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I'm building my first shopping cart.

Is there something I should know about shopping carts? For example, should I tell my customer that he should prepare a terms & services document?

My customer has a small shop of cosmetics. I would like to know all what I should know.

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

Terms of Service, and all copy like it, is the responsibility of the customer unless otherwise specified in a contract. Your job is to build them a shopping cart and ecommerce website, not to be their business decision maker and copyrighter.

As far as shopping carts go, keep the following in mind (if anyone has more ideas please feel free to add to this list):

  1. Make sure the cart is search engine friendly (URLs, semantic markup, etc).
  2. Make sure security is your top priority. Since payments will occur they will be a target of hackers who want their sensitive credit card and customer information (see SQL injections, XSS attacks, PCI compliance)
  3. Keep your payments flexible. Your customer may want to change payments providers in the future and you don't want this to become a nightmare.
  4. Make the admin easy to use. If you want to keep support calls to a minimum, make sure they can handle everything themselves.
  5. Make shopping and checkout easy to do. Their admin will be useless if customers are scared off by a difficult cart to use or a complex checkout process.
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