FoxyCart vs Snipcart: Full Review of Both E-Commerce Platforms

Back in 2006, developer Brett Florio was looking at the different e-commerce solutions available for web developers. The result of his research was plain and simple: he disliked them all. So it didn't take long before he decided to build his own. In April 2007, FoxyCart was launched. With it, he hoped to create a system that was "master of one" instead of "jack of all". It was most likely the first shopping cart to be mostly developer-oriented.

In this Snipcart vs. FoxyCart review, you'll find out that the mission behind FoxyCart relates much more to Snipcart's than other solutions like Shopify or WooCommerce. While the two products are similar, there are still a lot of differences between them. We are regularly asked about these, so today we're going to provide answers to the following:

How exactly does Snipcart differ from FoxyCart?

We'll take a look at what makes them similar, but most importantly, at how they differ. We'll give you insights on why & when choose one or the other. Let's start by learning more about both of them, individually.

What is FoxyCart? And Foxy.io?

FoxyCart is an e-commerce solution that enables shopping cart integration. It can be implemented within any website, with only a few lines of code. It is a developer-oriented product, meaning you need at least basic HTML knowledge to integrate your cart & products, and then CSS/JS skills to optimize the lot. FoxyCart's extensive number of features makes it a complete tool for an e-commerce site developer.

foxycart-checkout

Foxy.io is basically the same rebranded app, which focuses more on their e-commerce API and how it can be integrated into platforms.

What is Snipcart?

Snipcart is a complete shopping cart platform you integrate on top of any website or web application with basic HTML/JavaScript. It offers a flexible, customizable shopping cart, webhooks & APIs, and a dashboard to manage your e-commerce operations. A simple Snipcart integration also requires almost 0 development skills. However, customizing and extending it does.

snipcart_checkout

Pricing: how much do FoxyCart & Snipcart cost?

An important distinction between FoxyCart and Snipcart is in their pricing. Let's have a look at how they differ exactly.

Note: both products offer 100% free unlimited testing in development mode.

FoxyCart pricing

foxycart pricing

You'll need to add payment gateway fees (~2.9%) to the prices above.

In a nutshell, FoxyCart makes you pay mainly for their shopping cart solution. And they do have a cool set of built-in features. Some store upgrades might take the form of paid 3rd party integrations. Abandoned carts, for instance, will require a 50$/month CartHook account. Depending on your store's specific needs, you'll need to factor such paid extensions into your overall pricing.

Foxy.io, the latest rebranding of their platform, offers the same pricing.

Snipcart pricing

2% + payment gateway fees (2,9%)

Snipcart's standard pricing is 2% of monthly transactions (min. 10$ fee), plus payment gateway fees. No paid extensions, integrations or marketplace. All of our features, such as abandoned carts recovery and inventory management, are included in the price.

We also offer custom-tailored pricing for merchants with high-volume & seasonal sales. Check out our pricing page for details.


As you can see, FoxyCart's pricing focuses on the number of sales. As for us, we mostly look at the sales volume. Depending on your average order & product price + number of orders, FoxyCart could be cheaper or more expensive than Snipcart.

Both platforms can be extended with custom code and/or existing integrations, FoxyCart having more of the latter. It really comes down to what features matter most to your operation.

The following section should help you sort that out!

FoxyCart vs. Snipcart: feature set similarities

Both solutions are born from the same idea: offer developers simple but powerful shopping carts they can implement into any pre-existing website. Of course, you'll find a lot of similarities between them. Here's a list of features they have in common:

  • Simple integration with HTML and JavaScript
  • Subscriptions
  • Digital goods
  • Custom products
  • Discounts---both products offer a flexible discount system. However, FoxyCart supports a few more fancy scenarios, such as applying discounts before and after taxes
  • Support---support platforms are similar, except FoxyCart nurtures a community forum, something we are also considering at Snipcart
  • Responsiveness---when on mobile, add-to-cart buttons redirect automatically to FoxyCart's hosted cart and checkout page (see below in checkout section)
  • Flexible taxes & multi-currency
  • Flexible shipping
  • Email templating customization
  • Security
  • Existing tutorials & plugins with different CMS/site builders.

And these last two shared features will differ in their application:

  • Cart customization
  • API & webhooks

Now let's get into the thick of it---differences.

FoxyCart vs Snipcart: review of key differences

First, here's a quick list of features you'll only find in one of the two solutions (or in a more advanced form).

FoxyCart advantages

  • Product categories
  • Payment gateways & alternate payment methods---FoxyCart's been around for a while and thus accepts a larger number of payment gateways than Snipcart (90+)
  • Multi-shipping
  • Single Sign On (SSO)---on Snipcart's roadmap

Snipcart advantages

  • Abandoned carts & recovery campaigns---with FoxyCart, you'll have to use a paid third party app
  • Inventory management---FoxyCart chose not to deal with inventory

Now here's a more in-depth look at other important differences.

1. Merchant-friendly features

When it comes to giving comprehensive tools to merchants and non-technical users, Snipcart has some interesting stuff to offer. Out-of-the-box features we mentioned earlier like abandoned carts recovery and inventory management will help merchants grow their business. No third party, no additional fees. These features are displayed on a user-friendly merchant dashboard.

Snipcart's merchant dashboard

FoxyCart does give flexibility to merchants to manage their store with built-in features like discounts or custom products. However, the philosophy of FoxyCart is to be "master of one". This "one", the core of their product is really the cart itself and the checkout flow. Less focus is put on merchant-oriented features.

2. API & Webhooks

FoxyCart and Foxy.io—the latest rebranding of their platform—offer developers a neat Hypermedia API (hAPI). While similar to REST, these bring to the table more linking between resources & intelligent clients. They're often labeled "self-discoverable APIs."

With Snipcart, developers have access to a full REST API, coupled with an extensive JavaScript API. The latter might provide a little more flexibility when it comes to JS cart manipulations than what can be done there on FoxyCart's side.

3. Customization & checkout experience

Snipcart and FoxyCart are marketed as "fully customizable solutions." But how both solutions handle customization varies a lot.

First, here's what both solutions include:

  • Custom checkout fields
  • Order confirmation emails
  • Possibility to customize cart & checkout

With Snipcart, you get complete control over your cart's look, feel, & behaviour. We provide a base theme, but the only limit after that is your imagination (and CSS/JS skills). It's up to developers to modify or fully override CSS styles, and inject JS if needed. The "checkout" examples below will showcase a few different personalized shopping cart stylings.

FoxyCart has a more template-based approach to styling cart & checkout elements. In a sense, their cart---and especially their checkout--are more detached from the actual merchant site than Snipcart's. The final checkout with FoxyCart, for instance, will always happen on a full-on, secure hosted page. That page itself isn't hosted on the merchant site and represents a change in the shopping environment. Snipcart doesn't work that way: from adding a product to the cart to confirming your order, everything happens on-site without a redirection.

You can style hosted checkout pages on FoxyCart using templates, and skin the cart by inserting a CSS stylesheet in the merchant admin. The cart can also take the form of a hosted page.

FoxyCart checkout examples

foxycart-checkout

Cart summary customized, hosted checkout template

foxycart-checkout2

Cart + checkout hosted templates

Snipcart checkout examples

snipcart-checkout-example1

snipcart-checkout-example2

snipcart-checkout-example3

Conclusion

SO, all of this stuff sure sounds great, but the question you probably want answered is:

Should I use FoxyCart or Snipcart?

Well, sadly, we're not going to draw a clear line in the sand here, because there is none. Both products adopt a decoupled approach to e-commerce, with a clear focus on providing a developer-friendly solution. Both products can be deeply integrated into existing CMS & site generators to enable easy product management.

The folks at FoxyCart have built a good product, and we admire their long-lasting developer-first dedication. They support a wide variety of product types and payment gateways---areas where Snipcart isn't as mature yet.

However, if you're looking for more freedom & flexibility when it comes to customization & checkout, Snipcart might offer an interesting approach here. Same thing goes for handing out an e-commerce site/dashboard where merchant-friendly features such as inventory management & advanced abandoned cart recovery are ready to use.

Clearly, differences in pricing might also play a big role in your decision. Make sure to weigh in every factor and draw different scenarios before making your call.

And whichever you pick, make sure to build a kick-ass project with it!


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