Saved Cart? Returning Customer?

By | August 3, 2011

I have two clients in particular who come up with really good ideas for their shops. These shops, I believe, will eventually be the standard by which all other osCommerce shops will be measured, they are that good.

One of these shops deals with repeat customers a lot, so the owner came up with the idea of somehow finding a way to see if the customer (when logging in to check out with a new order) has a “merged” cart.

What is a “merged” cart?

osCommerce has a standard function whereby if customers do not complete checkout, then their cart is saved for the next time they login. If they come back later on in the day, or in the future, the cart that was saved is presented to them. It looks like this on log out;

Then, when they log back in, the cart contents are available. If in the meantime (without logging in), they add other items in the cart, and THEN log in, this new cart and the old (saved) cart are merged! Sometimes this is undesirable as the customer may have changed their mind or somesuch, and it is hard for the customer to spot until they get to the checkout_confirmation page! So, a solution is needed to combat this…

With a little new code in login.php and a little bit of code in shopping_cart.php it is possible to redirect the user to the shopping_cart and give a nice message explaining the merged cart and allow them to ensure that the order is OK.

The login.php change determines whether the cart is “merged” and the shopping_cart.php change shows a message;

Pretty nice, obviously if no “merge” occured then the message would not be shown.


A good way to bring attention to a potential problem before the client gets all the way through your checkout to find out his/her order is not correct!

3 thoughts on “Saved Cart? Returning Customer?

  1. Isa

    Personally I have always thought that one could expect from customers to check what’s in their carts before proceeding to checkout, however I like your way of going one step further to help them by drawing attention to what they are about to purchase. 🙂

  2. Gary Post author

    Hi Isa – this does add in an extra step in the checking out process – which might not be suitable for some shops.

  3. Xpajun

    A nice option to this would be the ability to send items to a wishlist rather than just delete

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