What & History
Designed for Online Merchants
Zen Cart® truly is the art of e-commerce; a free, user-friendly, open source shopping cart system. The software is being developed by group of like-minded shop owners, programmers, designers, and consultants that think e-commerce could be and should be done differently. Some "solutions" seem to be complicated programming exercises instead of responding to users' needs, Zen Cart® puts the merchant's and shopper's requirements first. Similarly, other programs are nearly impossible to install and use without an IT degree, Zen Cart® can be installed and set-up by anyone with the most basic computer skills. Others are so expensive ... not Zen Cart®, it's FREE!
Designed for Online Shoppers
Zen Cart® is the first Open Source Ecommerce platform to attain PA-DSS certification.
Zen Cart® delivers the ultimate online shopping experience to your customers. Navigating through your merchandise offerings is a breeze with Zen Cart®, the program allows you to draw attention to products such as "featured" and "specials" etc in addition to the traditional category/product navigation. Once a product is added to the shopping cart, secure checkout is a simple 3-step process including collecting address information, shipping selection (multiple shipping methods including real-time internet shipping quotes are built-in), payment selection (PayPal™ and AuthorizeNet™ are just 2 of the various included modules) and confirming the final order including taxes and discounts/coupons/sales/gift-certificates applied. You are immediately notified of the order and your customer automatically receives an e-mail confirmation.
Zen Cart®'s goals include:
- make the program easy to set up
- make it easy to customize
- automate tasks, such as order confirmation
- make navigation simple
- built in promotions; discount coupons, gift certificates, newsletters and product notification
- offer single item specials and storewide discounts, including group discounts and quantity discounts
- built in intelligent Search Engine Optimization tools, including per-product metatag controls
- password protected Administration Tool
- support multiple languages, currencies and tax structures
In short, Zen Cart® is shopping cart software the way it should have been all along.
We simply want to deliver a fast and easy to use shopping cart program that's freely available to everyone under the GPL. Zen Cart's® development team encourages feedback and contributions from the community and we invite open discussion about e-commerce solutions.
For Web Designers
Zen Cart® gives web designers a robust and customizable electronic storefront that's easy to keep up-to-date with new features. It provides usable, intuitive and unobtrusive purchase flows right out of the box based on proven industry best-practices.
One of the secrets behind its power lies in our robust template system that "abstracts" the look-and-feel from the code and logic behind the scenes. This enables you to give clients a truly custom solution that integrates quickly and perfectly with their existing website design.
For Developers and Hosting Providers
Developers are able to deploy cutting edge solutions based on Zen Cart®'s modern standards and technologies. Combining PHP server-side technology with the ability to choose from multiple databases on the back end, Zen Cart® is flexible software that you can customize and modify to suit your needs.
Zen Cart® Server Requirements:
- For up-to-date requirements, see: Zen Cart® Server Requirements
- * Apache must be configured with AllowOverride set to either 'All' or at least both 'Limit' and 'Indexes' parameters, and preferably the 'Options' parameter as well.
- * PHP must be configured to support CURL with OpenSSL
While Zen Cart® can run on Windows/IIS servers, Linux/Apache servers are recommended for best results.