ZenCart

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Zen Cart is a free, open-source PHP/MySQL-based eCommerce platform. It is notable for its customizable code, something that has earned it a place as one of the most popular e-shopping cart options.

Zen Cart continues to be maintained and developed by volunteers. As such, it grows organically in response to industry needs. This has led Zen Cart down a usability pathway: the goal has been to produce an eCommerce solution that anyone can feel confident in using. It is recognised as being one of the leading 50 eCart providers.

History: Origin and evolution

Zen Cart’s immediate background is in osCommerce, an open source eCommerce platform. Launching in 2003, Zen Cart made some major changes to the basic architecture, especially in the development of a CSS-based template system.

Who’s using it?

Zen Cart occupies about 1.1% of the market share. That’s compared to WooCommerce (27.87%), PayPal (22.64%), and Lexity (8.19%).

It’s mainly used by the retail sector, with restaurants and IT services following in second and third place respectively.

These are almost exclusively located in the United States, with 56% of customers being US based. The rest are mainly in Europe, with the exception of India, with 348 registered users.

The Indian companies may represent a small overall percentage, but they also represent the top five major users. These include Techwagon Solutions PLC, Brainwork Technologies, and Limtex Infotech Ltd.

Specificities: pros and cons of the technology

There are many pros to Zen Cart. Firstly, the template overhaul means that means that endless mass production of pages that are similar is achievable at the touch of a button. This always has been, and continues to be, its crowning jewel.

However, there are other pros. These include the fact that it supports Windows, Linux, Mac, and Web-Based servers, although it is primed to work on Linux/Apache. There is a detailed list of requirements here.

On the other hand, as an open-source product, Zen Cart leaves much of the background work and set-up to the user. This includes purchasing a domain name, finding a suitable hosting package, securing a decent FTP option, and gaining MySQL database access from the web host. In short, no small task, especially for novices.

One you’re in, however, Zen Cart truly opens up the possibilities for customization. This can be back-end, where you are tweaking the code to fit your unique requirements, or front-end, where you are busily adding plug-ins to enhance user experience.

Advantages of Zen Cart

Even though Zen Cart was built with non-experts in mind, the result is software that’s primed for those who are comfortable with code. Zen Cart offers the basics, and expects you to take it from there.

The result is that a large community has built up around the Zen Cart phenomenon, and users adapt and shape the platform to suit their individual needs. Zen Cart therefore scores reasonably low for overall usability, but in the hands of the right user can offer an extremely powerful and versatile option. Moreover, it offers the bonus of the zero price-tag, meaning that investing in learning the tech navigation may reap its own dividends.



Hosting plans supporting ZenCart

Offre Rating €/y Type Diskspace Bandwidth
★ ★ ★
87.48€ Website Builder ∞GB
0.0€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
59.4€ Cloud Hosting ∞GB
0.0€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
179.88€ Dedicated Servers
at Ikoula
1000GB
0.18€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
754.08€ Reseller 150GB
5.03€/GB
5000 GB /mo
0.15€/GB
★ ★ ★
298.56€ VPS Hosting 120GB
2.49€/GB
3000 GB /mo
0.1€/GB
★ ★ ★
40.2€ VPS Hosting
at Ovh
20GB
2.01€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
311.4€ Reseller
at Site5
50GB
6.23€/GB
500 GB /mo
0.62€/GB
★ ★ ★
791.88€ VPS Hosting 150GB
5.28€/GB
4000 GB /mo
0.2€/GB
★ ★ ★
239.88€ Wordpress Hosting 30GB
8.0€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
240.0€ Cloud Hosting 80GB
3.0€/GB
4000 GB /mo
0.06€/GB
★ ★ ★
1920.0€ Cloud Hosting 640GB
3.0€/GB
7000 GB /mo
0.27€/GB
★ ★ ★
392.28€ Shared Hosting 120GB
3.27€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
239.4€ Reseller 60GB
3.99€/GB
600 GB /mo
0.4€/GB
★ ★ ★
1788.0€ Dedicated Servers 1000GB
1.79€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
87.12€ Wordpress Hosting 40GB
2.18€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
136.56€ Wordpress Hosting 80GB
1.71€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
832.08€ VPS Hosting 260GB
3.2€/GB
6000 GB /mo
0.14€/GB
★ ★ ★
184.68€ Reseller 80GB
2.31€/GB
800 GB /mo
0.23€/GB
★ ★ ★
892.68€ Cloud Hosting
at Ovh
50GB
17.85€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
1727.88€ Dedicated Servers
at Ovh
4000GB
0.43€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
239.4€ Reseller 40GB
5.99€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB
★ ★ ★
2940.0€ Dedicated Servers 600GB
4.9€/GB
4000 GB /mo
0.73€/GB
★ ★ ★
35.88€ Website Builder ∞GB
0.0€/GB
∞ GB /mo
0.0€/GB

Other technologies

ZenCart is cool ! ... Do you want to get informations about other webhosting technologies and find supporting web hosting plans? If so, just have a look at these articles.

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