XCart Moves Shopping Cart to the Cloud, Woos Developers
By Ina Steiner
The popular shopping-cart software for online merchants X-Cart has launched its first Cloud-hosted platform called X-Cart NEXT. A company spokesperson said the new platform makes it easier for X-Cart merchants to install, use, scale and upgrade.
Existing merchants can choose to migrate to the new platform, but the company assured users it would continue to fully support its downloadable ecommerce packages with plans to publish new versions regularly.
The company is giving certified developers access to source code so they can customize a SaaS store for their customers at the source code level and can create add-on tools to extend functionality (called extensions) that they can sell to merchants through the X-Cart NEXT Marketplace.
Maxim Vydrin, CEO of X-Cart, said the company began working on X-Cart NEXT three years ago in reaction to market changes. "In the very beginning, ecommerce was for tech guys who knew how to code, etc. Nowadays, many more people are trying to sell online and the most of them are not technical specialists at all." X-Cart NEXT is easier to use and maintain, he said, yet they didn't want to ignore developers. "We made X-Cart Next expandable and customizable so they can use it for their projects and develop extensions to enrich the platform."
Vydrin said X-Cart has erased one of the biggest objections to SaaS ecommerce platforms - the inability to alter the source code for a specific hosted storefront. "Now our certified developers can take advantage of the benefits of a hosted platform, but with the flexibility of a downloaded software package. We've also made this process much easier to implement."
Certified developers can earn a 15 to 25 percent recurring commission on new platform sales with X-Cart NEXT's affiliate program and can earn 75 percent for every add-on extension or theme they create.
The original X-Cart team evolved into a group of companies - as the website explains, "Under the umbrella of parent company Qualiteam, the company released LiteCommerce and Ecwid shopping cart platforms in addition to its core X-Cart product line."
When asked about the differences between Ecwid and X-Cart, Vydrin said, "In terms of comparing products, Ecwid is a set of ecommerce widgets that can be embedded into any existing website. X-Cart Next is the solution that provides both website and shopping cart so merchants don't need to setup a site somewhere to start selling online. In terms of who uses these products - Ecwid is best for small merchants while X-Cart Next is best for medium and large businesses."
X-Cart NEXT offers a Starter plan at $29.95 (US) monthly with a 100-product limit, an Advanced plan at $99.95 per month for up to 5000 products, and a Business plan at $249.95 for unlimited products. The Enterprise plan, a customized solution with unlimited support and a dedicated account manager, is also available starting at $999 monthly.
More information is available on the X-Cart.com website.
About the author:
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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