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Why You Might Not Want Off-The-Shelf E-commerce Packages

Posted Wed, December 25, 2013 by Julie Short

You don't have to look very far these days to find an e-commerce platform that claims to do everything you need and more, right off the shelf. But, despite their high prices and impressive feature list, most will require some degree of customization and specialty programming (and possibly a lot of it) before they'll work predictably on your e-commerce site, much less give you the features you thought you were paying for.

In other words, there are a number of reasons you might not want an off-the-shelf e-commerce package, and certainly not to invest in one without the help of a custom e-commerce programming team on your side.

In fact, when you work with online retailing experts for your e-commerce package, you gain a number of advantages that you can’t get with off-the-shelf systems, such as:

E-commerce platforms built just for you. Not only do off-the-shelf e-commerce platforms often have to be customized, but they may also have features or functions you don't want or need. Extra functionality might sound like a good thing, until you realize that the extraneous code can cause lots of problems, contain pieces that hackers can exploit, and even crash your online store.

Advanced marketing capabilities structured around your campaigns. Do you have some online marketing features that are especially important to your online store? Why not have an e-commerce platform that is built around those, rather than generic e-commerce campaigns?

Automated order processing and fulfillment solutions. Depending on how you source or manufacture your products, automated order processing and fulfillment could save you tens of thousands of dollars each year, and allow for faster, more reliable delivery to customers.

Specialized pricing and discount controls. Many e-commerce platforms only allow set pricing schedules and tax calculations. With a custom (or customized) platform, however, you can set prices anyway you wish.

Detailed e-commerce reports. Although most standard e-commerce platforms do a good job of generating reports, your customized package can make the process of generating the ones you need faster.

Dedicated e-commerce support. This is perhaps the biggest benefit. Anyone who has tried to find specialized answers from their e-commerce package provider already knows how frustrating it can be to wait while the problem or issue costs you money every hour. With a customized e-commerce package, support is never farther away than your dedicated e-commerce development team.

A lot of e-commerce platform developers want you to think that you're getting a great deal, and an all-in-one solution, by buying their ready-made product. But, as lots of entrepreneurs and online store owners have found, you almost always end up paying for custom programming customization one way or another. Why not have the right team on your side from the start, helping you to choose the package and/or features that fit your needs?

Call WebRevelation today at 817-283-3324 to see why we've become your top choice for e-commerce design and support.
WebRevelation today and let us show you how we use specialized programming and design to help our clients sell more while keeping costs low.

Posted in : Websites | 
Tags : websites , e commerce


Do You Need a Custom Online Ordering Solution

Posted Wed, December 18, 2013 by Julie Short

As e-commerce has grown, and gotten more competitive, a lot of different platforms and payment gateways have come to the market. But, for online retailers who need the very best, custom online ordering solutions are often the most convenient, not to mention the most cost-effective.

What makes custom online ordering solutions better for e-commerce? Here are just a few of the key benefits:

Custom online ordering solutions are faster. Faster carts and payment processing mean fewer abandoned sales. That's especially true if you have a complicated checkout procedure that could otherwise stall or confuse buyers.

You get more reliable carts and payment processing. Even worse than slow payment processing is an unreliable platform that makes buyers feel like your online store isn't safe and stable. Having your online ordering offline costs you money each and every minute, so you need a reliable answer.

Custom ordering solutions can lower your e-commerce costs. In the end, so much of e-commerce comes down to efficiency. That is, if you can handle more orders with lower per-transaction costs, you can instantly increase the profitability of your online store (and maintain that advantage over time).

Your online store gets automatic integrated inventory control. With custom online ordering, you can tie transactions to inventory, meaning better real-time information availability and fewer chargebacks.

You can take advantage of advanced shipping features. For some online retailers, shipping and fulfillment can be complicated because of multiple distribution centers or unusually packaged or weighted objects. With custom online ordering, you can build in the functionality you need.

Your e-commerce site can use special pricing models. In the same way, if you have a highly segmented customer base, or an unusual pricing structure, you might want custom controls to ensure that buyers are being charged the right amount.

Custom online ordering solutions could offer better e-commerce security. Security is a big concern for both online retailers and their customers. With custom online ordering solutions, you can make every transaction as secure as possible.

Think your online store could be more profitable with custom online ordering solutions? Talk to WebRevelation today and let us show you how we use specialized programming and design to help our clients sell more while keeping costs low.

Posted in : Websites | 
Tags : websites , ordering solutions


What Technology, Logistics, and an Eye For Details Mean to Oil and Gas Producers

Posted Wed, December 11, 2013 by Julie Short

These days, lots of businesses like to talk about technology and logistics, especially when it comes to the oil and gas industry. When it comes down to it, though, these are just buzzwords – they are the difference between successfully turning a profit from one quarter to the next and being out of business altogether because you can keep an eye of the details.

Here at WebRevelation, that's something we've seen firsthand. In working with oil and gas producers, suppliers, and distributors all these years, we have learned how to put the pieces of a successful technology plan together in a commonsense, cost-effective way. In other words, we've learned how to help our clients do the most with the least, and boost their bottom-line results in the process.

Here are just a few of the ways oil and gas companies can utilize new technology to run smarter, more efficient businesses:

Through improved inventory control. Need to know what you have, where you have it, and what condition it's in? Most oil and gas operators do, which is why inventory control is such an integral part of their technology plan.

By keeping a close eye on costs and financials. Because market prices can change on a dime, and suppliers can shift terms at a moment’s notice, having one eye on the bottom line – and one finger on your pricing controls – is a must in today's oil and gas industry.

Through scheduling and project management. Smart scheduling and project management let you meet deadlines, keep costs low, and ensure that your whole operation moves forward smoothly.

With reliable mobile communications. Voice, video, and file-sharing systems let entire organizations stay in touch, even with multiple locations or vendors located around the globe.

By watching real-time shipping and logistics. You don't have time for missing equipment or incomplete answers. That's why real-time shipment tracking and logistical information can make such a powerful difference on your company's bottom-line performance.

With detailed, customized reports. When you need to spot important patterns and trends, or make sure that you're coming to the right conclusions, there is no substitute for having accurate, instantly customizable reports.

Worried that your oil and gas company isn't making the most of available technology? Talk to a member of the WebRevelation team today and let us show you what we've been able to do for other businesses like yours.

Posted in : Business Strategy | 
Tags : Gas and Oil , technology


How to Make Search Engine Marketing More Successful Over Time

Posted Wed, November 27, 2013 by Julie Short

As we have noted in some recent blog posts, there are really two keys to success when it comes to search engine marketing: First, you have to plan your campaigns very carefully, especially when it comes to keyword research; and second, you need to constantly refine your ads and offers over time, making them more targeted and efficient.

Today, we want to focus our attention on that second part of the equation. That is, we want to share with you a few of the tried-and-true secrets for making your search engine marketing campaigns more successful (and profitable) from one month to the next:

Always test new versions of your ads. When writing pay-per-click ads, the name of the game is to attract attention from the right kinds of buyers. That takes trial and error, using the successive results of new versions as your guide.

Look for negative keywords that can help you avoid unwanted clicks. As much as you want the right traffic coming to your site, you don't want to pay for just any visit. Negative keywords help you keep away people who aren't going to buy from you, and reduce waste in your search engine marketing budget.

Split-test your landing pages for maximum conversions. Once you have a targeted visitor to your business website, the challenge is just beginning. In the same way you need to test ads for click-throughs, landing pages should be altered and compared to make sure you're turning as many visitors into leads as possible.

Study your competition to see if they have any hidden tricks. You never want to copy things like content from your competitors, but you can look at their websites for information. Pay particular attention to any features or offers they have that your site is lacking.

Pay close attention to your on-site analytics. Ultimately, one of the best ways to improve your search engine marketing performance is to see how visitors interact with your landing pages. Once you understand what they like and don't like, you can emphasize your strengths more effectively.

When you devote your time and energy to making search engine marketing more effective, your campaigns produce bigger and bigger returns as the months go on. Pretty soon, you'll be seeing Internet marketing gains that would have felt unimaginable in the past, but that's just the natural result of one small incremental improvement after the next.

If you want to see that kind of growth in your online sales or lead generation, now is the perfect time to call or email WebRevelation to request a free consultation.

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : SEO , Search Engine Marketing


Why So Many Businesses Get it Wrong About SEM

Posted Wed, November 20, 2013 by Julie Short

A lot of businesses treat search engine marketing – that is, paid listings in the results you see on Google and other popular search sites – the same way owners and executives always treat things they don't understand or haven't been successful with yet. Which is to say, they ignore it.

In fact, if you happen to mention to your colleagues that you're even trying search engine marketing, you'll probably get a few encouraging recommendations, along with a healthy dose of "helpful advice" that it's "too expensive," or "just doesn't work."

But, we have seen time and time again that you can find new customers, efficiently and profitably, by making the most of search engine marketing. So, why is it that so many businesses get it wrong?

In our experience, there are four main reasons:

1. They devise campaigns that aren't targeted enough. A lot of companies, when first beginning search engine marketing campaigns, assume that they want to bring everyone they can to their website. Without very specific targeting, though, you're just setting yourself up for a big budget with very low conversion rates.

2. They fail to pay attention to their quality scores. If Google and the other search engines don't think your ads are relevant to searchers, they are going to charge you a lot of money to run them. Few things will sink your search engine marketing campaign, and your return on investment, faster than low-quality scores.

3. They don't make the most of the clicks they receive. If you aren't doing everything you can to turn visitors into customers, then the rest of your search engine marketing campaign is wasted. It's hard to overstate the importance of landing pages and offers, since they'll ultimately determine the profitability of your investment.

4. They give up on search engine marketing too soon. Occasionally, search engine marketers have success right away. More often, though, it's a mixed bag at first, with small improvements leading to dramatic results over time. Give up too soon and you could miss the big payoff that’s waiting for you down the road.

If you've always assumed that search engine marketing wouldn't work for you, then it's time to find out what your company has been missing. Call or email WebRevelation today and let us show you what the right keyword and advertising combinations can do for your Internet marketing efforts.

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : SEO , Search engine marketing


What Separates the Winners From the Losers in Search Engine Marketing

Posted Wed, November 13, 2013 by Julie Short

In many ways, search engine marketing is a "winner takes all" sort of endeavor. That is, in most markets there are a few companies that are attracting the lion's share of traffic, dominating the top sponsored listings and converting visitors into clients or customers at a much higher rate than their competitors.

While this is common knowledge, though, the factors that separate the "winners" from "losers" in search engine marketing aren't. So, if you're tired of putting together campaigns that seem to be overshadowed by other advertisers, here are the three things you need to be sure you have:

1. The very best keyword and market research. Many search engine marketing campaigns fail before they even get off the ground, simply because they aim for popular keywords and search phrases instead of profitable ones. In order to find the right buyers for your company, and avoid wasting money on the wrong keywords and phrases, it's important for your research to be targeted and specific. In addition, you want to know everything you can about customers you're trying to attract, beyond the search terms they prefer.

2. The right offer for every search phrase and add combination. If most of your search engine marketing simply leads potential buyers to your site's home page, then you are probably missing out on sales and marketing opportunities. Instead, you have to create the right partnership between search terms, ads, and marketing offers to envision what a potential customer might have in mind and suggest the next step that makes sense for them.

3. Some sort of mechanism for following up with potential customers. In most markets, very few people are going to make a purchase, or even request a personal meeting, the first time they visit your site. But, if you can convince them to sign up for your email newsletter, for example, or follow you on social media sites, then you've laid the groundwork for a relationship that can grow and continue in the future.

Because search engine marketing campaigns are optimized one incremental percentage point at a time, the real success – and the key to smashing your competitors – lies in constantly improving and becoming more efficient. Keep these three factors in mind, and you'll have a head start on all the other companies you’re bidding against.

Need help making your Internet marketing campaigns more profitable and efficient? Let WebRevelation help. Call or email our team today to request a free consultation and see what we can do for you.

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : SEO , Effective campaigns


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