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- The Good
- Easy drag-and-drop website builder
- Multilingual and multiple currencies supported
- TSL 1.2 encryption
- The Bad
- Upgrades are additional cost
- SSL security certification additional
- Not cloud-hosted
- Paid customer service
X-cart is software that helps you build your online website store. Unlike its competition, you’ll have to download X-cart to your computer. It has both PC and Mac versions. There are no transaction fees or setup fees, and you get unlimited product hosting and bandwidth.
- Prices and Packages
- Free edition
X-cart offers a 15-day free trial before buying a subscription. There are two different X-cart products: X-cart Version 5 and Xcart Classic. All plans come with a lifetime license. X-cart offers hosting plans but these are a separate purchase from the e-commerce platform license. The hosting charges are monthly expenses.
The storage capacities listed are for X-cart’s various hosting plans. There are limitations on bandwidth with each plan as well. The starter plan allows 512MB bandwidth and Basic offers 1GB bandwidth. With the Enhanced plan, you get 4GB of bandwidth and the Enterprise plan offers 16GB of bandwidth. Each plan comes with an SSL certificate to encrypt incoming and outgoing data. In addition, each user gains access to a Virtual Private Server (VPS), providing a faster, more private and more secure environment than shared hosting plans offered by other platforms.
- SEO tools
- 4 free templates
- Built-in blog
- No unique domains offered
X-cart offers only four free templates, but you can purchase premium templates if you so choose. There is a built-in blog feature and integration with WordPress available. If you want to download your website faster by using a content delivery network (CDN), you’ll have to pay an additional fee for that. X-cart will not provide you a unique domain name but you can register your own. If you’re uncertain how to do that, you can hire X-cart to find and register a domain for you. This will, of course, be an additional charge. Some of the premium SEO tools offered include XML sitemaps, canonical URLs, URL customization and metadata customization.
- Shopping Features
- Point of sale (POS) system
- Sell digital products
- Sell globally
- TSL 1.2 encryption
X-cart is the only e-commerce platform solution offering TSL 1.2 encryption. That means X-cart will stand alone as the only PCI compliant service in June 2018 if others don’t update their encryption levels. With X-cart you can sell globally by displaying different languages and currencies, and checkout is available through more than 75 payment gateways. Some of the payment methods available include PayPal, Amazon payments, 2Checkout, Stripe, WorldPay, CyberSource and FirstData. With X-cart’s POS system, you can monitor your inventory in both your digital and brick-and-mortar stores. You can accept payment when you’re mobile with PayPal and iPhone, iPad or Android apps.
- Phone, email and forums
When it comes to support with X-cart, you’re pretty much left to your own devices. You can get help with technical support from X-cart but you’ll have to pay an extra fee for their services. Any questions you have about development, web design, technical support or hosting will cost you extra. You can get customer support with their hosting plans for $199/month or $399/month for hosting and support. You can also purchase a single-incident plan or a plan for support subscription that offers personalized assistance.
X-cart: User Reviews
If all you look at are X-cart’s features, it seems like a fairly good idea. It has functionality and customizability – if you have PHP experience. It can handle a growing business. Then you look at the pricing.
Not only is their pricing structure confusing, in order to keep your website up to date and compliant with ever-changing industry standards, you have to purchase the annual subscription. That means an outlay each year of approximately 20 percent to 50 percent of the amount you paid for the platform in the beginning.
Because X-cart is self-hosted, you’ll also have to make certain your site is PCI compliant. Accepting payments via a PCI-compliant payment processor is one way to do this. Or, you can use PA-DSS certified software if you want to accept credit card numbers directly through your website.
How Does X-cart Work?
The features available through X-cart are almost overwhelming. The admin is one of the most intuitive on the market, so that helps. A few things you can do through the admin include order management, accounting integrations with QuickBooks or Xero and marketplace integration with eBay. You can push your products to other marketplaces using X-cart’s bulk export features.
With the mobile admin, you can manage your store online from your mobile device. You can use X-cart’s mobile responsive template to make your store mobile-friendly or use a service such as Shopgate. With the mobile point-of-sale feature, you can accept payments on the go.
X-cart lets your track inventory by variants so you never sell a product you don’t have. You can track your best-sellers and get low stock alerts. You can sell digital products through X-cart. You can also offer cloud search with a site-wide search engine.
You can set up your own unique account or sign in through social media such as Facebook and Google Plus. Your customers can also purchase as a guest if they choose not to open their own accounts.
What Makes X-cart Stand Out?
One of the more interesting features about X-cart is its auction feature. You can allow your customers to bid on select items. You can also display your products using unlimited product images that include smart zoom and X-cart’s own thumbnail generator.
The global selling feature lets you set your site to display in different languages and currencies. You can also offer auto-calculate for shipping costs and totals, all displayed in the currency you select.
X-cart offers the usual abandoned cart reminders. It also includes a loyalty program that awards customers for their patronage. You can set exit-intent pop-ups if you choose and offer discounts on specific categories. You can also offer volume discounts.
You can use Google Analytics, Cloud Search, Yandex.Metrix, Diib and MailChimp analytics to view your site reports.
Common Reviews of X-cart
One of the most frequently touted features of X-cart is the users’ ability to make changes to their stores’ capabilities. Many express gratitude that their online platform doesn’t limit their business plans. There are also positive marks for X-cart’s scalability. Those who have used the service for years say they’ve been able to alter their platforms as their companies grow.
X-cart’s dashboard gets mentioned for its ease of use. The drag-and-drop theme editor is a favorite feature. Some who’ve tried other platforms point out that X-cart is just as easy to use as other fully hosted, cloud-based solution systems.
Because X-cart is self-hosted, you’re on your own for maintaining your site’s security. You have to buy your own SSL certificate, which starts at $89.95/year.
The limited customer support, and the extra fee for it, is a big negative for X-cart. Also not so popular are the theme templates X-cart offers. Although they are fully responsive on mobile devices, they are not described as up-to-date or trendy.
Is X-cart for Me?
X-cart’s technological level is up there, which gives you access to some of the more state-of-the-art shopping cart technology for your small business. The company has an experienced team of developers, web designers and technical engineers that can be very helpful. The only problem is you must purchase a subscription to gain access to them.
If your business is large or rapidly growing on a global scale, X-cart is probably going to be one of the best choices out there for you. It could be well worth the costs if your business is expanding around the globe at a rapid rate. If you’re just getting started with your online store, you’d probably do better to look elsewhere for a software platform.