If you have no experience with content management systems, but would like to start with a simple and convenient online store solution, you should consider osCommerce. This system has a set of basic features required for an online store and is quite easy to use. All you need to do is to set up a template, go through a simple installation process, enter your products list, and your store is up and running and is ready to meet new customers. Although it is simpler than other shopping cart solutions such as Zen Cart, Magento, or Mambo, OsCommerce remains the most popular open source ecommerce engine for a good start of online businesses. Advantages
* Has a large community of developers and users that may help you with any question or problem
* A great number of addons are available for download
* Is compatible with PHP5 and MySQL 5
* Some technical knowledge and time is required to install the addons you need for your shopping cart
* There is no graphic template system, which means that it is not so easy to modify the design
* Updates are not very frequent. The last update had been made over a year ago
For a more flexible management interface, you should consider a more advanced ecommerce tool-ZenCart. The system allows its users to easily change configurations within the intuitive admin interface. The in-built system of sub-pages management helps to easily add information about your products. Furthermore, with its set of payment system modules, ZenCart leaves the choice up to you as to what payment option to include to your e-store.
* Is distributed under the GNU General Public License (GPL)
* Has a large community and multiple addons, including those required for the update from osCommerce stores
* Has a more intuitive interface with more features than osCommerce
* osCommerce addons cannot be used with Zen Cart unless they are re-developed
* In certain areas, the admin interface looks a little messy, but this shouldn’t be a problem with so many addons to customize the tool to virtually any needs.
– osCommerce Online Merchant v2.2: The engine with an in-built template (MS 2.2), HTML, PSD, database
– Zen Cart 1.2.x/1.3.x: Plug-in templates, HTML, PSD, database
– osCommerce Online Merchant v2.2: No Zen Cart 1.2.x/1.3.x: Yes
– osCommerce Online Merchant v2.2: PHP-code modification in the engine’s executable files
– Zen Cart 1.2.x/1.3.x: Through the templates system in the admin interface
– osCommerce Online Merchant v2.2: English, German, Spanish. There’s a possibility to add other languages
– Zen Cart 1.2.x/1.3.x: English as the default langugage. Other languages are available for download from the official Zen Cart website
Installation of both OsCommerce hosting and Zen Cart hosting is extremely easy. If your web hosting provider offers Fantastico De Luxe package within your hosting account it will take a couple of clicks to setup. There are lots of companies offering Zan Cart hosting and Os commerce for reasonable prices and 24/7 support.