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  E - commerce
Part 4: Online Payment Systems & Credit Card Processing

Site security is a prime concern of potential online shoppers. You have to work especially hard at this, because you have to deal with both the reality and the perception of online credit card processing. The reality is that on a “secured” site, transmitting personal information such as credit card numbers is less dangerous than using a credit card in a “realworld” retail situation, where someone might look over someone else’s shoulder and steal the number, or pick the credit card slip out of the trash afterwards. During an interview with About Retail Industry Guide Melody Vargas, Eric Olafson, Tomax...

Part 3: Building Credibility With Your E-Commerce Customers

E-commerce merchants do a good job of this, for the most part. Most of them know that online shoppers need to see the product before they’ll purchase it; they use elements of e-commerce web site design such as online catalogues to accomplish this. Amateur e-commerce wanna-bes often make the mistake of loading many pictures onto too few pages and calling it an online catalogue, which results in a page that loads too slowly and doesn’t provide enough information. A good online catalogue will use a lot of web pages; it will be organized into categories, searchable, use thumbnails to give...

Part 2: Rules For Successful E-Commerce Web Site Design

You must have consistent, 24/7 hosting if you want to operate a successful e-commerce site. You must present a fully functional, complete store to entice the e-commerce visitor and get her to shop online. No big “Under Construction” or “Coming Soon” banners. E-Commerce web site design is critical; besides being professional looking and attractive, you must make your e-commerce site easy for the customer to use. If potential customers can’t navigate your site easily, they won’t bother. Your competition is always only a click away! And you must maintain your e-commerce web site regularly and often. An e-commerce site that’s...

Part 1: How Can You Turn E-Commerce Visitors Into Online Shoppers?

Build an e-commerce site, and the customers will come, shopping online madly and making you a dot com millionaire. Hype like this may move stock markets, but does nothing to motivate e-commerce visitors to become online shoppers. As you may already know from sad personal experience, you can invest a small fortune and a great deal of time designing a state-of-the-art e-commerce web site to showcase your product and getting those high rankings in search engines, but still be running your e-commerce venture in the red. I get a lot of email from people seeking e-commerce advice. They tell me...

Understanding B2C E-Commerce

Important aspects of B2C initiatives include promotion, ordering, product/service delivery, after-sales support. All activities are conducted in a seamless manner with the help of today's Web technologies. Let's explain them one by one: Promotion - According to reports, advertising expenditures via Internet are expected to rise from $3.3 billion in 1999 to $33 billion by 2004. Web promotion includes banners, buttons, pop-up ads, rich-media banners, etc. There are various advantages of using corporate Websites as a promotional medium where successful initiatives provide premium content, market research, online contests, coupons, etc. and have thus successfully established their consumer loyalty. Promotion via...

Effective Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization is crucial for anyone who wants people to visit his or her Web site. You can place as many ads as you like, but most people are still going to find your site because of its listings in search engines or directories. Search engine optimization is the process of making web pages attractive to search engines. In my work, I visit hundreds of web sites every month. Sadly, many of them are throwing traffic away; they look fine to the viewer, but ignore the basics of effective search engine optimization. It's a fact that most people who...

31 Ways To Drive Traffic To Your Business Web Site

Build a strong, solid business foundation. Design a business plan, marketing plan, ideal client profile and 30-second elevator speech. Be consistent and “brand” your company. Use the same colors, logo, motto, etc. everywhere on your business web site! Make your business web site trustable. Create policies that build trust: customer service, code of ethics and newsletter privacy policy. Ask your web master to name each of your pages using a keyword you have supplied them with. Offer added values on your business web site that make sense to your business and ideal client. This can include affiliate programs, books, and...

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Shopability: Exceeding Customers' Expectations

Last year many online retailers failed their customers. Some sites couldn't handle the volume of visitors. Others promised that goods would arrive before Christmas, but couldn't deliver on time. General usability problems from having to register before being allowed to shop, to bells-and-whistles that took forever to download on dial-up modems, newcomers and seasoned retailers alike experienced problems meeting their customer's expectations. What can online retailers do to not just meet, but exceed their customers' expectations this year? What creates a satisfied customer? Jupiter also advises online retailers to monitor customer contact volumes and continually reassess staffing forecasts, they should...

How To Build A Web Site That Works

If you want people to buy your product, you have to make it easy for them. Invest in a good shopping cart, and make sure that you offer payment options such as credit cards and other online payment options, such as Paypal. People don't want to have to bother to print off and mail in a form and a cheque - nor should they have to. ( For more on Canadian online payment options, see my article on Canadian E-Commerce Solutions.) Customers are concerned about transmitting personal information, such as credit card numbers, over the Web. You need to not...

Market Forces Continue To Shape The eRetailing Industry

Brand identity: The Internet makes it very easy for shoppers to find the same product in many places. Services like make the process of price shopping painless; try shopping for a book with and it will tell you where you can buy the book online at the best delivered price, based upon where you want it delivered. Unless the retailer owns the brand it is easy to find the same product in any number of stores. Companies that own their own brands can avoid price competition online. (e.g. Sears with its Craftsman and Kenmore brands, and Sharper Image...