eCommerce FAQ

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Reviewing these questions below will help prepare you for one of our sales calls as well as prompt you to think of features on your shopping cart that you didn’t even think was possible.

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 Coupons/Gift Certificates

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A coupon is a code that you provide the public to get a discount on products, shipping or cart total. You have many options such as a percentage or dollar amount off anything that has a cost. You can also define expiration dates or usage amounts if needed.

If you have a deal on Groupon or LivingSocial and need hundreds of coupon codes, you won’t want to enter each of these codes manually. Having the ability to create/import coupon codes in bulk will save you time.

Gift certificates are different than coupons in that the codes for a gift certificate are unique for each person. When a customer buys a gift certificate online the system generates a random unique code for them to use until the funds are gone.

If you have a brick-and-mortar store and you want to be able to have your customers use the gift certificates both on your website and in-store, first you’ll want to check with your point of sale (POS) provider that it is even possible. If it is, this feature could be added on a case-by-case basis, depending on what kind of POS system you’re running in your physical location.

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Custom Forms

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A “Contact Us” type form is a part of our starter website package. However a fundraising or wholesale form with many questions to ask your customers is more complex and therefore requires more programming.

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eNewsletter Integration

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Having an eNewsletter to send communication out to your customers is an invaluable way to inform them about specials, events or just thank them for shopping with you by giving them a special coupon code to use on their next purchase. We can integrate most eNewsletter platforms into your website so that new customer’s email addresses automatically import into a list of your choosing.

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Online Payments: Processing Payments On Your Website

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There are many options when it comes to accepting payments online. Some options for online payment include PayPal, Stripe, Amazon Payments or other Merchant Account (must work with Authorize.net and not an emulator).If you need assistance in making this decision we can guide you though this process.

A payment gateway is a program that communicates with the payment processor and the shopping cart like Authorize.net. Some payment gateway accounts have a dual job and functions as the payment processor and gateway account such as Stripe. We currently support Authorize.net, Stripe, PayPal and Amazon as reputable payment gateways. If you have a different payment gateway account that you’d like to use please let us know before hand because it may incur an additional setup cost.

If you want to process payments directly on your site, as opposed to taking customers away from your site to process payments, you will need make your website secure for processing your buyer’s credit card information on the internet. In order to do this you will need to purchase an SSL from your domain registrar and a Unique IP Address from us.We can walk you through this process at the time of purchase however the decision needs to be made early on.

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Products

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Our starter package for a website with a shopping cart includes 10 products. If you want us to create any more than that it will be an additional cost. Remember to include products that might be seasonal when considering your active and inactive products.

For example, you might have a t-shirt in many colors and sizes or a food product with many flavors placed in different size containers. We’ll need to know these variables before products can be created.

For example, if you have a food product you might have gluten-free, sugar-free or house favorite. If you have a t-shirt you might want to filter by highest to lowest price or most popular item purchased. Deciding these options for your customer from the beginning of development will help us build out these filter options from the get go.

For example, a dress or blouse might have jewelry accessories that you want your customers to be able to add-on. These addons can be helpful to sell “impulse buy” type products, similar to how grocery stores have gum and candy at the checkout. They are usually a lower price than the main product you’re trying to sell.

We highly recommend you having this feature. The ability to expand your market to customers over social media platforms is invaluable marketing.

Setting up sales tax can be a tricky thing. Some states/counties require a special tax be applied to alcohol or tobacco products. Sometimes tax is not a factor at all. Either way, knowing what kind of taxes need to be applied at checkout is an important part of the development process.

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Customers

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Allowing your customers access to past orders and be able to save their billing information can be helpful to your repeat customers. Please note that their account will not have the credit card number, just the billing address and email address associated with past purchases. If you have subscription based products then your customers will be required to have an account on your website in order to switch/cancel their subscriptions.

There are many options to having a Gift Registry or Wishlist on your eCommerce site. Your customers can have a public list and share it with whomever they choose. Or they can have a private list just for themselves. This essentially allows your customers to gather all your products in one place to purchase for later. We have found the Wishlist to be especially helpful to organizations who have donors that want to purchase products to donate instead of just donating money.

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Shipping

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Shipping can be calculated in a variety of ways. You can have free shipping of course, flat rate or use a specified carrier.

Depending on what shipping carrier you want to use, you’ll need a different setup on the backend of your website. Most shipping carriers require that you setup an account with them and connect your website directly with them through the use of API keys. We will setup this connection for you as a part of the development process.

If you find that you have a large number of orders or simply do not want to mess with hand-addressing packages, you can setup an account with a third-party platform that will print shipping labels for you. We do not currently have a way to print shipping labels from your website directly.

Allowing your customers to send orders to multiple places at once can really help with gifting. This option allows you to split up the cat into as many destinations as your customer wants. We have found this is especially helpful during the holiday season. Don’t worry, the confirmation emails that come from your website will let you know what items need to be shipping to which address and what type of shipping they chose for each package.

Local delivery as a shipping option is no longer just for pizza! If you have a physical location that wants to allow your customers to select local delivery for your products, we can setup your website so that they have all kinds of options to choose from.

For example, different zipcodes have different charges, ability to leave a tip for Delivery driver, allow customers to choose different timeslots for their delivery to arrive, set a minimum amount in the cart before Local Delivery, etc. All these are options to consider when thinking about Local Delivery.

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