Before using 3dCart, we had a lot of high expectations. However, the site was consistently disappointing and overwhelming. The user experience is poor and much of that can be owed to the lack of user-friendliness of the interface and a lack of clear language on the site. We had to spend a lot of time dealing with support (we even had to wait for replies) just to figure out how to do stuff.
Compare this to Shopify, and it’s pretty clear how a platform should be: simple, easy-to-use, and most importantly, uncomplicated. We also found the user interface to be disorganized, and this made it hard for us to create product listings, or add specifications.
When it comes to setting prices for products, 3dCart was really confusing. As you can see, there are four pricing fields: cost, retail price, price, and on sale. Why would anyone add four pricing fields? Again, it was only after reading the support that we found out the “Cost” is used for setting pricing for wholesalers.
This begs the question, why are wholesaler options being displayed by default? Apart from these visible blunders, we found many checkboxes under Options to be rather vague. For instance, what does category special mean? What does Home Special mean?
Like we mentioned earlier, the interface lacks user-friendliness. And this can clearly be seen in the discount editor as well. If you notice the checkbox for percentage, many users will feel confused as to what unchecking it will do. After reading the support documents we realized that unchecking the percentage checkbox replaces discounts with a dollar amount. As you can see from the picture above, there is no indication, explanation, or guide for this.
We may sound a bit harsh, but it is an honest review after all. So, we will continue pointing out the blunders. Another example of 3dCart’s confusing interface is in the “Emails Editor”. If you notice at the top right corner of the editor, there is an option which says “Upgrade All”. To start, we don’t know what “Upgrade All” does. However, when we clicked it, we got this aggressive prompt (see above picture). What is the purpose of displaying this prompt? Why would a user even want to do this? There are too many questions and few answers.
Upon using 3dCart, we noticed several security blunders, among which the most significant one was: users have to change their password every 45 days. The reason why we called it a security blunder is why else would they have you change your password. It is pointless and not to mention frustrating for a user to come up with a new password each time. Many may argue that changing passwords makes your account more secure. However, a good site with security protocols and encryption would never ask you to update your password every 45 days.
- Recurring Products – 3dCart offers a Recurring Orders app that enables customers to purchase products on a recurring basis. We found this quite useful for both customers and ecommerce site owners.
- Digital Products – 3dCart provides users an e-product module that enables them to sell products with digital files attached. However, it feels a little incomplete, as there is no way for users to edit the email notifications customers receive.
- App Store – 3dCart has an App Store with two different names. In some places, it is called App Module and elsewhere, App Store. Regardless, it is a good way to use 3rd party apps to boost the effectiveness of your online store.
- Discounts & Coupon Codes – Site owners can add discounts. It is a little confusing and there is no way to set bulk discounts (each product must be discounted individually).
- Email Customization – There are 63 template emails 3dCart offers for site owners to send to their customers. However, this feature lacks the appropriate customization.
- Gift Cards – Gift cards can be sent to customers, but you need to spend a lot of time in the support docs to figure out how it works.
- 3rd Party Shipping Integration – There are integrations with FedEx, UPS and other shipping sites.
There is a good selection of themes on 3dCart, around 64. Customizing is also easy and works well. However, we would have preferred the site to display a side-by-side preview, so users can see their customizations in real time. Read on to view the quality of premium and free themes.
Pricing and Billing Practices
3dCart offers five pricing plans, all of which are reasonable. However, the billing practices are a little confusing. The site claims you can cancel through their web interface, but you actually need to call them up if you want to cancel your subscription.
Compounding this problem is a more complicated cancellation process, which would force many users into thinking why did they even join the platform.
If you find yourself in need of support, 3dCart provides plenty of helpful solutions. You can avail the 24/7 customer support, which includes email, chat, and phone support to all merchants, at all subscription levels. However, the platform has a poor reply time (8 hours and 24 min).
3dcart also offers the following resources:
Between the agreeable price point and plethora of built-in features (some are poorly executed), 3dCart scores low with Hostt.com. The platform has considerable room for improvement, but a better option/alternative would definitely be Shopify.
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It’s free for you to call us should you ever need a real “English-Speaking Human” to help you figure out the “best way to start”.
We Review. You Decide.
Mike Orozco and Steve Stacy – Hostt’s Review Crew