Ease of Online Shopping Portals

Online shopping has caught up as a recent trend. Why not? It has made shopping so much easier as now you can shop from the comfort of your home from your laptop or smart phone without going through the hassle of getting ready and going out. Buy away from the wide range of products available to you in your searched category.

Finding a product is now, easy as you just have to mention the product in the search bar of the website and you will be directed to the product in its sub-category with the similar other products. You can then choose the product that you like the most from the given options.

The products offered are provided with the zoom option to get a proper look of product, its quality, the materials used etc. Plus the images of the products from different angles are also available to know how the product actually comes across from different angles.

The product is provided with its key features, i.e. the attractive features that make the product stand out. The other specifications and details are also mentioned that provide the details of the product that the consumer wants to know. Namely, brands, dimensions, material used, package details etc. The offers regarding the product are also mentioned on the same page with the price it is being sold at including the shipping charges & EMI schemes if any.

You can also find products by their brand names, and can sort them by relevance, price, discounts, ratings, popularity and new arrivals etc. These features have made online shopping so much easier.

The products available on portals are renewed frequently to keep their product portfolio up to date with the ongoing trends and fashion requirements. Almost all of the e-commerce sites have user-friendly interface to enable its customers to interact with the seller and acquire the product of their choice as well as return it if the need arises. Browsing through the portals is so easy that a child can also operate the transaction. Plus the customers can also file or register their grievances with the product or service that they are using.

Customers can pay choosing from the different payment options made available to them by the portal. The payment options normally available to the customers for online shopping are Cash on delivery, cheques, debit cards, credit cards, online payment, gift cards etc.

After placing the order comes the time for delivery of the intended package that can be done by three methods, such as shipping, in store pickup and drop shipping. Shipping means to ship the package directly to the customer with the use of postal system or couriers. In store pickup enables the customer to pick up the package from a location easier for him/her to access. The location is chosen with the use of locator software. Drop shipping includes informing the manufacturer of the product about the order and they deliver the package in question to the customer it is intended for.

It is interesting to note that the customers are attracted to shop online not only because of ease of operation, but also because of competitive prices, broader range of selection and greater access to information.

Online shopping has seen a boom in the industry due to the convenience factor. These portals are available for online shopping 24*7, i.e., the order for shopping can be placed at any time of the day or night as convenient for the customer.

All the above mentioned services and conveniences are available at different shopping portals for the wide range of products to shop in all the categories for your whole family.

6 Tips For Choosing The Perfect Shopping Cart

OK – Just What Is A Shopping Cart Supposed to Do?

Shopping carts are more commonly used as a way to display physical products, products like televisions, groceries, electronic equipment, clothes, and memorabilia, etc, NOT digital products. Shopping carts make it easy to cross-sell and up-sell your customers once they arrive at your store. Shopping carts typically handle the shipping and handling calculation, taxes and credit card processing. A good shopping cart handles all of these efficiently and securely.

Dynamic Operation

A good shopping cart program also creates dynamic order forms on the fly as the order takes place. The shopping cart should be totally dynamic; meaning it only executes code and retrieves products, images, and product descriptions from your database when your customers request it. During the checkout process it should also calculate shipping/handling and taxes for you.

Real-Time Credit Card Processing

Powerful CGI, PHP, CFM, ASP, etc, scripting, processes commands for you on secure servers when your customers place their orders. Don’t get this confused with credit card processing. What I’m speaking of here is the passing of your customers’ order information from a secure form, to your merchant or payment processor, using one of the scripting languages above. Your payment processor or merchant, like PayPal, 2CheckOut, or Authorize.Net will then process the credit card. If you don’t currently have a merchant or payment processor, and you are going to be selling online, then you NEED one.


You can choose what options you want your customer to see. For instance, you can choose to display a search form on your shopping cart. A search form allows your customers to search your store for items by keyword or product name, etc. You can choose to display options like color, size and quantity, and even adjust the price based on the customer’s selection. These are called options. Your shopping cart should also allow you to upload images of your products as well.

Stand-Alone -vs- Hosted Shopping Carts

However, you CAN purchase standalone shopping cart software or services. The stand alone software, of course, requires skill and expertise to install it on your web host or on your own server. Some of the shopping cart services, although it may not seem like it at first, limit you as to what you can and cannot do. These services are most commonly offered by web hosts as a way to entice you to host your site with them. When using these types of services, remember, you’re locked into using that web host when you opt to use their shopping cart service. Your business is not portable and becomes a part of that web host. Make sure there is a simple export process that allows you to easily download your website and shopping cart if you no longer wish to use their services. In my opinion, the best option is to use a shopping cart that runs from your own website, independent of your web host. Both Prowebware and stand-alone shopping cart applications run from YOUR website, giving you both control and flexibility.

So, Which Is The Right System For You?

Choosing a shopping cart boils down to 4 things:

1 Your Budget – Is FREE your only option or are you
serious about your business?

2 Your Skill-level – Do you have the expertise to
edit & install scripts on your server?

3 Desired Functionality – Want a professional results
oriented system or a display case?

4 Time – Have time to take away from your business to
shape and mold a new program?

Whatever you decide, your cart should also permit you to follow-up with your customers automatically and even instantly auto-subscribe them to your mailing list.

To implement most out-of-the-box applications, you will need to know how to edit PHP, HTML, or ASP code and how to set up a MySQL database on your server for dynamic operation. Then, with some, all you need to know is how to copy/paste some simple code to your existing web pages or the template you’re using. The system should also include some type of easy help or instructions, like an HTML file or contextual help menus that walk you through setting up your new cart.

If either of these fits you, a “Copy/Past” system, or a boxed program, then, why not try one of them today? Try it out and see if the system is right for you.

Much Success To You!

Increase Conversion’s by Decreasing Shopping Cart Abandonment – Part 2

In part one of Increase Conversion’s by Decreasing Shopping Cart Abandonment, we shown you the first 10 top tips to increasing your conversion rates. In part 2, we conclude with our final 10 tips, and a conclusion. Read on for more top tips…

11. Give the visitors the option to call.

If visitors have a problem during the checkout or just feel uncomfortable using their credit card online, give them a phone number to call. Use a separate telephone number that is different from the one you use for the rest of your site. this will help you track, evaluate & understand shoppers’ needs and behaviors. While you are at it, give them a fax-order form so they can complete their order by fax if they prefer.

12. Make it always about your new customer.

Make the focus of the checkout process easier for your new visitor with whom you do not yet have a relationship with, than for your registered customer. It is much harder to acquire a new customer than to keep selling to loyal customers. Registered customer’s will find a way to sign in (if they don’t already have a cookie), but don’t make the registration and log-in a barrier in the way of the new visitors finding their way to check out.

13. Add third-party reinforcement messages.

Verisign, BBB or logos of credit cards have either greatly boosted conversion rates, or kept them neutral. in other words, they never hurt. HackerSafe certification seems to be helping clients all across the board, especially in sites with larger average order sizes. They claim a 15.7% average increase in orders – directly attributable to earning the Hacker Safe certification.

14. Present coupon codes carefully.

Be careful how you handle these – you don’t want to decrease your conversion rate. You might want to think carefully about where you present this option and how you label it. Coupons should add to the experience, not create doubt for those may not be shopping with a coupon.

15. Deal with pricing issues head-on.

If you sell name brand products and your store is price competitive or truly provides better value, why not try a “Lower Price Match” guarantee?

16. GTC: Get the cash.

Offer more payment options and add other ways to collect the cash. You can offer visitors the option to pay by cheque, PayPal or any other means you can to get the cash.

17. Offer point-of-action reassurance.

Check how often information critical to your customers buying decision gets buried in tiny type at the bottom of the page or in some place where it is not immediately visible when the need to know is foremost in the customers mind. If you walk into a store, its fairly easy to find out product warranty information. One can read the box at hand or chat with a salesperson.

Online, give your customer this same option at the POA where he’d figuratively be examining that box. Link right there to product warranties, your company’s specific policies, testimonials, even optional extended service plans. Right there! Maybe you take them to the information or perhaps give it to the shopper in a pop-up.

At the exact point when your customer has to start filling in a form with personal information, reassure the customer that privacy is sacred to you. At the point the customer might be curious about your company’s shipping costs, make them concretely available. Just when the customer is wondering whether or not it is possible to return the item if it doesn’t suit, make it clear that you have a no-questions-asked returns policy. Make the best use of your assurances at the right time and place.

18. Track your mistakes.

Develop a system that keeps you notified of errors during your checkout process. One client noticed a portion of their visitors had cookies turned off. He developed a cookie-less checkout option and his conversion rate and sales jumped.

19. Save it for them.

We know that customers often leave a shopping cart with items in it, but they do return sometimes. Don’t be overly concerned if visitors leave items behind. Just plan on doing your best to give them a reason and reminder to return and complete the sale. You may have the ability to save the cart for them or email them that they left items in their cart and can complete their order when they are ready. This can be done online at your website or through the telephone with interactive voice response (IVR). Remember, if they’ve gotten to the shopping cart, they are most likely considering the purchase.

20. When all else fails, survey.

Try an exit survey (think of it as an objectionator) if people abandon your checkout. Try offering them an incentive to complete your survey or even save their cart. They might just tell you why they didn’t complete their order.

These twenty tips can help you reduce your shopping cart abandonment. Of course, every site is different and has its own environment and issues. Don’t overly obsess about abandonment rates, since many people simply use the shopping cart as a placeholder for considering purchases of interest to them. These tips help you focus on those whose intent it is to check out and purchase, but may have questions, doubts or obstacles holding them back. Some of these tips will result in dramatic improvements and others might not do much. the only way to find out is to test each.