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Selecting e.Commerce
Software

Whatever you buy, we can work with it!RemoteDesk e.Commerce integrates to most shopping cart systems!
Look for this logo, or ask us how you can get one for your site!

With so many e-commerce software solutions to choose from, deciding which one is right for you may seem overwhelming. But the more informed you are, the easier it will be.

Online shopping cart software is a cost effective way to provide you with the ability to display your items for sale, process Credit Card transactions and automate the entire ordering cycle.

Your customers can efficiently order 24 hours a day while increasing your credibility on the Internet.

For software selection:
You should create a list of what you need the system to do. You can then evaluate different software packages/e-commerce solutions.

For software options, you have three choices:

  1. Buy a ready-made solution
  2. Select an ISP that has shopping cart software
    Special Note: For options 1 and 2 - Be sure to follow our software evaluation criteria also

  3. Have a custom-built system created

Option 1 Buy a ready-made solution.

This will provide you with a standard set of e-commerce features. If your business needs closely match what the package offers, you can either buy it and host it yourself, or see what ISP already hosts it. This will save you money and a great deal of time. If the system is lacking some of your features, you will need to keep looking at alternatives. Unless you have the technical staff to support it, it is not recommended you host your own store because if your site is down - you're not selling!

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Option 2 Select an ISP that has shopping cart software

RemoteDesk works with most ISP's that have shopping cart facilities. You just need to contact us to check the e-mail confirmation format for you. Selecing an ISP that has shopping cart capabilities is inexpensive and often includes most common features. It eliminates the need to install, and learn a new software technology. With minor configuration of some settings, and importing in your product information, you're ready to go: instant storefront, with 24x7 technical support and monitoring.
Sample our Store - ShopZone

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Option 3 Create a custom-built system.

This approach will give you exactly what you want. You can build features and functions to make you unique and competitive in the marketplace, such as offer discounts on National Holidays.
Contact us for a custom quote

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Shopping Cart System Analysis

Some Features to look for:
TIP:
The ShopZone product contains all of these features, and more

Ease of Installation
Make sure the installation is simplified with a function such as a wizard. A wizard automates the process of setting up, designing your store, creating product catalogs, shopping carts, customer forms, discussion groups, store search capabilities, and shipping and tax calculations, to name a few.

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Online shopping carts
Shopping carts allow consumers to add items, change the quantity ordered, clear items, and proceed to checkout.

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Payment methods supported
You’ll want a solution that supports the methods you accept. For example, VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discovery, Cheque, Paypal or on account. This includes a wide range of electronic and traditional payment methods in order to complete the sale.

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Compatibile with your current hardware and software
You’ll want ensure that your hardware, web server software and operating systems are totally compatible with the e-commerce solution you decide upon.

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Capacity to import existing data
It's great to have a good looking store, but if importing your pictures, item numbers, available quantities etc, is a difficult task or involves re-entering, then integrating the two elements later may not be possible. Make sure you select a product that has a database capable of reading your database structure.

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Links to accounting applications
Even better than importing, is the ability to update your inventory and ordering information bisynchronously without re-entry or intervention. Check out the products Application Programming Interface (API) capabilities to see if this is possible. This is where RemoteDesk eCommerce applies, in that it takes the order confirmation, interprets it, validates the information as compared to the accounting system, structures it into the appropriate file format, and delivers it to the accounting system. Simply, and cost effectively.

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Tax and shipping calculations
Currently many systems still only support one currency, and the conversion occurs after the fact when it hits your credit card. If you want to appeal internationally you will need to be able to express shipping and product pricing, as well as handle complex tax calculations comprehensively.

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Complex pricing support

If you are dealing with current customers that receive discounts, volume purchase, or you want to offer the general public promotions and target pricing, make sure the software you select offers these. Again, we have found that most affordable products lack sophistication in this area, so budget appropriately.

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Statistics
If you are involved with advertising campaigns, target markets, repeat customers, and want to track the purchasing habits of your visitors, make sure you evaluate the statistic reports that come standard with the product, and if any abilities exist to interface to common reporting tools such as Crystal exist for expansion.

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Automated order confirmation
Once the order has been placed you need an order confirmation to be sent immediately. This lets the purchaser know you have received the order, and may also serve as a receipt if enough detail is included. This helps the client feel comfortable with the purchase, and allows them to track the progress.

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Sophisticated product handling
If you have a complex product such as shirts, which need to track the item number, size and colour, you will want a product that can handle this type of item number breakdown, and even better, if the item numbers entered could match your accounting system. Secondly, you may need a complex category system, that allows for many sub categories such as Office Supplies, Notebooks, 3 ring, 50 sheets.

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Forum/Feedback
If you have a product that requires support (software), has a following (toys and fads), or need an area where your users can congregate to discuss features and use, you may need to select a software that has the ability to handle this.

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Simple updating of files
You want to consider the technical expertise of the person who will be maintaining the store. If they are a programmer, then PHP type carts with MYSQL database engines may be fine. However, if you have the accounting clerk, they may need to have something that is a one-step process, where the system automatically detects updated files, and posts the new information back to the web.

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Next... Designing your Store

 

 
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