Home – New Forums Selling online Adding an online store to existing website

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  • #1232255
    Calcul8or
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    Hi Everyone,

    Apologies if this question has been asked/answered previously, but does anyone know of an option to allow the addition of an online store to an existing website, whether it’s html or CMS?

    I don’t know much about Shopify, but from what I’ve gathered so far, it seems you need to build everything on there including the actual website, and redirect your domain to it. The only other option seems to be adding buttons. Is that right? Does anyone know more about this?

    I’ve just found myself in a situation where a client with an existing website (that they’re very fond of) wants an online store added to it, and I’m investigating options.

    Cheers,
    Shail

    • This topic was modified 6 months, 1 week ago by Calcul8or.
    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1232263
    Paul – FS Concierge
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    Hi Shail,

    Shopify is the platform and the shop – so it is an all in one, from the ground -up shop.

    WooCommerce is a plug-in for WordPress sites that adds shop functionality.

    What CMS is your client running?

    Cheers
    Paul

    #1232264
    Calcul8or
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    Thanks @paul-fs-concierge, that’s pretty much what I thought. The client has a custom html site. I honestly presumed you could embed shopify into an existing website, and was a little bit shocked when I realised you can’t. They’ve got huge databases containing customer, transaction and inventory records which would be a mammoth task to migrate.

    I do a lot of customisations for existing websites, mainly building systems people can’t get off the shelf, that are usually unique to the business.

    Building a shopfront which is basically nothing more than a catalogue of products with a shopping cart and integrated freight is something I could definitely do, but will depend on their budget. One of the first things I ever do is see if there’s already something existing around, and let them know if there is. That way, I hope to build good faith with the client, and they’ll remember me next time around. Better that than them finding it themselves and then resenting the amount they had to spend with me. Just recently I had someone who wanted to integrate MS Dynamics 365 and Xero. I’ve done a few integrations before, but had a look around and found an existing app that does exactly that. May have lost the business, but I can bask in the glow of the karma! hahaha

    Cheers,
    Shail

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1232274
    Megofors
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    If the site is in html, then you need to convert it into a platform. Only then will you be able to connect the store quickly and conveniently. If you write yourself and from scratch for such a site – it will be very expensive and long. Just move the site to some CMS platform.

    #1232276
    Calcul8or
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    Thanks @megofors, their existing site is very good and suits their specific purposes quite well, and I know they’re not very keen to move to a CMS. I’ll let them know of that option though.

    With so many stand alone and WordPress sites out there, it would be much easier to incorporate an online store rather than rebuild the whole thing on a third party platfrom like Shopify.

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1232281
    Paul – FS Concierge
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    Shail, I don’t know if this is even possible but it is worth checking out.

    Create a sub domain using WordPress+Woo Commerce eg shop.yourdomain.com.au

    If it works, it would save a ton of money but is not SEO best practice.

    Another tangential issue is, now that the shop has already come up, is the overall cost of keeping their HTML website vs starting afresh (keeping the same URL’s).

    Unless things have changed, working on HTML is very painful and expensive in the long run and doesn’t offer the same flexibility that alternatives offer.

    Cheers
    Paul

    #1232284
    Calcul8or
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    Great idea @paul-fs-concierge. I’ve built customised solutions for WordPress, so no reason not to go the other way and add WordPress to a customised site! According to the small amount of “research” (I feel weird using that word these days!) I’ve done, WooCommerce is reputed to be a bit buggy. Do you know if that’s true?

    • This reply was modified 6 months, 1 week ago by Calcul8or.
    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1232291
    Calcul8or
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    Just a question for anyone who has a Shopify site, I’m curious to know how you feel about having to host your entire website on there. To someone like me, it sounds like putting way too many eggs in one basket, which I’ve always thought is pretty much always a bad idea.

    I don’t know anything about Shopify, so I’ll be very happy to be corrected if my limited impressions of it seem limited or naive.

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1232315
    Paul – FS Concierge
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    Hi Shail,

    I have never used Woo Commerce so I can’t comment beyond offering the suggestion.

    If it is buggy, it does lead a bit to your second question which is about Shopify.

    I understand your apprehension but on the other side, the platform is their business model so “it makes sense” for them to support that model as much as possible ie, your interests and their interests are aligned. Making sense however is not always evident in business so there is that.

    It has been around for a long time now and a lot of very successful businesses run on the platform so I would be confident that consistently bad results should be easily uncovered with your research.

    One thing I have noticed over the years is that security is becoming a bigger and bigger issue. For that reason, I suspect (but don’t know) that Shopify would cover this off better than most.

    Cheers
    Paul

    #1232324
    Calcul8or
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    Thanks, @paul-fs-concierge. I guess it’s no different to Amazon or Ebay, except that you get to modify the appearance to suit your preferences, and it’s not bunched in together with a million other sellers selling exactly the same things.

    Programmer. Analyst. Nerd. Calcul8ors.com.au Custom Software & Collaboration
    #1232359
    DNova
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    Hi Shail,

    Here’s some additional food-for-thought.

    “I honestly presumed you could embed shopify into an existing website…”
    As you discovered, you can embed a Shopify “Button” into an existing website, and that button can include a single product or a product category called a “Collection”.

    “They’ve got huge databases containing customer, transaction and inventory records which would be a mammoth task to migrate.”
    You can import Product and Customer information into Shopify using CSV files. That should make it less of a mammoth task.

    “I’m curious to know how you feel about having to host your entire website on there.”
    You could as @paul-fs-concierge suggested, create a subdomain and just link that to the Shopify store. Then create a menu item on the existing website that points to the subdomain. That way, you get to keep the existing site and would just need to modify a Shopify theme to best-match the theme of the existing website.

    As a dedicated e-commerce solution, Shopify is very good at what they do. There’s also plenty of support and Q/A material to help shop owners, and their platform is regularly updated and secure.

    However, there are some things about Shopify that need to be considered.

    1. There’s ongoing subscription, credit card and transaction fees, which often outweight the costs for hosting, domain registration, SSL and transaction fees for a self-hosted website.

    2. Getting found in Google Search – There isn’t much beyond page titles, meta descriptions and on-page content that can be optimised for search engines. In fact, I’ve found that just changing a HTML heading level often requires searching through theme files and manually changing the code. Shopify sites also use lots of Javascript which doesn’t help.

    That being said, I have seen Shopify websites ranking in position one of Google Search results, but outranking them with a well-optimised WordPress site was pretty easy.

    Also, Shopify’s URL structure isn’t the best for SEO, or future migration to a customer-owned website if they decide to leave the platform.

    For example: Products are categorised into “Collections”, so the product URL of a website selling garden equipment might look like -> https://gardenequipment.com/collections/shovels/products/Saxon-compact-shovel/ , whereas with WordPress and Woocommerce it might be -> https://gardenequipment.com/shovels/Saxon-compact-shovel/

    If your client has no interest in maintaining and updating a CMS website, then Shopify might be the best option.

    #1232371
    KeithR
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    if your site is built on WordPress – easy – add woocomemrce store. Piece of cake.
    Shopify – start again
    BigCommerce – Start Again
    HTML Site – start again or add a subdomain with WordPress and Woocommerce – easy

    I haven’t used the other CMS’ – Joomla etc.

    I advise Woocommerce in most cases.

    Keith

    #1232372
    webhance
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    Hi Calcul8tor – you can add Shopify functionality to an existing HTML website. This is achieved with Shopify Buy Buttons. Sign up for a Shopify account, add ‘buy button’ sales channel, create product or collection buttons and add the code to the html site. Shout out if you need a hand with it. Julie

    #1232373
    charlenew
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    hi
    If you don’t want to go down the shopify path and keep your shopping cart on your hosting server with your current website there are several options, all which I have done for our clients.

    if you have wordpress then add a shopping plugin eg woocommerce
    add a complete shopping cart cms and link between sites with a shop button on the menu

    In the past when I have done option two we create a design template to match as closely as possible to the rest of your website and in some case make the menus on both so the customer doesn’t notice that they are moving between the two systems. I personally prefer own clients to use opencart as its free and we build additional modules for it, its lite as in code so unlike wordpress its alot faster plust more secure than wordpress. Shopify isnt Australian and you would be using their servers so would need to link the sites is a bit more complex. Plus you have to pay ongoing fees for shopify where as you have an upfront cost but not monthly fees for a wordpress or opencart site.

    If you are interested I can show you a few sites as mentioned above and a quote if you are interested – no hard sell and my partner and I have run our business for over 25 years so we have a great deal of experience in this area.

    #1232697
    Ken
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    If the site already exists and works well why not just add wordpress to a directory of that domain such as youdomain.com/store/ and add store to your main navigation. Then add WooCommerce to the wordpress.

    Help to build a website here. Contact me for online or offline graphics for your business.
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