Mobile responsive website design is a must these days.

adminWeb design

What does Mobile responsive website design actually mean.  A Mobile website is an entirely separate website specifically created for mobile devices such as a mobile phone eg iphones or tablets such as ipads. A mobile responsive website is “responsive” to the device it’s displayed on.

Responsive Design uses the same domain and website content, which is built in such a way to detect the visitor’s screen size and orientation then change the layout accordingly to fit that particular screen. Therefore a responsive website would have a certain look on a desktop monitor and laptops, yet a thinner version for tablets and mobile devices.

mobile responsive website designTrying to Interact with a non-mobile-responsive website using a touch screen is often clumsy. Having to scroll left and right to see what you want, or resizing the page several times is very tedious.  Furthermore mobile devices experience slow load times since they need to load all the content and images at desktop sizes or format.

The following graph clearly shows the growth in mobile usage over a 4 year period and the contious increase. This devices being used by number of users (10% sample) versus time (over 4 years) clearly manifests the increase over time of mobile devices

responsive-mobile-website-graph

And in this image we can see every industry/segment is different. As you can imagine some sites are better left to be viewed while in front of your desktop.

comparison-mobile-vs-desktopSo we can conclude from these 2 images that its becoming more important that your website caters to people who want to access it from both mobile and desktop devices.

So how do we build a mobile responsive website design?

The quickest and easiest way to get yourself a mobile friendly website, is to just buy one. Thats right. There are many theme websites like themeforest plus others. Searching for website themes will produce thousands of results.

Or build one using a free theme from www.getbootstrap.com.

High Quality mobile responsive design is definitely a must these days. And very affordable too, so make sure your website works in a responsive fashion on all devices today.

 

For High Quality Mobile responsive website design please contact our office.

How to setup magento 2

adminEcommerce

How to Setup Magento 2 quickly and easily

We will be looking at how to quickly and easily install a copy of Magento 2 on your web server through Cpanel without mucking about with technical heavy software like SSH, Composer or any PHP programming code etc. We’ll actually do this in less then 10 minutes through CPanel.

Apart from the instructions on this page, we have also added a video below as a basic guide on how to install Magento 2 through cpanel on your account. Both the tutorial and the video are a very basic step by step to get Magento shopping cart up and running without too much difficulty.
Once the Magento installation is complete, we are going to be adding a category and a product, just to have a basic understanding and get you going.

Before we start its good to know, Magento is an open-source e-commerce software system written in PHP with a Mysql Database backend. The software was originally developed by Varien Inc. Magento’s market share among the 30 most popular e-commerce platforms is about 29.8% and is used by many large companies like Nike, Dicksmith etc The Latest version being Magento 2 at the time of writing this Blog, is powerful, with hundreds of features not available in other carts. The only downside would be having so many features being its strength also makes it its weakness since it is complex and harder to use.

Ok, so lets get on with it

How to Setup Magento 2 quickly and easily

The default Magento 2 install

1. First Log into your cpanel… you would do this by going to your browser and typing in your domain name followed by cpanel, like this:
www.your-domain-name.com.au/cpanel
2. Then find and click on Softaculous Magento icon
3. Once the screen is loaded enter the details its self explanatory here.
4. Once the installation is complete, visit the webpage http://www.i-net.com.au/magento2

Its important to note, ideally you would want to place your magento on its own VPS (virtual Private server) or Dedicated server instead of a shared server, so that you have all the server resources dedicated to your Magento website therefore that way your site would load faster. These days servers are quite cheap. if your interested see our url below this video for server pricing.

5. ok, once the sites installed and loaded, we have the default Luma theme displayed at your domain, now lets look at setting up some products.
6. On the Softaculous screen, follow the link to the admin page and please login.
7. now we’ll add a sample product – follow the video from here if its difficult to find the actual links
8 products > catalog > add product
9. enter the product name, price
10. click on new category if you require a new category
11. scroll down to images and videos and drag image across to add video and hit save.
(the image couldn’t be uploaded due to permission settings on the images folder. you can change the images folder via the cpanel file manager to 777 to allow for images to be uploaded.
12. refresh the home page,and you should now see that you have a category with one product

So there you go a very basic tutorial on setting up Magento 2, adding a category and a product.

For those who got stuck, send me your questions, and/or feedback id love to hear from you and based on your questions I may create part 2 of this video.

How Website Programmers can Help Your Business

adminEcommerce, Web design

A website programmer can build you a website that responds to your business needs, and anticipates customer behaviour. The E-commerce industry is a complex industry, and a web developer can help you quickly and easily navigate your options for webpage style and function, as well as creating the perfect website for you. A website programmer can customise a ready-made theme to suit your business (the cheapest option), or build you a website from scratch complete with a shopping cart system, payment gateway, shipping calculators, backup and report automation using PHP programming and MYSQL database.

magento

DIY website programmers, or concentrate on the core of your business

Working with a programmer is much better in the long run, and often cheaper in the short term as well, than trying to DIY (do-it-yourself) your site. However, It’s becoming easier for a modern businesses to set up a basic e-commerce website and start trading using ready made available ecommerce themes. Keep in mind though, there’s a big difference between a basic webpage, and a website that is able to really impress new customers, generate interest, and drive sales growth. How much do you know about coding, and how much time do you want to spend developing your IT skills, when you could be developing your product and your business management skills? If you’re a business manager, then no matter which way you slice it, your time and money is better off invested in working on your business then in your business. Best of all leave website design and development to an experienced web developer.

web programmer

Website programmers arent cheap, use a open source CMS

A website programmer can do so much more. If your budget is limited, you might like to stick with WordPress as your host. WordPress is a content management platform with impressive scope for creating individual, responsive websites. A skilled website programmer can spend a small but valuable amount of time bringing your website up to the best it can possibly be. A website programmer can draw on expert advice and talk you through how to make the most of the WordPress CMS in future, and what you can do to make your business stand out from the crowd.

website programmers coding websites

All the major e-commerce platforms – WordPress, Amazon, eBay and Shopify each offer competing payment gateways. And each of these gateways is designed to benefit the platform, not always your business. Contracting with a website programmer is the best way to develop an ecommerce model that suits your business, and offers all the payment gateways that you want.

Aside from the front-end, user-visible and customer-experience improvements, you will find that a website programmer is invaluable behind the scenes as well. You don’t need to understand the ins and outs of PHP, or how to make a marvellous MYSQL database.
Why pay your accounting and reports team to spend hours every week on data analysis and compiling detailed reports, when you could pay a website programmer once to set up a system for automating reports?

Employing the right website programmers

To know that you’re contracting with the right website programmer for you, always ask to see their portfolio. If you like the look of their work, and they have creative suggestions for how they could improve your traffic flow and grow your business, then you know you’re in good hands. With an eye-catching website that works flawlessly for your customers every time, you are guaranteed to improve your business’ reputation and results.

What is Poodle Update, SSL 3.0 and TLS

adminEcommerce

The popular implementation of public-key encryption is the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). SSL is an Internet security protocol used by browsers and servers to transmit private and sensitive information. SSL has become part of an overall security protocol known as Transport Layer Security (TLS).

It used to be believed that TLS v1.0 was marginally more secure than SSL v3.0, its predecessor. However, SSL v3.0 is getting very old and recent developments, such as the POODLE vulnerability have shown that SSL v3.0 is now completely insecure.

So what is this Poodle Vulnerability?

The Poodle (“Padding Oracle On Downgraded Legacy Encryption”) flaw was revealed by Google last month.
It works by forcing an HTTPS connection to a site to use the less secure SSL 3.0. This ‘fallback’ could then allow an attacker to steal session cookies which could give them access to a victim’s online accounts.

It is important to make sure your website does not use the less secure SSL 3.0 protocol and Uses the more up to date secure TLS protocol. So that if an attacker downgrades the connection to SSL 3 does not gain access to the private information like credit cards being sent from the browser to the server.

Paypal has notified all customers that they will be rejecting all SSL 3.0 connections to prevent problems, so if you havent updated your site, you wont be able to connect and accept payments from your website via Paypal.

Also, Google will put an end to Poodle-related problems with the launch of Chrome 40, which will disable SSL 3.0 completely.

Senior software engineer, Adam Langley, wrote in a note late last week that Google would be disabling that SSL 3.0 fallback from the next version of Chrome (39).

So shoppers on your website without the latest Poodle updates will recieve a error message when using Google chrome as their browser.

Google said that in Chrome 40, Google will disable SSL 3.0 completely, shutting off any avenue for attack via Poodle.

“In time, SSLv3 client support will be removed from the code, so anyone re-enabling SSLv3 and/or fallback to it via policy, command line options or about:flags should not treat that as a long-term solution,” Langely From Google explained.

Linux Server administrators would be updating all Apache servers to also prevent users from writing code which would use the SSL encryption method.

If you need to upgrade your software or website to remove Poodle vulnerabilities or for any other code related issues or concerns please give us a call.

Magento Go is Shutting Down

adminEcommerce, Servers

On February 1, 2015 Magento Go is Shutting Down!

I think this is the worst thing a Company can say to its clients. Surely you could have organised a several easy options for your clients, who have trusted and used your services over the years. Forcing people to migrate to your $12,000/ year Enterprise software, is not fair. Neither is downgrading to the less featured community edition.

Magento Go is Shutting Down

Magento Go
is Shutting Down

We at Inet have always presented our clients several options, each business has its own objectives and would require a different solution, thats why we work with many shopping carts and not just push one.

If your a Magento Go customer and are looking for a way out, give us a call and lets help you find a solution moving forward and make the move a whole lot smoother and little stress.

I really think Magento should ahve thought this out better. Merchants dont have time to go through all this, they just want to concentrate on the business and keep selling.

How to get Get high Google rankings using a SEO ( Search Engine Optimisation) Process that works

adminSEO

UPDATE: Heres the Top Most IMPORTANT factors which help you rank in the search engines

2016 SEO ranking factors

2016 SEO ranking factors

 

1 – Website analysis and goals

Determine Website goals. Is the goal to
– Drive more traffic to the site
– Sign up to newsletter
– Make purchase online
– Entice people to call
– or fill out a form

Very often different pages within the site will have different goals, and these need to be kept in mind throughout the SEO process.

Analyse current site
– Is the site cached/indexed by Google, MSN or Yahoo.
– What is the PR of the current site.
– What keywords are currently ranking high in the search engines for the site
– How long has the website been online.

 

2 – Conduct Keyword Research

– Brainstorm a list of keyword phrases with the help of client.
– Using the above list, provide client with real monthly searches made for those keywords.

Case study-
Clients website is a b2b business directory, so we know how many searches are made worldwide per month for the keywords with the word business in it. This Highly targeted list is sent to client, whose job will be to weed out irrelevant phrases and rank the relevant ones in order of importance to their business.

Searches / month  Keyword
1593314  business
468670  home business
367656  business school
339300  business opportunity
310293  business card
306146  business to business
293087  business services
271152  better business bureau
249595  home based business
246586  small business
237715  business gift
160068  business credit card
154211  business business
136368  internet business
132441  business directory
131244  business plan
129383  business voip
127194  business search
123976  business for sale
122088  home business opportunity
120491  business insurance
119308  starting a business

note : the above list is a shortened version.

3- Develop and mark competitive keywords.

The list of keywords will be analysed further to determine its competition within the search engines, if competition is too high the keywords will be marked, and client will be notified.
ROI is the key here, you do not want to spend months and months on optimisation just to get a few more hits.

Make Selection of Final Keywords

Once this new “short list” is compiled, it’s time to brainstorm with the client on which 2 or 3 phrases to focus on within the copy of each page of the site. The home page of the site should usually focus on the main 2 or 3 phrases that encompass the general theme of the site. Inner pages should each focus on 2 or 3 more specific phrases. If the pages already have some copy to work with (say 150-250 words or more), take a look at the existing words on each page and see which 2 or 3 keyword phrases in your short list will fit best with the current copy. If pages of the site don’t have much copy to begin with, or if there is no specific focus on any given page, a rewrite from scratch will be necessary.

 

 

4 – Incorporate Keywords into Copy

Once the keyword phrases are chosen for each page of the site, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty and start utilizing them within the copy. If you’re rewriting from scratch, be sure your copywriter understands which phrases need to be used, what the goals of the site are, and who the target market is. Obviously this information will affect how they write the copy, so the more they know, the more accurate your copy will turn out. If you’re lucky enough to be able to work in the necessary keywords, that’s your next step. Once your copy is finished and approved, you should now have a number of pages focusing on 2 or 3 keyword phrases each.

5 – Optimize HTML Code

You’re now ready to optimize the actual HTML code. Optimizing the HTML code includes creating Title tags, Meta description tags, Meta keyword tags, hyperlinks, and possibly headings & image alt attributes. All of these are factors in helping the search engine spiders to properly classify your site, with some being more important than others.

When your code is optimized, it’s time to upload your new pages to your server.

 

6 – Submission

– Make sure site is complete. You may not be accepted otherwise.
– Submit to search engines relevant to your industry
– submit to directories relevant to your industry

Don’t bother submitting to Google etc, concentrate on quality link building as it works better.

 

7 – Build Links

– Create a page for your link partners

The next step is to begin your link-building campaign in earnest. As with directory submissions, I prefer to wait until the site is in perfect condition before starting to request links. You can certainly get started researching link partners before the SEO is complete; however, the better your site is, the more likely others will be willing to link to it. Link building can be done in a quick burst, but should also be an ongoing process. You should always be on the lookout for sites that are a good fit with yours and contact them about exchanging links.

8 – Be Patient

At this point, the only thing left to do is wait for your rankings to roll in! If you’ve paid for inclusion with the search engines and directories that offer this, you’ll start to see results within a week or 2. If the rankings aren’t as high as you’d like them to be, I recommend not changing anything for at least 3 to 6 months.

You’ll need to give your link-building campaign time to kick in, as well as simply give your new site time to age in the engines’ databases.

That’s all there is to it! Pretty simple, eh? Did I miss anything? Do you have another process? With thousands of SEO firms out there, I’m sure everyone has their own tried-and-true methods. The one I’ve outlined here has served me well for many years, and I’m sure you’ll find it will do the same for you if performed correctly. However, there’s always more than one way to skin the SEO cat, so if your method differs a bit and it’s working for you, don’t worry about it!

Finally – Check positions regularly…. further optimise if necessary.

Keep in mind its not rocket science that gets you to the top of the search engines, its just common sense, a clear process and goals and sheer hard work. If you find that the SEO work your doing is just not working outsource it and let someone else deal with it while you concentrate on your core business.

 

Please contact us if you require assistance with your SEO campaign

 

Compare ecommerce software

adminEcommerceLeave a Comment

We have have compared some of the more popular ecommerce shopping cart software available today. Some of the shopping cart software packages have further features which are available through modules and addons. As such, the features listed below may not include all possible features for a given shopping cart software package.

Keep in mind this is only but a small fraction of the number of ecommerce shopping cart software available today

We’ve compared Data Storage General, Customer Features, SEO, Administration Area Features, Customer, Gateway Support, Alternative, Security , Shipment, Reward Features, Payment, plus many Other Features

 

General information

Name Creator Latest Stable Version Latest Release Date License Language Web application framework CMS extension
Avactis HBWSL 2.1.3 2013-03-08 Proprietary PHP
Batavi Batavi 1.2.2[1] 2012-04-13 GPL PHP
IzzoNet IzzoNet LTD n/a Every day Proprietary PHP
KonaKart DS Data Systems UK Ltd 6.5.1.0 2013-03-08 GNU LGPL Java
LemonStand Limewheel Creative Inc. 1.5.52 2011-06-03 Proprietary PHP
Magento Varien ver 1.7.0.2 2012-07-05 OSL 3.0 PHP
Miva Merchant Miva Merchant Inc. 5.5 2011-08-24 Proprietary MIVA Script
Drupal Commerce Drupal Commerce ver 1.5[2] 2013-02-13 GPL PHP Drupal
nopCommerce nopCommerce ver 3.00 2013-05-04 nopCommerce Public License C# ASP.NET MVC Framework
osCMax Michael Sasek, E Jonsen, PG Marshall, Mark Fleeson, JM Ivler, John Wisdom 2.5.2 2012-06-23 GNU GPL PHP
osCommerce osCommerce 3.0 2011-03-01 GPL PHP
PrestaShop www.prestashop.com 1.5.4[3] 2013-03-27 OSL 3.0 PHP
ProStores www.prostores.com 10.3 2011-05-17 Proprietary PHP
Shopify Shopify Continuous/SAAS Continuous/SAAS Proprietary Ruby Ruby on Rails
uCoz uCoz Media Continuous/SAAS Continuous/SAAS Proprietary Perl
VirtueMart Max Milbers and Team 2.0.18a 2013-01-09 GPL PHP Mambo or Joomla!
Zen Cart Zen Ventures 1.5.1 2012-09-19 GPL PHP
Creator Latest Stable Version Latest Release Date License Language Web application framework CMS extension

Data Storage

Information about what data storage system can be used.

Flat File MySQL PostgreSQL MSSQL Oracle SQLite Firebird
Avactis No Yes No No No No No
Batavi No Yes No No No No No
Drupal Commerce No Yes Yes No No Yes No
KonaKart No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
IzzoNet No Yes No No No No No
LemonStand Yes Yes No No No No No
Magento No Yes No No No No No
nopCommerce No Yes No Yes No No No
osCommerce No Yes No No No No No
PrestaShop No Yes No No No No No
Shopify No Yes No No No No No
Zen Cart No Yes No No No No No
Flat file MySQL PostgreSQL MSSQL Oracle SQLite Firebird

General Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

Source Code Provided AJAX Usage Digital Downloads eBay Listing Integration eBay Order Import Multiple Skins Point of Sale Order Management Subscriptions Taxation Template Engine
Avactis Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Batavi Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
IzzoNet No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes
KonaKart Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
LemonStand Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Magento Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce Yes Yes Yes No No N/A Yes Yes Yes N/A
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes ebay.fr or Module (paid) ebay.fr or Module (paid) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Zen Cart Yes No Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Source Code Provided AJAX Usage Digital Downloads eBay Listing Integration eBay Order Import Multiple Skins Point of Sale Order Management Subscriptions Taxation Template Engine

Customer Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

Guest account Customer Testimonials Featured Products Glossary / Tool Tip Words Image Enlarge Mini Cart Multiple Addresses Newest Products Newsletter News Next / Previous Product Links Polls Popular Products Printer Friendly Printing
Avactis Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes
Batavi ? Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No
IzzoNet ? Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes
KonaKart ? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
LemonStand ? Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Magento ? Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes No
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes {free addon} Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes {free addon}
nopCommerce ? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce ? free Addon free Addon No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes No
PrestaShop ? Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes
Shopify ? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zen Cart ? free Addon Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes free Addon Yes free Addon Yes Yes
Guest account Customer Testimonials Featured Products Glossary / Tool Tip Words Image Enlarge Mini Cart Multiple Addresses Newest Products Newsletter News Next / Previous Product Links Polls Popular Products Printer Friendly Printing

Product Image Attaching Product Rating Product Reviews Quotes Reordering Returns Searching Search as you Type Search Cloud Site Map (Viewable) Social Bookmarking Tell a Friend Wish List
Avactis Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes No No No No Yes Yes
Batavi Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Yes
IzzoNet Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
KonaKart Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes
LemonStand Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Magento Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce No Yes Yes No No No Yes No No No No Yes No
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 3rd party Module (price varies) 3rd party Module (price varies) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zen Cart Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes No No Yes free Addon Yes No
Product Image Attaching Product Rating Product Reviews Quotes Reordering Returns Searching Search as you Type Search Cloud Site Map (Viewable) Social Bookmarking Tell a Friend Wish List

Customer Reward Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

Coupons Gift Certificates Membership Discounts Membership Only Categories Membership Only Products Reward Points Special Offers
Avactis Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Batavi No No Yes No No No Yes
IzzoNet Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes
KonaKart Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
LemonStand Yes 3rd party Module Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Magento Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce free Addon No No No No No No
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zen Cart Yes Yes Yes No No yes Yes
Coupons Gift Certificates Membership Discounts Membership Only Categories Membership Only Products Reward Points Special Offers

Administration Area Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

Product Import / Export Statistics Stock Control WYSIWYG Editor
Avactis Yes Yes Yes Yes
Batavi Yes Yes Yes Yes
IzzoNet Yes Yes Yes Yes
KonaKart Yes Yes Yes Yes
LemonStand Yes Yes Yes Yes
Magento Yes Yes Yes Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce free Addon Yes Yes free Addon
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify Yes Yes Yes No
Zen Cart free Addon Yes Yes free Addon
Product Import / Export Statistics Stock Control WYSIWYG Editor

Search Engine Optimization Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

HTML Catalog Meta Tagging RSS Feeds SEO URLs Site Map (XML) GoodRelations RDFa
Avactis No Yes No Yes No No
Batavi Yes Yes No Yes No No
IzzoNet Yes Yes No Yes Yes No
KonaKart Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
LemonStand ? ? ? ? ? ?
Magento Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce No No No Yes No Yes
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes – added manually
Zen Cart free Addon (Printable Price List) Yes No free Addon free Addon No
HTML Catalog Meta Tagging RSS Feeds SEO URLs Site Map (XML) GoodRelations RDFa

Security Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

Access Control List Form CAPTCHA Staff Action Logging PA/DSS Certified
Avactis Yes Yes Yes No
Batavi Yes No Yes No
IzzoNet Yes Yes Yes No
KonaKart Yes No Yes No
LemonStand Yes Yes Yes No
Magento Yes No enterprise Yes / Magento Payment Bridge
Drupal Commerce Yes free Addon Yes No
Miva Merchant n/a n/a n/a Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes Yes / PCI/DSS
osCommerce Yes No No No
PrestaShop Yes No No No
Shopify Yes Yes Yes No
Zen Cart Yes free Addon Yes Yes
Access Control List Form CAPTCHA Staff Action Logging PA/DSS Certified

Other Features

Information about the features the shopping carts offer.

Multiple Store Fronts Affiliates API (Remote Management Functions) Minimum Orders Multiple Vendor Support
Avactis n/a Yes Yes Yes No
Batavi n/a No No Yes Yes
IzzoNet No No Yes Yes No
KonaKart n/a No Yes Yes Yes
Magento n/a No Yes Yes Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce n/a No No Yes No
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zen Cart free Addon 3rd party Module No free Addon / low order fee std. No
Multiple Store Fronts Affiliates API (Remote Management Functions) Minimum Orders Multiple vendor support

Payment Gateway Support

Information about which payment gateways are supported.

2Checkout Authorize.Net AIM Authorize.Net SIM Barclaycard CPI Barclaycard MPI HSBC API HSBC CPI Nochex PayPal Standard
Avactis Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Batavi No No No No No No No No No
IzzoNet No Yes Yes No No No No No Yes
KonaKart No Yes Yes No No No No No Yes
Magento Yes Yes Addon ($50.00) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes No No No No No No Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes No No No No No No Yes
osCommerce Yes Yes Yes No No No No Yes Yes
PrestaShop Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Shopify No Yes Yes No Yes No No Yes Yes
Zen Cart Yes Yes Yes No No No No Yes Yes
2Checkout Authorize.Net AIM Authorize.Net SIM Barclaycard CPI Barclaycard MPI HSBC API HSBC CPI Nochex PayPal Standard

PayPal Pro PayPal Payflow Link PayPal Payflow Pro Sage Pay Form Sage Pay Direct USA ePay WorldPay Offline Processing Offline Methods
Avactis Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Batavi No No No No No No No Yes Yes
IzzoNet Yes No No No No No No No Yes
KonaKart No No Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Magento Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Addon ($175.00) Yes Yes Yes
Drupal Commerce Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No
nopCommerce Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
osCommerce No No No No No No No Yes Yes
PrestaShop Yes No No No No No Yes Yes Yes
Shopify Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Zen Cart Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes free Addon (removed from core for PCI compliance) Yes
PayPal Pro PayPal Payflow Link PayPal Payflow Pro Sage Pay Form Sage Pay Direct USA ePay WorldPay Offline Processing Offline Methods

Alternative Checkout Support

Information about which alternative checkouts are supported.

Amazon FPS Checkout by Amazon Google Checkout PayPal Express
Avactis No  ?? Yes Yes
Batavi No  ?? No No
IzzoNet No  ?? Yes No
Drupal Commerce Yes  ?? Yes Yes
Magento Yes  ?? Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes  ?? Yes Yes
osCommerce No  ?? No No
PrestaShop No  ?? Yes Yes
Shopify No  ?? Yes Yes
Zen Cart No  ?? free Addon Yes
Amazon FPS Checkout by Amazon Google Checkout PayPal Express

Real Time Shipping Calculation

Information about if the Shopping Carts have Real Time Shipping Calculation built in to be able to calculate how much it will cost to ship an order in real time when the customer checks out an order.

Australia Post Canada Post City Link DHL FedEx Intershipper United States Postal Service UPS Purolator
Avactis Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes n/a
Batavi No No No No No No No No n/a
IzzoNet Yes No No No Yes No Yes Yes No
KonaKart No No No No Yes No Yes Yes n/a
LemonStand Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Magento No Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes n/a
osCommerce No No No No No No No No n/a
PrestaShop Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes n/a
Shopify No No No No No No Yes Yes n/a
Zen Cart free Addon free Addon No No free Addon No Yes Yes Yes
Australia Post Canada Post City Link DHL FedEx Intershipper United States Postal Service UPS Purolator

Shipment Booking Integration

Information about if the Shopping Carts have Shipment Booking Integration to allow staff to be able to book shipments for a number of orders at once via the control panel.

Australia Post Canada Post City Link DHL FedEx Intershipper United States Postal Service UPS
Avactis No No No No No No No No
Batavi No No No No No No No No
IzzoNet No No No No No No No No
KonaKart No No No No Yes* No Yes* Yes
Magento No No No No No No No No
nopCommerce No No No No No No No No
osCommerce No No No No No No No No
PrestaShop Template:Via webservice No No No No No No No
Shopify No No No No No No No No
Zen Cart No No No No No No No No
Australia Post Canada Post City Link DHL FedEx Intershipper United States Postal Service UPS

Shipment Tracking Integration

Information about if the Shopping Carts have Shipment Tracking Integration to show the customers the tracking information on the View Order pages.

Australia Post Canada Post City Link DHL FedEx Intershipper United States Postal Service UPS
Avactis Yes No No No Yes No Yes Yes
Batavi No No No No No No No No
IzzoNet No No No No No No No No
KonaKart No No No No Yes No Yes Yes
Magento No No No Yes Yes No Yes Yes
nopCommerce Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes
osCommerce No No No No No No No No
PrestaShop Template:Via webservice No No No Yes No Yes Yes
Shopify No No No No No No No No
Zen Cart No No No free Addon (Ty) free Addon (Ty) No free Addon (Ty) free Addon (Ty)
Australia Post Canada Post City Link DHL FedEx Intershipper United States Postal Service UPS

Server Cleaner : A script to keep your VPS or Dedicated Server Squeky clean

adminServers

Do you run your own VPS or dedicated server, and find your server filling up with log files, yum files and unnecessary ‘stuff’.
Well heres a script you can run on your servers, in fact add a cron and have it run daily, weekly or monthly.

IMPORTANT NOTE: this script will be deleting files, and must be run as root
and if you are running this as root – IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE RESULTS.

If you would like to know what files are deleted or want to edit the script as to determine what gets deleted
see further below.

There are plenty of improvements that could be made to this script, however its a great baseline to start with.

The basic idea is that Server side disk space is expensive compared to local storage – every
extra Gb is more clients that you can host. This script will:
a) remove uneeded YUM cache files, cpanel temp files etc.
b) remove “trash” files from user accounts older than a specified period (see Variables)
c) backup old log files (from logrotate), then compress and FTP them to a backup server
d) remove the backup files
e) give you a report to so that you know how it went

The script:

First create a file named vpsclean.sh which contains the following:

[divider_advanced]

#!/bin/bash
#VPS disk cleanup by RoboRutt for the world to use as you see fit
#any comments critique and stuff welcome to robert@ruttentech.com
#latest version available from http://www.ruttentech.com (checkout downloads)
#NOTE: this does some deleting stuff, and deliberately must be run as root
#and if you are running this as root – IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE RESULTS

echo Starting…

#setup the application variables – dont change these – editable variables are in the file vpsclean.conf
source vpsclean.conf
today=`date +%G%m%d`
MaxSpam=`expr $MaxSpamM “*” 1000`
version=1.6

#remove temp folder if it already exists from a previous (bad) run
cd $RunDir
if [ -d $RunDir/backup-$today ] ;then rm -rdf $RunDir/backup-$today ;fi
if [ -f vpsclean_ftp.log ] ;then rm -f vpsclean_ftp.log ;fi
if [ -f vpsclean-$today.tar.gz ] ;then rm -f vpsclean-$today.tar.gz ;fi
if [ -f $RunDir/before_cleanup ] ;then rm -f $RunDir/before_cleanup ;fi

#get a snapshot of disk usage before cleanup
echo Getting some disk statistics
df -h >> $RunDir/before_cleanup

# FTP Backup
if test $FTPBACKUP = Y
then
echo Creating a backup of files to be removed
#create file structure in back to mirror server
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today/var
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today/usr
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today/usr/local
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today/usr/local/apache
mkdir $RunDir/backup-$today/usr/local/apache/logs
#copy files
cp /var/log/apf_log.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/boot.log.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/cron.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/exim_mainlog.?.gz $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/exim_paniclog.?.gz $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/exim_rejectlog.?.gz $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/maillog.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/messages.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/rpmpkgs.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/secure.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/spooler.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /var/log/wtmp.? $RunDir/backup-$today/var/log > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /usr/local/apache/logs/error_log $RunDir/backup-$today/usr/local/apache/logs > /dev/null 2>&1
cp /usr/local/apache/logs/suphp_log $RunDir/backup-$today/usr/local/apache/logs > /dev/null 2>&1
find /home -ipath “*/.trash/*” -type f -mtime +$OldTrash -exec tar -rf $RunDir/backup-$today/user_trash_accounts.tar {} \; > /dev/null 2>&1
#tar and ftp the complete backup folder to your ftp server
echo “Compressing backup files to send to remote FTP server ($FtpHost:$FtpDir)”
cd $RunDir
tar -czf vpsclean-$today.tar.gz backup-$today/
FtpSize=`ls -hs vpsclean-$today.tar.gz`
echo “…about to ftp, this may take sime time – your backup file is $FtpSize”
ftp -nv $FtpHost << END > vpsclean_ftp.log
user “$FtpUser” “$FtpPass”
binary
cd $FtpDir
put vpsclean-$today.tar.gz
bye
END

#remove temporary files
echo “…removing the vpsclean temporary files”
rm -rdf $RunDir/backup-$today
rm -f $RunDir/vpsclean-$today.tar.gz

#end FTP backup conditional check
else
echo “Skipping FTP backup of files”
fi

#the actual cleaning up bit
echo “Now cleaning up”
echo …clearing YUM cache
yum clean all
echo “…removing Cpanel temp files”
rm -rdf /home/.cpcpan > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -rdf /home/.cpan > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -rdf /home/MySQLInstall > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -rdf /home/cpeasyapache > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -rdf /home/cprestore > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -rdf /home/cpbackuptmp > /dev/null 2>&1
echo “…removing “trash” files from user accounts”
find /home -ipath “*/.trash/*” -type f -mtime +$OldTrash -exec rm -df {} \; > /dev/null 2>&1
echo “…removing old log files”
rm -f /var/log/apf_log.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/boot.log.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/cron.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/exim_mainlog.?.gz > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/exim_paniclog.?.gz > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/exim_rejectlog.?.gz > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/maillog.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/messages.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/rpmpkgs.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/secure.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/spooler.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /var/log/wtmp.? > /dev/null 2>&1
rm -f /usr/local/apache/logs/error_log > /dev/null 2>&1
touch /usr/local/apache/logs/error_log
rm -f /usr/local/apache/logs/suphp_log > /dev/bull 2>&1
touch /usr/local/apache/logs/suphp_log

#Check for and remove oversize SpamAssassin Files
if test $DELSPAM = Y
then
echo “Checking for large SpamAssassin files over “$MaxSpamM” Megabytes”
CHECK=`find /home -name “auto-whitelist” -size +”$MaxSpam”k`
if test -n “$CHECK”
then
echo “…the following files have been detected”
find /home -name “auto-whitelist” -size +”$MaxSpam”k -exec du {} -ah –max-depth=0 \;
find /home -name “bayes_seen” -size +”$MaxSpam”k -exec du {} -ah –max-depth=0 \;
echo
echo “Would you like to delete these files (y = yes) ?”
read Conf
if test $Conf = y
then
echo “…deleting files”
#find /home -name “auto-whitelist” -exec rm -f {} \;
#find /home -name “bayes-seen” -exec rm -f {} \;
else
echo “…skipping SpamAssassin file deletion”
fi
else
echo “…there are no SpamAssassin files greater than $MaxSpamM Mb”
fi
else
echo “Skipping check for large SpamAssassin files”
fi

#Clear Joomla cache and tmp files for accounts in root folders
if test $JCACHE = Y
then
echo “Clearing cache for joomla installations in account webroot folders”
find /home -path “*/public_html/cache” -type d -exec rm -f {}/* \; > /dev/null 2>&1
echo “Clearing tmp files for joomla installations in account webroot folders”
find /home -ipath “*/public_html/tmp/*” ! -iname “*index*” -maxdepth 5 -exec rm -rdf \{} \; > /dev/null 2>&1
else
echo “Skipping joomla cleanup”
fi

#display the results of your hard work so that you know you deserve a coffee
echo
echo “finished cleaning up – now the results”
echo
echo “BEFORE FILE CLEANUP (v$version)”
cat before_cleanup
echo
echo “AFTER FILE CLEANUP (v$version)”
df -h
echo
cd /root
RootSize=`du -ah –max-depth=0`
echo “JUST TO LET YOU KNOW, YOU ARE STORING $RootSize IN YOUR “/ROOT” FOLDER”

#Remove log files
rm -f $RunDir/before_cleanup
#rm -f $RunDir/vpsclean_ftp.log

#end
cd $RunDir
echo “finished”

[divider_advanced]

VARIABLES:

Now Create the configuration file named vpsclean.conf and insert this content:

[divider_advanced]

conf_version=1.2

#setup some variables that you might like to change Dont comment them out – but you can change them as noted

OldTrash=60 #the number of days that you want to keep user accounts .trash files
FtpUser=something #your username for your chosen ftp backup server
FtpPass=somehting #password for the aformentioned ftp backup server
FtpHost=127.127.127.127 #host for the now famous ftp backup server
FtpDir=something #remote ftp dir for the legendary ftp backup server – you will need to create this first
RunDir=/root #Folder that you want to run the script from (usually /root)
MaxSpamM=100 #SpamAssassin auto-whitelist or bayes_seen file to be detected IN MEGABYTES
FTPBACKUP=Y #Perform FTP backup of files, Y= yes, N = no (implies no backup of files to be removed)
JCACHE=Y #Clear cache from Joomla sites (only for Joomla sites in account web root folders)
DELSPAM=Y #Check for large SpamAssassin Files, Y= yes, N= no (you will still be asked to confirm before delete)

[divider_advanced]

The file contains all the user editable variables. Feel free to change what
you like in this file, notes on variables are contained within the file.

Here are a few variables that are included in the vpsclean.conf file:

‘OldTrash’ – the number of days that you want to keep user accounts .trash files
‘FtpUser’ – your username for your chosen ftp backup server
‘FtpPass’ – password for ftp backup server
‘FtpHost’ – host for the ftp backup server
‘FtpDir’ – remote ftp dir for the ftp backup server
‘RunDir’ – folder that you want to run the script from (usually =/root )
‘MaxSpamM’ – The largest SpamAssassin auto-whitelist or bayes_seen file to be detected IN MEGABYTES
‘FTPBACKUP’ – Perform FTP backup of files, Y= yes, N = no (implies no backup of files to be removed)
‘JCACHE’ – Choose to clear cache from Joomla sites (only for Joomla sites in account web root folders ie. /home/’acccount’/public_html/cache)
‘DELSPAM’ – Choose to check for large SpamAssassin Files, Y= yes, N= no (you will still be asked to confirm before delete)

1) save both filenames correctly
2) upload to your server /root folder
3) make the script executable (ie. ‘chmod +x vpsclean*’)
4) make the script writeable (ie. ‘chmod 775 vpsclean*’)
5) edit the script – you will need to enter your own FTP server variables “vpsclean.conf” file
6) run the script – ./vpsclean.sh

==BACKUP:==

This script works on the assumption that you would like to backup your log files to a remote FTP server. If you don’t want to, you have 2 choices. Firstly you can just delete them without a backup – the second choice is to allow the compressed tar.gz file to be stored on your server. My tests have shown it to be about half the size of the total files that it replaces. Either way, you will need to modify the script to do this.

==KNOWN ISSUES:==

* FTP connection issue. The script will drpo a logfile (vpsclean_ftp.log) in the root folder once it starts FTP’ing, and should remove it once it ends. If for some reason the FTP is interrupted you should be able to check the logfile for hint. At this stage there is no built in check to verify the file transferred.
* Currently I only test for the existance of tmp/ and cache/ folders in user accounts. On my server, this equals Joomla installations, but I can’t guarantee that others use similar systems. In other words, if you are storing valuable information in a folder called “cache/” – this script will delete it.

==THINGS TO DO:==
* Domain logs – checkout /usr/local/apache/domlogs/ – can we rotate these logs? Which ones can be deleted ?
* /var/log – see if we can tar/ftp the logs to a remote server, then delete.
* add webroot as a variable so that we can use this script on other filesystems/structures (eg. var/www)
* tar command in progress meter
* elborate on joomla cleanup to detect version.php – currently just checks for the existence of tmp and cache
* remove the need for a fixed “rundir” variable
* add option to run as su
* create, append to logfile – option for emailing logfile to user (for use as part of cronjob)
* add error traps around ftp and other functions
* do a version check on the conf file – to allow the creation of an update script

==CHANGELOG:==

v1.5 – added the removal and re-creation of the suphp logfile for those running suphp

v1.4 – fixup some bugs from 1.3
fixed a bug preventing “find” to work properly

v1.3 – added changelog to notes file 🙂
added a search/remove for tmp file in joomla installations
fixed ftp bug
changed removal process for user trash files. This will now backup file (if wanted) before removal
added notes file to explain my innermost thinking – scarey

v1.1 – added some conditional statements to allow you to “opt out” of an FTP backup **Thanks to DAWORM on NL Forums for suggestion**
– added a check and remove (plus confirm) for extra large SpamAssassin files
– added a find and remove for Joomla Cache files (some folders on our server were 100Mb +)
– improved the copy / remove functions to output to NULL so that no messages are received when file does not exist

How to design a ecommerce website quickly and cheaply

adminEcommerce

Ecommerce shopping carts

You are reading this article because you want a ecommerce website designed to sell your products or services online. You also want to be able to do this very quickly and as cheap as possible.

Well im going to show you some of the ways this can be done. Just keep in mind though, what may look cheap initially can be costlier later on and other options which look costly right now can be cheaper in the long run.

Let me explain.

Cheapest way to design a ecommerce website

To get the cheapest ecommerce website, you need to look for companies which sell a hosting package thats cheap (possibly unlimited bandwidth/diskspace) for around $4-$10 / month that also has a ecommerce website software ready to go. There are many companies that offer such products, some are great others not so reliable. I guess you get what you pay for.  I would select a company that’s been around for a while, check to see they have a portfolio and maybe even contact some of their clients in their portfolio to see how they are getting along with the company.

Advantages: quick to install and usually very cheap. you could always invest more money into it once you start making money

Disadvantages :  learning curve, you will need to put in the time to learn the system and configure to your own specifications, install modules for local shipping companies and banks etc. If its a company located in another country, usually times/ dates and currencies are set to their defaults. All of which will need to be reconfigured back to your local area.

 

Quickest way to design a ecommerce website

What would it take to make a website quickly. First lets define ‘Quickest’, If we said, Quickest would be to build and configure a ecommerce website within 1-2 days, that reasonably quite quick isnt it. And a tool to allow your products to be uploaded in several hours using some sort of bulk product uploading tool – that would be quick.

But what about features or tools that are non existent in the ecommerce app that we’re using, like the above mentioned tool ‘bulk product uploader’. This may require extra time in programming or configuring which could end up costing time and money, so what may seem to be quick initially can actually turn out to take much longer to setup. Let me give you another example, oscommerce and Zencart are widely used ecommerce website solutions, and both are great out of the box. However both programs are built for people selling in the US or worldwide. Which means dates are back to front, currencies are in US dollars etc this needs to be configured to work for Australians selling only in Australia in Australian dollars. The shop will need to be re-configured to display times and dates right way round aswell, not month first then day and so on. So what may seem like initially is quick may turn out taking much longer to setup and design then anticipated.

 

If you really want a site thats both quick and cheap to setup i recommend

  1. Get the I-net unlimited hosting offer, Unlimited bandwidth and unlimited disk space!
  2. You get cpanel/fantastico with the above hosting offer. Fantastico has several free and powerful ecommerce apps which can be installed in 1-2 steps which makes the whole process very quick. Some of the free carts included are oscommerce and Zencart plus a few others.

 

 

Pre-made Ecommerce Templates.

 

Lately pre-designed ecommerce websites have been a hot seller. You could Buy and modify a premade ecommerce template and be up and running in days. There are literally hundreds of ecommerce templates on sites  like Templatemonster and Themeforest. The advantages and disadvantages are similar to the above options.

 

Advantages

Cheap, good looking

 

Disadvantages

mucking about installing and re-configuring dates, times and taxes

 

Whats my other options?

Ecommerce websites with free templates with hosting and emails, installed for you quickly and common modules and features built in for your country -little more expensive .

I-net has a unique solution. I-net has partnered with Immerce.com.au, a provider of an ecommerce software which is made for Australians. Australian sellers and Buyers from Australia. Now if your business is in Australia and sells mainly to Australians this software is for you. I dont want to turn this article into a sales copy, but this is what we choose first for our custom designed requirements (you can read it on www.i-net.com.au/ecommerce-websites/ and on www.Immerce.com.au)  .

Advantages

– software and hosting together – cheap, no additional costs

– software includes many functionality others dont have – cheap, no need to install/program these features

– software has several high quality templates – no need to buy additional templates

– after purchase software automatically installs, no need to stuff around with installation php files, uploads etc

– configured for Australia – dates, times, states, currencies all local format – no need to change anything

– modules like Australia post, Fastway ban transfer, Australian banks installed and ready to be configured – other carts need to be installed or programmed

 

Disadvantages

– Costlier – these setups start from around $25 / month

 

Well what about Volusion, Magento, shopify etc

These are all great companies providing excellent software. Some have advantages mentioned above others have disadvantages which greatly affect Australian sellers. Below are some advantages and disadvantages not broken down into individual products, but just as a general guide

Advantages

– software and hosting together – some are missing emails services, so you’ll need to get that elsewhere

– some have excellent addons (cost extra)

– wide range of templates

– after purchase software automatically installs, no need to stuff around with installation php files, uploads etc not Magento

– configured for Australia – dates, times, states, currencies all local format – no need to change anything

– modules like Australia post, Fastway ban transfer, Australian banks installed and ready to be configured – other carts need to be installed or programmed

 

Disadvantages

– Costlier – these setups start from around $45 / month

– software and configured to  people in the US and UK generally
– some missing important Australian modules like Fastway shipping- they charge to use addons, some are like $100 extra each month, so some have hidden costs

 

OK, This is too much for me…. I just want to sell online, can you help

What May look expensive can be cheaper and quicker

If your serious about selling online the option of getting your site custom designed or at least installed, modified, setup/configured with a bit of training  is the best option which will save you a lot of headache. People that design ecommerce websites do it day in day out and are very quick at it. What may take you hours to do can take them minutes. So its worth paying someone to get things to speed while you concentrate on other parts of your business.

Custom ecommerce designs were expensive once upon a time (+$20,000 was common), but these days you can get most of the required tools for couple dollars as pointed out above. Also think about the outlay of a bricks and mortar business, to setup a real shopfront your looking at no less than $50,000, thats at the bare minimum. Build your online business just like you would invest in a bricks and mortar business. Maybe you dont need to spend $50,000 but dont be afraid to spend $5000-$10,000. It would give you a good start in the competitive online business world.

 

…And Remember it takes money to make money

 

 

Important Tips for Running an E-commerce Websites

adminEcommerce, Web design

Running an e-commerce task is not a simple task. From conversion rate strategies to figuring out which referrers drive you the best traffic, it involves a series of processes and certain mastery of marketing tools to be able to successfully run an online shop.

 

If you want to take advantage of establishing an online presence, this article should give you a heads-up into some of the opportunities available to you as you enter the online market. In this article, we will be discussing certain visualization tools, product page tips, check out tips, and some testing tools you need to get your hands on. Keep in mind that this article only serves as an introduction to what you should expect in establishing and running an e-commerce website. Hopefully you find this useful.

 

Product Page

 

If you want your website to be as successful as your offline store, you need a good product page. When designing your website, ensure that you always have your customers in mind and that you direct them when they land on your site. Here are some few tips to improve your product pages.

 

Tip 1: Make sure your Call-to-Action buttons are obvious enough.

 

 

 

Ensure that your CTA button is in a prominent place and that it’s not too small. Make sure that it’s also well-designed and that you use contrasting colors. Keep in mind that the color of your button should contrast with the text color on your button as well as the background color it’s on.

 

Tip 2: Delivery information

 

 

Give out the necessary delivery information and do not withhold until the very last minute. Remember that transparency is very important otherwise people will doubt your business. If an item is out of stock, make sure to state before a customer places his order. Inform the customer about the delivery lead time and how much the shipping cost is. Do not hide anything from your customer. Doing so will just encourage ill feelings toward your website.

 

Tip 3: Progressive Disclosure of information

 

Not all people are the same with the way they want to consume information. While others prefer to trust social reviews, some prefer technical specifications. The point is that your site should give the information your customers want to know. You may want to group information under several tabs or just provide a “more information” link.

 

Tip 4: Copy is king.

 

We cannot stress enough how important originality or uniqueness is. There are too many online shops that just copy the manufacturer’s description. A copied content will just harm your site instead of bringing it any good. First, expect that your rankings in Google will drop and your overall Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) will be rendered useless. Second, by just copying the manufacturer’s content, you are not giving any reason why your customers should buy your products. Keep in mind that a sales copy should be able to inspire confidence in you and your product hence building your site’s credibility. If you don’t have a talent writing good copies, then hire a copywriter who can write on your behalf. Trust us it’s worth the investment!

 

Check Out

 

Tip 1: Make sure guests can check out.

 

 

Customers should be able to purchase your products even if they are not registered customers. Just think about offline shopping. Do customers need to register before they can buy clothes? Of course not. Give your customers an option. Ask if they want to check out as a guest or as a customer.

 

Tip 2: Enclose the check-out process.

 

If someone wants to check out, ensure that your check out process is fast and secure. Don’t put in distractions such as ads and unnecessary offers that might just distract or annoy them from what they are trying to do which is to purchase. Though some may say the check-out process is a good opportunity to upsell, we really don’t think so and we think it’s not worth the risk. Don’t encourage the visitors to check out your other products when they are about pay. You don’t want them to abandon their cart.

 

Tip 3: Solicit feedback after visitors have submitted their orders.

 

Once a visitor purchased, instead of showing them a standard confirmation page, it would be better if you ask for some feedback regarding their experience when it comes to purchasing on your site. Feedback is important to site owners in making sure that they continuously improve for the benefit of their customers.

 

 

Tip 4: Handle errors gracefully.

 

Let’s face it problems are inevitable especially during the check-out stage. Cards get declined and people enter invalid email addresses and zip codes. To cover all these errors, make sure that you display messages that are contextual, useful, and conventional.

 

Analytics

 

If you want to know what is going on with your website and how many visitors on average you get, then you need to start using Google Analytics. By using this tool, you will be able to study your site metrics and find out how you can further improve your website.

 

Tip 1: Advanced Segments

 

With this feature, you will be able to compare your visitors from different countries in terms of buying habits, website usage, searches, quality of traffic, etc.

 

Tip 2: Custom Reports

 

Though the default reports in Google Analytics are not that superb, you can still customize the reports and add metrics that matter to you. For instance, you can see a report of the referring websites and their average per visit  value, bounce rates and the time spent on site.

 

Tip 3: Advanced Filters

 

If you want to know which referrers are the best then you can set GA to filter out what you don’t like. Just click on the “Advanced Filter” and you should be able to exclude the referrers that don’t matter to you.

 

Tip 4: Intelligence

 

With this feature, you will be able to notice traffic patterns without needing to set up reports for all the metrics you want to track. With Intelligence, if your bounce rate goes up by 10% you will immediately see an alert so there’s no need for you to spot it.

 

Final Word

 

Technologies are getting more and more advanced each year. Who knows what businesses will be using to track information and metrics across certain platforms. No matter. The key to being successful in the digital world is through customer insight and engagement. Find out what your customers want and give it to them. Make sure that you constantly monitor every element of your website, business, and industry and utilize the current available technology to help you grow your business and achieve your goals.