Shopping Carts Made From Metal or Plastic: Which Are Right for Your Store?

shopping carts

When it comes time for that initial order or replacement of a fleet of shopping carts for your store, you may find yourself mulling over some questions about what to purchase. How large do your carts need to be? What kinds of features will they require for your target shoppers? And are metal or plastic shopping carts best suited to your store’s and customers’ needs? In this article, we’ll discuss the nuances of a metal shopping cart vs. a plastic one and what to look for as you consider which to choose.

Should You Get Metal or Plastic Shopping Carts?

Metal Shopping Carts: Pros and Cons

A metal shopping cart with wheels comes with a host of benefits. Believe it or not, metal carts are actually lighter than plastic ones for the most part. Whereas a plastic cart might weigh 9 pounds, a metal shopping cart typically weighs around 7.5 lbs. This may not seem like much, but if your shoppers are primarily seniors or families with children, this small difference in weight can make a huge difference in customer satisfaction and loyalty.

What are most shopping carts made of? Metal shopping carts are typically made from steel, a pretty durable material. Nowadays, many shopping cart manufacturers—including Good L Corporation—produce their carts with a steel base but include a bright zinc finish, often covered with a liquid polyester coating. Not only does this keep your shopping carts sparkling and shining, but it prevents rust—a common concern when it comes to metal shopping carts, especially if they’re stored outside in variable weather conditions.

Metal shopping carts tend to be less pricey than plastic ones as well, and they are easier to repair through welding or ordering replacement parts, rather than having to order replacement carts. But they don’t always hold up quite as long as plastic carts, and since they have a lattice pattern, small objects can fall through. So you’ll need to consider what types of products your store is selling to make the best decision for you and your shoppers.

Plastic Shopping Carts: Pros and Cons

All shopping carts—whether metal or plastic—will wear better when they’re protected from the outside elements. But generally speaking, plastic shopping carts are damaged less easily than metal ones. Plastic is extremely durable and tends to be more dent-proof. Plastic doesn’t rust if exposed to moisture, which is a huge bonus for store owners who need to keep their carts in outdoor bays. And when plastic carts run into objects, they’re less likely to incur damage.

A plastic shopping cart is also more customizable than a metal one due to its material. For example, while you can include your store’s brand name and logo on a panel of a metal shopping cart, you can customize the entire look of a plastic shopping cart using your brand’s colors. Not only is this an invaluable advertising opportunity that can help build brand awareness, but it also means that your plastic shopping carts are less likely to be stolen or misplaced in another bay of a shopping center with multiple stores. 

Plastic carts can also dampen noise, so there isn’t the presence of that rattling sound when pushed over bumpy parking lots, curb edges, and bumpy tiled aisles. Your shoppers will be happy when their experience at your store isn’t quite so noisy! All of that said, plastic shopping carts are typically heavier than wire ones, and they may be more costly per unit—though bulk orders can help save you some of this expense.

Additional Factors to Consider

As you’re considering purchasing steel vs. plastic carts for your establishment, you want to take note of a few additional things. For one, will your carts need child seats? Will you need a larger cart for bigger, bulkier items, or is your store selling small wares that could easily fall through cracks? Do you need special carts for seniors or those with limited mobility? And how much storage space do you have for your carts?

A knowledgeable and experienced shopping cart manufacturer can help you sort through all of these considerations and make the best decision for your store. They’ll ask you questions about your customer demographics, aisle widths, product types, security systems, and more. So while it’s good to have a grasp on what your needs are, you should be able to rely on industry professionals to help you navigate the ins and outs of your decision-making process too. 

When you do choose to work with a shopping cart manufacturer, ask lots of questions about their pricing structure, their repair and replacement policies, their shipping timelines, and their success in the market. A high-quality manufacturer should be able to provide ample evidence of satisfied store owners and excellent customer service.

Purchase Your Shopping Cart Fleet From Good L Corp

Now that you’re equipped with more knowledge about metal and plastic shopping carts, it’s time to get started on your order. And when you’re ready to purchase that brand new fleet of carts, we hope you’ll consider working with Good L Corp. We’re a company made up of industry experts, bringing 30 years of experience serving clients throughout the United States across various verticals. Our customers are attracted to our wide range of shopping cart and basket options, including metal and plastic carts of multiple sizes and capacities, plus child-sized carts, basket-cart hybrids, rolling baskets, and more.

Our carts and baskets are made from recycled materials, and all of them are manufactured in the United States. We’re proud of our customization options—you can choose from a range of colors, as well as prominently display your store’s name and logo on side panels with a 100% color match. Plus, our customer service and shipping are second to none. We will work with you every step of the way—from answering your questions to providing you with a no-pressure sales quote—and we’ll ship your fleet ASAP, so you won’t have to wait months for it to arrive. 

Even if you don’t have all the decisions made about your shopping carts yet, give us a call, and one of our friendly representatives will talk through your options and help you figure out what you’re looking for. Contact us today for that initial discussion!

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