What is e-commerce?

e-commerce

E-commerce is selling a product or service by electronic means, typically from a website. This also includes through social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.

If you don’t already sell online, you may be missing out on a huge opportunity to market your products and services to a wider audience and even worldwide.

Do I need my own website?

By only listing or having a page on someone else’s site you are helping and possibly paying them to grow their marketplaces. Those companies can and do change the rules at any stage and that can be to your detriment. This is not to say that a business should not have a Facebook page or list on sites like Etsy or Madeit. For certain products it makes sense to be part of other marketplaces where you can reach more customers.

It’s all part of your overall marketing strategy

We believe every business needs their own domain name to build their brand. It’s about owing your own piece of real estate on the internet that you can grow in the right way for your business. One of the most important aspects is to build a subscription list so you can send them emails or messages when you have new products or run specials, or when you have something worthwhile to say. It’s important to keep actively engaging with prospects and customers. That’s part of the reason why Facebook and Instagram can work so well for business. But third parties can change the rules at any stage, so having your own domain and website protects you from that.

When you sell a product from your own website, you keep 100% of the profits, less any payment gateway expenses which are way less than the big marketplaces like Amazon and EBay. We’re not against listing on Amazon if it’s a right fit for your product. Amazon is the world’s largest marketplace and can even do all the fulfilment for you via their Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) program. You send your products to their warehouse and they take care of all the packing and distribution for you and deposit money into your account monthly. The downsides are you don’t get to know who the customer is or add them to your subscriber list.

The key is building up your brand, not someone else’s

Get the search engines to rank your website and products well, market your website in whatever way works the best for you and people will find you.

It’s why we take a strategic approach and work out the best combination for your business.

If you already sell from your website, are you getting the returns you expected? If not, why? We’d be happy to have a look at your site and give you a free appraisal. Just book in a FREE 30 minute call with us via our Contact page.

Not seeing results from selling on your current site?

Some of the reasons you might not be seeing the results you were expecting from selling on your site are:

  1. Your site isn’t secure so your customers don’t feel comfortable using it. In the address part of your web browser it will say either http://yourdomain.com.au or https://yourdomain.com.au. The ‘s’ on the end of http means it’s secure. You could have a mix of both where your shopping cart links to a secure page on another domain, but that’s a hangover from years ago when secure certificates were expensive and sites linked to other secure ones. We include secure certificates in our hosting offering. Non secure sites are downgraded by Google in search engine rankings.
  2. Your site doesn’t look and feel professional so customers don’t feel comfortable ordering from it.
  3. Your site is too hard to use and customers give up. Are you regularly (e.g. monthly) reviewing your website statistics to see how many people are actually putting items in the shopping cart then not buying? It’s like bringing your shopping trolley at the supermarket to the checkout and the line is so long or the operator so slow that you give up and just abandon your cart and walk out.
  4. Your site is not ranking well in search engines. Read our blog post on How to improve your sites ranking in Google search.

WordPress and WooCommerce are FREE

We develop websites using WordPress along with a plugin called WooCommerce to develop our e-commerce sites. Both are available free of charge to use. Why? Because they are both known as open source systems. Without going into the details, as there are enough resources on the web for that. What this means is that you are not locked into a proprietary system, but one that is constantly updated and supported by many organisations. There are several e-commerce plugins for WordPress, but WooCommerce is the most popular and benefits from many other plugins having been developed to enhance it even more.

Fast setup and low cost to setting up your e-commerce website

Our e-commerce solutions allow you to:

  • Get a website up and running quickly. We’re talking weeks, not months.
  • Have you selling your products and services as quickly as you can type them in. We can even upload them from a spreadsheet.
  • Take complete control of the content and items for sale on your site.
  • Keep all your data hosted in the country you predominantly do business in. It doesn’t make sense having your site hosted in the US (e.g. Bluehost) when your customers are in Australia.
  • Choose from a number of different payment gateway providers
  • Pay only a very small percentage per sale, depending on the payment gateway you use. For example, we integrate with Stripe and Square who charge from 1.75% and 30c per transaction.
  • Integrate with the big guns of e-commerce so you can simultaneously sell on Amazon and EBay.
  • There are others but in the interests of keeping this short we’ll leave it here. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have.
  • How much would you expect to pay? Give us a call, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Align Systems' POS Chat App wins innovation award for the Gumeracha Hotel

Our POS Chat app makes the news!

The Mount Barker Courier in South Australia published a story about how the Gumeracha Hotel in the Adelaide Hills won an Excellence award in the ‘Recognition of Adaption & Innovation’ category by the Australian Hotels Association SA using our Messenger POS Chat app – meaning they will represent SA in the AHA National Awards, to be held in Hobart on February 7 next year.