There are over 2 billion eCommerce shoppers worldwide in 2021. And that number is increasing quickly, especially since the pandemic has forced people to rethink their shopping habits.
But to cater to that rapidly-growing number of buyers, eCommerce stores must offer convenient, simple, and safe payment options that instill trust and allow even less tech-smart people to easily make a purchase.
What’s more, today’s online stores have numerous powerful software tools at their disposal, and they need a way to integrate their sales process to have an accurate picture of how their business is performing.
And that’s why shopping cart integration is one of the hottest eCommerce trends today.
Shopping carts are a central part of running an eCommerce store because they’re the thing that allows the actual sale. When you choose the right integration for your eCommerce shopping cart, you can simplify processes both for yourself and the customer, which can make everything much easier.
In this article, let’s look at what shopping cart integration is and some of the top reasons why it’s so important for your online store.
What is Shopping Cart Integration?
Choosing the right shopping cart can seem like an afterthought. And most eCommerce stores end up using the simplest solution available, not giving much thought about the potential to improve performance by finding a more robust solution.
And that’s unfortunate because the possibilities of using shopping cart integration solutions allow to streamline the entire business, from warehousing to accounting or customer tracking.
Basically, shopping cart integration is the process of connecting all of your business tools to work in unison, where they can share information in real-time, providing you a full picture of what’s going in and what might need to be adjusted.
For instance, you can get live information about new orders, knowing when your inventory is decreasing, and even setting up automation to stock up on items that are running low.
The Importance of Shopping Cart Integration for eCommerce
Shopping cart integration is an essential tool for small businesses. With resources being limited, taking advantage of streamlined processes can help free up time for more productive activities. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what the technology can offer.
Let’s go over a few of the main benefits that highlight the importance of shopping cart integration below.
Seamlessly Integrates with Other Software
As the name implies, the biggest advantage that comes with shopping cart integration is the ability to integrate with other software you’re already using. And although each shopping cart platform is different, most leading solutions today offer a wide variety of API methods that can connect processes within your store.
For instance, you could import orders from multiple channels, automatically adding them to your system. This would allow you to track performance and see whether something needs your attention.
You can also synchronize your sales with inventory, tracking your stock levels and setting up alerts when you need to order more items that are running low. Few things are as frustrating to shoppers as seeing an item out of stock, so solving this issue alone can make a big difference in how your business operates.
Some of the more robust shopping cart solutions can even allow you to update listings and pricing automatically and send notifications to subscribers about offers you want them to see.
Hundreds of APIs can be used to enhance your business and connect different tasks, which is exactly why shopping cart integration is so powerful. There’s no single thing that makes it amazing but the combination of features can have a massive impact on how your business functions on a day-to-day basis.
Helps Optimize Processes & Save Money
The integrations with other software are great, but smart business owners understand that every feature must have a clear purpose for it to be worth it. But while they may not be clear initially, the benefits of eCommerce automation are hard to ignore.
Whether it’s getting more accurate data, making more informed decisions, or providing the best possible experience for your customers, shopping cart integration can offer far-reaching advantages that impact every part of your business.
For instance, shopping cart integration can help you stay compliant in terms of taxes, automatically calculating the amount the customer needs to pay depending on their location, and saving your accounting team a lot of time by automatically sending the necessary information to your databases.
And over time, having a convenient way to integrate your shopping cart and track sales will also result in saving money.
On one hand, you will have to allocate fewer resources to overseeing various operational tasks, which means you can use them more effectively. And if you use a comprehensive shopping cart integration solution, you can achieve high-level integrations without the need for a developer team. And that can end up saving you thousands of dollars you would have had to spend otherwise.
Gives You Control Over Inventory
Tracking inventory can be a big hassle. And we already briefly discussed how shopping cart integration can make the process much more effective. But when you have an efficient way to connect your inventory to your shopping cart software, the benefits are not that simple.
By using shopping cart integration to your warehouse management system, you can reimagine the entire process with which your warehousing is currently set up.
You can track products and organize warehouse operations to respond to real-time data and adjust accordingly. As you collect more data and recognize patterns in real-time, you can set up processes for updating your inventory automatically, saving a lot of time for your team.
And that also translates into the way that your customers shop. When someone enters your store, they will be presented with accurate data about the number of available items, avoiding situations where the number of orders exceeds your stock and you have to scramble to keep your customers happy.
Learn More About Your Audience
Shopping cart software is not just about allowing your customers to finalize their orders. It can also be an immensely powerful tool for collecting insights about what your customers care about and how you can better cater to their needs.
For instance, you can set up a way to retarget customers who have not completed the purchase and have abandoned the cart. If they registered before leaving, you can send out automated messages reminding them to complete the purchase or even target them using paid ads.
By collecting essential data about your customer’s order, you can run personalized ads that are designed to capture attention and create a desire for your products. Instead of abandoning the cart and forgetting about the purchase, they can be reminded that they were about to buy something, making these types of retargeting ads much more likely to succeed.
Over time, you can leverage the insights you gather about your audience’s behavior in the shopping process to better structure your pricing system and your offers, driving more sales and creating a more customer-focused business that puts the needs of your buyers first.
For instance, you can discover the most common reasons for cart abandonment based on user data and streamline the payment process in a way that minimizes friction and makes it much more convenient to buy from you.
Enhance Your Sales Process
Your customers aren’t all the same. In fact, you will find that even within your audience, there are people with vastly different preferences, likes, and shopping habits.
Because of that, it’s not surprising that your customers will also have different methods they like to pay with when shopping online. And if you aren’t able to cater to those needs, that will end up costing you a lot of sales.
Luckily, shopping cart integration allows you to set up multiple payment gateways that will cater to all of your customers, ensuring that the sale doesn’t fall through at the moment when they’re actually ready to pay.
Some of the more robust shopping cart software solutions offer a wide variety of payment gateway integrations, making it easy to accept credit cards from all over the world. They also enable your store to accept payments through PayPal, which has been a popular and safe option for paying online for a long time.
There are also services like Amazon Pay, Google Pay, and Apple Pay, which are used by many users and can be important additions to your store.
Today, with cryptocurrencies becoming more prevalent, forward-thinking eCommerce stores are even embracing payments using Bitcoin or even some of the smaller cryptocurrencies available today.
All of these payment methods are made possible with seamless shopping cart integrations that are becoming easier to use every year. In most cases, you won’t need to hire a developer for thousands of dollars and can set up simple integrations quickly and without much technical knowledge.
Shopping cart integration plays a key role in how your online store functions. The ability to streamline processes, take control of your inventory, and provide a better all-around experience for your customers are just some of the powerful benefits you can get from embracing the shopping cart technology available today.
The only thing to keep in mind is how your store’s needs align with the shopping cart solutions of today and how the current software you’re using can be enhanced by adding a new tool to your workflow.