It’s important to compare options closely to find out which offers the best value for money.

Research customer reviews and ratings

Check out the reviews of other eCommerce stores within your niche/vertical that have used a certain shopping cart. This will give you insight into the pros and cons of different solutions and whether there are recurring problems concerning technical issues or reliability.

Take into consideration the compatibility with your existing system

Your shopping cart needs to be able to integrate seamlessly with your tech stack and other business tools to avoid compatibility issues. This means your current eCommerce platform or payment processing solution may dictate what shopping carts are available to your business.

Evaluate customer support and service quality

Given that your shopping cart is responsible for capturing sales, solid customer service support is essential. Be sure to look for a shopping cart solution that offers multiple support channels including phone, email, and live chat.

Consider future scalability 

The best shopping cart software is able to scale alongside your business, saving you from wasting time and resources by switching to another solution at a later date. To assess scalability, find out what transaction volumes a shopping cart is able to handle and what integrations it supports.

Your online shopping cart is an essential feature for any e-commerce business to remove friction from the shopping experience and increase sales. But to achieve this, you need to select the right shopping cart for your business needs. Key factors to consider are:

  • What additional features you may require
  • Whether there is a high volume of positive customer reviews
  • If the pricing plan is good value for your business
  • Compatibility with your current eCommerce platform

Hosted shopping carts, such as Shopify and BigCommerce, are easy to set up but can lack robust customization. Open-source options offer a fantastic sandbox, but businesses need to have the right developer expertise to take advantage of their flexibility.

By choosing the perfect shopping cart solution, your business can lower cart abandonment, increase customer satisfaction, and gain greater insight into consumer behavior and preferences.

Already have a shopping cart in mind? Integrate it with a robust payment processing platform that allows you to accept all payment types—including credit cards, mobile payments, ACH and more. 

Stax helps you do just that. We cover all your payment processing needs so you can focus on driving sales and delighting your customers. Learn more

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