eCommerce : OpenCart ( – Introduction to OpenCart

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AsSalam and hi all. In this eCommerce : OpenCart ( – Part 1, we will cover on the Introduction to OpenCart. Lets start!


  • OpenCart is an open source shopping cart solution.
  • Just like any other open source software, OpenCart has its advantages and disadvantages.
  • OpenCart built with PHP/HTML and MuSQL.
  • Simple code design using Model-View-Controller (MVC).


  • OpenCart is self-hosted, which means we need to install it on our own server (online or local).
  • Basic system requirements for current OpenCart version ( are:
    • Web server (Apache is recommended, but also can be used on other such as nginx or IIS)
    • PHP with cURL support (at least PHP5.4)
    • Database software (MySQL is recommended, but other database such as MariaDB and PostgreSQL can also be used)
  • OpenCart base consists of two different parts:
    • Front store
    • Administration
  • Each part contains an MVC structure for models, views and controllers,



  • Original OpenCart project was a Perl-based online shopping cart system created in 1998. The project was abandoned in 2000.
  • In 2009, the name OpenCart was used as open source shopping cart system built with PHP.
  • As of February 2018, there are 3 major OpenCart versions.
    • OpenCart 1.x (2009-2014)
    • OpenCart 2.x (2014-2017)
    • OpenCart 3.x


  • Features and benefits of OpenCart for the store owner, OpenCart offers decent set of online store system.
  • OpenCart capable to do most of the things expected from a free and open source shopping cart and can be extend it further through third party plugin.
  • OpenCart enable admin to publish and organize product into categories.
  • Store owner can use over 50 predefined product fields, exp;
    • Generic fields like name, description and price
    • Unique product identifiers like SKU, UPC and EAN, dimensions, option, attributes and more.
  • Product can be sort and filter to make it easier for store owner and customers.
  • OpenCart also can be used to sell digital products such as software, music or e-books by uploading files and attaching them to individual products.
  • Process payment and handle shipping is two important element in any eCommerce website.
  • OpenCart come with some 50 different payment plugin and a dozen of shipping extensions in default installation.
  • This can be extended with hundreds of payment and shipping plugin from third party developers.
    • Default payment solutions provided such as:
    • PayPal
    • Skrill
    • 2Checkout
    • Amazon Payments
    • Manual bank transfer
    • Cash on delivery
  • Default shipping solutions provider such as:
    • UPS
    • Royal Mail
    • USPS
    • FedEx
  • For our local (Malaysia) market, it is recommended using local payment gateway provider such as Billplz, iPay88, WebCash, SenangPay and MaybankPay.



  • Receive orders and manage customers is a task for store admin.
  • OpenCart provide basic order and customer management process.
  • First, store admin will receive, process and modify orders, generate invoice and print packing slips.
  • Admin also can view and modify customer accounts, assign customer to different customer groups and view their purchasing histories.
  • After made an order, customers can leave feedback about your products. Feedback is then displayed on product page.
  • OpenCart enable store admin to run special price offer or discount campaigns.
  • Three options are:
    • Define a special price for each product and limit it to specific dates if it’s a limited time offer.
    • Set product bulk pricing for wholesale buyers or to entice buyer to purchase larger quantity product.
      oCreate discount coupon codes and send them out in a newsletter.
  • OpenCart enable store admin to generate reports and see analytics.
  • 4 reports can be generated are;
    • Sales reports
    • Product reports
      Viewed products
      Purchased products
    • Customer reports
      Reward points
    • Marketing reports
      Marketing report
      Affiliate report
      Affiliate activity
      Default language is English. OpenCart also support multiple language by default.
      Use and install translation language pack.
      Multiple languages used in product descriptions, front store pages and admin-area interfaces.

Thats it for an introduction. Next, I shall share on how to install and setup your OpenCart site.