How to Protect Your Online Store from the Internet Burglars, Part 1Written by Lynne Schlumpf
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He politely told her he would check up on it, and he hung up. It was at this point my eye-opening began. He taught me that if a customer is irate and wants quick shipment to places like New York City, Detroit, Chicago, and they put whole thing on a credit card (about $3,500 worth), it's STOLEN. I'm not picking any city in particular - these come to mind as ones he mentioned. Two elements of sale bothered him. 1. The amount was high (over 500.00) 2. The need for urgent shipment was weird.
Thanks for joining me. After you finish this report, you'll be amazed at how simple it is to keep from getting ripped off. I hope this will be a fun but informative adventure for you. I will start by showing you a day in life of two Internet store owners. One is very naive (as we were in beginning), and other is a seasoned player in this dangerous game of taking credit cards over Internet. Don't get me wrong, though. I don't disapprove of taking credit cards on Internet, and I don't think anyone should stop taking them. If your company can take losing up to 40% of its merchandise to thieves, don't read rest of this booklet!
What our company actually did was to stop selling computer equipment on Internet altogether. This was one among many reasons.
When I return in Part 2, Ill show you a scenario of two Internet store owners, and Ill discuss how they handle online ordering.
Lynne Schlumpf is the CEO of Route 66 Cyber Cafe, Inc., http://www.r66cci.com, a Web hosting and design company specializing in promoting websites for new owners, building affordable e-commerce sites, and providing reliable web hosting solutions as an affiliate of Virtualis Incorporated.
Developing a Winning Ecommerce Strategy Written by Lee Traupel
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It's very surprising, but approx 30% of ecommerce sites don't have a search capability that actually works in many cases it just returns gobblygook. This is a real irritant for many online shoppers who want to find goods and services quickly and efficiently need for speed should be ecommerce merchants marketing mantra and a good search capability gives users a way to quickly find products.
One of most important parts of any web site is home or index page, as it aggregates design elements and information architecture. So many index page are cluttered and poorly designed, loaded with poor graphics, bad menu structures, oddball words or my absolute least favorite, 30-60 second Flash animation sequences which force user to sit and stare at a blank screen while animation loads.
Privacy statements are about as exciting as filing taxes (unless you know your getting a refund) they are out of necessity filled with legal terminology that needs to be addressed succinctly and in a way that makes a consumer feel comfortable about doing business with an ecommerce web site. Unfortunately, many ecommerce web site privacy statements look like an afterthought, or, are so "attorney driven" (three pages who has time to read this?) people are turned off by them. It's very important that a privacy statement be a compromise doc brokered between legal and marketing.
We are a full service ad agency so I don't mind shooting arrows in direction of my peers too much attention is being placed on web site advertising metrics (clickthrough rates, certified traffic to substantiate ad rates, etc.) and not enough on how people find and use an ecommerce web site. The industry standard web site analysis tool is Web Trends, but one of least understood aspects of this product is tracking how people find and move around a web site via reports which can be pulled from server log files; i.e. where did visitors come from, what pages do they visit, how long do they stay, what are their traffic patterns, etc.? Ecommerce companies should be analyzing these "digital customer tracks" to better understand how to improve their front end marketing processes and back end web site design.
Lee Traupel has 20 plus years of marketing experience He is the co- founder of a Northern California and Brussels Belgium based, privately held, Marketing Services and Software Company, Intelective Communications, Inc. http://www.intelective.com Intelective focuses exclusively on providing services to small to medium sized companies that need strategic and tactical marketing services. He can be reached at Lee@intelective.com