When selling online, wouldn’t it be nice to work with a system that offers all the functionality you need without being forced to install a bunch of third party apps?
Shouldn’t all of these apps already be available for you in your dashboard?
UltraCart is the ecommerce platform currently making that happen, and since the company has been around for more than 15 years, it has become a better value, with more security, than just about every other platform on the market.
Upon reviewing the UltraCart system I had a few questions as to who this platform was built for, and how it could help me get an online store up and running quickly. Well, it turns out UltraCart provides more built-in tools than most other solutions, and it offers a simple interface for both beginners and advanced users.
So, let’s take a look at how UltraCart stands out and why it might just be the best solution for companies hoping to scale up fast.
Ease of Use
Creating an UltraCart account takes just a few minutes, and once you’re on the dashboard you have access to a step-by-step setup process, complemented with video tutorials and documentation.
The UltraCart team has clearly worked hard making the interface look similar to WordPress, generating a clear and concise workflow
As an example, when you go to the front end of your website, you can click on any page and choose to edit that page from the top right corner. This stands out to me, since it combines the visual aspects of design with the power of a full-fledged backend editor.
As you can see, I navigated to a plaid shirt product page, clicked on the Edit Item button and was redirected to the Item Management area, rich with settings for media, descriptions, discounts, reviews, shiping and more.
Themes That Clear Out The Clutter
As you’ll start to realize the more you read this article, the UltraCart company takes a few different approaches when it comes to its offerings.
The UltraCart team looked at the current marketplace and realized that companies like Shopify and Volusion simply pack their theme stores with duplicate solutions, and most of the themes (even though they have slight design differences) are virtually the same when it comes to functionality.
This setup puts the burden on you to sift through all these themes, and in the end, your theme isn’t going to be much different than everyone else who picked something from the store.
UltraCart calls its themes “Storefronts,” and they’ve put most of the development efforts into bringing their storefronts into a centrally located spot with niche designs to clear out the clutter.
The point is to make the decision process less overwhelming. If you know what you want to sell, it shouldn’t take you longer than a few minutes to grab the perfect theme.
What else can you expect from the UltraCart themes?
- Each theme is completely responsive.
- UltraCart focuses on quality or quantity, with layouts built for flexibility and customization.
- Video tutorials are divided up into micro-lessons for modifying your theme.
- The theme setup process is one of the fastest I’ve seen.
- You receive social integrations with all themes.
- Each theme is ripe for your development needs, using a local atmosphere, a traditional FTP connection, a browser editor and even code comparison tools.
A Solution for Both Beginners and Advanced Users
One facet of UltraCart that stood out during my review was that it provides design tools for all experience levels.
For example, you can directly edit source code, modify content from the backend editor, or even open up a content guide which points to the elements you can edit, while it also reveals the files these elements are associated with.
Offering No Third Party Apps is an Advantage in This Case
A huge selling point for solutions like Shopify and Bigcommerce is that they provide large App Stores for implementing anything from affiliate systems to coupons, membership programs to reporting.
UltraCart has no app store for you to use.
Sounds bad right? Well, here’s the glory of it all. The folks at UltraCart have worked rather hard ensuring that you don’t need any third party apps, since all of the app functionality is included with your UltraCart account.
As an example, a full blown, multi-tier affiliate system is offered in your dashboard, and it’s super easy to setup and implement.
Along with numerous other gems that you would generally have to install as apps, UltraCart has built-on capabilities for:
- Gift cards
- Membership programs
- Advanced reporting
- Upselling after a sale
- Rotating transaction gateways
- Global and item specific shipping
- Unlimited users with user permissions
- Much more.
What’s UltraCart Going to Cost You?
Unlike other ecommerce platforms, the UltraCart payment plans are based on volume, not features. This comes out as a strong advantage for you, since although the first tier payment plan is actually more expensive than first tier options from places like Shopify and Volusion, the price point is significantly lower when talking about the most popular plans from each system.
In terms of online businesses that expect to scale up and actually make money down the road, UltraCart is poised to set you up with the most features for reaching that point.
For example, the “Most Popular Plans” from other top systems go for the following prices:
- Volusion – $75
- Shopify – $79
- Bigcommerce – $79.95
- 3DCart – $99.95
If you average those rates out, it comes to $83, whereas the most popular UltraCart plan is only $49.95.
What else will you have to pay for?
As stated above, an UltraCart App Store is nonexistent, but most of the features you would expect from those apps are included in your plan. Therefore, you don’t have to pay for any extensions.
Transaction fees depend on your payment processor, but that’s a cost of running business online. The final areas you would generally have to pay for are domains and hosting.
UltraCart doesn’t sell domains, but they provide handy links in the dashboard for you to buy from places like Google Apps and GoDaddy. You can expect to pay up to $10 per year for a domain. The best part is that hosting is included with your UltraCart plan, so you can forget about setting up your own Bluehost or WPEngine account.
As a company that’s been around for such as long time, UltraCart has the advantage of pretty much covering every payment integration possible.
Feel free to accept payments through solutions like PayPal or Amazon Payments, or choose one of the dozens of more advanced payment gateways such as the following:
- Many more…
The Best Security in the Business
Are you aware if your company and customer information is secure?
The unfortunate reality is that when you implement a shopping cart plugin for WordPress or go with a budget ecommerce system, they may tell you that it’s PCI Compliant.
What’s the problem with that?
It’s not that hard to say you’re PCI compliant. The goal is to have a system with PCI Level 1 Certification, and since UltraCart has been around for quite some time, the company completed an audit of their system to ensure they had the best security certification possible. You also get multi-factor authentication for the ultimate security.
What Truly Differentiates UltraCart?
Two facets of the UltraCart system make it stand out when you’re trying to figure out which solution to choose for your online store.
First of all, the UltraCart support is wonderful. Each area of the backend editor is covered in an in-depth video tutorial which you can search and filter through at your own leisure. Not to mention, you gain access to a forum, along with email and phone support. Oh yea, and the support team is experienced and completely based out of the United States, so your questions are answered by experts who can turn to the person next to them if they need assistance.
The second part that differentiates UltraCart is the price point. As we talked about above, you don’t need a confusing app store with UltraCart, since it’s all included with your plan. In addition, the most popular plan is around half the price of the most popular plans from other solutions.
Over to You…
Now that we’ve had a chance to outline the uniqueness of UltraCart, let us know in the comments if you’ve ever had the pleasure of working with this ecommerce platform. Share your thoughts, and drop any questions you may have before committing to UltraCart.
Comments 1 Response
I am considering using ultra art as it looks like a great platform that has just about every feature built in. My other option is woocommerce. I’m a little concerned that with woocommerce I’ll need 10 to 20 plug-ins and that I’ll have a lot of bugs and issues to deal with.the site I am building will be selling physical products and also have a free membership portal.
That being said, the site will be built on WordPress, so I would use the ultracart wpnplugin. Do you know how well the WordPress plugin works? Can I incorporate quantities and product attributes through the plugin?
Compared to woocommerce do you consider ultracart equal, better or worse?