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There are several other variants. Using a traditional shopping cart and simply reserving the item as soon as the user puts it in the cart seems to be a common approach. It then becomes invisible to other users. Because of this, the shopping cart often expires quickly, releasing the item if the purchase is not completed in time.

I also know a site that allows its users to “save” the shopping cart and checks availability upon reloading it. The site then shows a list of all items that are not available anymore and suggests alternatives. There is therefore a distinction between an “active” shopping cart (item is reserved but only for a limited time) and a “saved” shopping cart (contains a reference to the item but does not guarantee its availability, the cart/list does not expire).

Amazon uses a variant of this idea for its “Marketplace” products (e.g. used books from third parties): The item is added to the shopping cart as every other item but it is not reserved in any way and as soon as it becomes unavailable, its spot in the cart/wish list is replaced by an entry that reads “This product is not available from this vendor anymore”.

I would expect that in most cases, race conditions would be rare. If having many customers interested in the same painting is in fact frequent, then it might make sense to rethink the whole business model. Maybe an auction would be more appropriate than a traditional retail approach. A reverse auction or some other way to emphasize the limited availability of the offer and the first-come-first-served factor could also work.

There are several other variants. Using a traditional shopping cart and simply reserving the item as soon as the user puts it in the cart seems to be a common approach. It then becomes invisible to other users. Because of this, the shopping cart often expires quickly, releasing the item if the purchase is not completed in time.

I also know a site that allows its users to “save” the shopping cart and checks availability upon reloading it. The site then shows a list of all items that are not available anymore and suggests alternatives. There is therefore a distinction between an “active” shopping cart (item is reserved but only for a limited time) and a “saved” shopping cart (contains a reference to the item but does not guarantee its availability, the cart/list does not expire).

Amazon uses a variant of this idea for its “Marketplace” products (e.g. used books from third parties): The item is added to the shopping cart as every other item but it is not reserved in any way and as soon as it becomes unavailable, its spot in the cart/wish list is replaced by an entry that reads “This product is not available from this vendor anymore”.

I would expect that in most cases, race conditions would be rare. If having many customers interested in the same painting is in fact frequent, then it might make sense to rethink the whole business model. Maybe an auction would be more appropriate than a traditional retail approach.

There are several other variants. Using a traditional shopping cart and simply reserving the item as soon as the user puts it in the cart seems to be a common approach. It then becomes invisible to other users. Because of this, the shopping cart often expires quickly, releasing the item if the purchase is not completed in time.

I also know a site that allows its users to “save” the shopping cart and checks availability upon reloading it. The site then shows a list of all items that are not available anymore and suggests alternatives. There is therefore a distinction between an “active” shopping cart (item is reserved but only for a limited time) and a “saved” shopping cart (contains a reference to the item but does not guarantee its availability, the cart/list does not expire).

Amazon uses a variant of this idea for its “Marketplace” products (e.g. used books from third parties): The item is added to the shopping cart as every other item but it is not reserved in any way and as soon as it becomes unavailable, its spot in the cart/wish list is replaced by an entry that reads “This product is not available from this vendor anymore”.

I would expect that in most cases, race conditions would be rare. If having many customers interested in the same painting is in fact frequent, then it might make sense to rethink the whole business model. Maybe an auction would be more appropriate than a traditional retail approach. A reverse auction or some other way to emphasize the limited availability of the offer and the first-come-first-served factor could also work.

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There are several other variants. Using a traditional shopping cart and simply reserving the item as soon as the user puts it in the cart seems to be a common approach. It then becomes invisible to other users. Because of this, the shopping cart often expires quickly, releasing the item if the purchase is not completed in time.

I also know a site that allows its users to “save” the shopping cart and checks availability upon reloading it. The site then shows a list of all items that are not available anymore and suggests alternatives. There is therefore a distinction between an “active” shopping cart (item is reserved but only for a limited time) and a “saved” shopping cart (contains a reference to the item but does not guarantee its availability, the cart/list does not expire).

Amazon uses a variant of this idea for its “Marketplace” products (e.g. used books from third parties): The item is added to the shopping cart as every other item but it is not reserved in any way and as soon as it becomes unavailable, its spot in the cart/wish list is replaced by an entry that reads “This product is not available from this vendor anymore”.

I would expect that in most cases, race conditions would be rare. If having many customers interested in the same painting is in fact frequent, then it might make sense to rethink the whole business model. Maybe an auction would be more appropriate than a traditional retail approach.