What features does Zen Cart offer?

What features does Zen Cart offer?
  • Easily keep your product/catalog updated – no HTML coding required to add, delete, or modify products
  • No limits on the number of categories or products
  • Secure – no one but your administrative personnel can access your customer/catalog data
  • Easy to install – our helpful installation program guides you easily through the setup process
  • Mobile ready: can be viewed on tablets and phones as well as desktop devices
  • The responsive_classic template meets accessibility standards for both desktop and mobile.
  • Advanced Template System using stylesheets and images
  • PHP customizations can be protected during upgrades by using overrides and notifiers
  • Switching from one installed template to another is as simple as a couple of clicks in the Admin
  • Product variants may be added using product attributes, appearing as radio buttons, checkboxes, drop-down lists, text boxes, file uploads, file downloads, and more
  • Attribute Options can upcharge the price of an item, and an item can have its price completely controlled by attributes
  • Attributes can be configured as “read only” so as to provide a Features List
  • One-Time Fees can be added to products via attributes
  • Attributes also support Text Pricing, such as price-per-word or price-per-letter for personalizing
  • Attributes can show image/color swatches
  • No fixed limits on the number of attributes or values per attribute
  • Merchandise Pricing options: items can be price reduced using percentage-off, fixed amount off, or new price
  • Price reductions can include or exclude product attributes
  • Products may be included or excluded from a price reduction
  • Price reductions can be put on one item, a whole category or the entire store
  • Products can be marked as Free, or “Call for Price”
  • Products can be marked as “Featured” for specific highlighting/attention
  • Products can be linked and/or copied to multiple categories
  • Per product minimum or maximum quantities and units - You can sell 1 per customer, or require at least 4 and in multiples of 2
  • Quantity Discounts can be configured per-product for varying pricing levels or quantity levels
  • Store layout can be controlled in great detail simply by switching settings in the Admin area
  • Entire categories of products (or individual products) can be enabled/disabled with just a few clicks
  • Sort order of products is easily controlled in the admin area
  • If you need to take your site offline for a period of maintenance, you can do it easily by posting advance notices, as well as a friendly Down For Maintenance page that’s also Search-Engine friendly
  • During maintenance intervals, specified IP addresses may still access the site for testing
  • Nearly every piece of information about your products can be controlled in the Admin areas, giving you the ability to fine-tune how your products and services appear to your customers without needing to write code
  • Multiple items can be added to the shopping cart from a listing page by simply entering quantities and clicking Add
  • The Product Type feature allows you to customize information fields and display format for different products differently
  • You can add multiple images to your products, in small/medium/large format
  • A verification for Agreement to the Terms of Service has been added for compliance with new laws regarding privacy and disclosure
  • CVV2 card verification number support is available for compliance with most Merchant Agreements
  • Shipping - quotes from most major couriers and postal services are available
  • Shipping - non-quoted options possible, such as Hold for Pickup, Free Delivery in an area, etc.
  • Payment - multiple payment processors are supported, including PayPal, Square and Authorize
  • Payment - offline options available such as Check/Money Order and Invoice
  • Customer Access Control – Browsing, viewing prices and buying may be configured to require authorization
  • Showcase - You can set your store up to be simply a product showcase, without pricing at all
  • Search options allow you to search for products based on name, description, metatags, price, and more
  • Meta Tags keywords and descriptions can be controlled at the per-product level, all from the admin interface
  • Automatic detection of search engine spiders
  • Intelligent generation of metatags content for search engines
  • Upgrade Detection notifies administrators of new versions at login
  • CKEditor integration available for WYSIWYG editing of site content
  • Tight security on password handling, login/logout, and more
  • Customizable email generated at all relevant points of ordering process: when a new account is created, when stock is depleted, after a customer order, as order is processed by storeowner, when product availability changes, when customer reviews are received, and more
  • Storeowner email addresses are protected from abuse, as they are not displayed on-screen
  • Contact Us page can be configured to support multiple destinations, such as Sales, Technical Support, Webmaster, and so on
  • HTML email supported
  • Email can be sent via sendmail, smtp, or smtp-with-authorization
  • Email archiving supported for audit trail
  • Administrative activity logging enabled for audit trail – especially beneficial with recent Merchant Agreement requirements concerning tracking of activity related to accessing customer information
  • Advertising Banners – show information about your business colleagues and track banner link activity
  • Shipping Estimator allows your customer to get an idea of their shipping costs prior to checkout
  • Coupons and Gift Certificates are easily handled both by customers and administrators
  • Customer “Group Pricing” allows groups of users to receive a set discount amount at checkout
  • Newsletter system and Product Notification system
  • Low-Order Fees can be configured
  • COD Fees can be added
  • Shipping Tare, Large-Package handling to give fine-grain control over shipping services
  • Tax rates, tax zones, etc easily configured in the admin area
  • PayPal IPN and many other popular Merchant Services supported
  • Customers can write product reviews (approvals can be required by an Administrator)
  • Low-Stock notifications to administrator when inventory is getting low (level can be configured)
  • Simple customization of templates via Stylesheets
  • Developers Toolkit helps quickly locate a setting or text string to be customized
  • Scalable from small shops to larger shops with hundreds of thousands of products
  • Track Who’s Online interactively
  • Multiple Language Support
  • Multiple Currency Support
  • Ability to add new pages

Do you have a question about whether Zen Cart offers a particular feature? It might be answered on the miscellaneous FAQs page.


Still have questions? No problem! Just head over to the Zen Cart support forum and ask there.
In your post, please include your Zen Cart and PHP versions, and a link to your site.


Last modified May 22, 2020 by Scott C Wilson (b3b576e).