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4 Best ASP.NET open-source eCommerce platforms

anna_angelova profile image Anna Angelova Updated on ・3 min read

Here is the review of the best ASP.NET open-source eCommerce platforms. All the listed options are free or have a free tariff plan.

Since the active community, the popularity of the product and its regular updates are very important when working with open-source projects, these factors formed the basis for including ASP.NET free shopping carts in this review.

nopCommerce

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ASP.NET Core based free eCommerce platform. Founded in 2008, nopCommerce has 250.000+ community by today. The new versions are released every 8-9 months.

nopCommerce allows creating both small and large stores. There are no limitations in the number of products, and the platform charges no commissions. Multi-store and multi-vendor functionality come out-of-the-box so you can manage several stores from a single installation or create a multi-vendor marketplace.

Although all the functionality is available for free, there is a copyright removal key payment to remove the “Powered by nopCommerce” link from the footer ($250 and above). The marketplace is extensive and contains themes, plugins, and integrations from different developers - both free and paid.

Though there are also some other ASP.NET free shopping carts, besides nopCommerce there are no really popular solutions among them, i.e. the solutions that would power a big amount of shops, and that would have a large and active community. All the above are important indicators that working with the platform will be convenient and that it will get regular updates and good support.

If it is important for you, too, when choosing the platform, and you don’t consider paid enterprise CMS platforms that can be extended with eCommerce features, like Sitecore, Kentico, and Sitefinity, then the possible solution might be working with open-source ASP.NET CMS platforms with eCommerce modules. The best options are listed below.

Ucommerce

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An eCommerce module for ASP.NET CMS, both open-source (Umbraco) and paid ones. The set of available Ucommerce features will depend on the chosen tariff plan and the exact CMS.

From all the integration options, the free plan is offered for Umbraco only. It has a lot of limitations and allows to create only basic simple stores, as shown in the table below. It might be a good choice if the store is the additional functionality for the website, and it’s more important to work with the content.

nopCommerce vs Ucommerce (for Umbraco)

nopCommerce Ucommerce Free Ucommerce Pro Ucommerce Enterprise
Single catalog + + + +
Multiple catalogs + - + +
Product reviews and ratings + - + +
Multiple stores + - - +
Multi-vendor + - - -
Marketing tools (promo and discounts) + - + +
Tier pricing + - - +
Price 0 0 €2999 /yr/prd. server €4999 /yr/prd. server

Ucommerce can be integrated with the paid ASP.NET CMS as well. In such a case, only an Enterprise version will be available. It will cost €6999 a year for a server for Kentico and Sitecore; for Sitefinity, the price should be requested.

Merchello + Umbraco

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Unlike Ucommerce, Merchello open-source eCommerce extension has only a free version and can be integrated with Umbraco only. The store administration will be intuitive if you have already worked with Umbraco CMS. Merchello is supported by two developers - Rusty Swayne and Lee Messenger.

There is no multi-vendor and multi-store functionality, so it will suit well for creating a simple store with a minimal budget. Among available functionality is order management, coupons and discounts, business reporting.

There is no marketplace for Merchello, and there is only a limited number of ready-made shipping, payment, and other integrations, so you will have to implement all the needed extended functionality by yourself.

DNN with eCommerce modules

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To make an eCommerce project in ASP.NET with a minimal budget, you can also choose open-source DNN CMS. The platform, which is partially based on obsolete ASP.NET Webforms, still powers quite many websites.

Among four DNN editions, only the DNN platform with basic functionality is free. For the rest three editions, Evoq Basic, Evoq Content, and Evoq Engage, the price is available on demand.

There are a lot of eCommerce modules for DNN. As usual, they are small custom solutions that can be bought for several hundreds of dollars (for one URL). Some of them provide multi-store and multi-vendor functionality if it’s what you need. Since they are not open-source it will set limitations in the store’s customization and integrations. But if you like working with the DNN platform and need to create a simple basic store, this might be a good choice.

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Discussion

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There's a great e-commerce module for DNN, called HotCakes Commerce. It's 100% open-source and it's MVC based.

Also good to note that DNN is gradually phasing out WebForms. You could already build MVC and WebAPI modules for DNN since 2012, but recently they've added support for Dependency Injection (in preparation for DNN's migration to .NET Core). #dnncms