Year after year, the number of people setting out on their own to launch an online store continues to grow. As such, so too does the number of products, platforms, plugins and other tools that are available to help even those with limited technical knowledge run a powerful eCommerce website.
Among the leading platforms comes Joomla, a top-ranked Content Management System capable of driving solid, dynamic online stores to rival any of the big name online retailers.
One of the key components of any eCommerce website is of course, the shopping cart, and in the case of Joomla, you’ve got plenty of options to choose from.
Building your new online store using the Joomla CMS? Here’s our guide to some of the best shopping cart plugins available.
MiJoshop may not be the most established shopping cart featured on this list, but it’s certainly made a big impact in a relatively small amount of time.
First included in the Joomla Extension Directory just three short years ago, MiJoShop is a sleek, highly intuitive shopping cart that doesn’t take any time at all to get the hang of and works flawlessly with most Joomla templates used on a top ten website hosting plan.
Priced at just $69 for a six month license, this one is ideal for larger-sized stores needing a sleek, polished and professional look for their online store.
Though we may have ranked MiJoShop slightly higher, there’s little doubting that VirtueMart is by far the most popular Joomla shopping cart mentioned in this piece. Loved by both hardcore eCommerce veterans and tentative newcomers alike, one of the VirtueMart’s biggest appeals is its price.
Namely, there isn’t one.
A free Joomla shopping cart with as much functionality as most users could ever need, another key attraction is the amount of support available from the wider internet community. As one of the most widely-used shopping carts on the net, it’s rare that you’ll ever run into a problem that somebody hasn’t solved and put online before you ever get there.
Simplicity is HikaShop’s biggest asset, though some would argue it’s the only one it has.
The free starter version comes with enough basic features to get you started, and is by far one of the easiest shopping carts to set up and run that we’ve ever come across.
That ease of use owes much to HikaShop’s bare-bones approach to eCommerce, though if you want to take things to the next level, there are premium versions which include lots of additional features such as product comparisons and discount offers.
Ideal for trendier, modern online stores, RedSHOP creates cool, eye-catching storefronts that are simple for customers to navigate and get exactly what they need within a few clicks of a mouse.
Behind the scenes, you’ll find RedSHOP’s pricing a little different than any of the other shopping carts on this list.
Rather than choosing either a free or premium plan, the bog standard cart package comes for free by default, whilst individual features are paid for separately.
Personally, we like this approach a lot as it means you only ever pay for what you need and avoid cluttering your back-end with features that you’ll never even look at, never mind implement.
Last but not least, we come to J2store, which is ideal for those of you planning to start off small.
Indeed, whilst most of the shopping carts we’ve mentioned above are well-suited to bigger shops, J2’s smooth, user-friendly interface uses the basic content layout of your Joomla website to add products, treating them as simply another piece of content rather than an entirely seperate entitity all of their own, whilst still providing room to add payment details and set up all that behind-the-scenes store management.