Zen Cart Review – The Pros and Cons of Zen Cart

Though I may be upfront and say that Zen Cart is not perfect, and I am usually on the lookout to discover higher structures, including Magento Commerce, I may review that quickly as nicely, so stay tuned. Zen Cart is an internet software program designed completely for e-commerce businesses. It uses PHP and MySQL and is an open supply undertaking that evolved through a community of shop proprietors, programmers, designers, and experts who just wanted an easy e-trade solution. Being available supply like WordPress, the software is free for all of us to apply, and it lets us adjust, develop and distribute.

Zen Cart

Most website hosting organizations offer Simple Scripts or Fantastico, which might be application installers to assist with installing Zen Cart. I might advise their usage because it saves time and the problem of putting in databases yourself. Zen Cart is certainly one of the standard buying carts available for installation, so installing must be a breeze. If you decide to go through and deploy Zen Cart yourself, you will want to examine the instructions supplied, and it will take time to get via. I want to advocate this direction when you have robust information in PHP and MySQL because it requires editing files and utilizing FTP equipment.

It is superb online software and best of all; it’s far loose. Since its inception over five years ago, many developers have created several accessories that may be downloaded and installed on the Zen Cart gadget at any time. They are publicly available on the Zen Cart website and offer your e-trade software program extra capability. You can download add-ons starting from administrative gear everywhere to adding more languages. Each option may be activated when you need it or become off. Zen Cart’s product management device is, with the aid of ways, the most comprehensive gadget I have used to date, and the entirety is at your finger pointer as it is all linked to your orders and clients.

A Wide Range Of Free And Paid Templates Available

Most Internet groups usually want a customized website and extraordinary capabilities to show their customers, so it has a wide range of free and paid templates. You will locate free fundamental templates available on the internet site that can be set up without difficulty, converting the colors and layout of your site. If you want more customization, strive for some paid templates that begin from approximately $50 and upwards. Here are the websites I advise: Algozone and Template Monster.

Forum And Community Support Is Good

Unfortunately, Zen Cart has no formal support or a group hired to handle customer support, being a loose product. However, a sturdy forum and network assist and attempt their high-quality to assist. I have posted on their forum many times and was given a response quite fast. Most of the solutions are found through running a short week, and a maximum of the time, they will have a little by little method to fix the problem. I should admit that even though it does get a chunk technical, and if you lack PHP know-how, I might agree it could be unpleasant to discover an answer.

TLikewaree, a few document pieces of action misspecified in a Wiki section and FAQ on their internet site. If you seek out a detailed guide, there is one completely for administrators, and it can be downloaded from a PDF record. If all else fails, try to locate an experienced programmer and pay them to assist in restoring your trouble. They won’t value an excessive amount and are very reasonable at what they do. I used a programmer to modify my internet site and found them nicely in the forum. Place a publish asking for a programmer and specify what you need executed. I am positive you will get humans to answer iifyou pay them.

Currently, it supports both QuickBooks and MYOB accounting. Though one module is loose and the other does fee. So, to force it into your Internet business, you must remember which accounting package deal to apply. There may be a free QuickBooks export module that you may download and deploy to be had in the Zen Cart Downloads section.

The Cons Of Zen Cart

Not Cosmetically Appealing

When I first began using Zen Cart, I was no longer impressed with the not-so-attractive website after the setup. As with most of the open-source “out-of-the-box solutions,” I knew there would be lots of customizing. What I found at the beginning became the default pores, and the skin that it furnished had lots of “stuff” that I no longer wanted, making the entire store look too cluttered for my liking. Furthermore, it changed into greater work to show off all banner advertisements and arrange the packing containers to have a simplistic appearance. I trust there must be a few details of visible attraction for any new person wanting to apply it as their e-commerce gadget.

Most basic reports are to be had, encompassing merchandise regarded, products bought, and clients’ orders. It lacks more sophisticated reviews and income using the merchandise, earnings on every product, profit margins made, etc. Additional add-ons may be mounted but are nevertheless not up to scratch. I might no longer assume intensive evaluation of sales, clients, and products going through the door. You will want to generate those reviews from your accounting software.

This is the big disadvantage of Zen Cart. Once you have mounted Zen Cart and adjusted the software, do not assume to improve for a long time. In my experience, if you upgrade to the next model, you’ll start from the start again. The gadget has not been designed to improve without overwriting all your add-ons and customizations. So, if you made any modifications as I have on my websites, I would be cautious about sticking to the existing model. Unlike WordPress, for example, if there are essential improvements or enhancements for accessories, it’s miles a simple click on a mouse, and the rest of the system will improve for you.


Alcohol scholar. Bacon fan. Internetaholic. Beer geek. Thinker. Coffee advocate. Reader. Have a strong interest in consulting about teddy bears in Nigeria. Spent 2001-2004 promoting glue in Pensacola, FL. My current pet project is testing the market for salsa in Las Vegas, NV. In 2008 I was getting to know birdhouses worldwide. Spent 2002-2008 buying and selling easy-bake-ovens in Bethesda, MD. Spent 2002-2009 marketing country music in the financial sector.