OsCommerce: an open source, high-risk compatible platform
Many years ago, when we first started helping a large volume of high-risk merchants with their payment gateways we were introduced to osCommerce. A vape client looking for a compatible payment gateway raved about its features and stability, and since then hundreds of other clients have mentioned osCommerce.
In today’s e-commerce marketplace there are even more options out there as to what platforms you can sell your products on. However, this extensive list narrows quickly when you run a high-risk business. That said, there are still options out there, some better than others. Different website owners prefer different things from their platforms, we have yet to find one that gives them all just about everything. There are many who desire simplicity. On the other hand, some might prefer to have complete control. OsCommerce is a unique e-commerce platform that can give your high-risk website both, depending on your needs.
What high-risk merchants get with osCommerce
OsCommerce is an open source e-commerce platform which offers a great deal of customization for you to take advantage of. The osCommerce platform is very simple and basic out-of-the-box. It offers standard features on both front-end and back-end. If all you need is a product catalog, a shopping cart, and a high-risk payment processor then you’re already halfway there. However, if you need to add more, there’s an extensive library of add-ons. Here are a few of our favorites.
- Extra shopping carts
- Shipping options and streamlining
- Product listing flexibility
- Additional analytics and SEO features
You will find pretty much anything you need to customize your web-store in the add-on library. An added benefit is that osCommerce is a free and open source software that works with high-risk products like FFL, vape, cigars, even pipes, and glassware. This means that you can hire someone from the open source community to write an add-on specifically for you. Best of all you can utilize Authorize.Net to connect your store to a high-risk payment processor. That said, you’ll need a properly set up merchant account first.
With Authorize.Net, you can accept credit cards and process other popular payment methods quickly and easily if you set it up correctly with a high-risk processor on the back end. We happen to be big fans of Authorize.Net, and we know how to easily connect your high-risk web-store with their service. However, to do so you’ll need a proper merchant account.
If you need help finding an osCommerce merchant account for your industry we can quickly recommend a provider that fits your exact needs and integrates perfectly with osCommerce. Contact us today to get started.
OsCommerce is also compatible with NMI. However, the plugins for NMI are a bit harder to find. Don’t worry though, we’re more than happy to help. Feel free to contact us for assistance with setting up an Authorize.Net account with osCommerce. You can always check our resource guide on Authorize.Net and high-risk integration if you’re looking for more information on how osCommerce pairs with Authorize.Net.
Take advantage of the osCommerce shopping cart
We often hear from our clients that one of the best things about using osCommerce is their shopping cart. One of their favorite features of the osCommerce shopping cart is the “fast checkout” option you can place right on the cart page. This online payment checkout process selects the payment type of the purchase on the same page. This eliminates the added steps of having to 1) choose checkout 2) reload a page 3) choose the payment type. This might seem like a standard function these days, and you would be right to think so. What makes this particularly enticing, however, is that it’s a free, open source, out of the box function without the need for a complicated platform. The rest of the cart offers industry standard features like;
- List of selected products.
- Quantity changer.
- Account creation option with returning customer sign-in.
If the standard cart options aren’t enough, there are a lot of add-on options for you to choose from. For example, you can add a tax estimator to your shopping cart options. That way you can make it as easy as possible for both you and your customer. This is particularly useful if a customer lives in a state which takes sales tax for online purchases. Another great add-on is the cart conversion suite. It comes with features to help you close more deals and sell more products by encouraging customers that already have items in their carts to complete their sale. There are even replacement buttons and icons you can download if you don’t like the out-of-the-box options. Admittedly, the standard buttons and icons are a bit dated, so the option to upgrade them as you see fit is a huge bonus.
OsCommerce 3.0 and what to look forward to
The biggest drawback to the osCommerce e-commerce platform is what some perceive as a retro look. Having said that, it shouldn’t be a problem for much longer. OsCommerce programmers are already working on version 3.0, which will be the first significant update in several years. This update should bring the look and style up to modern standards. The new version will also offer some useful functionalities catering to the capabilities of today’s powerful online web-browsing devices.
The next best part of osCommerce, as an e-commerce solution, is its ease of use. Simply add products and categories to your online store, connect your payment gateway, and you’re ready to go. It also has an entirely customizable theme with plenty of templates to choose from. Not only do the templates change the look of a page, but they can also add functionality, such as an admin bar. Impressively, OsCommerce has an entire section of their add-on library dedicated to content. This means that content producers can utilize the platform to sell their products regardless of business type. It’s no wonder osCommerce remains so popular with website owners in the high-risk industry. Especially considering the amount of customization possible on the platform.
If you’re looking to start using osCommerce and need an Authorize.Net payment gateway with credit card processing that fits your high-risk business, feel free to contact us today. We specialize in high-risk e-commerce and can provide assistance with everything from high-risk payment gateway setups to merchant account recommendations. Even if you only have a question or two, don’t worry, we’re here to help!