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Looking for a particular type of shopping cart for e-commerce?

12:54 pm on Aug 15, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I am looking for a shopping cart for e-commerce that allows you to bulk upload attributes (size, color, etc). Most of the carts I am finding require the product option or attribute to be installed and then attached to the item. I have over 10,000 items and each color, size, and feature varies by brand - it would take forever to create applicable product options or attributes within the system (trust me - I have already done it with Zulu Cart). Any suggestions? I also want to keep my store front. In general - I would want to up-root from one location and plop down in another within a disruption in business.
7:52 pm on Aug 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I would pick your favorite cart system based on feature set and hire a programmer to the bulk insert for you. It should not be that hard to figure out the database structure and write a bulk insert routine.
1:56 pm on Aug 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Welcome to WebmasterWorld!
Let's be sure we're on the same page. There are 3 basic pieces to a eCommerce website.

  • The catalog where products and their details can be viewed,
  • The cart, where selected products can be collected and stored prior to checkout,
  • The checkout flow where the prices are totalled, shipping calculated, and the buyer gives up their billing and shipping info.

    Based on your post, it seems like you want to change to another solution for the catalog but then later you say you want to keep your store front. Or did you want to switch because of the way the other two items worked/don't work?
  • 11:57 am on Aug 23, 2012 (gmt 0)

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    I'm with Particleman on this. Someone good at reading and understanding mySQL structures would write something in a few days, then run it against how you have your data today and all done.

    Look at Prestashop's csv functionality and see if that is what you need. You will need to get your data into csv format (Excel) which is usually not to difficult.

    OR learn how to write INSERT INTO mySQL statements and use Excel of something to create the data in the right format to insert into the appropriate DB tables.
    7:11 pm on Aug 25, 2012 (gmt 0)

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    If only it were that simple. Every shopping cart (Zulu, Magento, AspDotNetStorefront), hosted service, and marketplace (eBay, Amazon, Bonanza) has different capabilities, which affects the schema of the product catalog.

    Compare your existing site with your proposed cart/hosted service. Do they have any of these features?:
      Kits, Quantity Discounts, Ship-separately items, Variations (size, color, style), Restricted Quantities,
      Upsell items, Tag-along items, Shipping Dimensions, Shipping Restrictions (HazMat), Gift Wrapping Option, Free shipping.

    Then there are search-related attributes, which are tied to the specific cart/hosted service search facility:
      Genre, Year, Manufacturers Part Number, Manufacturer, Publisher, Ships Free, Horsepower, Hand (Left/Right), etc.

    Other questions:
      Can Product Variations vary by weight and/or price? Can Product Prices vary by Currency? Can shipping rates be specified for each item? Are quantities stored as integers, or do they include decimal places? Can products be placed in multiple categories, or just one? How are your URLs (as indexed by Google) going to be carried over and redirected?

    As a simple test, try mapping products from eBay to Amazon (two well-known marketplaces). The common attributes are easy, and can be done in an hour. But Variations are completely different, shipping methodologies don't even compare, product feature bullets (for Amazon search) don't have an eBay counterpart, and the pricing model is different (one uses US-only tiered rates, while the other gets International real-time rates from carriers). The two biggest marketplaces on Earth, and you'd think that moving from one to the other would be a snap.

    Don't believe that a programmer can do this for a couple-hundred dollars. It's been my experience that taking 10,000 products from one cart/service to another is *not* a weekend job. The common information (Name, Description, Price) can be done in a few minutes. The difficulty is dealing with the things that don't map over.

    The task of picking-up and plopping-down, with no disruption in operation, is measured in man-weeks, not minutes.