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From corporate giants to small moms and pop shops, many ecommerce store owners are turning to free open source e-commerce platforms.
The tools needed to sell online are not cheap. But using open source software, you can delete at least one monthly fee. Plus, you’ll have more control over your online presence.
Some of today’s most popular shopping carts are open source solutions, including the most downloaded and used platform on the web – WooCommerce.
If you have the technical skills and time to play with CSS, HTML and even Ruby on Rails while socializing in code forums, you’re probably the right candidate for the open source e-commerce platform. And if you don’t have the time but have the resources and desire to hire someone who can manipulate almost every aspect of your ecommerce site, you may also be interested in open source ecommerce platforms.
Before you step on this list, keep in mind something – we know that open source is not for everyone, and only a few of these platforms meet our standards. It is definitely a steep learning curve if you want to build an online store without hiring a web developer.
If you’re looking for an ecommerce platform but aren’t committed to the open source idea, check out our post on top ecommerce platforms.
X-Cart is a solid open source platform. This PHP shopping cart offers something you won’t find in most free shopping carts. Lifetime license. Built on solid source code with an extensive feature set available for paid plans, X Cart offers hosting and self-install options.
While the feature list is impressive, upgrades can be expensive – we’re talking $ 495 +. For a store that is doing well, it is a decent option and considering a license is lifelong, it is not a bad thing.
You will need to manually code and use HTML to get the most out of this ecommerce feature, but there is plenty of room for customization if you have the time or staff.
They have great design and development support, along with hosting, to make things less technical easier. Their business release is also worth a look. There are also no transaction fees.
Who uses the X cart?
- The La Mer Collections
- Goat milk stairs
Proud to be running 37% of online stores, WooCommerce has been downloaded 14,095,679 times. It is by far the most popular open source e-commerce solution available. This ecommerce solution was created to help users convert any WordPress site into an ecommerce store, and this solution was created by the equally popular WooThemes. When it comes to content, WooCommerce is the best cms for ecommerce.
Unfortunately, as you start to look at more complex features with WooCommerce, you’ll see the price tag attached. The same goes for support – it comes in the form of a purchased product for this solution. On the other hand, WooCommerce measures the scale nicely and as a result is a frequent choice of e-commerce platform for large businesses, although it works equally well for small and medium-sized stores.
Who uses WooCommerce?
- A box of mysterious chocolate
- Le Marzocco
- New balance
paGOCommerce is an open source platform developed by developers on ‘corePHP’. paGO Commerce is focused on Joomla! ecosystem and it has several powerful toolkits such as a comprehensive attribute system, paGO Quickpay for payment, a robust coupon system, very easy and clean one-page conversion for more conversion and more. Developers will like the extensibility of the platform and the ease of adding plugins without core hacks. paGO Commerce is PCI-compatible and is focused on mid- and business-level implementation. paGO Commerce is the only open source trading system built with real-time support in the background to help you with your business needs.
Sites powered by paGO
Magento Community Edition
With over 200,000 users, Magento Community Edition is one of the most popular open source e-commerce platforms available. While not as robust as the Magento Enterprise Edition, the Magento Open Source Community Edition is still a strong choice for e-commerce stores committed to the idea of a free platform.
Who uses the Magento or Magento Enterprise community?
- Greeting! Lucky
- Brewshop (New Zealand)
- Hu2 (UK, ships worldwide)
See: Comparison of Ultimate Magento vs Shopify
PrestaShop boasts that more than 250,000 stores use their ecommerce platform. The PrestaShop forum has more than 850,000 members and customers include Zippo lighters and Fashion Stork, among others. The popularity of this open source e-commerce platform is expanding to more than 200 countries and as a result PrestaShop has been translated into 65 languages.
Developers and users love PrestaShop so much that the platform has won awards around the world:
- Best Packt Publishing Open Source Application (twice)
- The 2013 BSOCO Award in the CMS category
- Open source shopping cart software no. 1 by EcommerceBytes for reseller selection
Who uses PrestaShop?
- The fashion genus
- Eleventh Paris
Aware that views are important, OpenCart offers more than 2,700 topics. The platform is used by 576,862 e-commerce sites, but 4,481 of them are on the top 1 million sites on Alexa.com – which is not a bad number for a relatively small e-commerce platform.
The OpenCart community is welcoming and very active. Although the platform was created in Hong Kong, most users are in the United States. OpenCart is multi-lingual, multilingual, and offers more than 20 payment gateways, as well as eight shipping methods.
One feature that many OpenCart users enjoy is the nature of the key to this open source e-commerce platform – no need to mess with the code in the beginning.
Who uses OpenCart?
- Cilantro: The cook
- British Red Cross (UK)
The front of the demo of this open e-commerce platform acts a bit like a dated version of Amazon. After 16 years in business, osCommerce should be stronger in the market than it used to be, especially given the availability of more than 7000 add-ons and two spinoff projects that have taken a strong place in the e-commerce platform field.
Maybe the axis stands for old-school?
Unfortunately for osCommerce, only 13,300 stores currently use this platform, despite an active community of more than 285,720 members and more than 1.6 million posts. OsCommerce has a major need for an update that follows the faithful open source developer that follows, but there is little opportunity to compete in the modern e-commerce field without some major changes.
Who uses osCommerce?
- Ubuntu Shop
- Kitchen Renovation in Melbourne (Australia)
- Parsiaco (Iran)
Originally based on the osCommerce code, the two modes split in 2003, when Zen Cart decided to focus more on templates. Today, this free ecommerce platform offers users a 390+ page guide and a host of features – not to mention more than 1800 plugins in 16 different categories. And the connected community is big. There are more than 150,000 members in the Zen Cart community.
Who uses Zen Cart?
- US Armored Power
- Health cabin
- A hobby shop
- Pipe Divan
Expand the store
More than 45,000 stores use Spree Commerce, not least because it’s affordable. Designed with features and named the top 50 open source projects of over 3 million, it is visually appealing, modern, and the developer community is large and active.
Based on Ruby on Rails, Spree Commerce is an e-commerce platform that developers will love, but the technologically naive will have a difficult time with. If you have knowledge of coding or can afford a developer who does, this platform will deploy with you. The popular fast-food chain Chipotle uses Spree Commerce, and the platform has been translated into 30 languages.
Who uses Spree Commerce?
URL: The JigoShop website is currently down
, I’ll give them time to see if they can get it back. Otherwise I will remove the jigoshop.
Another WordPress e-commerce platform, JigoShop, offers the advantage of the superiority of most WordPress users who will recognize and be able to navigate easily. This WooCommerce predecessor has a smaller selection of topics than many of its competitors, but seems to hold its own in the ecommerce space with 512,739 downloads.
However, access to community support is not free through JigoShop. That’s $ 40 a month. The platform also charges $ 35- $ 49.00 for its official themes, with the exception of Simply Jigoshop, which is free. Follow the JigoShop page as a major change is underway. JigoShop has a new beta release, along with some expected changes.
Who uses JigoShop?
- Echoes of opal
- Nordic appeal
- Oregon Trail Survival
Designed for use with Joomla 2.5 and 3, Virtue Mart has more than 500 features, stores worldwide, and an engaged and active developer community. The platform has 348,487 users, of which only 995 are in the first 1 million places. The vast majority of e-commerce sites that use VirtueMart are based in the United States or Russia.
VirtueMart’s core system is very small, with only 3-5 developers working on it. On the other hand, the contribution of the developer community is openly accepted and has 316,371 members. This open source PHP e-commerce solution is not new to e-commerce – VirtueMart is a German company that has been around since 2004. The platform is not acceptable for the non-tech crowd – you will need a developer who is well versed in the Joomla CMS system and PHP software can really use this platform. It’s also easy to spend a little wealth on extras and extras for this platform. Watch your wallet.
Who uses VirtueMart?
- Produtti Herbalife (Italy)
- DPModa (Bulgaria)
- 3D Puzzle Welt (Europe)
- Can you fix it (Canada)
Drupal Commerce (Drupal)
Drupal Commerce, one of the most comprehensive open source e-commerce platforms, has been built by Commerce Guys and offers multilingualism, multilingualism, global functionality – making it perfect for work such as Open Sesame, a provider of e-learning language courses.
Drupal integrates easily with many third-party applications. It is currently one of the only e-commerce platforms built on the CMS (Drupal Content Management System), making it inextricably compatible with a strong content marketing strategy. Like many other open source platforms, support will cost you – Commerce Guys offers support for the Drupal Commerce application is very expensive. That makes sense when you see their client list. Drupal Commerce is popular with large companies.
Who uses Drupal Commerce?
- The sesame seeds open
- Lush cosmetics
- Cartier Jewelers
simpleCart js (NOT to be confused with ModMore’s SimpleCart)
URL: simplecart.js don’t seem to work anymore.
The text was prepared by himself, so language was not a problem. You can use SimpleCart js in any language. As a result of its lightweight nature, simpleCart js does not offer many of the support features you may be looking for.
You will find downloads and documentation on the simpleCart (js) website, but keep in mind that nothing has been updated since 2010. You will need to appear in the developer forums or check out one of the many YouTube guides for this platform if you need help.
Another WordPress plugin option, WP e-commerce has been downloaded more than three million times and is honored to be the original e-commerce solution for WordPress. Coding this open source ecommerce platform is relatively straightforward.
If you can manage CSS and HTML, it’s good. You can either pay experts for a little extra support or contact a large community of users for answers to common questions.
Who Uses WP Ecommerce?
- Mayrun’s goods
This open source ecommerce solution has been around for a while, but it has never taken the rankings. Ubercart appears to be in the top 30 ecommerce platforms by number of users, but generally at the bottom of that list.
Although their ecommerce software is constantly updated, Ubercart’s forums and presentations cannot boast the same attention for regular updates. The demo site is currently redirected to a sales domain page – upcoming issues for Ubercart or the current downtime? You decide.
Built to work with Drupal, Ubercart treating products in a shopping cart can result in quantity, shipping and tracking orders. In general, Ubercart seems to be lagging behind the competition. Although the learning curve is fast for this platform, it is not a good option for medium or large stores.
Who uses Ubercart?
- Jamie & Jaimie (Indonesia)
- TiS Lifestyle (Netherlands & Belgium)
- Ultrasun (England)
- Kidmart (Russia)
Zeuscart does not hide its developer-focused nature. Drop down to the homepage and you’ll be greeted with enough acronyms to chase away any non-enthusiastic developers. MySQL. PHP. GPL license. You get the idea.
No matter how much programming knowledge you have, Zeuscart is a decent open source ecommerce solution. Their focus on the UX of their platforms makes the platform less daunting than many other open source options.
Zeuscart is built with Bootstrap and is designed for small and medium businesses. It features rich and marketing friends, has a decent community, and offers free support for the first 30 days with paid support from that point on. This could be an ecommerce platform worth looking at. Unfortunately, it seems like the site and social media feeds were abandoned in 2014, though you can still download the ecommerce platform from the Zuescart website.
Who uses Zeuscart?
- [queried Zeuscart Support. Waiting for reply.]
This open source PHP e-commerce platform based on MySQL can run on Windows, Linux and Unix, but has a problem with Macs. It is not SEO friendly, it has poor customer service and support and does not have a gift certificate feature or low stock alert. In short, it is not a platform we would easily recommend. In this regard, AFCommerce has several surprises, such as single-page ordering.
There is no limit to what you can customize with AFCommerce, and it is a multilingual capability with the ability to integrate loyalty programs and affiliate programs. If you decide to take this route, make sure you are ready for the amount of programs you will need to do (or pay to have done).
Despite its obvious problems with AFCommerce, it has been around since 2007 and has been tested on over 250,000 e-commerce sites. It works great with multiple currencies and can display weights in metric and standard systems.
Who uses AFCommerce?
Like Zen Cart, Tomato Cart owes its existence to osCommerce. Tomato Cart is an independent branch of osCommerce 3 and it is popular. It can be fully customized and includes a basic built-in CMS. Lightweight, TomatoCart loads quickly.
We are betting on the feature, we are betting that this is an open source ecommerce solution that we will always take care of. Tomato Cart has conquered many of the issues that other platforms are facing – it’s versatile, SEO-friendly, content marketing ready, works with multiple payment gateways, includes multiple marketing features, even includes a decent (not stellar) analytics program.
The dashboard is trying too hard to look like a desktop, which can be a little annoying. The tomato crust is relatively new, so there isn’t much expansion left. Delivery options are also limited. However, do not jump ship from your current cart to work with TomatoCart. You can play around with all the features of their display on TomatoCart to see if you like the feel and behavior of the platform. Make sure to take a test drive if you are interested.
Who uses TomatoCart?
- Brigade du chef
- Simply personal
- Carnivorous carnivores
This UK open source ecommerce solution is popular on both sides of the pond – in fact, they have a decent following in many parts of the world. CubeCart uses 100% machined skin template to look good on all devices. Great customer support, social networking plugins, unlimited products, admins, customers, orders … call it quits. This basket stands out as a member of the next generation of open source e-commerce platforms. However, it is not Shopify or BigCommerce and you will not be able to get telephone support, although you will find live help on that website.
CubeCart is decent sized but not equipped for large enterprises. It integrates with several common applications, such as MailChimp, but cannot compete with OpenCart in the number of third-party integrations available.
Who uses CubeCart?
- Harris Organic Wines
- Card tower
- Orchid Jacky
Ready for work as soon as you add it to Joomla, this shopping cart works with Google Checkout, Paypal and Amazon to make starting your online store easy. Products are displayed as blocks on the network, and customers can select the product they prefer, add it to the cart, and the software processes shipping and sales tax information.
This lightweight option is similar to simpleCart js in function, created by the Rocket Theme team, so it wouldn’t surprise me to see a WordPress release in the future. The software is lightweight and won’t slow down loading speeds. The administrative controls are intuitive and well-designed, and you can control every item on the page and their configuration. RokQuickCart also lets you work with 23 different currencies.
Who uses RokQuickCart?
- Skydive Moab
- Survivor Jane Simple Survivor Jewelry & Accessories
- Bull bikes
Shoop started out as a project by several web designers who wanted a better way of creating websites for their clients after realizing that the existing options were not so great. With offices in Finland and the United States, Shoop is an international platform with a focus on listening to the open source developer community. Their current market share is mainly Fin, where the company comes from. We are curious to see where they are in a year or two.
Version 1.1 of this platform was recently launched, and version 1.2 is expected to be released by the web every day. Built with Django and Python, your platform customizations are unlimited and include the ability to work with multiple stores. The departure process is also customizable and you can integrate payment via Stripe among other options.
Designed for scale, commercially viable, SEO and content ready, and built to meet the needs of the modern e-marketer. Shoop got off to a good start – here’s hoping it continues to do well and expand this open source ecommerce capability to the same power and versatility as paid options.
Who uses Shoop?
- School of Art, Design and Architecture at Aalto University (Finland)
Is open source ecommerce really free?
Open source ecommerce offers a wide range of features and complexity. Before you choose, you need to be honest with yourself about your web developer skills and budget to pay for support and assistance. Regardless of the cost, however, an open source platform with an active developer community offers benefits to a global community of people working to improve software.
At the same time, these are usually freemium plans that have a dedicated team of ongoing developers and support. If you need help and are not using the open source freemium platform with paid technical assistance, you may run into problems if you encounter a new code error.
Now that you’ve seen a sample of the best open source ecommerce web platforms, think about them. Is there one wow? Go check it out. Already using an open source ecommerce solution? Tell us about your experience in the comments. If you have some devilish skills, give X-Cart a try. And if they are not sold through open store, check out the list of the best ecommerce platforms we mentioned at the beginning of this article.
No matter what your budget, you’ll find the perfect solution for your ecommerce site. Just remember to keep watching until you find the right mix of front and back UX, features, loading speed and scalability.
Thanks for visiting our site. As a way of saying "thanks" here's a FREE course on how to make $688 a day online using FREE methods: