At Practical eCommerce, we are aware of more than 350 online shopping carts. And each week we feature one, interviewing both the cart’s developer or management and a customer. “Cart of the Week” is not a review or an evaluation, but rather an opportunity to learn about a shopping cart from the people who built it and use it.
This week, we’ll hear from Wladimir Baranoff-Rossine,
managing director of Tradingeye, a licensed shopping cart based in Newcastle upon Tyne, in the northeast of England. We’ll also hear the views of Deborah Miarkowska, founder of EcoChic, a Tradingeye customer.
PeC: Please provide some general background on the cart.
Baranoff-Rossine: “Tradingeye was born out a lack of fully-functional ecommerce software that would also comply with the UK DDA [United Kingdom’s Disability Discrimination Act] and Section 508 [of the U.S. Disability Act]. With web accessibility such a great concern for us and many other web designers and developers, we decided to build from the ground up a fully-accessible ecommerce cart that would suit users as well as the web teams who would be supplying the software. As the software is built on a solid foundation of modern web standards, we’ve ended up with a product that is easy to use as well as customize. We currently have over 5,000 active licenses.”
PeC: What sort of server requirements are required to run your cart?
Baranoff-Rossine: “Tradingeye is licensed on a per-domain basis and can be hosted on Linux or Windows running PHP and MySQL. We offer web hosting ourselves as an additional service, with packages to suit every retailer’s requirements.”
PeC: How much does the cart cost?
Baranoff-Rossine: “It’s £299 [$493 USD] for a first license, with discounts available for those purchasing additional licenses. The pricing scheme makes Tradingeye very appealing to web teams who may offer ecommerce as an option to multiple clients, as great savings can be passed on to clients. We offer free local host licenses for those who wish to test-drive the software in a local environment, and also offer IP-based and server-wide licensing packages.”
PeC: What are the cart’s biggest strengths?
Baranoff-Rossine: “The software is very easy to re-skin and theme to any style, and developers can easily modify the functionality of the software to their preferences. And, as Tradingeye has been built with accessibility and ease of use in mind, the powerful system remains very straightforward to use from a customer point of view. Due to its foundation of modern web standards, the software is search engine friendly, fast and intuitive to use.”
PeC: What are some of its weaknesses?
Baranoff-Rossine: “The only real weaknesses revolve around the product’s supporting materials. The team is currently working on the accompanying documentation for version 6 of Tradingeye.”
PeC: What plans do you have for future cart development?
Baranoff-Rossine: “Some areas of development on the horizon include some new and innovative web marketing techniques, and our very own API, which will allow developers to link in to Tradingeye in new and inventive ways. Over the coming months we will be launching our Tradingeye Themes site, where we will be selling some beautiful themes for the software, many of which will be designed and built by guest web designers.”
PeC: How would your cart help an ecommerce merchant, versus the cart he/she is using now?
Baranoff-Rossine: “Many retailers have come to us for the intuitiveness, speed, reliability, and the features which our software provides. Many systems currently on the market simply do not adhere to current web standards, making them slow, difficult to update and confining in terms of the features they offer and support.”
PeC: Any other thoughts for our readers, who are ecommerce merchants?
Baranoff-Rossine: “A good ecommerce system is only one small part of running an online business. Tradingeye covers the online sales aspect, leaving you to concentrate on sales, marketing and promotion.”
A Customer’s View
Deborah Miarkowska is the founder and managing director of EcoChic, an online specialty boutique out of Hove, East Sussex, England. Miarkowska uses the Tradingeye cart, and here she offers her opinions and comments about it.
PeC: What is your store’s approximate total annual revenue?
Miarkowska: “EcoChic is a new business, but we have taken several thousands of pounds through the cart to date.”
PeC: What does your company sell via the cart?
Miarkowska: “We have a wide range of handmade and ethical and fair trade fashion accessories in our boutique and subscriptions to our EcoChic ethical living magazine. Each product holds a wonderful story of its origin and special features, and thanks to the Trading Eye cart, we can share these with our customers.”
PeC: How long has your company been using the Tradingeye cart?
Miarkowska: “Since July 2007.”
PeC: What are the cart’s biggest strengths?
Miarkowska: “It is exceptionally user friendly, and we find that the cart provides a content management system and enables the user to manage it in-house, which allows for real flexibility.”
PeC: How could the cart improve?
Miarkowska: “We are aware that the cart has very recently been upgraded to version 6, which looks even better as it has only one checkout page and even greater flexibility.”
PeC: How would the Tradingeye cart improve another merchant’s business?
Miarkowska: “It is easy to use, flexible, with the highest levels of security, and there is an online support system, should you have queries.”
PeC: Do you plan on continuing to use the cart?
Miarkowska: “Yes. We are looking to upgrade to version 6 to provide the most up-to-date and user-friendly system for our customers.”
PeC: Any other thoughts for our readers concerning Tradingeye?
Miarkowska: “Be assured that the security and payment options on the Tradingeye cart are configured to the highest levels. It is easy to use, and once the customer is signed up in the system, their details are kept secure, making it even easier for a future purchase.”