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Cart vs. Mart: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Updated on November 29, 2023
A cart is a vehicle with two or four wheels, typically used for transporting goods, while a mart is a marketplace or commercial center for trading goods.

Key Differences

Cart typically refers to a two- or four-wheeled vehicle used for transportation of goods, often pulled by animals or humans. Mart, in contrast, is a term used for marketplaces or shops where goods are sold or traded.
In historical contexts, a cart was essential for farmers and traders for moving goods, reflecting a physical object for transport. A mart, however, has been a central place for commerce and trade, focusing on the exchange of goods and services.
Modern usage of cart extends to shopping carts in stores or digital shopping carts in online platforms, symbolizing a tool for selecting and holding purchases. Meanwhile, mart is often used in business names and denotes a commercial establishment or shopping area.
The design and function of a cart vary, from hand-pulled carts to horse-drawn carriages, emphasizing its role in transportation. On the other hand, a mart can range from a local flea market to a large shopping complex, highlighting its role as a commerce hub.
Cart can also be a verb, meaning to transport or carry something in a cart. In contrast, mart is strictly a noun and does not have a verb form, reinforcing its identity as a place for commercial activity.

Comparison Chart

Primary Function

Transportation of goods.
Trading or selling of goods.

Physical Form

A wheeled vehicle.
A marketplace or commercial center.

Historical Use

Used for moving goods, especially in agriculture.
A central place for commerce and trade.

Modern Usage

Includes shopping carts and online carts.
Refers to shopping centers or stores.

Part of Speech

Can be both a noun and a verb.
Strictly a noun.

Cart and Mart Definitions


A small wheeled device used in supermarkets for carrying groceries.
She pushed her shopping cart down the aisle.


A commercial center or shopping complex.
The new shopping mart attracted many visitors.


A virtual basket used in online shopping platforms.
I added the shoes to my online cart.


A store or trading place, often specialized.
The electronics mart had a wide range of gadgets.


A two- or four-wheeled vehicle for transporting goods.
He loaded the hay onto the farm cart.


A term used in business names to denote a market.
We shopped at the discount mart.


An open container on wheels used for transportation.
We used a hand cart to move the boxes.


A gathering place for buyers and sellers.
The farmers' mart was bustling with activity.


To transport or wheel something in a cart.
They carted the bricks to the construction site.


A marketplace or area where goods are sold.
They went to the local mart for groceries.


A small wheeled vehicle typically pushed by hand
A shopping cart.
A pastry cart.


A trading center; a market.


Are carts still used in agriculture?

Yes, carts are still used in some agricultural settings.

What is a cart used for?

A cart is used for transporting or carrying goods.

Do marts specialize in certain goods?

Some marts specialize, like a 'fish mart' or 'flower mart'.

Is a shopping cart only physical?

No, shopping carts can also be digital in online stores.

Is mart a modern term?

Mart is a traditional term, but still used in modern times.

Can a cart be motorized?

Some modern carts, like golf carts, are motorized.

Can carts carry people?

Some carts, like rickshaws, are designed to carry people.

Are all marts indoors?

Marts can be both indoor and outdoor, like flea markets.

What defines a mart?

A mart is defined as a marketplace or commercial center.

What does 'carting something' mean?

'Carting something' means transporting it in a cart.

Can a cart have more than four wheels?

Typically, carts have two or four wheels.

Are marts always large?

Marts vary in size from small stores to large complexes.

Can a mart be online?

Traditionally, a mart refers to a physical location.

Is 'cart' used in idioms?

Yes, like 'putting the cart before the horse'.

Do carts need maintenance?

Yes, carts need regular maintenance, especially wheeled carts.

What is an example of a mart?

An example is 'Walmart', a large retail mart.

Do marts offer services besides selling goods?

Some marts may offer services like food courts or cinemas.

How is a cart different from a wagon?

Carts are generally smaller and simpler than wagons.

What is a supermarket cart?

A supermarket cart is a wheeled basket for shopping.

What's the difference between a mart and a mall?

A mall is a large complex of many stores, a mart is a single store or market.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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