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User Types in X-Cart
User Types in X-Cart

Learn about X-Cart user types (administrator, customer, vendor)

Written by Anna Verbichenko
Updated this week

X-Cart has two major types of users available in all X-Cart editions and one extended type of user that is available starting from X-Cart Multivendor:

  • Administrators (aka admins);

  • Customers;

  • Vendors (available in X-Cart Multivendor and higher).

Administrators are users who configure, maintain and manage the store using the store Admin area - the back end of an X-Cart store that provides various tools for the store configuration and the management of products, orders, and users. Every X-Cart store has at least one store admin but may have multiple admins if the store owner creates additional administrator accounts. The root admin can limit access for other administrator accounts to the store's Admin area with the help of Roles.

Customers are store visitors, shoppers, or buyers, i.e., anyone who views and buys products in the store Customer area. Generally, we may call anyone who views the storefront and acts as a shopper (this includes viewing products, adding products to the shopping cart, and placing orders) a "customer." However, not all customers are the same: some browse through the site and leave, while others buy stuff.

Those who choose to buy stuff may do it as a guest without registering an account or may prefer to create an account to gain access to their order history and reuse their registration name and address for future purchases.

If we wanted to emphasize the difference between these types of customers, we would say that those who come to the store and navigate the site viewing the publicly accessible pages of the Customer area are just "visitors" or "shoppers." The others who sign up for an account and maintain a user profile with the store are "registered customers." The rest who purchase without creating an account or logging into an existing account are "anonymous customers." Speaking about the management of X-Cart users, it is only the latter two types of customers that a store administrator may hope to manage.

Registered customers have a user account to represent them in the store system. For example, a store admin uses a customer account to access their profile information and order history. In addition, a store admin can assign memberships to customer accounts to reflect the privileges they need (like access to discounted prices, wholesale offers, etc.).

Anonymous customers do not have a full-featured account that would allow them to log in but still can be traced as a source of orders. Technically, such customers do have accounts in the system. After an anonymous customer places an order, the system saves and stores all the provided information for future reference. Suppose the anonymous customer chooses to return to the store later and register a full-featured customer account using the email address they have used to place an order at this store previously. In that case, a store administrator will be able to merge their newly registered customer account with the existing records to save the history of purchases for this user.

In addition to the two primary user types present in every X-Cart software edition, X-Cart Multivendor stores also have vendor accounts. Vendors are sellers in a virtual shopping marketplace who manage only the products they own and thus have limited access to the store back end with fewer privileges than administrators.

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