Tag Archives: ecommerce

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Online Shopping

Four Good WordPress E-Commerce Plugins

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Hello from Allan at MindVisionmedia.net again, I hope this post finds you well.

I get a lot of inquiries about which plugin or program to use for WP e-commerce. I have used several myself and installed and set up several for clients as well and there are 4 that really stick out for user friendliness and cost to get started. I would consider all of these to be from simple to moderate in technical detail and ability. Almost anybody can set one of these up in no time depending on how many products you have and the specifics you need for each.

Be sure to check with your hosting company to make sure they have enough WP support to run your e-commerce option. These are all free and offer other features, options and add-ons that you can purchase to enhance your online store and the control features you have.

ecwid-logoThe first is Ecwid, this free plugin offers a handy e-commerce widget that is easy to implement on any page or post through the use of a shortcode.. The set up at Ecwid.com is friendly and easy as well providing more options than one would expect from a free service. Once you have your products created and all of the settings configured, it is just a matter of dragging the Ecwid e-commerce Plugin widget into the sidebar of your choice or add the store to a page of your choice using the provided “shortcodes”.

The free plan includes all standard e-commerce features, and paid plans start at $15 per month and grant you more advanced features such as discount settings and inventory control. Check it out and see if it’s the right e-commerce solution for your WordPress site or Blog.


Online ShoppingNext we have Shopify, get your online retail plan going with this stylish and versatile e-commerce solution. What I like about this one is the ability to customize the look and feel pretty much however you want. I have worked on and seen some pretty nice “looking” online stores using this one.

They offer over 100 templates and even have an iPad Point-of-Sale feature that syncs all of your online and brick and mortar products, inventory, orders etc making it easier for business owners to manage their business.


WooCommerceProbably one of the most known free e-commerce plugins for WordPress  is WooCommerce. This is another option for your online store that offers great themes ($) to help you customize the look and feel of your business.

You get all the basic features including order management, shipping and tax adjustments, customer account area, sales reports, inventory management options, coupon options and a whole lot more. If you are looking for a plugin that is popular, this is it. A quick note to consider though is that not all hosting companies offer full WordPress support which can impact whether or not you can run WooCommerce on your server. Check with your hosting company to see if they support WooCommerce before you get all exited, I have had personal experience getting one all setup and the hosting company couldn’t run it properly.


 

WP ECommerceThe last one is WP e-Commerce. A bit of a trend setter, this e-commerce option was one of the few solutions for WordPress years ago before a lot of the others were developed. Of course this one has everything you need as do most, control over inventory, shipping, discounts, orders, multiple language and currency options, Google Checkout and a lot more, free.

You can buy other features and add-ons to enhance the product but you can definitely get started and go a long way with the free version. These guys were around before all of the options available today so they have had the advantage of finding out what works and what features to provide for those who choose to use this e-commerce option, tried and tested.

So if you are trying to configure an online store or shopping cart, set up an e-commerce site, sell stuff on your blog etc, these 4 WordPress e-commerce options provide enough versatility and comparison to help you make a good decision for your needs. Again just a reminder to check with your hosting company to make sure your choice will work on your current server configuration. Enjoy and happy selling!

by
Allan Whitney
Owner/Administrator
MindVisionMedia.net


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My Head is in the Clouds

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Cloud ComputingCloud Computing is the new buzzword on the Internet but what is it? I’m just starting to really appreciate the beauty of it myself. It simply means that no matter where you are in the world and no matter what time it is, if you want to access your stuff, you can and from any compatible device. All of the business processes,  computing infrastructure, computing power, applications and personal collaboration can be delivered to you as a service wherever and whenever you need. Your stuff is always floating above you in a cloud. This is the wave of the future as indicated by the biggest companies and corporations adapting to this technology.

Cloud Computing takes the burden off of the end-user and runs everything on the back-end from a server. As the Internet has grown so has the need to process and handle the large amounts of data and information being accessed. Mobile computing and Telecommuting have benefited too as a result of the technology that is available now through the cloud platform.

With Cloud computing a Smart phone is now a PC. A Tablet is a Workstation because the applications can run independently of the device in cloud computing. The process resembles the office setup that has a main server running all applications and processes and all of the employees just have monitors and keyboards. If one employees monitor or keyboard breaks, the data and applications are still accessible through another device, its always there waiting to be accessed. If your daughter is working on a homework project on the home computer, you can still access your work files and applications through the “cloud”.

The power and versatility of this new method of running and storing everything in a central location and accessing it from anywhere, anytime has opened up the Internet to even deeper possibilities and inspired innovation in a number of areas including application development. The benefits of cloud computing are many but here are a few.

  • Cloud Computing uses the ISP model by providing everything the user needs in the way of software, storage, memory, processes, etc through the service provider on demand.
  • Expandable and customizable to user demand. For the developer Cloud Computing allows for the adjustment of resource allocation based on user demand.
  • For companies faced with the challenge of increasing IT productivity and effectiveness with saving money, the scalable design of the custom cloud infrastructure for a particular company can minimize overspending and wasted technology.
  • The power of running an application that is not on your device is nothing new but the success of Cloud Computing technologies being so well integrated into the mainstream user experience is. You have the same power through the cloud that you would sitting at your computer
  • The system can be built on several platforms such as public or private or both providing customizable access for specific networks within a company or IT department, or allowing access by the general public as a service or through an ISP. IBM would be a “private” cloud infrastructure, Amazon and Google would be “public” cloud infrastructures and Sprint would be a combination of both public and private cloud infrastructure providing both internal processes for company operations and external services to their mobile subscribers

I just love the fact that the Internet has been reborn again with all that is taking place with Cloud Computing, HTML5, WebM and OGG formatting. To me the Internet was getting stagnant. Not in terms of research which it will always be awesome for, but for general use. I think the timing of Smart Phone and Tablet technology and Cloud Computing have contributed to the overhaul of the web. I don’t believe they planned it this way but I’m sure they are happy about the direction the web is going. So many resources have been freed up because of cloud technology that it is allowing for a better use of resources by service providers and that means better services and capability for the end user.

 

Written by
Allan Whitney
Owner/Administrator
MindVisionMedia.net

 

 

 


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