There are many factors to take into consideration when you are deciding on what shopping cart software to use including the hosting. There are advantages and disadvantages to shopping cart hosting that you should carefully explore before deciding on a shopping cart software program. Generally there are local hosting and remote hosting options when it comes to hosting your shopping cart.
The advantages of remote hosting:
There are usually many features involved when you use remote hosting for your shopping cart including fast implementation, secure connection, monitoring of service just to name a few. Typically all of these features are a part of the hosting service. You will save on bandwidth charges because your shopping cart is hosted on another server especially if you sell soft products such as software.
Most remote shopping carts are actually total marketing solutions that contain affiliate programs and the ability to send sequential pre-defined messages out to your customers and leads. Most remote hosting will also include gateway services and an Internet Merchant account. Most remote hosting services charge a monthly fee for their features so choose carefully and look at many remote-hosting companies before you settle on one.
The disadvantages of remote hosting:
You may run into this disadvantage especially if you go with a small, unknown company or a one-man operation and that is a situation where the hosting company goes belly up overnight and leaves you high and dry?
You normally have less control over the various cart pages and how they display. Make sure that you are with a reputable remote hosting company as some are known to harvest your client databases in order to Spam them.
A very popular remotely hosted shopping cart service is 1ShoppingCart.com it’s motto is that it is your total ecommerce solution. The rates at this company start at just $19 a month. It is easy to configure and use and new features are constantly being added at no extra cost. 1ShoppingCart is a secure shopping cart system, which means you don’t need SSL for your Website. This remote hosting is set up for both physical goods and soft goods. It has a delivery system for digital goods that is secure and minimizes unauthorized downloading. It has an up sell module, and the ability to use gift coupons and also has a discount module. It also supports most payment gateways, unlimited client database and unlimited autoresponders. There is an affiliate programs tracking and management capability as well as ad/revenue tracking so that you can determine the effectiveness of your advertising campaigns.
The advantages of Local hosting:
With local hosting of your shopping cart you have total control over the software and incur no ongoing fees.
The disadvantages of local hosting is that you will probably spend more time installing, configuration and maintaining the shopping cart. You will incur greater initial outlay; will require a secure sockets layer (SSL), which can be costly.
A locally hosted shopping cart is hosted on your own server and is typically a one-time purchase.
If you run into difficulties installing or customizing, most shopping cart companies will help you for an extra fee.
A popular locally hosted shopping cart is Interspire shopping cart. This local hosting cart handles digital products and physical products, and has multiple inventory tracking options. No coding knowledge is needed as you can drag and drop design mode options. It has a full-featured couponing system and comes with free software installation and 12 months of phone, and email technical support. Any future updates are included in the initial price and there is a full 60-day refund guarantee.
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