By: Shailesh Gajjar
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|Thursday, 1-Sep-2011 06:57
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Why And How To Build An Online Store?
Let's start by assuming that we are living in a world without internet. You have to physically go to each and every place and get your things done. No e-bay, no Amazon, no Face book and no Google. Seems unbelievable, isn't it?
Think of doing business in such a world. You have a limited customer base and a local market only. You have to be present all the time in order to take care of your customers. This means you cannot concentrate on strategic aspects of business. The crux of it is that expanding your business becomes extremely difficult.
There are few more problems. You are strained to operate in business hours only and so your productivity will be limited. You will need high capital to sustain your business as a constant place, staff, high inventory, etc. will be needed.
It's extremely terrifying so let's come back to reality!
Welcome to the world dominated by internet where anyone can start a business. With the use of internet and various technological devices, you can be productive for 24/7.
Today, entrepreneurship is no longer a monarchy. You, me, anyone can start it. The entry barriers have reduced considerably because you can have a start-up even with a minuscule budget. As you start a business over the net, you instantly become a global player. You have access to each and everyone.
And with online money transactions a reality, it is imperative to be virtually present over the web.
Feels good to be back in the real world, am I right?
Now, we all know the importance of being online. Your business can really benefit with online presence as customers will be able to easily contact and buy from you. And for this, it is necessary to have an efficient and well-updated online store.
TIPS FOR CREATING A WELL-ORGANIZED E-COMMERCE STORE
Choose A Proper Software
There are several software applications available in the market. Many are accessible at absolutely no cost. Make sure you choose one which is easy to manage and satisfies your business requirements.
Simple Shopping Process
People buy online because it is quick and hassle-free. So, keep the shopping process simple and limit the number of steps involved. It's very important for your customers to easily and quickly find the product.
First List Your Best- Selling Product
If you are selling several products online, it is important that you start with your best selling products. Start product description with the most preferred product and then go for less profitable products. This will be of immense help to your buyers as they will be able to get their preferred products easily.
Emphasize On The Buy Button
You are having an online store and you won't be there to convince your buyer. So it is essential that he is motivated to buy as soon as he takes a look at the product. So make the Buy button most visible.
Your customers are wary of online shopping as several hidden costs are involved. They have been at the receiving end quite a number of times. That's why they are ever-so cautious about online shopping. So be transparent in financial transactions and show all the additional costs in the shopping cart.
Give me a personalized experience and I'll come back for more.
You can personalize your e-store by several options. Before the customers hits the submit/buy button, ask if they are interested in greeting cards, gift certificates, and wrapping paper options. Give them an opportunity to write messages in the cards and choose colors for wrapping papers. You can be innovative by permitting them to set reminders for birthdays and anniversaries and allowing your customer to create gift lists for their dear-ones.
It's your store; make it as you want it.
Think of all the things that will make things easier for your customer. You can offer your customers with several features like on-line order tracking features, online customer help, and live chats with your representatives and multiple shipping options.
You have an exquisitely made e-store, but you don't take care of your back-end operations. This can be hazardous for your business. Your inventory, management processing, financial transactions, etc. should be handled really well so that you provide total satisfaction and ease to your customers.
Stay In Touch With Your Customers
Whenever your customer posts a query, provide a satisfactory answer and do it in the least possible time. If you do it, then the customer would be assured that you are a serious businessman and not a fraud.
The problem with online business is that you can never know the customer as you understand them in traditional business. Hence don't lose touch with customers. Ask for feedback and value their suggestions. Keep in touch by e-mail and tell them about new promotions. Make them feel important and you will get loyal customers in return.
You are not there with your customer, but you can still solve all their doubts. You can make a list of the questions frequently asked to you and create a FAQ section.
You can answer several questions like:
When will the goods be shipped? How long will it take to reach you?
What safety is maintained for the goods in transit? Are they insured?
What are the consequences if the goods are damaged while in transit?
The bottom-line is to do as much as you can to make your customers trust you.
All this seem to be a lot, right? Don't feel that an online store isn't your cup of tea. The good news is that you can get it done from others. There are several website development companies who will help you in taking your business to the next level. You can give a contract to a company or even hire professional web developers.
There's no stopping you. Go ahead! Take your business online.
Remember what Bill Gates said a few years back, "There will be two types of business in the future: those online... and those out of business".
When you are in need of a competent eCommerce application development company, we can assure you that Capacity Web Solutions is your answer. Hire dedicated experts from us or contract us to create an impressive online store. Take a look at our eCommerce application development portfolio and know us better.
|Thursday, 1-Sep-2011 06:56
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Benefits of Hiring a Web Developer
There are more than 2,000,000,000 internet users as of March 2011 (Source: Internet World Status). Staggering amount, isn’t it? Imagine, with so many eye balls constantly hooked on the web, your business is sure to grab some attention. To be able to reach out to so many people, you need to be online. And so a website is a necessity for your business.
Now website designing and development is an intimidating job. You will have to entirely devote your time and efforts; this may hamper the development of your business. And, if you are not aware of the latest applications of website development, you are in deep water.
So if you are someone who wants to have a fantastic website and lacks technical knowledge. Don’t worry. There are several professionals who are dedicated towards work in creating spectacular websites. And guess what? You can hire them. To hire a dedicated, competent and enthusiastic web developer, you can either seek recommendations from your social circle or search over the net.
These dedicated professionals will work for a fee and be available for specified hours of the day. Now, why the word dedicated? It’s simple. They will work exclusively for you. You can contact them during the decided work hours and get your work done faster.
Hiring a dedicated web developer is also cheaper than contracting a website development company or having an in-house development team. You don’t have to worry about the tedious Employee Laws because they are not on your pay-roll. So there is no HR burden and no additional infrastructure is required.
“Many stone, few diamonds”
You will have to consider certain things before hiring a dedicated web developer.
Your developer should be able to develop your website with the help of CMS. Content Management System will allow you to add, edit or delete content on your website and that too without any requirement of HTML knowledge.
Your web developer should be able to communicate well with you. He should be able to clearly understand your requirements and provide you with optimum solutions. He should have the ability to explain you technical matters and solve your queries efficiently.
Check Website and Portfolio
Do you like to go to a dentist, who doesn’t have pearl white teeth or to a gym instructor who is not in his best shape? No; right. Then, why go to a website developer who can’t manage his own website. Check the website for functionality and style.
You will also need to go through their web design & development portfolio. Check for diversity and ensure that their work exudes quality and innovation.
After these checks, you will have the confidence to hire the professional. Remember that the professional is working entirely for you. So, whenever you have doubts and queries make sure you ask him.
Communicating on a regular basis will definitely help your website.
With a hired web developer, you pay less and get quality work. What more do you need?
Go ahead, hire a dedicated web developer and give your business the much needed shot in the arm.
|Thursday, 1-Sep-2011 06:53
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How to create a spectacular website?
The whole world is online. Why let your business stay back? Take your business to the next level by developing a fantastic website. It will give more visibility to your business. When you have a website, you get more customers and more profit.
But, website development is an overwhelming task. Several things will vie for your attention. If you don't take care, chances are that your website won't do a good job.
Here's a list of things that you will have to consider:
DOMAIN NAME SUGGESTION AND REGISTRATION
What's in a name? Well, everything! Your will need to decide a domain name for the website.
A domain name is used to identify and locate IP addresses. All the devices on the internet have an exclusive identifying number called the IP address. When you want to visit a website, you will have to type the unique IP address in the address bar. Remembering different addresses for different websites is a daunting job. And so, we have domain names which can be used instead of IP addresses.
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) administers the international Domain Name Server (DNS) database. It does the work of ensuring that all registered names are unique. So your domain name must be unique. It is an expansion of your business personality and should reveal your business instantly.
Your domain name should be easy to recall and remember. You can have a phrase as your domain name e.g. Howstuffworks.com but you should avoid hyphens and extra words because the user may get confused or forget them. It is better to have an easy spelling.
When you decide on the domain name, you should check whether it is available or not. There are several sites which will help you ensure that your domain name is exclusive. You can visit whois.net or checkdomain.com to verify the exclusivity of your domain name.
After you decide on the domain name, you will have to register it. After registration, your domain name is secured for the contract period. You will have to renew it after the period gets over.
Mc Donald's Golden Arches, Nike's Swoosh BMW's roundel... are all famous logos. They have created a distinct place in our minds. All these companies have worked hard in designing their logos because it is the most noticeable part of the brand identity.
Logo designing is one of the most important marketing decisions because your logo defines your mission. It should be unique and memorable for your customers.
Designing a logo needs a creative bent of mind. So if you have creative designers who can develop a logo, you can do that in-house, otherwise there are several website development companies who will design a logo for you. They will follow your requirement and provide you with options to choose from.
Truly elegant design incorporates top-notch functionality into a simple, uncluttered form.
This explains how your website should be- simple, effective and consistent with your business goals.
When you are undertaking the task of designing your website, keep in mind that it shouldn't look like an artist's color palette. Stick to two or at the most three colors and choose those colors which bring out your business's personality.
You will also have to take care of the layout and template design. It should be uniform for the entire website.
Your home page is the most important page of your website. You will have to design it in such a way that your customers understand what it wants to convey. Your home page should consist of almost all the details of your business, without impeding the beauty of your website.
Every page will have a new requirement. Your product page will have a separate design than other pages. But the basic template and colors should invariably remain the same.
So even though, each page may demand a specific design, try and maintain uniformity.
Content precedes design. Design in the absence of content is not design, its decoration. - Jeffrey Zeldman
Your design may be exquisite. But if the content doesn't convince your users, then all your efforts go in vain. So when you're developing content for your website, give the relevant information in simple and lucid language.
You will need to put up content on your website as well as write articles and blogs. The latter will provide information and help you in search engine optimization. In both the scenarios, it is important that you post relevant and true information. False promises won't last long.
It is necessary that you organize your information in proper order. The lesser paragraphs you use, the better it is. Think of interesting ways in which you can write the information.
The authenticity of your website is very important. If you don't provide original information, it will have a negative impact on your readers. If your website is fresh and innovative, it will help you a lot.
PROPER NAVIGATION STRUCTURE
Creative Good Inc. recently published a review of 10 leading Web shopping sites. In the study, 39 percent of test shoppers failed in their buying attempts because sites were too difficult to navigate.
This shows that you may lose your customers if you failed in having a proper navigation structure. What does good navigation mean? It means allowing your users to navigate through the entire website in as less time as possible.
Once a visitor gets to your web site, you have to make sure they get what they want. If your website gives them what they want and that too easily, they will come back.
The very first thing that you need to have is a constant navigation menu (which means same style and position) on every page. It will help your users to move from one page to another with ease.
You can also have multiple-tiered navigation which will organize your website effectively and will provide easy access to your users. Along with, the top navigation bar you can also have vertical navigation which runs down the left side of your website. This will make your visitors' work easier.
The home page is the most important page of your website; still you cannot link every page to it. Site maps will be of use here. It will help users to have a structured navigation across your website.
It is essential that you have a sound navigation because the search engine robots will come to your site with the help of external and internal links. And if any page is unapproachable then, the search engine won't be able to access it.
When you are dealing with the navigation structure, remember that simplicity is the way of doing things.
TESTING AND IMPROVEMENTS
The test is to recognize the mistake, admit it and correct it. - Dale C Turner
When your website is complete, you will need to test it. There are several aspects of checking your website.
>> When your website is ready, you will have to test whether all the web pages are linked correctly or not. You will have to validate the Navigation structure. Also, don't forget to ensure that the site map has proper links for the all web pages.
>> You will have to verify that the forms used in your website are getting correct data from the user.
>> At this time, you also have to do HTML/CSS validation. So if there is any syntax error, it can be rectified immediately.
>> You will also have to check your content for any spelling and grammatical errors. Also check the font sizes and style and ensure that your information is readable. Check whether the images are placed at proper locations and in appropriate sizes.
Browser compatibility is extremely important. Different browsers have different features and settings and so each browser may show your website differently. So it is essential that you check the compatibility of your site.
Also, users make use of different operating systems. So it is essential that you check your website and its web applications in reference to different operating systems like Windows, UNIX, MAC, etc.
With the advancement of technology, several users will log in to your website with their cell-phones. So ensure that your website looks fine when operated with the help of smart phones.
Also test your website for web- load. It means to check whether the website can sustain when too many users are requesting the same page.
When your website has passed these acid tests, it is time to ensure its safety.
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) provide security over the internet. If you have used SSL, then each of the web pages must display https://yourwebsite.com. With https://yourwebsite.com, you can assure users of a secured network.
You undergo the entire web development process in order to increase your business. You can do that only when your website is visible in the search engine ranking. For that, you will have to promote your website.
You can promote your website by many ways like Banner Advertisements, Search Engine Optimization or by PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising etc.
Keep in mind that your website will be ranked top only when you complete the entire development process. So, make sure that you have done your job with due diligence.
Phew!! It's too much work, isn't it?
Developing a website is extremely complicated and time consuming. But there are several offshore web development companies who will create a spectacular website for you in no time. You just have to provide them with your requirements and they will do a fantastic job for you.
So, why not give out your work to someone who knows how to do it effectively. This will ensure that you have ample time to take care of the strategic aspects of the business.
So, hire dedicated web developers and get your website going.
All the best!!!
|Monday, 22-Aug-2011 06:19
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Website Designing - Let Experts Handle Your Website
FIRST IMPRESSION IS OFTEN THE LAST IMPRESSION
In a world dominated by Google and Face-book, having online presence is important for your business. A website will allow you to have more visitors than you ever had. But for that, it is necessary that you have an alluring website. A website is alluring when it conveys what it is meant to be and that too in the simplest manner. It is not collage of pictures and text, just in between. Designing is a very important aspect of your website. It gives the first impression of your business. Your designing should be perfect; you obviously don't want the first impression to go wrong.
For a flawless design, you will have to take care of several things. Here is a list of things that will demand your attention
Sense of balance
One look at your website and the visitor should be able to understand your business. You shouldn't just use images or texts. It should have a good combination of both. An uncluttered and structured web page will have a good impact.
*One way of uncluttered your website is to use hyper-links for words and ideas that need more explanations. By doing this you can make the page less congested and still discuss things in detail.
Using contrasting colors will allow your text to be visible. It is not mandatory that you only choose black and white colors. Choose colors that add personality to your business and do keep in mind that it should complement the colors used in your logo.
Colors have a great meaning in every culture. You will have to choose colors according to your target market. If you are dealing in bridal dress in the States, then you should choose colors which will complement white. This is so because white is used for bridal dresses. But if you are doing the same business in India, white cannot be chosen as it is considered inauspicious for weddings.
Avoid the temptation of using many colors. Stick to two or at the most three colors in your website.
You have built your website with the objective of getting more business. So it is necessary that your website should do its business efficiently.
1> If you have an e-commerce store, then it is necessary that you emphasize the BUY button and not just provide information about your inventory.
2>If you have websites that encourages charity, the DONATE option should be easily visible.
When you design your website, you should take care of uniformity. The web pages should have consistent template, layout and colors. If you don't take care of uniformity, the visitor may feel that your business is as unorganized as your website.
Paragraph and Line spacing
First of all, there should be as less paragraphs as possible. A maximum of 4-5 lines or 3-4 sentences is enough for a paragraph. Long paragraphs can demotivate your reader.
There should be adequate distance between the lines of the paragraph. If it's too less, then it looks a mess. If it's more, then the user will feel that a new paragraph has started. All this will hamper the readers' interest in your content.
*Use more of bullets to make it easier to read.
You cannot go for Times New Roman font size 12 in your website. You will need to check how several font types and sizes appear in various MOST USED browsers and then decide on one which looks good everywhere and every time.
Plagiarism-image and content
It may happen that you liked an image and embedded it in your website. Now if you are not a professional, you may not know that it is actually stealing. Same is the case, when you use someone else's content without permission.
There can be several repercussions to your simple action so don't use anyone else's content on your site without permission.
Use of image
A picture speaks a thousand words. Images are always useful because all your visitors may not be proficient in the language you are communicating. But the problem is that images take more time to load. Users may not want to wait that long and you will lose them. And so you will have to use lesser images. Even then, you must use the image slicing technique to increase the loading time
Alternate tags to image
The search engine robot doesn't recognize an image so it is essential that you give alternate tags otherwise the search engine may not give you a ranking. The reason-it is not fully aware of the content put on your website.
Now alternate tags are also useful even when the image doesn't get loaded quickly. Your website users will get an idea of the image even when it doesn't download faster.
Alternate tags will also be useful when the picture won't be able to fully explain what you want to explain.
Your website should work even when the user has disabled Java script. If you ask to activate it, users might feel wary of it and leave your site.
If your web site requires plug-ins, then your users will consider it a hassle and won't come back. So, it is essential that you use common plug-ins and if you want to use other plug-ins, let your users know the purpose of it.
Your targeted market holds great importance in decision making. As of now, Microsoft's Internet Explorer is the most used web-browser. It covers around 41% of the market share all over the world (Survey by Stat Counter in July 2011). But if your target market doesn't use Internet Explore and uses Firefox, you will have to check your website's compatibility with it.
Also when you are promoting your business, your website should be compatible with almost all the browsers so that there remain only weak chances of losing your customers.
WITH SMART PHONES, YOU WILL HAVE TO GET SMARTER
Many people across the globe access internet through their cell-phones. So you will now have to check whether your website can be properly operated in cell-phones.
ERROR-404 (Broken or Missing links)
The Error 404 is displayed when someone asks for a page that's not available on your site. If you have deleted any pages, then the links to those pages won't work. Also if you have given wrong paths, the required page won't open.
This will create a bad impression of your website. So, you will have to constantly maintain your site and keep checking for broken/missing links.
While designing your website, you will have to take care of the site map as well. A site map has all your web pages listed. With the help of site map, you can prioritize your pages. It will also help the search engine to prioritize the pages when it wants to show them in results.
Your home page may not have links of all the pages, so it is essential that user gets all the pages at one place to get an idea about the business. Site map will help you in this aspect.
You may not understand the intricacies of designing a website. It is better if you outsource it to someone who is competent and possesses expertise to do it. A dedicated expert will take care of design and develop a fantastic website within no time. You may take days to design it and importantly you won't be able to concentrate on your business for the time being. You don't want to lose any business opportunity, do you?
By hiring a web designer, you will be able to give more time to the strategic aspects of your business. Remember that your customers have lot many options and they will happily shift to others, so it is essential that you have a perfect website. You just can't take chances with it.
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Make that perfect first impression by a flawless web design.
Real creativity lies in making complicated things simple. Allow CapacityWebSolutions.com to simplify website designing and transform all your ideas into a visual delight. We design your website according to your requirement and take your business higher. Have a look at our website designing portfolio to have better idea about our work.