Foretell what’s in 2006 E-Commerce Web Development

Foretell what’s in 2006 E-Commerce Web Development

Will it be a better year or worst than the exiting year? It remains to be seen. Nonetheless, let me present my predictions as well…

1. The giant among the search engines will purchase additional technology start-ups. It will also contemplate on purchasing an older company and let go of its product for free.

2. Another is that web-wide video search will be developed into something big. It can now be found both in user-uploaded files and web videos.

3. A major revamp will happen on major search engines indices. As a result of this, numerous sites will be kicked out of the engines.

4. Internet Explorer 7 is soon to be released. This version includes several features.

5. Google will release Google Talk. This new feature can be used by chatters in their browsers.

6. Consequently, Microsoft Windows will suffer a little because of the E-commerce latest web developments.

7. Yahoo will again release a new email client. This can trigger the change of heart among Gmail users. The change will be by reason of the formers look and feel.

8. New translation tools will be introduced to the web. This way, just anybody can search in any language they prefer.

9. Bloggers will still be given attention. In fact, additional search engine features will be made for their enjoyment and easy access to other blogs.

10. Google will increase the frequency of their updates. Those who rank high in its PageRank will be made more accessible.

11. Google will also introduce graphic ads and do away with old features. This can trigger the user’s angst.

12. Yahoo and MSN will contemplate on focusing on its search and do away with their so-so features.

These are the foreseen future of E-commerce web development. Other predictions may mark a good leap while others may mark a horrible downfall. Let the future clear the clouds of ambiguities and make certain out anticipations. Let the days of the year 2006 be our guiding torch…

Ecommerce: Landing The Merchant Account

Ecommerce: Landing The Merchant Account

Accepting credit card orders online is a convenient way to do business, especially for the consumer. There are online businesses that do not use credit card payments, but rather invoice and accept either cashiers check or money orders. However, in most cases this billing process results in a loss of more than half of a site’s potential customers.

The reasons many businesses do not like to accept credit cards are many and include financial issues such as transaction fees, discount rates, setup, statement and application fees as well as a minimum monthly fee. Combined this can take a significant bite out of your potential profit.

If you are developing an ecommerce website you may discover some sites for ecommerce development that offer a Merchant Account at no cost. Others may charge as much as $500 for this type of account. What a Merchant Account does is allow those credit card orders to be processed.

The Merchant Account is also necessary to the implementation of many online shopping carts. The two often work together.

One of the most compelling reasons to pursue a Merchant Account is to expand the potential growth of your ecommerce website. With a credit card sale the consumer has a level of assurance that they will either receive their product or they are not held liable for the purchase by the credit card company (in many instances). However, with an invoice/pre-payment plan the consumer may be wary of providing cash for something they haven’t received. This is especially true when the customer is new.

In essence, an invoicing system might work for existing customers, but in order to grow you may need to consider obtaining a Merchant Account for ecommerce and then expanding your marketing plan to increase the demand for your product. In turn, growing demand may more than offset the fees associated with credit card transactions.

Some small businesses might make use of a PayPal account in lieu of a Merchant Account in order to send and receive online payments. Fees are required in this arrangement as well and some consumers may not like establishing their own PayPal account just to make a payment, but this option may be more palatable for some online business startups or small businesses that operate a niche corporation.

The knowledge of available tools provides a certain empowerment. Online searches can lead you to a variety of Merchant Account providers, but knowing the options may help you manage your company goals and objectives. Ecommerce is a big step and the more you know about available options the easier it becomes to define the solution.

gging – Why Blog for your Business

Blogging – Why Blog for your Business

In this day and age where we rely so much on various gadgets like smartphones, tablets, and computers, business owners are forced to shift their marketing radar over to the digital realm. Their customers are now reliant on Google to deliver information that they need, whether it’s a recipe for a chocolate cake or the address to the nearest law firms within an area.
It’s really no surprise to see huge corporations and executives own a blog or have their own social media profiles. If they can see the huge marketing potential of the Internet, other business owners should too. One of the most powerful tools that business owners can have on the Internet is a blog.

But why use a blog? Why not websites, or why should you even use a blog for your business? Let me give you a few reasons.
1.) On the Internet, blogs act avenues for information. They can hold an infinite number of content, from articles to images to videos. People log on to the Internet if they want to look for something. If your business’ blog holds relevant information, they will consider your blog as a reputable source of information. This also builds brand presence online.
2.) What makes blogs so attractive to business owners is that they are so easy to use. Blogs are easy to use.Unlike websites, blogs like Blogger and WordPress have a unique UI or user interface which allows you to publish content and layout your blog with a few clicks of a button. There’s no need to do some hard coding just to publish something.
3.) Blogs are free. You can setup an account and your blog without having to spend money, unless you opt to buy more bandwidth for your hosting and your own domain name. Blogger is a good blogging platform from Google which allows you to tweak the templates of your blog just by uploading the XML file. WordPress’ free account is limited because you are not allowed to upload themes unless you buy the hosting. Even if you were to purchase hosting and domain, you’d only spend an average of up to $200 a year for both. Pretty cheap and cost-effective too.

Blogging is used by business owners to showcase their products or to show the online world what their business is all about. If your business can’t afford to purchase air time from radio and TV stations, I suggest you invest in blogging. It’s cheaper and casts a wider net for your business.

The Key to Successful Marketing

The Key to Successful Marketing

If your business has limited marketing resources in terms of people, expertise and materials then you might want to consider outsourcing your marketing functions to an independent marketing professional or a marketing and promotions agency. Small businesses, downsized companies, and expanding corporations all have different reasons to outsource.
Marketing can be an expensive activity and maintaining in house resources can really make this a difficult program to commit to. But marketing is a very important part of business success so allowing someone else to focus on marketing gives companies a chance to focus on their core business and areas that will enable them to surpass their competition.
Outsourcing marketing resources comes with a price, but this cost is usually lower than it would be if the companies had employed and undertaken in house activities. By eliminating the need to hire full-time employees, using an agency for marketing resources saves companies thousands of dollars on wages, taxes and benefits. You are also gaining expertise in an agency that you might not find in individual employees. In addition to their own staff, agencies also have other resources to help you, such as their own outside contacts, suppliers, designers, copywriters and printers–saving you time as well as money.
When you hire an outside agency, you are hiring experts in marketing. These are professional people who can focus on all your marketing needs and not be hindered by your internal politics, relations between employees, or lack of knowledge among staff in relation to marketing strategies and how they integrate with business strategies. Marketing professionals whether independent or through a marketing agency – will often have more experience in the particular aspects of marketing than you staff, and undoubtedly more than you could pay for in an employee. Also, since they work with other clients, they have seen what works and what doesn’t in other company campaigns. This knowledge translates to more efficient and effective marketing for you as you have the benefit of their hindsight.
As with outsourcing any business function, allowing an outside agency to do your marketing or advertising brings a certain kind of objectivity with it. Sometimes you just need a fresh perspective to overcome difficulties and to achieve specific goals. An objective marketing professional will help you see things you might otherwise miss and will be more open to offering a range of fresh ideas as opposed to a bunch of tired ideas that you might have been toying with for years but have yet to implement.

Marketing Ideas

Marketing Ideas

How to implement Marketing Ideas
There are millions of marketing ideas around you
everywhere you look and the next good idea is merely
just a glance, a thought or brainstorm away. Every
successful business has at its core a series of
marketing ideas that are used to propel its
promotional activities. All of these marketing ideas
dovetail into one another and are designed to gain
and maintain a loyal customer base who will buy and
sell their products.
New marketing ideas are required to make new and creative
marketing strategies. You can either brainstorm or web
search for new ideas. For the purpose of brain storming
you will have to give a good look to your product and
then to your customer and device marketing ideas about
these. While doing web search for specific marketing
ideas, these ideas may also help you come up with newer
and additional ideas that may work for your company.
When devising a marketing plan, you need to include
the best marketing ideas, which requires creativity. If
you lack the time or talent to be creative, there are
marketing agencies that can help you with this. They
will build a complete marketing strategy for you from
the ground up. Agency staff members have seen
hundreds of different campaigns and know what
works and what doesn’t.
The marketing ideas you come up with will need to be
implemented, or they are of no use. If you cannot or do
not launch your campaigns, they will never bring you
the desired results! So when planning, keep in mind
the obstacles you may face, and think of ways to
eliminate them. Some things that may hold you back
include budget constraints, lack of skill, or being
understaffed. Think of ways around this as you plan
your strategy.
While planning you marketing strategy you have to be sure
of all the tactics that you will use in the campaign. Let
the marketing strategies be a combination of advertising,
product branding, product sampling, or something simpler
like direct mails. You can also think of adding packaging
and other promotional materials like posters etc in your
marketing strategy.

Ecommerce – What Makes You Unique?

Ecommerce – What Makes You Unique?

I stumbled across a website with a unique marketing angle. The use of ecological interests has resulted in improved marketing capabilities. In the case of the site I visited it was a jewelry company that specializes in recycled gold and diamonds.

The premise seems to be that there are significant gold and diamond supplies available so the need for the mining of these precious gems and ore may be reduced or even unnecessary. The reasons are many, but one of the key arguments has to do with the human deaths that result in battles over the ownership of the gems. Similarly this jewelry company considers the use of extensive gold mining to be a hindrance to solid ecological practices.

It is their contention that there are enough current supplies that no more gold or diamonds need be mined for decades. Existing gold supplies can be melted down to create new jewelry products and recycled diamonds can find a home in new settings.

Their philosophy appeals to many different consumers. For some this philosophy of ecommerce just makes practical sense. For others, this is a matter of ecological stewardship. For still others, the potential to reduce human rights abuses make this strategy worthwhile.

I am not calling into question the sincerity of the mission of this company. I am simply analyzing their strategy from a marketing standpoint. My assessment is that the premise is brilliant because it markets to a variety of interests without focusing heavily on any of them. This company even provides exceptions for local villagers who may currently pan for gold. They agree these villages should be allowed to continue to do so in an effort to improve their economic condition without harming the environment with mining.

In the mind of the customer they can draw conclusions about the benefits of the process and can make a purchasing decision based on their belief about the product and premise.

In ecommerce you need to find a unique premise that will allow your online business to be recognized as unique. For some ecommerce business owners this means a unique product, for others a unique presence and, in the case of this jewelry company, a unique approach to an existing business model.

You may have an existing ecommerce business. What do customers perceive to be unique about your business? What makes your site or business philosophy stand out in ways other businesses don’t?

Take some time to evaluate what makes your ecommerce store unique. If you can’t find that uniqueness consider what you can do to make your business philosophy something that stands out to consumers.

The Importance of Business Marketing

The Importance of Business Marketing

Business marketing is one of the most important parts that your business needs to be addressed with careful attention and proactive thoughts. In last decade or so, the importance of business marketing has increased volcanically, as the advent of Internet and online business has ushered a whole new era in business. It should be noted that the competition and urgency among businessmen has increased due to the fact that Internet has rendered a whole world as a virtual world, and you never know when and from where a potential competitor has entered your territory unnoticed by you. And this is where proper business marketing strategies and sound business marketing plans play their part to make you the choicest businessman for your customers and dealers.
For successful business marketing, you need to develop a proper business marketing plan, and then gauge its performance for your business growth. There are many things that your business marketing plan needs to address and these points may include some of the following:
• What are your business marketing goals
This actually delineates what are you looking for. What goals you have set for your business and what are you looking to achieve through your marketing plans?
• What is your target audience
This is an important point that you need to know beforehand, for, it describes the scope and range of your business marketing plan. There is no advantage of advertising your fashion prone apparels to the old people, for, they are less likely to buy it. You must be very clear about who you are addressing and will your audience generate the leads that you are looking for.
Sometimes, you keep on targeting wrong audience that do not have the need of your products and expertise, and the result is as you can think: you are wasting your money and not getting the results that you have set for your business. So, it becomes utterly necessary to chalk out the group of people that you are going to address and market your business. Business marketing plans often have detailed study of the audience: their liking, their predominant choice, and their habitual circumstances, for, actually audience is the thing for which business marketing is done!
• Deciding business marketing system
As it is already said that Internet has made business marketing a whole new concept, every growing business should address the need of Internet or online marketing. Apart from the conventional advertisement systems in newspapers, magazines, online marketing tools should be incorporated in the business marketing plan, which may include: search engine optimization, e-mail marketing, banner ads, etc.
At the end, we can say that business marketing has grown wide and wild with the added horizons of Internet and online business, and a business owner should be proactive enough to handle the situation steadily and should incorporate all possible techniques for better business marketing plans and strategies.

Why to Shop Online.

Why to Shop Online.

Billions of people love to shop online – and why not? It’s convenient, safe and usually cheaper.

1. It Saves Money:
One can easily save up to 50% of money by shopping at online websites as they sell items at a discounted price compared to physical stores. Further, there are too many online websites offering same range of products and the competition amongst them usually benefits customer.

2. It Saves Your Time.
If you are a busy person and have little time for shopping, then online shopping is the best for you. Also, with online price comparison websites like Google product search (Froogle), Abebooks, E-bay et cetera, it has become very easy to compare prices offered by different shops.

3. It Saves Cost of Gas:
Online shopping also saves the sky rocketing cost of Gas. The cost in gas alone would cover most shipping costs.

4. Your Money is Safe:
Most of the online e commerce websites offer Google Checkout and Paypal as payment method. These are the most secure payment methods and it guarantees that your money is safe and that you will get the item you purchase. So, you can purchase items from less established e-commerce websites without any fear.

5. Ideal for Sending Gifts:
Online webstores do ship orders directly to the recipient of a gift and hence saving your time, postage and gas cost. Some websites also offer the service to send anonymous gifts so that the recipient just keeps guessing about the sender of gift! Some websites also offer the option of getting items gift wrapped for small amount of extra money.

6. You can Pre-order Items:
Items with high demand like Harry Potter series, go out of stock very quickly after they are released. Pre-ordering such items is another feature that most of the online stores offer. This way you can reserve a copy for yourself without being worried about the release date.

7. Items can be Returned
Mostly, all e-commerce websites offer the facility of returning items if found to be defective or in-compatible. However, these websites usually put a time limit by which items must be returned in order to get full refund. Hence it is advised that you read the returns policy of a website before purchasing the item and if the item received is defective, the matter should be brought to the notice of seller website immediately.

8. Gift Certificates
Online shops are the most appropriate place to buy gift certificates as these websites ship them to gift recipient for free and the recipient can but an item of their choice.

9. No Need to Carry Shopping Bags

With online shopping, you do not need to carry shopping bags and moving around from one shop to another and waiting in lines. Just order it online and the item will be delivered right at your door steps.

10. Rebates and Loyalty Bonuses

These days many websites are offering Loyalty Bonuses and Rebates to the loyal customers who keep coming back with their business. This adds to the savings you can make by shopping online.

All these points show the importance of online shopping, however, there are thousands and thousands of online e-commerce websites but only few are quality websites that offer huge discounts without compromising with the quality of service. Selecting right website is another important factor of online shopping and I will discuss about it in my next article.

Building Blog With Private Label Contents

Building Blog With Private Label Contents

Blog (Web Log) is actually intended for people who want to create a diary on the internet. Without having to know any programming or HTML code you can simply log on, give your thoughts or opinions and publish your posts.

In the past few years blog has started to be utilized more than that. Many people have treated their blogs just like normal websites. Adding extra pages, uploading photos, changing templates are just several things many people have done to their blogs. Marketers even utilize blogs to attract more customers.

There are many advantages of using blog program to build your website. You can deliver the contents to people who want to read it with RSS because everytime you add new content to your blog the RSS Feed gets updated automatically. In addition you can submit your blog to many blog directories and search engines.

In addition, if you use WordPress for blogging, you can take advantage of its “post by email” feature and an autoresponder to publish your contents automatically. It is very useful especially if you want to setup several posts in advance and publish them later. In case you have difficulties to do it you may consider to hire someone to set it up for you.

But not like a normal website, a blog should be updated regularly. If you have time restraints or often have difficulties in finding ideas what to write you could lose frequent visitors. The good news is you can use private label contents to overcome the problem. Just pick ones that fit your needs, make them unique by adding your own experience and publish them.

There is a marketer who created a private label product based on the contents of his own blog. He named the product “Matt’s Year of Content”. You can copy the way how he shares his experience and knowledge in doing business on the internet with blog. Combined with other private label contents, your writing task could become a lot easier.

The real contents on your blog is very important. Even if the purpose of your blog is only for promoting your business you should add real contents into it since most directories will not accept blogs that only contain advertisements. That means your posts should not only contain, for example, updated products from Amazon.

So, by using WordPress and contents with private label rights you could improve your web presence in easy way. Use them to build a content-rich site by giving away advice or news about your industry.

A Beginners Guide To Blogging: How To Start A Blog

A Beginners Guide To Blogging: How To Start A Blog

It is logical for a beginners guide to blogging to begin with information on how to start a blog. However, first a brief introduction to what a blog actually is. A blog is nothing more than your online diary or journal, in which you can express your feelings, thoughts, and opinions or even advertise your products. There are few rules apart from keeping it clean. For that reason they come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and designs, and your blog page is literally yours to anything you want with.

You can include pictures, hyperlinks to your websites, MP3s and videos. Much depends on the type of blog you have and who is the provider, but WordPress allows more than Blogger or Blogspot, especially if you have downloaded it to your own website. However, it is also more complicated and you might prefer to start off easy and then work your way up as you become more familiar with what you are doing. Many cPanel web hosts offer WordPress facilities.

The basic components of a blog are:

Title: You can use the title to label your posting.
Category: You can add a category to keep blogs on similar topics together.
Body: This is the main content of the blog.
Trackback: This allows other sites to link back to your blog.
Permalink: This is the URL that goes with every blog that you write.
Comments: This allows readers to make comments on your blog – some good, and some bad.

By means of just one or two templates you can easily create new pages. It’s a bit like having a website and copying your home page as a template for all the rest of the pages, only the blog template is blank with spaces for the title, category and all the other aspects of your blog. The blogging websites that you sign up with offer a number of templates and you can choose one and literally start blogging immediately.

Blogging can be more that just your own personal thing, and you can join groups that blog about specific topics, such as football, movies, music, blogging, etc, etc. You can all share your expertise and knowledge and some are literally operating as forums. You can also use your blog to advertise a product, and to drive traffic to your website, while others have no website and use their blog as their sole communications window on the internet.

I could go on all day about what you can do and, sometimes, cannot do with a blog, but the best way is to get started and then find what you are capable of. The best way is to log onto the blog provider of your choice and sign up for a blog. Most newcomers to blogging find it easiest to start blogging from a provider’s website, and then graduating to installing blogging software on their own website

This is a bit trickier, but it allows you use all the plugins that allow total personalization of your blog so that it is completely unlike that of anybody else. You cannot use plugins when you run your blog from the provider’s site, whether it is WordPress or any other blog. You cannot beat having your own blog software and being able to design any page that you want.

However, although this sounds great to be able to do, on the whole you are likely best to start blogging from the blog hosting site, and then graduate to your own website once you are comfortable with blogging. You will have enough to take in and learn when you upload to your own web space without having to worry about how blogging works.

Blogging is fantastic fun, and it can also be very profitable. However, there are specific techniques involved in making money using blogs, and it is very easy to get your fingers burnt if you are unaware of the pitfalls and the right way to do it. Nevertheless, blogging can be very rewarding, both personally and financially, so best of luck, and get blogging now. Don’t leave it a minute longer because you might have a lot to learn yet.

Once you have learned how to start a blog, then you can think of running your own from your own website.