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  • #983089
    martin.firth
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    • Total posts: 259
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    Hi everyone,

    A lot of you around here will already know that I’m a web designer. I’ve often thought that I could easily come up with two or three simple principals that would have saved me a lot of struggling and heartache if I’d had known them when I first started out. I’m an experienced web developer now, and will always go out of my way to impart wisdom where I can.

    One thing I’ve never done is manage an online store for myself. I’m soon to opening an store which will sell wines from the Swan Valley (many prolific vineyards recognized globally by wine aficionados) to people locally and all over the world.

    I was wondering if anyone has any short and sweet tips for me that will get me going on the right track? I think I have a fairly good idea how to run the thing, but you never know what you haven’t thought of until someone tells you :)

    I don’t expect you to spend ages writing an essay for me, just anything that pops into mind that you wish you’d known when you started out.

    Thanks everyone,
    Martin – The Web Guy

    #1140571
    markn
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    • Total posts: 103
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    Engage your customer and remove as many barriers as possible between them making the decision to purchase and the transaction being complete. Every extra step in your shopping cart is lost sales.

    #1140572
    Ozzcouple
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    • Total posts: 17
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    Markin is right the easier you can make the sales experience the more sales you likely to have. That is providing you are supplying a quality product at a competitive price with great service. Customer don’t wont much do they!!!

    Next main part (the hardest & most costly) is to spread the word, you may have a great product at the best price but if no one knows about it you go down in a heap.
    Try blogs were people go to look at or talk about the products you are selling. Cost to put an ad on some of these sites are very cheap at around $35>$40 per month.

    Last point is use Face Book & Twitter to help drive traffic to your site so make a business FB & Twitter pages and write something informative on them EVERY day.

    Good Luck hope it works out for you.
    Cheers Peter

    #1140573
    Ade2
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    • Total posts: 18
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    Have you considered videos? A great tool for gaining trust. You could build a subscriber list with the best videos behind the gateway.

    Video will give you the opportunity to explain the product to the prospects through wine tastings. Moreover you can compare and contrast your products with high st wines allowing the customer to have a comparsion with something that is familiar.

    With such a subjective product trust is important. I’ve heard of a small company that was very successful with this approach. I can’t remember their name or I would include the link

    #1140574
    Warren Cottis
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    embersketch, post: 160477 wrote:
    A lot of you around here will already know that I’m a web designer. I’ve often thought that I could easily come up with two or three simple principals that would have saved me a lot of struggling and heartache if I’d had known them when I first started out. I’m an experienced web developer now, and will always go out of my way to impart wisdom where I can.

    … be humble… strive to understand your customers’ wants and needs… deliver value and quality service… employ a great copywriter and accept that the world revolves driven by people’s emotions and not technology… perhaps forget everything you know?

    Is it your money on the line?

    #1140575
    CarlieHamilton
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    • Total posts: 41
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    I’ve managed an ecommerce website before. Definitely agree with removing as many steps as possible from the checkout process.
    Follow up on people who didn’t buy with an offer (10% off or some such) so that they go back and purchase. If you can automate this, even better.

    Hmm, will add more if I think of it.

    #1140576
    martin.firth
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    • Total posts: 259
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    Thanks everyone. Carlie, I can automate anything. I have a pot plant at home which emails me when it needs watering. I wish that was a joke.

    How would you capture the emails of the people who don’t make a purchase? It seems like it would involve adding an extra step which could put people off.

    Thanks

    #1140577
    CarlieHamilton
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    • Total posts: 41
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    The system I was using goes
    1. fill in details
    2. next page fill in payment details

    so we can collect the details if they go through the first step, but don’t end up paying.

    If you reduce the steps then perhaps you can’t – but then, perhaps you could encourage sign up earlier, like for a wish list or saved cart function.

    #1140578
    eWAY
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    • Total posts: 524
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    Hi Martin,

    With this particular industry there’s a few things that differ from having a ‘standard’ online shopping cart.

    Given the profile of the vineyards you’re dealing with you may like to look at some of the existing SaaS options available.

    http://blackboxx.biz
    http://www.vin65.com

    These have tailored things like membership/fulfilment/taxing etc to comply with beverage industry compliance.

    Coincidently both operate mainly out of Canada but have local Australian contacts as well.

    These two software packages facilitate a lot of eWAY’s wine industry customers.

    Maclean
    Integration and Technical Specialist

    #1140579
    John Romaine
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    • Total posts: 1,108
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    1. Keep the store simple. Treat it the same as you would any traditional offline store.
    2. Remove anything that distracts from making sales
    3. Content. Most ecommerce websites lack content. Don’t make the mistake that almost all ecommerce owners make by not embracing a multitude of content formats.
    4. Go where your audience already is
    5. Build a list. Sell to the same customers over and over
    6. Don’t become an SEO junkie.
    7. Video and podcasts are two mediums you really should embrace
    8. Track and measure everything. Find what works, do more of it, and ditch the stuff that doesn’t.

    #1140580
    Ondetto
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    • Total posts: 110
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    Wine is a great topic to explore in blogs, social media content, videos etc.

    Have a look on Youtube for Gary Vaynerchuk or check out his Wine Library TV shows (http://tv.winelibrary.com/) – his style is a bit controversial but it worked and he became a social media mega star through his wine tasting videos…

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