What is a shopping cart?

According to growtheology.com, the shopping cart is an important function in the area of ​​e-commerce, as it influences the number of conversions and the user-friendliness of an online shop. The shopping cart enables the user to save certain articles.


The cart (ger.: shopping cart) is a function in online shopping, which the store allows the products. This offers an overview of all products that the user has saved for purchase. The term is derived from everyday language usage, as it has the same function as that in the supermarket: to transport the goods to the checkout.

Function of the shopping cart

The function of the shopping cart leads to a clear relief and improvement in user-friendliness. This means that the user can put the desired items in the shopping cart with one click and, before completing the purchase, also has the option of adjusting or removing the products in the shopping cart as often as desired. The purchase only becomes binding when he clicks on a corresponding call-to-action button (CTA) such as “Order now” or “Buy”. The stored articles are stored in the shopping cart as long as the user is on the website. The use of cookies and session IDs enable higher usability. Because the sessions, form data and shopping carts are saved, which is why the user does not have to expect the data and articles entered to be lost while shopping on the corresponding website.


An optimized shopping cart is an important factor in the buying process, as this is where users make their purchase decision. A purchase demolition is done with most users, if the cart does not save the desired item. Therefore, the shopping cart should be based on the needs of the potential buyer in order to prevent the purchase from being abandoned. In addition, other factors have an influence on the abandonment of the purchase, which is why a special focus should be placed on optimization.

Factors for abandoned purchases in the shopping cart:

  • Too high shipping costs
  • Use of the shopping cart as a memo
  • Missing display of shipping costs
  • No guest orders possible or the creation of an account is necessary
  • Complicated checkout
  • The requested payment option is not available
  • Too long shipping time

Properties of an optimized shopping cart

In order to generate as many conversions as possible, the online shop should always provide an overview of all order processes. The user must therefore be aware of the steps in the purchase process at all times. This can be achieved, for example, through certain graphics and clear CTAs. In addition, it is of great importance for customer satisfaction that the user is informed about crucial order details such as price, number, shipping costs and shipping time. Shortages (“Only a few items available!”) And the representations of certifications also have an impact on the purchasing process.

Good shopping cart designs with high conversion should have the following properties:

  • Presentation of the purchase process
    This gives the user a clear overview of the steps required to complete the transaction, which can be done using a timeline, for example.
  • Presentation of the contents of the shopping cart and the selected number of items.
    This way, the user always has an overview of his stored items and can adjust them as required.
  • Specification of the delivery date
  • Use of shortage
    This sales-increasing measure creates an artificial shortage, which leads to higher consumer pressure on the part of the customer. Both a time limit and a quantitative limit are common means here.
  • Use of a continue shopping function In
    this way, the user returns to the previous product page and can continue shopping directly.
  • Integration of trust elements
    For example, a Trusted Shops certification, a Stiftung Warentest seal or a TÜV certification awakens the trust of a reputable online shop.
  • Presentation of the available delivery providers
  • Information about the payment options offered
  • Reference to the encrypted transmission of data and data security
  • Display of strike prices for reduced items

Shopping cart and SEO

The perception of an online shop depends on the ordering process, from the product selection to the completion of the purchase. Due to insufficient information or incorrect ordering processes, many users cancel a large part of their purchases on the Internet. To prevent this, the shopping cart should also offer the user a good overview as well as a few ordering steps. The user expects a clear overview as well as detailed information about the ordering process, payment options or delivery conditions from an online shop. In addition to this information, he wants to make as few clicks as possible to buy a product. Therefore, the shopping cart should be adapted to the needs of the user, otherwise it becomes aCanceled purchase leads. With an optimization of the shopping cart next to the number of conversions is also the ease of use positively influenced.

What is a shopping cart