Is it worth using OpenCart in 2019

10 open source shop systems at a glance

The e-commerce market is growing year after year. From a for aioli to z for toothpaste: Nowadays you can buy almost anything online. If you want to create your own online shop, you always start with the choice of the respective shop system. In our guide we therefore present 10 different open source shop solutions with which you can get started online.

There are dozens of shop systems on the market - both free and paid. Providers come and providers go: That is why we only considered open source software when researching this article, which is currently being further developed and maintained.

Since the standard language of many software tools is English, we have also taken care to only present tools that offer an easy way to change the language to German during or after installation.

Legal compliance and the consideration of data protection also play a major role for operation in Germany and the EU. In order to be able to use the shop in a legally compliant manner, further adjustments are sometimes necessary. While this can be done with just a few clicks in many systems, some solutions sometimes require adjustments to the code or the purchase of chargeable plugins / extensions.

Before you decide on an open source shop system, you should thoroughly analyze the advantages and disadvantages of the various shop solutions in advance. If strong growth is forecast, it should be ensured that this is also in line with the favored shop software and can be implemented.

Despite careful research, we would like to point out that the licenses and conditions of the providers and solutions can change at any time. You should therefore pay attention to the license terms that are valid at the time of the download.

1. Magento Open Source - Free e-commerce platform for developers and small businesses

Screenshot: Magento / FLYERALARM Digital

Magento is shop software written in PHP that was released in 2008 and has been continuously developed. There is now a very large community and many service providers who specialize in Magento. The shop solution, which is popular in German-speaking countries, is offered in various editions / models.

With Magento open source (formerly Magento Community Edition) you get a flexible basis with the most necessary functionalities to run a solid webshop. A paid version is also available for large enterprise shops - Magento Commerce. Incidentally, both editions use the same software core. The difference lies among other things in the warranty, availability and support. You don't get support from Magento directly in the free version, but only from the community.

Important features of the Magento shop software

  • almost 6,000 extensions available (as of June 2020)
  • Multi-shop and multilingualism
  • Product reviews and ratings
  • Statistics available for controlling
  • Template and content management system
  • Shop control possible via REST API

Further links to Magento

2. PrestaShop - The free online shop software for free

Screenshot: PrestaShop / FLYERALARM Digital

Another very popular shop solution is PrestaShop. This software has been on the market for over 12 years and is constantly being further developed. Version 1 was released in August 2008. Version 1.7.6.5 is currently available. The modular software developed in the PHP programming language can be easily expanded by installing modules.

Over 4,000 modules are offered in the Marketplace - from API services to payment service providers. The appearance can also be customized using templates. By supporting multiple languages, you can also sell the same products on an international level and thus increase sales.

Important features of the PrestaShop online shop software

  • Over 3,000 templates (themes) available (as of June 2020)
  • Can be expanded as required with over 4,000 modules (as of June 2020)
  • Multilingualism: available in over 75 languages
  • Simple template and content management
  • Special offers and coupons can be used
  • Shop control possible via REST API

Links to PrestaShop

3. Shopware 6 - flexible e-commerce solution free of charge

Screenshot: Shopware / FLYERALARM Digital

Shopware is a very powerful and flexible e-commerce solution that is available in several versions. In addition to a free Community Edition, there are also various Shopware editions that can be installed either in the cloud or on your own server. Manufacturer support and extended CMS functions are only available from the paid Professional Edition.

A plug-in manager gives you an overview of all extensions and templates at all times. Anyone who wants to sell their products on different sales channels is well equipped thanks to the API-first approach. Because with Shopware 6 you can control and manage all channels centrally via your own shop solution.

Important features of Shopware

  • Hosting on your own server or in the cloud
  • huge community for help, extensions and templates
  • API connection for different store fronts or sales channels
  • very high performance thanks to simple UX
  • Integrated SEO functions
  • countless extensions and plugins

Further links to Shopware

4. OXID eShop free of charge

Screenshot: OXID / FLYERALARM Digital

According to the manufacturer, the OXID eShop has been downloaded 500,000 times and has a very large community. There are also different versions for B2C and B2B that offer more functions and services than the free Community Edition. The OXID eShop Enterprise Edition in the cloud offers software maintenance, service and support as well as managed cloud services and hosting, for example.

The Community Edition of OXID eShop can be expanded with numerous modules. There are hundreds of extensions in the so-called OXID eXchange: payment providers, voucher solutions or B2B registration solutions. Help is only available through the community. Manufacturer support is only offered in the paid versions.

Important features of OXID eShop

  • slim & modular structure: expandable with modules
  • can be installed on almost any web server with PHP 7
  • Convenient product management and scaling
  • API integration via REST and GraphQL
  • Large community that supports you with questions

Further links to OXID eShop

5. WooCommerce Shop for WordPress for free

Screenshot: WooCommerce / FLYERALARM Digital

WooCommerce is the standard shop plugin for the most popular CMS WordPress. In a few minutes you can convert every WordPress instance into your own shop or add a store. Thanks to the widespread use of both variants, there are plugins or help in the form of code snippets for many applications. There are small shops based on WooCommerce, but also platforms and stores with hundreds of thousands of items.

WooCommerce is very easy to expand. Plugins can easily be searched for, downloaded and automatically installed via the WordPress marketplace. There are also extensions in order to be able to use a WooCommerce shop for use in German-speaking countries in accordance with the law. Because some elements and legal texts are not included by default.

Important features of WooCommerce

  • flexible shop plugin for WordPress with over 5 million installations
  • Product management via shop backend or REST API
  • Integration of numerous plugins such as Google Analytics, MailChimp or Facebook
  • Secure payment options from almost all payment providers
  • Supports multilingualism and different tax rates

Further links to WooCommerce

Fast websites with their own SSL certificate

Own website and hosting including data protection declaration (GDPR)

6. nopCommerce - Free & Open-Source eCommerce for free

Screenshot: nopCommerce / FLYERALARM Digital

nopCommerce is an easily scalable and expandable e-commerce platform. The e-commerce solution supports many classic functionalities such as B. Multi-store, multi-vendor (drop shipments), multi-warehouse, customer management, wish lists, discounts or coupon promotions. It is also possible to switch the language for multilingual operation. The basic installation already includes support for the most popular payment providers: Authorize.net, PayPal, Google Wallet, 2Checkout and many more.

In contrast to many other solutions, nopCommerce is not developed in the PHP language but relies on ASP.NET. As a result, the system cannot easily run with many standard web hosting packages. Support and help with all questions relating to further development can be activated at nopCommerce for a fee. 12 months of premium support cost around 720 euros.

Important features of nopCommerce

  • Shop solution in ASP.NET
  • Unlimited number of products, accounts and roles
  • Immediately supports many payment providers such as PayPal or Google Pay
  • GDPR-compliant operation possible
  • Connection of an ERP system and other tools possible

Further links to nopCommerce

7. OpenCart - Free Open Source Shopping Cart Solution

Screenshot: OpenCart / FLYERALARM Digital

OpenCart is a shop system based on the MVC framework that scores above all with its high performance and scalability. The software is particularly popular with small and medium-sized companies, as many functions are already included in the standard. The solution is programmed in PHP and can therefore be integrated on almost any web server.

The first version of OpenCart was released in 2012. Since then, the system has been continuously developed so that over 13,000 modules and extensions are now also available in the marketplace. A lot is also possible when it comes to multilingualism. Over 30 languages ​​are available for planned internationalization.

Important features of OpenCart

  • Simple article management and individual product rules
  • Multi-language shop: multilingualism can be easily implemented
  • Large community for questions about the expansion of OpenCart
  • Content management system for managing content and images
  • Marketplace for expansion: over 13,000 modules available

Further links to OpenCart

8. Free thirty bees shop system

Screenshot: thirtybees.com / FLYERALARM Digital

thirty bees is a PHP-based e-commerce system that builds on the PrestaShop source code. Because a lot in the PrestaShop ecosystem was no longer developed the way the community wanted, numerous developers have launched a new project under the name thirty bees. This shop system offers numerous functionalities that have repeatedly been requested and requested by users. Numerous bugs that exist in PrestaShop have also been fixed.

Regardless of whether it is a one-page checkout or a checkout over several steps. Thanks to the modular and flexible structure, a shop that was created with thirty bees can be completely adapted to your own wishes and needs. Either on your own or with the support of the community.

Important features of thirty bees

  • Modular shop system with over 500+ functionalities
  • Focus on search engine optimization and speed
  • Supports multi-site and multi-currency
  • Updates can be carried out with one click
  • Great community for support

Further links to thirty bees

9. Sylius - Open Source eCommerce Shopping for Free

Screenshot: Sylius / FLYERALARM Digital

Sylius is a platform-independent open source e-commerce framework that is based on Symfony and offers many functionalities. In addition to a comfortable admin panel with full software internationalization i18n, multiple currencies and multi-channel are also supported. Since the availability of different payment methods is a critical success factor for e-commerce shops, Sylius also offers integrations for almost all providers: PayPal, Visa, MasterCard, AmericanExpress, adyen, Stripe and many more.

As with numerous other shop providers, there is also another edition here. This offers guaranteed support from the manufacturer in the form of an exclusive customer success manager. There are also other enterprise features available that are not included in the standard version.

Important features of Sylius

  • Integration into an existing tech stack: PIM, ERP, CRM, mailing, warehouse
  • Multilingualism for easy internationalization
  • Customizable checkout process
  • Component-based for creating your own admin workflows
  • Support for almost all common payment providers

Further links to Sylius

10. EvenCart free of charge

Screenshot: EvenCart / FLYERALARM Digital

The EvenCart shop solution was deliberately developed so that there is a separate REST API for each functionality. In this way, product data and other required information can be used from anywhere and third-party systems can be easily connected. EvenCart is available in different licenses. The community license is free, but includes a visible “Powered by EvenCart” in the footer of every shop.

If you don't want that, you can purchase a commercial license from around 45 euros per year. EvenCart also offers a marketplace so that you can expand your own shop with additional functionalities. To optimize the user experience or to improve processes in the admin panel

Important features of EvenCart

  • Headless shop software with numerous API endpoints
  • Easy management of content and assets
  • Selectable data scheme: MySQL or MSSQL
  • Flexible and high-performance
  • Many functionalities can be used without plugins

Further links to EvenCart

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