Trepidation around starting my first ecommerce website

Hi all, I know that this forum is a wonderful resource so I wanted to ask your opinion.

I’m about to start my first e-commerce website and I’m a little anxious about it. It will be full e-commerce including posting abroad, different sizes of products, the whole shebang.

I’m assuming Rapid Cart Pro is the way to go. But I’m going to need help working it all out.
You guys won’t disappear, will you? I’ve a feeling I’m going to be on this forum A LOT when I start work on it.!

Ecwid and Cartloom are both good options to consider as well. There’s a good chance you’ll have recurring/monthly fees, but it may be worth it for some of the extra features (online administration, for example) and, potentially, ease of setup.

I say this as someone who has had good experience in setting up relatively simple, relatively uncustomized stores in RapidCart Pro. However, there’s been concerns with others around support and it can be tricky to get setup.

Not at all trying to dissuade you from RCP but just putting a couple of other options out there.

If your looking for a bit of a head start with RCP check out my template for Foundation.

There’s plenty of people around here that will help if you get stuck, so don’t worry too much about that. Alternatively, Cartloom is a smashing option too!


I would consider Cartloom if its the full shebang.

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You can also consider “outside” carts… I use UltraCart with simple “Add to Cart” buttons on my site. (I don’t use their “storefronts” front end. If you have tons of product you can maintain in Excel/Numbers and import your cart data.

Dylan, I do have Foundation, is that link showing a template ready made with Rapidcart Pro? If so are you saying that I can use that template in my existing Foundation website? Or am I misreading your link?

Are all the main e-commerce softwares charging monthly fees then? Just googling all the options now. Starting with Cartloom.

@SteveB I reckon the average unit price will be £25.
What do you mean by margin?
No idea how many units expected to sell a month at this point, maybe 200?
Will need advice on payment gateways I have no idea, full credit card options needed I guess.
Its fashion and trinkets, branded merchandise, small stuff mostly. Is that high risk fraudwise?
So t-shirts for girls and boys, sizes, colours etc.
What is an SKU? (I’ve got a LOT to learn). If you mean items, my client doesn’t know, maybe starting with 10 different items and see where it goes from there.
I’ve never used CSV to upload anything. Christ I’m starting to sweat!
I guess I’ll need to update stock levels, my client won’t have time for it.
No idea what 3d secure is, eek!
It’s going to be an internationally selling site so we need it secure.

Thank you so much for all of your questions, does any of that help??
I really appreciate all of your input so much.
I’m considering passing on the build because of this, but I know that if I manage to learn Cartloom or Rapidcart or any of the others, it will mean I can build future sites with e-commerce too, which can only be a good thing.

Also, it’s unlikely, but if the client ended up wanting to take over their ecommerce side of things, are all of these options currently handled inside Rapidweaver? In which case it would prove tricky to hand over to the client. This is very unlikely but I’m just curious.

I recently quoted for an accessories store with c.200 products that needed to be updated by the client.

For me Cartloom looked the best option and despite the slightly awkward (to my mind) way of creating product pages I was able to knock up a demo in a couple of hours using the free trial. I’ve only used RapidCart (not Pro) so can’t compare the two but I’d have a serious look at Cartloom because it does loads of stuff, is $20.00 a month and will make your client look good.


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It’s a pre made template built with Foundation and RCP that you can use on your own project. I suppose you could use/copy parts of it in an existing Foundation website yes. However, it’s ideal if you are starting new projects.

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Thanks for that info @robbeattie, so Cartloom can be updated by a third party? I haven’t purchased yet but now I’m assuming its a setup that you login to online rather than do inside Rapidweaver right?
Regarding the monthly cost, do you charge your client this? If so how do you sell/justify the monthly fee to your client?

Ah right, thanks @dylan :slight_smile:

@SteveB thanks so much for that. When you say you push them to someone else’s platform do you mean you hire someone else to build using Cartloom, or do you just mean Cartloom for example? Sorry if I’m not quite getting it.

Can you say which ones? You are talking about ones which all work with Rapidweaver right? Or are they completely independent of Rapidweaver?

Yes, Cartloom is a service that plugs into RW in various ways - as a
button, a product or a page of products. Client signs into Cartloom to add
edit or remove items.

As for charging, we haven’t gotten that far. I’d probably suggest client
pays direct. Cartloom does lots of other fancy stuff. - invoices, emails,
stock control, abandoned carts, etc. - that $20 a month is pretty good
value IMHO.


Stock Keeping Unit - good idea to have this if you want to keep track of stock!

Yes, in addition, you need to set up something like Stripe which is 1.4%+20p per transaction.

Seriously? I’d say Cartloom is way more than a hobbyist solution plus it offers good integration with rapidweaver. Not saying that dedicated external products don’t offer more but that doesn’t mean that cartloom is hobbyist. And some of those products are pretty weak when it comes to layout flexibility.

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@SteveB No, the 3% extra transaction fee was only applied to the free version of Cartloom (which has now been discontinued). There is no extra transaction fee on the plus and pro plans. All you pay is the monthly Cartloom fee and the card processing fee (e.g. Stripe at 1.4%+20p).

It’s the same as if you were to use an external gateway on Shopify. You pay the monthly fee + card processing fee.