Published: Jul 4, 2014 Last updated: Jul 4, 2014 Yan Kulakov

If you are going to launch a large ecommerce store project with numerous independent departments, then you are probably aware that standard web shopping carts will be useless here. Actually, you will need a specific, advanced type of ecommerce platform - eCommerce mall cart solution, or also known as a multi-vendor shopping cart - designed specifically for multi-vendor store development and management tasks.

online shopping mall software

CS-Cart online shopping mall software

Are you on the Web market today opting for a powerful, feature-rich and still affordably priced eCommerce mall shopping cart solution? CS-Cart can be the most deliberate choice! We are an established, well-known ecommerce cart platform development company with the comprehensive selection of turnkey ecommerce tools and carts for a wide range of eCommerce stores with any needs and budget limits—from small stores to established online malls.

What is an Online Shopping Mall?

Let's start from figuring out what a mall is. A mall is a large building where multiple companies sell their products in stores. Companies usually rent space from the mall administration and build mini stores. They build a store, the checkout zone, and all. Companies decorate their stores so that they match the company's visual style. The companies sell their products in the mall and pay the mall owner for using the mall's space.

An online mall is a also call an eCommerce marketplace or less often software mall. A marketplace is exactly the same thing as an offline mall with only one difference—a marketplace is virtual so are the sellers' mini stores in it. An eCommerce marketplace is usually a large website where multiple independent companies showcase their products on a common storefront and in their own mini stores.

Companies sell products to the marketplace visitors and pay commission to the marketplace owner from every sale. It is common that a marketplace owner also take a recurring fee from sellers for using his or her marketplace. This functionality is often call "vendor plans". Every plan offers sellers different privileges and places limitations.

Usually, an eCommerce mall doesn't store any products. All the products are stored on sellers' warehouses. And sellers ship products to customers themselves. But sometimes sellers ship products to the mall first, and the latter ships then to the customers using the malls's own delivery service.

Online shoppers prefer buying products on an online shopping mall website because it is fast, convenient, and safe. The thing is that the online mall acts as a middleman between a customer and a seller, and guarantees a safe purchase. If a seller sends low-quality or a wrong product, the mall guarantees the refund to the customers and punishes the seller.

One of the key components of an eCommerce marketplace is customer reviews. A modern eCommerce mall just can exist without customer reviews. Reviews are the key to building trust in an eCommerce mall. Customers review products and sellers. This greatly helps other buyer choose only high-quality products and this helps the mall owner to identify bad sellers and ban their store from the mall.

Another important component of an online mall is communication tools for customers and sellers. Communication is really the key to healthy relationships on the platform. Say, a customer can't decide on some product. The guy need a quick and convenient tools to contact the sellers and ask about the product features. Seller also need a convenient tool to communicate with the marketplace administration to discuss business topics and resolve conflicts.

An eCommerce marketplace is built on a special shopping cart platform called multi-vendor cart platforms. The key point of this cart solution is that it supports multiple sellers in one website. For example, a customers comes to the marketplace, puts products from different sellers to the cart and them proceeds to the cart and the checkout.

Multi-Vendor shopping cart solution also has to support powerful vendor administration system so that the marketplace administrators can effectively control and manages sellers. There are dozens on multi-vendor shopping cart solutions out there these days. You are free to choose from SaaS shopping cart to self-hosted multi-vendor cart solutions.

How does an Online Shopping Mall Work?

A software mall is a single sales platform where multiple independent vendors sell their products or services through a single cart. Say, some offline kitchenware manufacturer wants to sell their product online directly to customers avoiding dealers. The company registers a vendor account on an eCommerce mall, then the eCommerce mall administration checks the vendor and approves it.

The vendor (the kitchenware manufacturer) pick a suitable vendor plan and starts setting up their mini store on the marketplace: they create categories, import products, set up payment and shipping methods, and the look and feel of their storefront.

Next, the vendors starts selling. From every sale, they pay a commission to the marketplace administration. Plus, a monthly fee for using the marketplace for their business. That's how a marketplace makes money. In its turn, the marketplace helps sellers promote their products, attracts new customers, and offers other bonuses to the sellers.

Once a customer puts products to the cart and makes a purchase, the seller gets a new cart order and starts processing it. A customer can order from different sellers at the same time, It's up to the marketplace administration whether allow the buyer to pay for the whole cart or for orders from different sellers separately.

Then the seller ships the order to the customers. Sometimes, sellers ship products to the marketplace warehouse first and then the marketplace delivers orders via its own delivery service. That's how an eCommerce shopping mall works and what multi-vendor shopping cart software should have in terms of features.

Multi-Vendor Software Overview

Welcome to check out our Multi-Vendor Software – an advanced, fully-functional virtual shopping mall system that offers unmatched flexibility and usability, without requiring to invest a fortune. With multiple breakthrough tools integrated, it allows to create huge shopping malls with multiple standalone departments or sophisticated online marketplaces, where virtually an unlimited number of independent vendors can sell their products and services through a common storefront.

multi-vendor software

CS-Cart multi-vendor software

Our shopping cart software for an online shopping mall website allows tracking payable amounts for all vendors separately. By using a special built-in powerful tool to the cart platform, you can record your vendor payouts and have your bookkeeping always properly organized. Your vendors will be able to configure their own shipping options, while buyers will get the opportunity to choose vendor-specific shipping methods at checkout.

While the Multi-Vendor shopping cart software provides every single vendor with an individual administration panel to manage his/her own inventory and store settings, you, as a root administrator, obviously get full access to all stores, with the right to pre-moderate the activity of any particular vendor if required. With any sophisticated and specific online shopping mall project in mind, you can definitely match all your ideas and succeed in the long run with our Multi-Vendor marketplace cart software.

Learn what Multi-Vendor is and
how it works in this 5-minute video:

Try Multi-Vendor for free