Shopify versus. Volusion Ecommerce Platform Comparison

Shopify and Volusion are two best-known “hosted” ecommerce platforms on the web.

Ecommerce options exist on the spectrum of convenience and control. Both Shopify and Volusion are right in the center of the spectrum simply because they bundle all of the technical areas of a web-based store – hosting, speed, security, inventory, shopping cart software and payment processing – and bundle it right into a single monthly cost. This contrasts with solutions like WordPress + Woocommerce in which you buy, operate and keep each bit from the store but additionally have true 100% control of your site.

Ecommerce Real Estate Tradeoffs

But just like a self-located ecommerce website, Shopify and Volusion also bundle in your website in your domain in which you have full charge of product, prices and customer experience. So unlike managing a store on Etsy, eBay or Amazon . com – you control the build, design and content of the store.

Even if this area of the spectrum has lots of tradeoffs – services like Shopify and Volusion are a great choice for many storeowners. Therefore the question becomes – Shopify versus. Volusion?

I’ve reviewed Shopify here and Volusion here. I’ve used both like a customer so that as an advisor to customers of both.

Both are excellent companies by having an excellent product. And like several my other ecommerce and hosting reviews, there’s no such factor being an absolute “best” – there’s only the best choice for you personally according to your circumstances, goals and sources.

Here’s how Shopify comes even close to Volusion across 6 variables that many customers take a look at – and what you need to consider with Shopify versus. Volusion.

Skip to conclusion here.

Aside – I built a Buzzfeed style quiz for ecommerce platforms that grades the standards together with your goals. You should check out the quiz here.

Also, a fast disclosure – I receive referral charges from companies pointed out on this web site. All data and opinions derive from my experience like a having to pay customer or consultant to some having to pay customer.

Cost

Ahh – cost. It’s both simplest and many complex method to compare two products.

Rapid story on cost is the fact that both Shopify and Volusion work on a regular monthly cost structure having a ~2 week free trial offer. They likewise have a really similar “sticker” cost with tiers at ~$29/mo and ~$79/mo or more.

Shopify Pricing for Shopify Review (2016)

Volusion Pricing

That stated, their plan structure is simply different enough to create a direct comparison a little difficult.

The primary tradeoff originates from charges.

And you will find 3 various kinds of charges to think about.

First is the monthly store fee. This fee may be the “sticker” cost. Both Volusion and Shopify are usually exactly the same. Volusion is slightly cheaper, they also don’t include each and every feature on lower tiers that Shopify does.

Second is the store transaction fee. Shopify doesn’t charge transaction fees if you are using their charge card processor. Otherwise, their transaction charges are identical.

Third is the charge card processing charges. If you are using a third party processor like Authorize.internet, PayPal or Stripe – then you’ll pay anything they charge. If you are using Volusion, you’ll need to use a third party processor. If you are using Shopify, you should use Shopify payments for just two.9% + $.30 – about industry average.

If you are considering using a third party processor (ie, for cost or staying with your present provider), then Volusion is going to be comparable – or perhaps slightly less expensive than Shopify each month.

If you’re available to going “all in” ‘with Shopify, then you’ll save a lot of profit charges based on your revenue level.

In either case – cost isn’t the deciding factor for Shopify versus. Volusion. Rather, I’d take a look at additional factors.

Customer Care

Customer care is among the most undervalued advantages of choosing a located ecommerce platform.

The entire charge of a self-located ecommerce website is wonderful until it will get hacked and you’re having to pay $$$ to some developer or you are within the WordPress forums wishing someone points you within the right direction.

Both Volusion and Shopify have customer care included in their monthly cost. You obtain access to a variety of channels on – from phone to talk to forums to email tickets.

All customer care is customized since both operate on proprietary platforms.

At register – both of them come with an “onboarding” sequence along with a consultant to assist with any issues.

Volusion Onboarding

I’ve had good encounters with and you will find a few variations that I’ve observed –

  • Volusion has more thorough and instructive DIY education. They’ve videos and screenshots for small changes around the Dashboard whereas Shopify may have text instructions.Volusion Support
  • Volusion results in as increasing numbers of beginner-friendly because of onboarding and high consultant walk-throughs
  • Shopify has more thorough and instructive content on running your overall business. They invest considerable time and sources in situation studies, lengthy-form guides, tutorials, and helping your company succeed beyond just applying a brand new feature.
  • Shopify also offers a far more well-developed network of third party developers and marketers who focus on Shopify. They’re also known as “Shopify Experts.” It isn’t effortlessly, but it’s a much better beginning point for advanced help than the usual Google or UpWork search.
  • Shopify has *many* more integrations along with other 3rd parties along with other platforms. And frequently, individuals other platforms will really provide support for that Shopify integrations. This really is crucial for labeling providers, fulfillment providers, bookkeepers, etcShopify Integrations

Overall, I’d state that beginners will probably find Volusion’s support system to become less daunting. However a growing store will probably find Shopify’s support system to become handier. Quite simply, Shopify has a little more of the learning curve to understand their system, but once you understand it – that you can do more by using it.

Customer Focus

Shopify and Volusion both serve companies that vary from really small retailers selling niche products to multi-billion dollar brands. Have enterprise plans (I authored about Shopify Plus here) plus they have customer care teams educated to help absolute beginners.

That stated – there’s a significant difference between your companies when it comes to sources and mission. Shopify did an Dpo in 2015 to be a perfectly-funded public company. Their platform should serve all retail companies both on and offline – however with an emphasis on startups or online-first companies that are looking to grow offline.

Shopify runs their very own payment processing service as well as has their very own Point-of-Purchase (POS) system to ensure that small offline retailers sell offline an internet-based from inside exactly the same system. These were the first one to unveil “buyable buttons” on Pinterest and Facebook to ensure that retailers could sell inventory directly anywhere online – not only from customers who examined through the merchant’s website.

Shopify’s backend (which I’ll cover within the next section) reflects this focus. These products / orders / customers / inventory area is outside of the “website” area. The concept is your website is just one of numerous sales channels. You are able to certainly run your site as the only sales funnel in Shopify – however the choices to sell elsewhere happen to be built-in.

Volusions’s focus appears to become more about stores with an existing large offline operation – and want to grow online (almost overturn of Shopify).

That’s not necessarily a bad or perhaps a good factor – it’s only a choice. Their backend and terminology is centered on the storeowner that has a current retail business and requires to create it on the internet. There is a robust inventory system having a concentrate on the operations of the ecommerce store as opposed to the marketing of the ecommerce store. They’ve straightforward functionality to create on team people to handle listings and inventory.

Volusion Admin Control

Both Volusion and Shopify are fantastic platforms for startups to enterprise. However, Shopify’s focus is on getting an extensive platform that is useful for any kind of store. Volusions’s focus helps existing storeowners sell better – and manage across channels.

User-ambiance & Onboarding

Associated with Customer Focus would be the problems with user-ambiance and “onboarding” (ie, obtaining a new customer for an active storeowner).

Both Volusion and Shopify have excellent onboarding processes and user-friendly management areas.

The primary difference is when each backend is structured. Volusion includes a single Dashboard in which you manage everything – your product or service, inventory, websites, settings, billing, etc.

Volusion Dashboard

Shopify breaks out products/customers/orders as well as your website into separate areas. Furthermore, Shopify has their very own lingo.

For instance, rather of “product categories” – Shopify has “Collections.” Rather of a “website” – Shopify has “Online Store” that is among your “Sales Channels.”

Shopify Backend

To have an absolute beginner, it requires a couple of more minutes to determine Shopify’s lingo and structure when compared with Volusion. That stated, once Shopify’s lingo clicks, it will provide a little more versatility for daily operations. Shopify’s inventory setup, their product filtering and template editor are faster and much more versatile – when you figure them out.

For those who have never operate a website before and just possess a promising small to mid-size product collection, then Volusion will probably be preferable than Shopify.

If you would like more lengthy-term versatility, you’ll likely appreciate Shopify’s system more when you tackle the training curve.

Method of Features

Both Shopify and Volusion have the majority of the tools (marketing, Search engine optimization, inventory, order, etc) a web-based store will have to be effective. They differ though in the way the each approach adding additional features.

Shopify takes the “platform” approach. They’ve essential features that storeowners will require built-in. However for features that does not all storeowners need – they concentrate on ensuring storeowners can also add feature extensions for their store when needed. There is a large and active Application Store that does not has only well-known extensions (ie, MailChimp) but additionally lots of indie apps for each situation (ie, apps for worldwide tax and shipping features).

Shopify Apps

Shopify’s template editing language, Liquid, also enables developers to include features straight to an outlet if required. Shopify also offers a good “CMS” to handle non-product content (ie, blogs, pages, etc).

Shopify Blog Post

Volusion comes with an Application Store for extensions too. However, Volusion includes a bigger concentrate on building plenty of features straight into their software to ensure that there’s you don’t need to add extra time.

For instance, take selling on Amazon . com or importing your Amazon . com listings for your store. Both Shopify and Volusion could make these functions happen.

Volusion builds the feature to their backend. Should you not require the feature, it adds some clutter and technically enables you to “pay” for something aren’t using. However if you simply require it, it’s already there also it simply works.

Volusion Amazon Integration

Shopify doesn’t have it built-in. However, they are doing come with an application extension (produced by Shopify, readily available for free) that you could supplment your store if you are an Amazon . com seller.

That stated – the switch side from the platform/built-in tradeoff is when Volusion doesn’t have an element built-in – they’re unlikely with an application to supply the functionality whatsoever.

For instance, if you’re applying bulk 301 redirects and wish to monitor 404 errors to find out if you missed any URLs – Shopify comes with an application will require proper care of that however, you won’t have the ability to it whatsoever in Volusion.

It’s exactly the same situation for drag editing, membership shopping and lots of other advanced features. Most storeowners don’t needOrwould like them. However if you simply do, you are more inclined to have it in certain form or fashion in Shopify than Volusion.

Shopify Apps

The final example this is actually the “content management system” – Shopify includes a decent one to have an ecommerce platform. Volusion, though, is decidedly missing.

Volusion CMS

Again – a CMS isn’t by itself an enormous deal. But it’s vital that you consider which needs are critical for your store.

Overall, for those who have fairly core ecommerce needs and just want something to exist and also to work – then Volusion will probably are more effective.

If you would like more versatility (without going the self-hosting route), then you’ll convey more use of features with Shopify.

Aside – for this reason I suggest carrying out a 2 week free trial offer with Volusion and Shopify simply to click around and discover for yourself.

Method of Design

Both Shopify and Volusion make use of a system of styles / templates for design. You decide on basics theme after which edit it to appear as you desire.

As the finish result is identical, they are doing have a slightly different approach.

Shopify includes a well-developed “Theme Store” which, similar to their Application Store, has many free and premium styles produced by companies, individuals, and Shopify.

Shopify Themes

Shopify’s backend enables you to definitely make changes towards the theme. It can be done via drag or via  a hybrid method of editing. Small customizations (colors, logos, etc) require only a click while bigger changes (layout, widgets, etc) require editing Shopify’s custom Liquid language. Here’s Shopify’s drag tool.

Shopify Drag Drop

Volusion includes a Theme Store that’s quickly growing. They’ve just added a brand new batch of new styles. However, still it lacks the variety of Shopify. Their cost points for premium styles are often greater too. That stated, Volusion theme editing options include both selecting small customizations and editing the HTML/CSS. It’s a far more straightforward editor that you will get with Shopify.

Volusion Templates

Overall, I believe most storeowners will discover more versatility with Shopify’s method of design. However, if you wish to edit HTML/CSS directly without learning a brand new language and/or wish to download template designs (instead of your development store) – then you’ll like Volusion better.

Shopify versus. Volusion Conclusion & Next Steps

So Shopify versus. Volusion – who is the perfect fit for who? For those who have time – I’d really recommend carrying out a free trial offer (no charge card needed) with and merely clicking around.

Obtain a free 14-day free trial offer with Volusion here.

Obtain a free 14-day free trial offer with Shopify here.

Personally, i such as the versatility and options of Shopify. They’re likely a much better fit for many online storeowners. Take a look at Shopify here & my Shopify Review here.

However, if you are a old store and wish a less complicated experience, you’ll prosper with Volusion. Take a look at Volusion here & my Volusion Review here.

If you’re undecided – then take my Ecommerce Platform Quiz here. It will require your requirements and let you know who is the greatest option for your web store.

“”

Merchant’s Help guide to Stopping Card-Present Fraud

Charge card fraud, for most of us, invokes 1 of 2 scenarios. First, you will find data breaches à la Target or Lowe’s, where thieves connect to the system and steal charge card figures, names, along with other data. Beyond that, you may consider online card fraud, where shady people use stolen card figures (sometimes acquired in data breaches such as the formerly pointed out ones) to purchase a lot of stuff online. Even though you start digging into ways retailers can safeguard against card fraud, the overwhelming quantity of sources are directed at eCommerce an internet-based transactions, and the ways to prevent fraud there. There isn’t many details whatsoever about card-present fraud — that’s, transactions which are still not legitimate but occur inside a store, in which the card is swiped or dipped.

Overall, card-present charge card fraud is really a smaller sized bit of the cake than online fraud, that is likely why there is a disproportionate quantity of sources regarding internet-based cons. But it’s still necessary that retailers take each step they are able to to safeguard themselves. Which includes being aware of what risks you face within the brick-and-mortar atmosphere.

Table of Contents

Understanding the kinds of Charge Card Fraud

I’m penning this mostly to describe how to prevent fraud. I shouldn’t enter into all the various scams and methods that fraudsters use because you can write a little ebook about them. But generally, all charge card fraud (or bank card fraud) falls into 1 of 3 groups:

  • Cloned/Counterfeit Card Fraud: This is a kind of card-present fraud in which the fraudster forges a card with another person’s username and passwords and uses it inside a brick-and-mortar storefront.
  • Lost/Stolen Card Fraud: This kind of fraud is most familiar to consumers, and sure concern for a lot of retailers: a fraudster using another person’s card to create a transaction (frequently a really large one). This could happen online or perhaps in a store.
  • Card-Not-Present Fraud: Any kind of fraudulent online transaction falls into this category, simply due to the credit card not swiped or dipped. While there are several tools retailers may use to mitigate this risk, generally, it’s the easiest kind of fraud to commit. CNP fraud comprises nearly all card fraud, especially as EMV makes it harder to clone or counterfeit cards.

It is also important to note there’s a couple other kinds of fraud retailers have to be cautious about:

  • ATM Fraud: Scammers uses a couple of different tactics to obtain either money or card data from ATMs, including installing card skimmers (we’ll discuss individuals inside a bit) or deliberately blocking the money distribution mechanism. For those who have an ATM on-site at the business, be familiar with it as being a possible target.
  • Check Fraud: Checks are certainly decreasing. Actually, based on the Fed, the entire quantity of check payments produced in the U.S. fell typically 6.2 percent each year from 2000 to 2012, and from 2012 to 2015, fell by typically 4.4 % yearly. In 2015, consumers authored as many as 19.4 billion checks, that was a complete loss of 3.1 billion over 2012 figures. However, the Given also reports that the need for the checks risen has elevated — and therefore while individuals are writing them less often, they have a tendency to create them for more and more bigger purchases. Check acceptance isn’t universal, however if you simply do accept checks, utilizing a digital service for example Telecheck to instantly convert payments and flag dangerous transactions is a great way to safeguard yourself.

I am not likely to really enter into CNP fraud, as the majority of it requires running an eCommerce store. This short article won’t cope with ATM or check fraud in-depth simply because they don’t affect nearly all retailers. Our focus is particularly card fraud at brick-and-mortar stores, whether it is debit or charge card related.

The Charge Card Fraud Game-Changer: EMV

Before the EMV liability shift required place, fraud experts were predicting that CNP fraud would increase with a tremendous amount in america because other nations that implemented EMV observed an identical pattern, and individuals predictions have held true. Credit monitoring agency Experian reported a rise of CNP fraud totaling 33% when compared with 2015.

One of the reasons for elevated CNP fraud may be the development of shopping online. As increasing numbers of use online, the entire amount of charge card fraud is likely to increase. However, the rollout of EMV can also be playing a job within the increase of card-not-present fraud.

Particularly, the chips in EMV cards tend to be harder to repeat and reproduce than the usual magstripe card (which is dependant on technology straight from the 1970s). So rather, scammers are switching to purchasing online, where you can find no techniques to physically authenticate the credit card. Rather, most security checks depend around the CVV or AVS checks to recognize suspicious transactions.

That’s not saying cloned or counterfeited cards aren’t an issue whatsoever. They’re. EMV market saturation in america isn’t 100%, as well as if consumers have nick cards, that does not mean retailers are outfitted to simply accept nick cards. As well as if counterfeited card fraud is decreasing, there’s still lost/stolen card fraud to bother with.

6 Methods to Reduce Charge Card Fraud in Brick-and-Mortar Stores

So, your house you need to antiques store. Someone is available in to purchase some furniture for his or her new house. Two days and a few 1000 dollars later, you discover the card used would be a stolen card. The cardholder has filed a chargeback, meaning the entire transaction amount continues to be deducted from your bank account and put on hold pending analysis. Not just that, but you’re the actual merchandise, effectively doubling whatever is lost.

Regrettably, this could and does occur to retailers. Although some industries are much more likely than the others to become victims of card fraud, any and each business should know the potential risks and take safeguards.

Which industries are most in danger? Based on an american Bank presentation, a few of the MCCs (merchant category codes, accustomed to identify the kind of services or products a business offers) which are most focused on fraud range from the following:

  • 5411: Supermarkets and Supermarkets
  • 5732: Electronics Stores
  • 5812: Dining Establishments and Restaurants
  • 5999: Miscellaneous and Niche Stores
  • 4722: Travel Agencies and Tour Operators
  • 5311: Shops
  • 5661: Shoe Stores

Exactly what do you need to do to safeguard yourself? To begin with, you should know of whether you’re in the kind of industry that’s enjoy being focused on card-present fraud. A dry-cleaning business or perhaps a cafe? Most likely less. An gallery, a furniture or electronics store, or other business where consumers can drop hundreds or 1000s of dollars all at once? Most certainly a target.

Second, make certain you implement procedures and policies that will help mitigate fraud. We’ll begin with a very fundamental one, that we suspect lots of retailers overlook:

1. Check Network Guidelines for Card Acceptance

I mention mtss is a lot — by a great deal, I am talking about in nearly every review I write — but READ YOUR CONTRACT. Understand what you’re signing and just what rules and needs you’re being certain to. It’s important to maintain your credit card merchant account open so that you can keep accepting cards. But it’s also wise to consider the merchant guidelines the various card systems (Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Uncover) offer. They often cover guidelines for example displaying marks of acceptance, surcharging, and minimum/maximum transaction amounts. Hidden in individuals guidelines will also be policies which cover safety measures you’re likely to take and list of positive actions if you feel a card is fraudulent or even the transaction otherwise seems suspicious.

To help you get began, I suggest checking the Visa card acceptance guidelines, in addition to MasterCard’s rules.

2. Secure Your POS and Hardware

What is POS

In addition to the threats resulting from counterfeited or stolen cards, it’s also wise to be familiar with the opportunity of an information breach. If a person has the capacity to access the body and compromise your customers’ private information, it may be devastating for both you and your business. Data breaches can occur in lots of ways.

Among the apparent ones is skimming, in which a fraudster installs a tool over your terminal or pin pad that captures the credit card data and stores it. Skimmers may take only seconds to set up and therefore are difficult to place unless of course you are aware how to acknowledge the twelve signs. Scammers may also result in a data breach by using adware and spyware in your POS system or else hacking it. They are more complex techniques in most cases directed at high-value targets, but they’re possible you should know of, particularly if you store any type of customer data.

PCI Compliance: What you ought to Know

Technically, PCI DSS compliance (usually just known as PCI compliance) isn’t just about POS systems. Sturdy your hardware, too. More often than not that’s lumped along with your POS, though, particularly if you come with an integrated solution.

PCI DSS means Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard. It’s a unified policy indicating the steps retailers have to take to secure their transaction data through hardware and also the POS system, laid by the PCI Security Standards Council. Retailers are sorted into certainly one of four levels with respect to the type and number of transactions yearly. Most small companies are Level 3 or Level 4, that have the least steps to consider to keep compliance.

There’s an excellent chance that, should you didn’t construct your system yourself, you’re already PCI compliant. Software and equipment vendors will need to go via a certification process when they handle payment card information. However, should you store any customer data (particularly in a database you develop and keep yourself) or route it via a website you maintain yourself, that won’t function as the situation. You need to speak to your credit card merchant account provider or software vendor by what steps are needed to make sure your compliance. You might be needed to accomplish quarterly scans or self-assessments.

PCI compliance could be summarized into 12 points of action lumped into six groups. The reason here is obtained from the PCI SCC Quick Reference Guide.

Build and keep a safe and secure Network
1. Install and keep a firewall configuration to safeguard cardholder data.
2. Don’t use vendor-provided defaults for system passwords along with other security parameters.

Safeguard Cardholder Data
3. Safeguard stored cardholder data.
4. Secure transmission of cardholder data across open, public systems.

Conserve a Vulnerability Management Program
5. Use and frequently update anti-virus software or programs.
6. Develop and keep secure systems and applications.

Implement Strong Access Control Measures
7. Restrict use of cardholder data by business have to know.
8. Assign a distinctive ID to every person with computer access.
9. Restrict physical use of cardholder data.

Regularly Monitor and Test Systems
10. Track and monitor all use of network sources and cardholder data.
11. Regularly test home security systems and procedures.

Maintain an info Security Policy
12. Conserve a policy that addresses information to safeguard all personnel.

For retailers, I believe the important thing takeaway is the fact that PCI compliance (and knowledge peace of mind in general) isn’t a one-and-done type deal. You have to positively take preventive steps and monitoring the body, from updating software and firmware when updates seem to watching the employees and ensuring they’re educated on card security issues and proper procedures to handle.

Beyond PCI Compliance: How to maintain your POS (and knowledge) Secure

Learning all the intricacies of PCI compliance is most certainly challenging for anybody, the experts! However, since, data security isn’t something take proper care of once rather than consider again, you need to certainly take a moment to discover security.

Two big terms at this time are file encryption and tokenization. PCI DSS signifies that the POS and hardware should secure transactions. There’s two major kinds of file encryption, point-to-point and finish-to-finish.

Tokenization isn’t yet a business standard, though it’s increasingly common, mostly because of NFC/contactless payments. Tokenization generates a 1-time-use card number and substitutes it for that actual card number. Even when information is breached and decrypted, that tokenized number is useless to scammers. That’s just how Apple Pay and Samsung Pay and Android Pay keep the card data secure: Your card number is kept in a cloud vault which your phone have access to. Your phone generates the token and passes it to the system, which verifies the amount.

If you would like to understand more about how you can secure your POS, check out our POS 101 article around the subject, in addition to PC Mag’s article regarding how to place skimmers.

3. Capture Signatures, Even on Low-Value Transactions

accept mobile credit card payments

Credit (and debit) cards possess a space around the back for customers to sign them because, theoretically, retailers are meant to compare that signature towards the one around the receipt as a way of verification. The truth is couple of or no retailers really do that.

Within the interest of speeding along transactions, particularly in environments where customers be prepared to be interior and exterior the checkout fairly rapidly, the credit card systems have relaxed their guidelines with no longer need a signature on all transactions. Low-value transactions (under $25 or $50 with respect to the network) frequently waive the signature requirement.

mPOS systems — Square, PayPal Here, SumUp, etc. — plus some POS systems frequently allow retailers to disable signatures on low-value transactions. For mPOS systems, the brink is generally $25. For full-fledged POS systems, that threshold may also be in the merchant’s discretion.

Realistically speaking, quick-serve cafes and restaurants, supermarkets, etc., where you’re likely to encounter low-value transactions, aren’t an enormous risk. And also the losses, unless of course you’re experiencing a huge string of fraudulent transactions, are minimal. It isn’t that you simply absolutely must enable signatures on all transactions to safeguard yourself. That’s not true. However if you simply want to maximise your protection out on another mind the additional time to gather a signature throughout the checkout phase, you are able to enable them.

For top-value transactions, you need to absolutely be collecting signatures on everything. Actually, for large transactions, signed invoices are an easy way to safeguard your company and reduce the chances of chargebacks.

4. Request Customer Identification

Some consumers, rather of filling out the backs of the cards, decide to write “SEE ID” for the reason that space. This informs retailers they ought to request a photo ID and compare it towards the name around the card.

A great practice. Not every retailers get it done, especially with increasingly more consumer-facing PIN pads and terminals in which the cashier never handles the credit card.

But there’s only one small problem:

A merchant can ask to determine a photograph ID for any transaction, but legally, the customer isn’t obligated to supply it. Visa’s guide, 5 Important Visa Rules That Each Merchant Ought To Know, explains it such as this:

“A Merchant may request cardholder identification inside a face-to-face atmosphere. When the name around the identification doesn’t match the name around the card, the merchant could decide whether or not to accept the credit card. When the cardholder doesn’t have, or perhaps is reluctant to provide, cardholder identification, the merchant should recognition the credit card should they have acquired evidence of card presence, a legitimate authorization, along with a valid signature or PIN.”

Therefore if a person provides an ID that does not match the name around the card, the merchant can pick to say no the transaction. When the customer will not offer an ID or doesn’t have one, Visa’s rules condition that you ought to process the transaction, provided you will find the card in hands plus they sign or enter their PIN.

That stated, requesting ID continues to be generally a great policy. Just be familiar with the credit card systems acceptance rules (see point #1 above).

5. Avoid Keyed Transactions

It’s story time!

A lengthy, lengthy time ago (OK, a lot more like eight years back), after i labored like a cashier somewhere that shall ‘t be named, I recall from time to time getting to place a card inside a plastic grocery bag and swipe it to obtain the POS to see it. I’m still unsure why this labored, however it did. Them which had this issue were usually old and worn — sometimes worn to the stage the elevated figures weren’t as elevated because they must have been, and also the whole card appeared thinner, even extended. They often left worn-lower, overstuffed wallets, therefore i just generally assumed the put on evolved as the result of in which the card was stored. Sometimes, though, even that didn’t work, since the card might have a split inside it within the magstripe or it simply wouldn’t read. In individuals cases, I could (and did) by hand go into the card.

I do not determine if the cards I processed by doing this were fraudulent, but I know since it was a danger. Card network guidelines, in addition to other security experts, suggest that you inspect the physical card for indications of damage or tampering before you decide to process a transaction. Broken cards — particularly if it normally won’t swipe — can (but don’t always) indicate counterfeit or cloned cards. Entering the transaction means the POS does not have to physically look into the card, because it’s treated like a card-not-present transaction.

First, keyed transactions always are more expensive than swiped or dipped ones. PayPal and Square both charge 3.5% + $.15, that is well over the 2.7% and a pair of.75% (correspondingly) they charge for swiped or dipped transactions. Traditional merchant services may also assess a greater fee, although it varies more.

Second, getting a lot of keyed transactions is frequently a warning sign for a free account provider. It shows that someone may be processing cards that aren’t even physically contained in the shop, that is, clearly, a large no-no. A particular quantity of keyed transactions should be expected, but a lot of can result in a hold, freeze, or termination.

So your very best to prevent entering card information, because this will safeguard your company. Most security experts also recommend searching at the processing background and making note associated with a patterns — whether these transactions happen in a particular time consistently, or maybe one cashier is much more vulnerable to keyed transactions than the others.

6. Change to EMV Acceptance

EMV credit card terminal

Should you not curently have a POS and hardware that accepts EMV transactions, it’s about time you are making the switch. No exceptions, no excuses. Yes, it may appear costly, you will find, the EMV rollout continues to be rather slow partly due to the backlog on hardware and software certifications. But there are many EMV-certified hardware and software open to retailers. If you were postponing the switch, just start it already. It’s probably the most important methods for you to safeguard your company from charge card fraud.

Like I stated earlier, it’s a great deal harder (not possible, but very, very hard) to repeat a nick card. That is why many scammers are relocating to CNP fraud. On October 1, 2015, liability for fraudulent nick card transactions shifted in the banks to “the least-secure party,” which within this situation means retailers who aren’t outfitted to simply accept EMV.

Remember the instance I began with, using the antique furniture. Repeat the person purchasing the products have a counterfeit nick card. However, you, the merchant, have only a magstripe readers. If you’d had an EMV readers, it could have been in a position to identify the card was fraudulent. But rather, you processed the magstripe transaction — which leaves you entirely responsible for the entire mess.

The problem could be different when the fraudster were built with a stolen EMV card and tried on the extender in an EMV terminal. For the reason that situation, the liability would fall around the card provider.

Should you haven’t already, get EMV-capable card-readers and make certain your POS is EMV certified, too. It’s absolutely worthwhile, and every one of our top-rated merchant providers offer EMV acceptance, just like our top-rated mPOS providers.

Conclusion: How Large a danger is Card-Present Charge Card Fraud?

Realistically, retailers who sell online face an even bigger threat than brick-and-mortar retailers. That’s largely because of the EMV liability shift and rollout of nick cards. Unfortunately, even nick cards can’t safeguard against stolen or lost card fraud. And until EMV market saturation hits 100%, there’s still a danger of accepting counterfeit cards.

Fortunately, you are able to take measures to safeguard your and yourself business. Understanding is power, especially within the payments industry. So review your processing contract, the credit card networks’ laws and regulations, and also the legal matters affecting your industry. Make certain that you simply keep the POS secure, out on another overlook simple defenses for example collecting signatures or requesting IDs, and keeping keyed transactions low. Applying EMV, should you haven’t already, is among the most critical methods for you to safeguard your company.

If you have questions, we’d like to respond to them! Take a look at our comment guidelines by leaving your question inside a comment. Thanks for studying!

Melissa Johnson

Melissa Manley is definitely an independent author and editor who loves e-commerce, internet marketing, technology, and social networking. Not so long ago, she earned a journalism degree, but she continued to uncover that they could work at home, researching, editing, and covering the items she found most fascinating. When she’s not associated with her laptop, Melissa usually can be based in the kitchen, studying a magazine, or doing something from the nerdy persuasion.

Melissa Johnson

“”

The Advanced Help guide to Running A Highly Effective Loyalty Program

Exactly what do the Walmart Savings Catcher, Macy’s Shop The Right Path, and Delta SkyMiles programs all share? They’re loyalty programs operated by large companies generating huge amount of money annually. These programs offer incentives to customers in return for certain behaviors, varying from frequent or greater spending to social discussing and referrals.
Loyalty program InfographicBy providing carefully marketed incentives, loyalty programs boost sales and feet traffic, increase contact with your company, and open a door for future marketing. Sophisticated, digital loyalty programs aren’t always new, but having to pay between tens to thousands and thousands of dollars of these programs make them unattainable for small companies – until lately.

Loyalty and reward platforms are relatively recent towards the small company space. Numerous companies have embarked to produce top quality, digital loyalty programs at affordable rates. The majority of the companies I’ve reviewed average around 2-four years old the first began in ’09. That being stated, loyalty programs are extremely diverse, and also the rules and abilities of 1 aren’t prone to match another. Regardless of this diversity, most programs are made having a couple of things in your mind. The foremost and primary because you have a company that needs significant feet visitors to stay afloat. Companies for example restaurants, stores, fitness gyms, local niche shops, and ecommerce stores which require frequent visits may benefit a good deal from loyalty programs. Essentially, a properly-rounded loyalty program must do three things: increase repeat business, generate start up business, and provide you with an aggressive edge.

  • Construct it right. Developing a loyalty program that work well for you personally will require forethought and meticulous planning. While adjustments might be necessary after a while, you need to make certain the basic principles of the program are seem. I suggest studying the McKinsey & Co strategies in more detail.
  • Make use of the right draws. Among the best tools any loyalty program can provide is the opportunity to collect specific data regarding your customers. This data may be used to tailor promotions while offering to some customer’s preferences, giving your choices more quality and increasing the likelihood that buyers will revisit.
  • Possess the right reasons. Among the goals of the clients are to earn money. Getting stated that, it can’t be the sole reason if you wish to be effective. Your loyalty program is a superb tool. Utilize it to enhance the client experience, services or products you are offering, in addition to express gratitude for your customers for his or her patronage.

“But let’s say companies used their loyalty programs to help make the service or product better for me personally? Let’s say, rather of paying me for which is generally a similar (and of low quality) experience, they provided the knowledge better?” – Taddy Hall on loyalty programs, The Cambridge Group

(Link)

So, how can you tell if your loyalty program fits your needs? You will find numerous studies which suggest loyalty programs work, and numerous others which claim that loyalty programs don’t. Based on a Stanford Business article, loyalty programs don’t change customer behavior for top spenders, but instead only affect behavior for low spenders whose overall value might not offset program costs. A more modern article from Business Insider implies that companies without loyalty programs grow in a slightly greater rate than companies that do possess a loyalty program. Mckinsey & Company has identified a couple of explanations why loyalty programs neglect to deliver value, citing insufficient differentiation, innovation, and knowledge because the primary causes. Effective programs shared characteristics for example integrated or omni-funnel loyalty encounters, quality data to facilitate targeted marketing, and partnerships with non-competing retailers.

If you’ve didn’t have a loyalty program before, or else you have however it was unsuccessful, my hope may be the tips offered in the following paragraphs will take you better success. Loyalty programs are available in all sizes and shapes, so selecting the correct one for your company is key.

Table of Contents

Choosing the right Program

Steps
Choosing the right program may appear just like a daunting task. Whether you’re a physical merchant or work strictly in ecommerce markets, there’s a numerous possibilities. Prior to choosing a course, there are several preliminary steps you need to take that will help you make a good decision.

  • The First Step. Define your company. Your company type will matter when choosing a course. Some loyalty programs are produced strictly for ecommerce, while some need a location. If you are generating business both on and offline, you’ll find you will find less low-cost options open to you to streamline the procedure. Within each business type you will see limitations according to your company hardware and software. Some loyalty programs operate like a stand-alone product while some require integration. For brick-and-mortar retailers this can typically involve your POS for ecommerce retailers, this can involve your ecommerce platform or shopping cart software.
  • Second Step. Define your objectives. Knowing what you would like is half the fight in selecting, well, anything, particularly loyalty programs. From the three functions listed, that is most significant for you inside a loyalty program? Give me an idea your program to complete? Once you’ve written lower what you would like, begin defining how you need to keep it in check. Some programs permit you to make changes anytime towards the program, other medication is smaller. Just how much detail do you want in reports? Are you currently searching for simplicity or impressive personalization options? Be as honest so that as thorough as the hectic agenda enables.
  • Third Step. Define your limits. It’s important to reconcile what you would like with what you could realistically maintain. Many loyalty programs need a subscription, compensated monthly, though some don’t. Just how much are you able to afford? Are you able to invest in an agreement, as well as on what terms? Creating custom rewards and tiers could be a bit tiresome, as well as time intensive. Determine the length of time you’re prepared to invest in creating and looking after your program.
  • Fourth Step. Define your census. Probably you’ve already defined some, if not completely of those areas, in certain capacity. Your target audience (the shoppers you need to generate), subscriber base (the shoppers you have) as well as your competition (individuals who sell similar products within the same area or space) would be the areas that warrant probably the most analysis. Get just as much feedback as possible from customers about things that they like. This should help you pick which platform works perfect for your company, in addition to assist you in making significant rewards for the customers.

Survey Your Choices

Once you’ve completed your preliminaries, it’s time for you to start narrowing things lower making a top three list (or even more, if you have time). You should check out the loyalty reviews here on this website to obtain began. For physical retailers, I’d recommend you review FiveStars or Perkville for ecommerce retailers or retailers using both platforms, I suggest you take a look at Sweet Tooth. A couple of areas to seriously consider:

  • Customer Support. Each loyalty review gives information on customer support and overall impressions. If customer support is really a major feature for you personally, pay attention for this area. Some companies offer great products, but horrible interpersonal relations.
  • Prices, Contracts and Cancellation Policies. Before getting associated with any loyalty program, know with certainty ways to get out and just what do it yourself. Contract lengths and cancellation policies ought to be well defined and clearly expressed. A thing of caution: sales people will frequently downplay cancellation policies with vague or dismissive solutions. Never be afraid to inquire about more clearness about this subject, or request their official policy if it is not easily available online. Regarding contracts and prices, some companies are prepared to negotiate on either of individuals terms, therefore it never hurts to inquire about.
  • Simplicity of use. Typically, a great loyalty program ought to be simple for your clients to make use of and simple for you to handle. Some companies perform a better job only at that than the others, but make time to view available demos and tutorials on loyalty software to find out if it will likely be a great fit.

*If you are getting trouble narrowing lower your choices, or would prefer to have another person perform the legwork, you are able to call us for further assistance. *

Program Features

Each program may have its very own group of features open to you, and options and abilities will be different from business to business. A few of the more prevalent features are highlighted below:

  • Point-based programs. A place based program provides extensive value and versatility. Use a point based system to provide different point values for various services or products, and provide bonus or marketing suggests encourage specific actions.
  • Tiered programs. Utilizing a tiered system of rewarding your clients does a couple of things. First, it adds some gamification which provides your clients something to achieve for. Second, it enables you to definitely differentiate between customers and provide rewards according to their profitability.
  • Social Discussing. From Twitter and facebook posts email incentives, social discussing is a superb tool to market your company and special promotions. Most programs have incentivized social discussing (a coupon reward or X quantity of bonuses) however, many provide it without resorting to incentives.
  • Reviews. Not every companies provide the ability for the people to take a look at business from where you are, and also the limitations vary. There are several disadvantages in this selection namely, the possibility backlash from rewarding customers for 5 star reviews.
  • Data reports. Data reports are part of the effective lengthy-term loyalty program. Mckinsey & Co offer tips on how using data acquired through loyalty programs helps boost sales. Data collected from customer behaviors for example purchases, social networking interactions and reward redemptions will help you figure out what works well with each client and interact them in significant ways as individuals or smaller sized groups.
  • Campaigns & Promotions. Additionally in managing your loyalty program, some companies offer the opportunity to manage temporary or targeted campaigns and promotions via email, mobile application notifications, or SMS texting. These functions frequently include tracking abilities so that you can see whether a campaign ought to be repeated later on, or thrown within the scrap pile.
  • Mobile check-in. This selection generally needs a customer to download a particular application on their own smartphone. Mobile scanners such as the one utilized by Belly create a customer’s phone their loyalty card which may be scanned at the purpose of purchase. The iBeacon technology utilized by Perka automates the procedure using your customer’s Bluetooth capacity.
  • Omni-Funnel Features. Omni-funnel refers back to the ability for an organization to provide a seamless experience across multiple platforms. (i.e., beginning my shopping experience on amazon . com.com and finishing it with my cell phone) The amount of loyalty programs with omni-funnel technologies are still fairly small, however, many companies do provide omni-funnel development for his or her clients.

Companies to think about: Search Engine Optimization

Sweet Tooth
sweet-tooth-rewards-logoSweet Tooth can be obtained through Magento while offering a softer, Beta version in Shopify. Their point- based loyalty program has a clean front finish design and it is wealthy in features including social networking along with other interaction rewards, thorough program customizations, and product critiques. Sweet Tooth enables API integrations in addition to omni-funnel development. They’ve great customer support reviews, however the program could be cumbersome because of its complex rule system.

S Loyalty
s-loyalty-rewards-logoS Loyalty can be obtained through Shopify or BigCommerce and it is a place-based program. This program is extremely easy to use and could be setup within minutes. It can be bought in parts or in general package. It isn’t a really robust program, however it will get the task done.

Companies to think about: Physical Solutions

Perkville
perkville-rewards-logoPerkville offers affordable rates for any card free loyalty program. Their features include social networking and referral rewards, in addition to daily data reports. A good option for fitness gyms, gyms and restaurants, Perkville integrates with multiple POS systems and it has a reasonably seamless process. Their transaction limits can be a drawback, however their program has gotten lots of reviews that are positive from retailers as well as their customers.

FiveStars
five-stars-rewards-logFiveStars offers seamless integration with multiple POS systems, along with a well-rounded loyalty program. Features incorporate a customizable loyalty program, additional marketing abilities via SMS text and email, and knowledge reports to trace the progress of the program.

Belly
belly-logoBelly provides a customer facing iPad having a “per visit” loyalty platform. The Belly card is really a universal card customers may use at any Belly merchant location. An excellent choice for retailers with DIY customers, Belly offers social networking interactions, review abilities, a simple out-of-the-box setup, and knowledge reports which may be filtered into multiple groups.

Loyalty Gator
loyalty-gator-rewards-logoLoyalty Gator offers an array of choices for your loyalty program. Based on your subscription plan, you may choose multiple campaigns varying from the point system to some punch card system. Additionally they offer worker loyalty programs and coalition programs for multiple retailers. Additionally to data possession, retailers receive accessibility API to build up additional integrations.

Running A Highly Effective Loyalty Program

Promotion
Before you decide to unveil your program, and for some time later on, advertise it. For those who have an email list, enable your subscriber base be aware of information on this program ahead of time. Many programs offer marketing kits to brighten your doorways and funds registers (or nifty buttons for ecommerce retailers). Make use of the tools you need to tell your friends regarding your program. In almost any correspondence, your clients ought to be informed regarding how to join, how you can earn rewards, and the way to redeem them.

Should you haven’t already, ask your clients what sort of rewards they’d want to see, or make use of the information you’ve already to produce enticing rewards for the customers. With respect to the loyalty program you select, you could possibly get additional help with this out of your marketing repetition or software programs. Rewards ought to be enticing enough to inspire return visits, although not too pricey.

Maintenance
maintenance

Once you have your loyalty enter in place there’s a couple of things you want to do regularly:

  • Train your employees. Unless of course you’re the only real worker, the possibilities your employees may have different responses for your new program. Let everybody know upfront what’s expected of these, and make certain to possess very obvious guidelines to follow along with in situation something goes completely wrong (i.e., will we redeem rewards when the system crashes?). Some companies offer training via tutorials or webinars for the employees, so take benefit of individuals things too.
  • Inquire. Mainly in the beginning, and also at various times all year round, acquire some feedback out of your employees along with your customers on which they consider this program. According to your responses, you may want to have adjustments or re-train staff.
  • Use every chance. Whether it’s a complaint, concern, or compliment, use every chance to interact your clients inside a positive way. Versatility and courtesy go a lengthy means by improving customer relations.
  • Place your data to operate. Most loyalty programs have a helpful approach to data accumulation. Some data reports tend to be more extensive than the others, offering thorough analysis and actionable insights, while some just provide raw data for use at the will. The information abilities of the loyalty program are the best, since the insights attracted from that data may be used to enhance your business in other locations. My advice? Go to whichever you need to make smarter choices regarding your program and business.

Should you not seem like your program is fulfilling all your needs, speak to your customer support repetition. Regardless of whether you need additional tools or perhaps your loyalty program requires a couple of tweaks, contacting your repetition and expressing your concerns can help you save considerable time and. A lot of companies are eager to help you. In the end, your ability to succeed is the success.

Safeguards
Every loyalty programs aren’t likely to please everybody, so be ready for negative feedback, and prepare for foreseeable problems. All loyalty programs have limitations, and so i encourage you to definitely read both good and bad reviews when searching for your loyalty program. A couple of commonplace problems to think about are highlighted below.

  • Mobile Application software. If you are searching right into a mobile application for the loyalty software, it’s essential that you understand how your program interacts together with your customers’ phones. For instance, some mobile phone applications focus on all cell phones, while some only focus on smartphones. Also, apps have a tendency to crash more traditional programs.
  • Ecommerce software. The loyalty software I’ve reviewed for ecommerce can be obtained on 1 of 3 platforms: Shopify, Bigcommerce, or Magento. Though there are several integrations within the works best for the likes of Sweet Tooth, I haven’t seen anyone loyalty program on the 3 ecommerce platforms, therefore the platform you utilize will limit your choices. There’s a couple of software firms that can make custom integrations for the ecommerce store, however these integrations could cost you.
  • Program limitations. Some companies limit your program through transaction or signup limits, based on your subscription plan. Be sensible when selecting plans with these sorts of limitations, and think about future growth when deciding.

Guidelines
Loyalty programs provide essential tools to assist generate business, but the easiest method to stick out is thru customer relations. Most of all, preserve the connection you’ve together with your existing customers. Listed here are a couple of do’s and don’ts worth mentioning about this subject:

  • Don’t hide your loyalty program. This can be a horrible practice. If you notice that rewards are squandering your an excessive amount of, make alterations in your program or discontinue it. Sporadically telling your clients “the product is lower,” “the machine is damaged,” or “we’re full-scale,Inches paints your company inside a negative light, particularly when individuals statements are blatantly false. If individuals statements are true, which is likely to happen, attempt to offer positive alternatives (i.e. another reward, additional points/punches/perks, or perhaps an I.O.U.). Small gestures go a lengthy way.
  • Never be stingy together with your customers. Lavish gifts aren’t expected, but common courtesy is. You shouldn’t provide a “tenth donut free” if my tenth donut would be the tiniest, stalest one you’ll find. Help remind your employees that rewarding your clients is a great factor.
  • Don’t complain for your customers. In case your loyalty program is squandering your money, you shouldn’t gripe for your customers about this. Making your clients uncomfortable will probably turn them off and them.
  • Do smile. Smiling at the customers and which makes them feel appreciated for patronizing your company goes a lengthy means by keeping them. Whether they’re buying or redeeming a totally free reward, the interaction ought to always be an optimistic experience.
  • Do be flexible. Some arguments simply aren’t worth getting. If your potential conflict could be diffused with a small compromise, choose the compromise, particularly if the alternative involves creating a scene or slowing lower service.
  • Do give advance notice of changes for your program. If you are thinking about altering the guidelines of the program, or plan to cancel this program altogether, provide your customers a manages. Email changes, publish an indication, or inform customers once they buy something (Personally, I’d recommend doing the 3, simply to be thorough).

Final Ideas

Getting a loyalty program doesn’t guarantee your company will succeed, but the potential for a effective program can’t be overlooked. Loyalty programs boost profits inside a significant way. Selecting a loyalty program that’s the right fit for the business, creating significant rewards, and preserving the connection between both you and your customers will pave the best way to that success. Make sure to take a look at our loyalty reviews to obtain began with a small company loyalty program, and for those who have additional questions, you can leave a remark or achieve to us!

Phylicia Joannis

Phylicia is really a freelancer, indie author, and Google addict. She accustomed to scout all New York’s free venues in her own free time, however she’s reviewing loyalty rewards software for Merchant Maverick. Her professional background includes technical writing and research, though she’s also fluent in toddler gibberish. When she’s not crying over spilled milk, Phylicia enjoys studying, writing, and performing random Google searches.

Phylicia Joannis

“”

Using Amazon . com for Search engine optimization & Content Marketing

How To Use Amazon for SEO Content Marketing

Amazon . com may be the world&#8217s largest online shop. They offer greater than the following 12 largest online retailers&#8230combined.

Should you run a web-based store, it&#8217s senseless to see Amazon . com like a competitor (while they are).

Rather, it’s more lucrative to make use of Amazon . com like a platform to create your store as lucrative as possible.

Listing your product or service on Amazon . com is easily the most straightforward method. You may also use Amazon . com&#8217s PPC platform to create these listing effective.

But Amazon . com requires a cut of all the listing that erodes your margins. For a lot of storeowners, it seems sensible to take a position more in your store.

But if you are planning to purchase your personal store, you are able to (and really should) use Amazon . com.

Amazon . com may be the largest supply of ecommerce data on the web.

And lots of that information is public-facing. Here&#8217s a couple of tips on using Amazon . com like a data gold mine for the Search engine optimization &amp content marketing efforts.

On Amazon . com Search engine optimization

Observe that this publish isn’t about doing internet search engine optimization (Search engine optimization) on Amazon . com.

That’s separate, but interesting subject. It will pay to position in Amazon . com&#8217s internal product results.

But ranking there involves another strategy that drives sales on Amazon . com. I authored an extensive summary of Amazon . com marketing sources here. I additionally discussed it about this podcast episode.

This publish covers mining Amazon . com data for enhancing your online shop by yourself domain.

That stated, for those who have an Amazon . com listing, you should think about profits data for ideas.

For instance, use lucrative Amazon . com search keywords for the Search engine optimization &amp PPC campaigns.

Actually, many retailers list their product on Amazon . com utilized.

Let&#8217s take a look at using Amazon . com for market and keyword research and content development.

Market And Keyword Research &amp Content Development

Market and keyword research is definitely an art. There are many compensated and free tools to help you scale your market and keyword research.

But, you’ve still got to evaluate keyword difficulty, the need for ranking, and keyword intent.

But &#8211 you’ll need a supply of ideas that you simply don&#8217t realize that you don&#8217t know. That&#8217s what Amazon . com offers ecommerce proprietors.

*other sources which i&#8217ve covered include Quora, Reddit, Wikipedia, Google Books, Google Correlate, Display Planner, Pinterest, Slideshare, Search Analytics and YouTube.

Never exhaust ideas 🙂

Use Amazon . com Suggest To Locate Keyword Modifiers

Most SEOs and marketers learn about Google Suggest. It&#8217s a attempted and true market and keyword research method.

But don’t forget that Amazon . com has got the same functionality. Key in a keyword and it’ll suggests modifiers and alternatives.

Amazon Suggest

These suggestions originate from Amazon . com&#8217s internal search data. That time is crucial for keyword discovery.

Whether or not the recommended keywords are just like Google Suggest &#8211 they are available from the different dataset.

If suggestions overlap with Google, you already know that keyword modifier is essential.

When the suggestions don’t overlap with Google, then you’ve found a brand new market and keyword research &#8220thread.&#8221

But in either case, you will know Amazon . com&#8217s keyword suggestions have high purchase intent.

Quite simply, nobody searches on Amazon . com for the it. If a person searches on Amazon . com, they would like to *buy* that something.

Use that data to enhance your targeting. Utilize it to start a little Pay Per Click campaign.

Use Amazon . com.com like a Keyword &#8220Casting Internet&#8221

There are a few websites that rank well for everything. They’re very well-known and also have a lot of links that Google &amp Bing serve them up for any large range of searches.

Wikipedia and Quora are a handful of examples, but Amazon . com.com is  really the very best example.

I call these websites the &#8220casting nets&#8221 of market and keyword research.

They permit you to cast across countless keywords to locate a new thread to concentrate your quest.

Drop the whole domain right into a market and keyword research tool like Ahrefs (or SEMRush, Moz, etc).

You&#8217ll get a summary of countless keywords.

Amazon Keywords Ranking

Now, use known keywords to sift, sort and narrow.

There is also a subject or keyword thread that you’d haven’t imagined.

Reverse Engineer Product Pages

You may also go to the Amazon . com pages that contend with your products.

Most Amazon . com product pages will rank well for something.

Amazon Product Ranking

Go ahead and take best selling products in almost any given subcategory. Obtain individual URLs. Drop them into AdWords&#8217 Keyword Planner or perhaps a tool like Ahrefs.

Harvest the information.

Reverse Engineer Category, Trending &amp Bestseller Pages

Amazon . com includes a bigger Search engine optimization budget than you’ll have. They perform a large amount of optimization &#8211 specifically for mid-level and trending terms.

You are able to snoop on their own work via their category, trending (also known as &#8220Hot&#8221), and Bestseller pages.

Go ahead and take URLs for the relevant pages. Drop them into AdWords&#8217 Keyword Planner or perhaps a tool like Ahrefs.

Amazon Category Research

Harvest the information.

Scrape Product Titles &amp Product Descriptions for Keyword Ideas

Top sellers on Amazon . com know the strength of a great title and relevant product descriptions.

In competitive verticals, every seller may have an enhanced title with alternate terms.

Amazon Product Titles

Their product descriptions that mention use cases and operate in keyword modifiers.

You are able to by hand browse the titles. For bulk data, make use of the Scraper extension for Chrome or IMPORTXML for Google Sheets to drag within the data.

Amazon Scrape Product Titles

Search for repeats, patterns and different keywords.

By hand Read Reviews &amp Customer Questions

Platforms like Quora and Reddit are invaluable for market and keyword research. They’re rare platforms where one can scrape keywords from people&#8217s natural language.

Amazon . com&#8217s reviews and customer questions serve exactly the same role for products.

You’ll find real existence keywords from real existence use cases in context.

Quite simply, you are able to real people speaking like real people.

Amazon Read Reviews

With context, you are able to determine a variety of hidden jewel keywords that the keyword tool would *never* suggest.

If you wish to go that step further, you are able to (ironically) make use of a tool to evaluate review pages for keyword patterns.

You should use automated tools to process more pages. But, I suggest studying plenty of reviews and questions. You’re going to get a much better feeling of customer problems.

Use Amazon . com&#8217s Node System for Category and Keyword Planning

Website architecture and keyword mapping would be the foundation for effective, sustainable Search engine optimization campaigns.

Every ecommerce store faces a difficult tradeoff when planning expansion. It is almost always difficult to arrange for just how much vertical or horizontal expansion that you simply&#8217ll see.

It&#8217s also difficult to build the right groups in the beginning if you have little data.

The final wrench in planning are the competitors.

They don&#8217t know what they’re doing either. Stop searching their way.

Rather, take a look at Amazon . com. Amazon . com uses an well-performed &#8220node&#8221 system for groups and architecture. It&#8217s designed for scale, however it&#8217s also flexible enough for moving out complementary pages.

Study it.

You are able to explore it by hand or use a site like BrowseNodes that pull from Amazon . com&#8217s API.

Download Kindle Books Become Text and Run Keyword Analysis

Within my Google Books publish, I spoken about the strength of books for market and keyword research.

The issue with Google Books was it had become difficult to evaluate the entire text from the books.

Not too with Amazon . com.

This method isn’t free, but useful should you prefer a deep dive right into a subject. If you’re a non-expert inside a niche, this is actually useful.

Purchase the best selling books for the target vertical in Kindle format.

Convert the whole book into TXT format.

Take segments of text and chapter titles and run it through keyword analysis tools.

Or really browse the book &#8211 searching for great finds.

Order &amp Use Best Selling Products (especially Books)

With that, you are able to really buy best selling books &amp products inside your target vertical.

Amazon . com has virtually every product on the planet for affordable. For those who have budget, you will get invaluable data from book text, product manuals, and packaging text.

Or check out the products searching for questions like a consumer.

Such as these earphones &#8211 I had no clue the way the charging labored until I purchased it.

Amazon Product

For those who have product, this can be a lesser concern. However if you simply are dropshipping or adding Amazon . com affiliate products and programs for mix-sells / upsells, this really is critical.

The power here’s which i be certain that your competition aren’t carrying this out. If you’re looking to get unique product copy, these studies vein provides you with difficult to get information.

Search for Wrong Intent Queries for Amazon . com

I&#8217ve heard too many people complain that you could&#8217t out perform Amazon . com.

Everything equal &#8211 that maybe true.

But Amazon . com includes a problem which comes from ranking for everything.

However , Amazon . com ranks for terms that it shouldn’t rank well for. It ranks for irrelevant queries.

Consider research and consideration queries.

Sure, many people might do their research beginning to end on Amazon . com. However that not typical.

Your work being an online shop owner would be to stand before your clients *before* they’re going to Amazon . com.

Which means planning content that suits the query intent.

Quite simply, you need to determine the &#8220question behind the issue.&#8221 You need to answer that question much better than other people.

And Amazon . com.com is the beginning point with this.

Drop Amazon . com.com pages into Ahrefs or perhaps your favorite Search engine optimization tool. Search for keywords that don&#8217t match the page that ranks.

Amazon Wrong Intent

Search for &#8220how to&#8221 or &#8220vs&#8221 or &#8220compare&#8221 or &#8220why&#8221 keywords that send individuals to product pages.

Develop a page that completely solutions individuals queries.

Use Best Selling Product Descriptions to produce Content Template

You won’t ever have a similar budget or traffic that Amazon . com has. They are able to do rate of conversion optimization (CRO) at incredible scale.

Additionally they incentivize their third party sellers to ruthlessly concentrate on rate of conversion. Amazon . com sellers are continually improving with copy, images, and FAQs.

So steal everything.

Don&#8217t copy or plagiarize. But do steal the merchandise page / description of product template and roll it to your website.

Amazon Product Descriptions

Amazon Product Description

&nbsp

Perform the bestselling products use bullets or breaks? What objections will they overcome? What keywords and employ cases will they highlight? What features will they discuss?

Help make your product pages &amp descriptions your personal. But use effective Amazon . com pages as the beginning template.

Backlink Building &amp Content Promotion

Amazon . com doesn’t have to complete backlink building. They’ve built a brandname and marketing culture which brings in links on the scale that many stores could only imagine.

But Amazon . com isn’t invincible. In almost any given vertical, they may really be considered a second or 3rd tier player. In outside goods, REI beats Amazon . com on Search engine optimization and Backlink Building hands lower.

You are able to and really should study from Amazon . com&#8217s successes to focus on pathways of success. Targeted backlink building and content promotion is easily the most effective approach.

Reverse engineer Amazon . com to locate links and content promotion angles that actually work.

*Note &#8211 for those these tactics, you&#8217ll require a premium Search engine optimization tool like Ahrefs, Moz, SEMRush or Regal. Read my help guide to Ahrefs here.

Search for Links and Link Growth for Product Pages

This plan seems straightforward.

Find links to Amazon . com product pages which are like yours, and then try to have them.

However, you may take it much beyond that. Here&#8217s a couple of examples.

First, you’ll find all of the links to any or all the very best-selling product pages inside a given category. You are able to perform a straightforward link pitch.

Second, concentrate on the product pages which have the most powerful link growth. Strong link growth ensures they are presently accruing links. Place the popularity and obtain in front of it.

Amazon Link Growth

Third, concentrate on links to *complementary* products on Amazon . com and do link outreach. Pitching baseball mitts link is going to be simpler when the page links to some baseball bat instead of more baseball mitts.

4th, consider the referring domains and just what other sources they connect to. Place any content gaps where one can pitch an academic resource. For instance, your baseball bats product page may not get interest from the writer already linking to some baseball bats product page. Your &#8220perfect batting position to obtain home runs&#8221 guide could easily get more interest.

Fifth, remember that you could leverage Amazon . com&#8217s scale with this particular tactic. They’ve a large number of product pages in each and every vertical. Rely on them like a &#8220casting internet&#8221 for links possibilities.

There’s two notes to bear in mind &#8211

First, many links to Amazon . com is going to be affiliate links. Make sure to understand *why* publishers are linking to Amazon . com. Be ready to offer value far above.

Second, please personalize and become thoughtful together with your outreach &#8211 for that passion for the web.

Many publishers &amp consumers possess a soft place for innovative small companies. Don’t abuse that trust with spammy outreach.

Search for Links and Link Growth for Category, Trending &amp Bestseller Pages

This plan is much like researching product pages.

Publishers will connect to category, trending and bestseller pages for various reasons. It&#8217s vital that you understand why &amp the way they got each link.

You&#8217ll frequently find possibilities to pitch educational sources here.

You&#8217ll also find possibilities to obtain individuals invaluable category-level links in your site.

Make certain your category and academic pages are link worthy.

By hand Look for Amazon . com Pages w/ Links

Amazon . com&#8217s &#8220Customers Who Bought This Bought&#8221 is definitely an incredible bit of data for just about any store.

Amazon Related

By hand collect each and every URL and discover links to individuals pages. This method is much like searching for links to product pages &#8211 but focused on complementary links.

Search Amazon . com.com for Footprint Links

This plan is much like my &#8220casting internet&#8221 tactic for keywords.

Look for every connect to Amazon . com (yes, these).

Then, narrow lower with assorted &#8220footprints&#8221 that suit your goal.

Footprints may include URLs with &#8220resources&#8221 and &#8220[keyword]&#8221 within the URL.

Amazon Link Analysis

It could include URLs with &#8220[keyword]&#8221 within the domain and &#8220review&#8221 within the URL slug.

You may also concentrate on quantity of outlinks from individuals pages (ie, whether you’ll probably obtain the link). You are able to further concentrate on Domain Authority as well as other metric.

*Note &#8211 make sure to take a look at Amazon . com damaged links for a little bit of ecommerce damaged backlink building.

Use Amazon . com in Link Intersect along with other Ecommerce Stores

Most backlink tools possess a &#8220link intersect&#8221 tool. Even when yours doesn&#8217t, you may still perform the same process with Stand out.

The concept is to discover which websites connect to Site X and Y but don’t connect to Site Z.

The technique will get the best link prospects and also the best link types.

Since Amazon . com has so&#8230many&#8230links &#8211 it can make a great link intersect site.

Amazon Link Intersect

Amazon Link Intersect

The procedure here can be your imagination and vertical. But here&#8217s a couple of examples.

Suppose you need to find publishers that connect to independent companies. Search for publishers that connect to competitors but do *not* connect to Amazon . com.

Suppose you need to find publishers that link to whoever, whenever. Search for publishers that connect to all of your competitors AND Amazon . com.

Suppose you need to get links that the competitors don’t have. Search for publishers that connect to Amazon . com but don’t connect to competitors.

Again &#8211 the technique depends upon your objectives and sources, but Amazon . com constitutes a very helpful domain for this.

Next Steps

Should you run a web-based store, you can’t ignore Amazon . com. Regardless of whether you sell on Amazon . com or otherwise, you need to use their openly available data to enhance your site.

You won&#8217t function as the next Amazon . com. But &#8211 whenever you combine an solid ecommerce online marketing strategy with solid data &#8211 you’ll beat your competition. And you will &#8211 just maybe &#8211 beat Amazon . com working for you from the Internet.

Each week, I distribute some most helpful marketing posts which i&#8217ve read on the web. Should you found this publish helpful, you&#8217ll think it is helpful too. Register here.

The publish Using Amazon . com for Search engine optimization &#038 Content Marketing made an appearance first on ShivarWeb.

“”

11 Top WordPress Styles for DJs & Producers

WordPress Themes for DJs and Producers

Can a WordPress theme be functional for any music-based business or portfolio? Absolutely! WordPress styles provide you with a great chance to produce a tailor-made website which has a professional, yet sensational design that you could manage yourself!

Using WordPress styles for music producers, djs and bands implies that you won’t be required to spend a lot of money toward getting a design firm to handle your site &#8211 plus coding understanding isn’t needed! An execllent factor &#8211 WordPress themes give you incredibly versatility and support from it’s open-source community.

Learn to generate a WordPress website on your own &#8211 and explore the styles below!

Listed here are 11 top WordPress styles for DJs, producers and companies within the music business curated from theme marketplaces and sellers online&#8230

Disclosure &#8211 this site receives customer referral charges from companies and merchandise pointed out on this web site. All data &amp opinions derive from ShivarWeb staff&#8217s independent research and professional judgement.

Eprom

Eprom Theme

Eprom is really a quality WordPress theme choice for any music-related site. It&#8217s responsive, therefore it&#8217ll look great on all devices, also it&#8217s fully customizable in each and every aspect &#8211 pages, colors, fonts, posts, backgrounds.

It&#8217s simple to navigate and it has a few awesome features geared to bands and music labels as an Event Manager as well as on Page Very Good Music Player. Plus, it&#8217s WooCommerce ready if you wish to start an ecommerce store! Check out Eprom here.

Iron Band

IronBand Theme

IronBand is certainly worth thinking about since the site is intuitive, and also the user interface around the backend is simple to navigate.

Additionally towards the fully customizable pages, fonts, colors, etc, the photo/video templates are ideal for marketing your product or service, and contains an mp3 player, Event Manager, and is effective should you&#8217re into social networking. I adore that IronBand also links to major stores like iTunes and Amazon . com.com &#8211 it can make selling music simple? Take a look at Iron Band here.

JamSession

JamSession Theme

JamSession is a superb pick if you want an easy, clean look with a lot of personalization choices on the backend. It&#8217s fully responsive, with really awesome visual options like sliders and multiple menu formats. Another plus may be the AudioPlay and compatibility with Vimeo/Youtube. Take a look at JamSession here.

Live

Live Theme

Live is definitely an impressive, fully responsive theme built particularly for musicians &#8211  and totally worth searching into. It&#8217s formatted for WooCommerce, has multiple playlist options, gallery options or even a page particularly for Discography.

With the formatting choices, you’d be amazed at the number of various appearances you will get with this particular theme! Check out Live here.

Lush

Lush Theme

Lush is an excellent theme for musicians and producers in each and every genre &#8211 from solo artists to folk to classical to rock to rap and all things in between. It features a parallax option along with a 3D menu, therefore the interface is smooth and delightful.

The Big Event Manager is simple to use, and it has a pleasant turn to it, and also the theme is WooCommerce ready &#8211 ideal for marketing! Check out Lush here.

Muse

Muse Theme

Muse is completely among the top chioces with this list. Like a browser, it&#8217s an excellent experience&#8230intuitive, beautiful layouts, smooth. So that as an internet site owner, you actually can&#8217t beat it &#8211 pages and posts which are fully customizable, plus a touchable slideshow, widgets, shortcodes, and each social networking platform imaginable. Check out Muse here.

MusicPlay

MusicPlay

MusicPlay is really a theme that you could&#8217t ignore. It&#8217s fully responsive with a variety of customizations available through its drag builder, shortcodes, widgets, and plugins. Additionally, it includes a sticky audio player, along with a fantastic display page for discographies! The occasions managing and display product is also pretty sweet. Check out MusicPlay here.

Muzak

Muzak Theme

Should you&#8217re trying to find an exciting-inclusive theme, take a look at Muzak. It’s multiple palettes with fully customizable pages and widgets, plus it’s also suitable for WooCommerce in situation you need to start an ecommerce store.

Muzak&#8217s best features would need to whether it is&#8217s Event Management System the TrackListing System &#8211 they incorporate marketing without seeming so inside your face. Check out Muzak here.

Replay

Replay Theme

Replay is really a premium music theme particularly aimed at music, however it works especially well for producers. It features a minimalist feel into it that points all of the concentrate on your own music and occasions.

We have an Audio Player, an even Album Covers slider, as well as an Occasions Manager to go with the wonderfully customizable pages, posts, and widgets. Check out Replay here.

Soundboard

Soundboard Theme

Soundboard Theme is a straightforward, yet effective choice for your band or music website. It&#8217s static customizable background helps make the site stick out in the others, and contains obvious display choices for pictures, videos, and discographies. And, the dashboard is quite simple manage. It&#8217s also social networking and eCommerce ready! Check out Soundboard here.

Vocal

Vocal Theme

Searching for any one-page website option? Vocal may be the theme for you personally! It’s multi-page a treadmill-page displays, which are fully customizable to produce the right website for you personally band or record companies. It&#8217s suitable for MailChimp and social networking platforms, which can be useful for marketing And it has great Event Listing options. Check out Vocal here.

Next Steps

Making use of the WordPress realm of styles is a terrific way to impress your audience &#8211 as well as widen your group of followers. Also it won’t have a huge chunk from your budget!

Make certain to make use of styles rich in coding standards , and don’t forget that the good theme is definitely flexible and utilizes other plugins. You could browse around for other styles that won’t be clearly for that music world however that can modify easily right into a music site having a couple of plugins and custom code.

Best of luck! For those who have any suggestions, tell me within the comments!

The publish 11 Top WordPress Styles for DJs &#038 Producers made an appearance first on ShivarWeb.

“”

25 Beautiful WordPress eCommerce Styles (for WooCommerce WordPress plugin) That Actually Work

WordPress eCommerce Themes

I&#8217ve written how you can create a WordPress store with Woocommerce before &#8211 and pointed out the various tools to show WordPress (that is usually just website software) right into a effective online shop.

But what sort of designs are you able to expect? The most popular &#8220plugin&#8221 for eCommerce, WooCommerce, utilizes any design built by WooThemes. But there&#8217s more &#8211 much more.

Here&#8217s 25 interesting WordPress eCommerce Styles that you could install, personalize and employ for any beautiful storefront design&#8230

Disclosure &#8211 this site receives customer referral charges from companies and merchandise pointed out on this web site. All data &amp opinions derive from ShivarWeb staff&#8217s independent research and professional judgement.

Abundance

AbundanceShop For WooCommerce + WordPress

Abundance is really a wonderfully flexible theme that has slideshows, predefined skins that are simple to personalize, also it&#8217s built particularly around the woocommerce wordpress plugin. It&#8217s template builder and different sidebars make creating a tailor-made online shop easy. What&#8217s more, it&#8217s a responsive theme (meaning it appears great on any device) and supports video! Learn much more about Abundance here&#8230

Agriculture

Agriculture Theme

Agriculture is really a premium WordPress Theme constructed with eCommerce in your mind. It&#8217s drag feature makes customizing your squeeze pages very simple, and it arrives with a lot of shortcodes and widgets. It&#8217s neat and simple, and it has great versatility to suit your needs. Learn much more about Agriculture here&#8230 

Bellissima

BellissimaShop For WordPress + WooCommerce

You are able to&#8217t have more stylish than Bellissima Shop. It’s different color skin options to select from, together with little details that can make your web store shine that beats all others just like a filterable portfolio and collapsible sidebar options. This theme is ideal for online retailers that are looking to show plenty of product pictures. Learn much more about Bellissima here&#8230

 BigBoom

BigBoom Theme

BigBoom is really a much more of a template than the usual theme, however it&#8217s flexible and simple to use. It provides 3 different homepage layouts by having an limitless color plan, so that you can modify it to suit your brand. It&#8217s professional, relevant for almost any online shop, and is effective for big or smaller sized scale stores. Learn much more about Big Boom here&#8230

Camp

CampShop For WordPress + WooCommerce

Camp is a superb theme for visually-oriented stores. It’s limitless portfolios, and it has a built-in Flickr wordpress plugin. It arrives with limitless palettes along with a widgetized homepage, that makes it simple to personalize also it&#8217s a completely featured woocommerce theme. Learn much more about Camp here&#8230

 Centindu

Centindu Theme

Centindu is a straightforward little theme that’s fully responsive, making for any quality customer experience. Though it doesn&#8217t possess the versatility that other styles might have, it&#8217s quality is top-notch, and you may allow it to be distinctively yours with theme options like font size, style ad color. You are able to custom-build pages, and contains an incredible slideshow wordpress plugin! Learn much more about Centindu here&#8230

CleanLab

CleanLab Theme

Searching for any multi-purpose WordPress theme that doesn&#8217t require a lot of coding understanding? CleanLab is simply for you personally. It doesn’t only offer different homepage options, it has header and layout options. It’s user-friendly and enhanced for Search engine optimization with clean code. Just drag till your heart&#8217s content! Learn much more about CleanLab here&#8230 

CleanSale

CleanSale Theme

CleanSale is perfect for an eCommerce store that wishes endless growth options. The homepage is widget-driven that is visually appealing, and contains layout personalization options. The drag homepage builder is fast and simple, however it still lends an expert feel for your online shop. Learn much more about CleanSale here&#8230

Flash light

FlashlightShop For WordPress + WooCommerce

Although it was initially developed to become a Photography Theme, Flash light is a great choice for an eCommerce venture that’s visually-powered. It&#8217s key features are multiple gallery types, a fullscreen slider option, and custom widgets.  Learn much more about Flash light here&#8230

 Great Store

Great Store Theme

Beautiful, neat and simple perfectly describes the truly amazing Store WordPress Theme. It’s totally responsive, and includes 9 homepage version options and many headers to select from. You&#8217ll come with an limitless selection of color and fonts to build up a web-based store that’s distinctively yours&#8230all perfectly integrated using the WooCommerce wordpress plugin. Learn much more about Great Store here&#8230

Kinetico

KinecticoShop for WordPress + WooCommerce

Kinetico is a superb theme choice for you should you&#8217re searching for any modern set-up that’s user-friendly. It doesn’t only include customizable layouts and colours, however they have integrated a personalized background option that can make your store stand that beats all others. They likewise have an excellent history with customer care. Learn much more about Kinetico here&#8230

 La Boutique

La Boutique Theme

La Boutique comes with an impressive interface that is included with a menu that’s functional with 4-level navigation which is ideal for stores with a lot of products and groups. It&#8217s simple design displays products with class, there’s great versatility using the color scheme. Learn much more about La Boutique here&#8230

 Makalu

Makalu Theme

Makalu has got the functionality to become a full-fledged business and portfolio, however the theme design is effective to have an online shop too. It&#8217s had a one-click demo installation, and HD video lessons to take you step-by-step through all installations. One key feature of Makalu could it be&#8217s 5 responsive sliders that are ideal for highlighting feature products. It&#8217s highly customizable, and it has a lot of additional features making it work thinking about. Learn much more about Makalu here&#8230

MayaShop

MayaShopPress For WordPress + WooCommerce

MayaShop is really as customizable because they come. It’s limitless backgrounds and skins, a lot of fonts and colors, also it&#8217s child-theme ready in case you really wish to accomplish some personalization. You may also select a boxed or full-screen layout together with 8 different slider. It&#8217s an excellent choice for anybody, but particularly if you enjoy combine style with widgets and shortcodes. Learn much more about MayaShop here&#8230

Monstroid

Montroid Theme

Monstroid comes 100% suitable for WooCommerce, meaning you are able to configure your store in a couple of easy steps &#8211 as well as their page designs work wonderfully to have an online shop! It comes down pre-packaged with multiple layouts with customizations readily available for every last detail to be able to produce the site you’ve always dreamt of. Take a look at much more of Monstroid here&#8230

&nbsp

Musica

Musica Theme

This fully responsive eCommerce theme is really a terrific choice for website proprietors who love animations and slideshows. Musica provides the upper-hands with all of things media. You may also use video or audio with every of the products! It&#8217s simple to drag and customize the theme the way you like, and includes 3 different blog layouts and 4 homepage layout options. Learn much more about Musica here&#8230

Nielsen

Nielsen Theme

Nielsen is really a highly user-friendly theme that includes a lot of effective features. It’s highly intuitive, and can be used a web-based store so that as a portfolio or business sight. It&#8217s truly an exciting-in-one deal! The characteristics from the online shop are perfect&#8230create a wishlist, a glance-book, a compare feature plus much more. Learn much more about Nielsen here&#8230

Propulsion

PropulsionShop For WordPress + WooCommerce

Propulsion is really a highly customizable theme option that’s simple to use and it has an even turn to it. You are able to drag around the layout builder and make on any one of 20 predefined skins effortlessly. It&#8217s enhanced for Search engine optimization best practice, and it has all great options. Learn much more about Propulsion here&#8230

Sommerce Shop

SommerceShop For WordPress + WooCommerce

Should you&#8217re searching for any classic theme that provides great support, make sure to look into the Sommerce theme. The Ten custom headers are each highly impressive, and add some perfect touch for this easy-to-personalize theme. Learn much more about Sommerce here&#8230

Titania

Titania Theme

Titania Theme makes personalization very simple. With multiple homepage layouts and page templates to provide, you can easily help make your brand stick out with this particular theme. There&#8217s also choices for homepage sliders and sidebars/footers/headers which are widgetized. Learn much more about Titania here&#8230

uShop

uShop Theme

uShop Theme is made with customer in your mind. It provides different product page views like grid, list or thumbnail, plus a built-in &#8220like&#8221 system. Also, it features a special function known as &#8220ToolTip&#8221 which enables you to definitely provide your customers &#8220tips&#8221 because they undertake your web store. It comes down social networking ready, and in general, it&#8217s easily tailored for your brand. Learn much more about uShop here&#8230

Vende

VendeShop For WordPress + WooCommerce

Vende is yet another great eCommerce theme. It provides 5 portfolio layouts and three site layouts, therefore it&#8217s simple to make your own look. Vende also provides built-in cost tables and widget context plugins. It&#8217s code is Search engine optimization enhanced and also, since it&#8217s fully responsive, it&#8217ll look wonderful on any device! Learn much more about Vende here&#8230

Victoria

Victoria Theme

Additionally into it&#8217s classy, sophisticated look, Victoria&#8217s primary feature may be the video-as-background feature! Initially, it had been built particularly for any Fashion website, however it works best for other products too. It arrives with a drag page builder, limitless palettes, a wishlist feature, together with zoom capacity. Learn much more about Victoria here&#8230

Vintage Style

Vintage Theme

Vintage Style is really a multipurpose theme that actually works ideal for a company website as well as for any eCommerce store. It&#8217s primary feature may be the product slide carousel slider, that is unique and simple to use. Also, it’s accordian-styled additional products on every page. The page templates are simple to personalize also it provides a detailed admin panel. Learn much more about Vintage Style here&#8230

Xing

XingShop For WooCommerce and WordPress

Xing has a lot of features and it has an excellent status. They provide sliders and carousels for product display, custom templates, and a lot of shortcodes. But additionally, there is a variety of options with regards to widgets &#8211 6 custom widgets, several options of where you can place them. And when your store is very large within the social networking realm, Xing includes built-in social discussing features. Learn much more about Xing here&#8230

Get Began With Beautiful WordPress eCommerce Styles

That&#8217s my listing of 25 &#8211 you are able to&#8217t fail with WooCommerce + beautiful WordPress eCommerce Styles. If you are looking at using other theme frameworks (like Genesis) bear in mind they have plugins to sync the theme design to WooCommerce elements of design. With WordPress + Woocommerce there&#8217s always a lot of options.

[This publish was initially printed on September 6, 2012. It had been updated This summer 9, 2015 to provide the very best information.]

The publish 25 Beautiful WordPress eCommerce Styles (for WooCommerce WordPress plugin) That Actually Work made an appearance first on ShivarWeb.

“”

Using Search Console (Website owner Tools) Effectively

How To Use Search Console

Search Console (formerly Website owner Tools) is Google’s suite of tools, data &amp diagnostics to &#8220help you’ve got a healthy, Google-friendly site.&#8221

It’s the only real spot to get internet search engine optimization details about your site from Google.

Side note &#8211 Bing includes a separate but similar tool suite at Bing Website owner Tools.

Search Console (Website owner Tools) is free of charge. Any web site may use it. But, simply installing it won’t enhance your Search engine optimization, or perhaps your organic traffic. It’s a toolset &#8211 and that means you need to learn how to use Search Console effectively to make a difference in your website.

That stated, it’s really a bit formidable to understand. This tutorial goes through what each feature is, what you need to be utilising it for, and a few tips on be resourceful by using it.

Getting Began

To obtain began &#8211 you’ll need a website obviously. You&#8217ll have to link your website to look Console then take proper care of a couple of settings.

Verification

Google Search Console Verification

There are many methods to verify your research Console account. I favor verifying via Google Analytics because it reduces the amount of files / tags to keep.

If you work with WordPress, the Yoast Search engine optimization wordpress plugin allows you. Though bear in mind you need to keep that wordpress plugin active to keep the verification.

Yoast Webmaster Verification

When you’re verifying your bank account, keep in mind that Search Console treats all subdomains and protocols as different qualities.

This means that any vary from HTTP to HTTPS represents another website. Any vary from a World wide web subdomain to no subdomain differs. Your computer data is going to be wrong when the property you have verified with Search Console is different from the web site that Bing is serving within the search engine results (SERPs).

Understanding Settings

Site Settings in Webmaster Tools

Search Console Preferences

This is self-explanatory. Choose what language you would like your Console to stay in and select your email alert frequency.

I usually decide to receive All Issues simply to make certain I understand of all issues every time they happen.

Site Settings

Here you are able to set a frequent domain &#8211 often a non-World wide web version along with a World wide web version. This setting will help you help Google determine just one, &#8220canonical&#8221 subdomain for the website. A &#8220canonical&#8221 subdomain helps to ensure that your site is not in competition with itself within the SERPs.

Instead of depend about this setting, it’s easier to make certain you’ve got a permanent 301 redirect in position for your canonical subdomain. This solution ensures can have the right version to any or all visitors and bots. I personally use this Search Console setting to enhance the 301. It is also useful if you’re getting trouble obtaining a 301 redirect implemented.

You can also set the crawl rate for Googlebot. This determines the amount of your site Googlebot crawls everyday. Google’s goal would be to crawl because your website without overwhelming your server. They’ve sophisticated algorithms to make certain this occurs. But, if you feel your server gets hit too frequently, you are able to limit Google’s crawl here&#8230or consider upgrading your servers.

Crawl Rate in Search Console

Side note &#8211 Don’t even think that attempting to improve your crawl rate increases your rankings. It won&#8217t.

Change of Address

Change of Address in Search Console

If you’re moving to a different domain, subdomain, or protocol, this can be used tool to enhance the redirects that you ought to set up. Simply have both subdomains verified as qualities and employ the tool to inform Google concerning the move.

Google Analytics Property

Here you are able to link Search Console to Google Analytics. You want to do that, to be able to rapidly access Search Console data directly in the search engines Analytics.

Linking Analytics to Search Console

To link accounts, visit the Admin portion of Google Analytics. Click Property Settings. Scroll lower to look Console. Stick to the prompts.

Your reward in the search engines Analytics is going to be this screen &#8211

Google Analytics Search Query Information

Users &amp Property Proprietors

Add &amp manage everyone that may access your research Console. They need to be considered a Google Account (ie, Gmail or Google Apps).

Verification Details

Manage &amp keep your verification status here.

Associates

You are able to affiliate various accounts together with your Search Console. The most typical is YouTube, but other apps may appear because well. There’s nothing particularly to complete except monitor.

Associates in Search Console

Search Appearance

Before searching at these components, don’t overlook Google’s handy pop-up reference. It outlines the various SERP elements together with how you can influence each one of these.

SERP Elements

Structured Data

Structured Data Errors

This provides errors which help with structured data in your website. Not every websites have Structured Data. Structured Data are such things as name, address, telephone number, cost, product name, event name, etc. It may be implemented through various markups to assist search engines like google parse the information. The most typical markup is Schema. On it here&#8230

Data Highlighter

In case your website provides structured data, make use of the Data Highlighter whenever you don’t have the means to efficiently implement structured markup.

It’s simple to use. You stock up sample pages and tell Google if it is guesses are correct or otherwise.

Data Highlighting in Search Console

HTML Enhancements

This informs you concerning the two page factors that appear directly searching &#8211 titles on pages and meta descriptions. Google will inform which of them need improvement.

You may also make use of this tool to recognize related issues for example duplicate content. Make sure to click on the links to every problem to obtain details, then try to fix them.

HTML Improvements

HTML Improvements

Sitelinks

For many searches (usually brand terms), Google can have sub-pages directly within the search engine results. You can’t figure out what Google shows, however, you will easily notice it-not to incorporate certain pages.

Sitelinks in SERPs

Make use of this tool to demote a webpage (just like an admin page, low-content page, etc) in the SERPs.

Search Traffic

Looking Traffic section is easily the most relevant daily portion of Search Console. It’s where you’ll make the most helpful data for optimizing for search &amp growing organic traffic.

Search Traffic Report

Search Analytics

Looking Analytics is really a recent accessory for Search Console. It replaced that old (and far derided) &#8220search queries&#8221 report. Search Analytics will explain lots of helpful data about how exactly your site performs in the search engines Search. Before we break lower how you can manipulate and employ the information, there is a couple of definitions to check out &#8211 from Google. Google comes with an expanded breakdown on definitions here.

Search Analytics Data

Queries &#8211 The keywords that users looked for in the search engines Search.

Clicks &#8211 Count of clicks from the Search search engines that arrived the consumer in your yard. Observe that clicks don’t equal organic sessions in the search engines Analytics.

Impressions &#8211 The number of links to your website a person saw on the internet search engine results, whether or not the link wasn’t scrolled into view. However, if your user views only the first page and also the link is on-page 2, the sense isn’t counted.

CTR &#8211 Click-through rate: the press count divided through the impression count. If your row of information doesn’t have impressions, the CTR is going to be proven like a dash (-) because CTR could be division by zero.

Position &#8211 The typical position from the topmost derive from your website. So, for instance, in case your site has three results at positions 2, 4, and 6, the positioning is reported as 2. If your second query came back results at positions 3, 5, and 9, your average position could be (2 + 3)/2 = 2.5. If your row of information doesn’t have impressions, the positioning is going to be proven like a dash (-), since the position doesn&#8217t exist.

To effectively make use of the Search Console report, you have to alter the groupings to locate data that you’re searching for. Remember that you could change groupings once you use a filter (ie, you can try Queries once you have filtered for any page).

Listed here are my 2 favorite bits of data to drag.

Identify Why A Webpage Is Losing Traffic

  1. Check all metrics boxes
  2. Filter by page, pick a time frame
  3. Click to Queries, Countries, Devices searching for any offender

Search Analytics Investigation

Search For New / Revised Content Ideas

  1. Check all metrics boxes
  2. Filter by page
  3. Click to Queries
  4. Sort by Impressions
  5. Search for queries that aren’t proportional towards the page, but in which the page continues to be ranking
  6. Make use of this data either to revise the information to deal with that question OR produce a new page targeting that question

Search Analytics Investigation

Here’s a short video showing the way i consider the various tabs.

Aside &#8211 I’ve a whole publish on 15+ uses of Search Analytics effectively here.

Links To Your Website

Google understands the net via links. They are the primary element in Google’s formula. This can help you understand who links for you, what content will get linked most, and just what anchor-text other sites use to connect to you.

You will find three products to keep in mind when searching only at that section.

First, Google doesn’t provide you with its link data. Best SEOs &amp site proprietors having a budget uses something like Ahrefs to drag more helpful data.

Second, there isn’t any method to understand how Google makes use of this data for just about any given query. Don’t get too centered on any single link or string of anchor-text. Rather, apply it main issue marketing ideas &amp problem diagnosis.

Third, there’s more data within this section than you’d expect. The bottom line is to simply keep clicking for more information.

Links To Site Report

Here’s list of positive actions with Links To Your Website.

First, utilize it to understand kind of content will get links. You should use that data to complete more of what’s working.

Link To Site in Search Console

Second, utilize it to understand kinds of sites connect to you. Use that data to locate similar sites for content promotion. You may also utilize it to know just what amount of the web is junk e-mail.

Links To Site Who Is Linking Most Report

Third, review your anchor-text to make certain it’s telling usually the right &#8220story.&#8221 Search for junk e-mail terms that will show you in case your site continues to be hacked.

Anchor Text in Search Console

Internal Links

This enables you to comprehend the links in your site, and just how Bing is crawling your website. This can vary from a crawl by Screaming Frog, because this shows how the Googlebot continues to be crawling your website.

You ought to be by using this report to consider mostly one factor &#8211 outliers.

Internal Links

Sort their email list by most links &amp by least links. See should there be pages which are associated with even more than others. See should there be pages that needs to be associated with more frequently&#8230but aren’t.

Pages getting crawled more doesn’t equal greater rankings. But, links to pass through information towards the Googlebot through both anchor-text and link context.

For those who have underperforming content, it could underperforming since your internal links aren’t painting the best picture for Googlebot. This problem is typical in blogs where old content receives more internal links because it’s been around for extended (not since it is more relevant).

Internal Links Takeaway

If you notice pages which have more links compared to what they deserve &#8211 they could just be inside a stale category or tag page. According to that, you need to revise your category structure to coax Googlebot into crawling much deeper, more relevant pages.

Internal links could be overdone, but they’re even the simplest links to construct. The Interior Links report will help you do this.

Manual Actions

Google uses a mix of rewards, threats, bulletins and manual team reviews to trigger website owner behavior leading to higher, cleaner signals for that Googlebot.

If your Web Junk e-mail team member finds &#8220unnatural&#8221 marketing or website behavior. They will show you about this within this section.

Worldwide Targeting

If you’re managing a global operation, you may have location or language specific URLs. Worldwide Search engine optimization could possibly get complicated. This is how Google informs you associated with a issues.

If you’re moving out a brand new language or country-specific section, it’s important to reference this.

Mobile Usability

Google has mentioned it promises to demote websites that aren’t mobile-friendly in mobile search engine results. In ways, it’s a side-issue that users hate websites that do not work nicely on their own devices.

If Googlebot finds any common usability errors, you’ll locate them here. You need to fix them.

And bear in mind that simply since your site &#8220has no errors&#8221 does not necessarily mean that it’s mobile-friendly for users.

Google Index

Google stores copies of the website on its servers. This report can help you figure precisely what Google has &amp whether it aligns together with your actual website.

Index Status

For any Hyperlink to come in Google’s search engine results, Google should have a duplicate of this page &#8220indexed&#8221 on Google’s servers.

If your page isn’t in Google’s index, then it won’t get organic traffic from Google.

This can be used are accountable to make certain that the web pages that you would like to Google to index are actually indexed.

Index Status

Content Keywords

This report &#8220lists the most important keywords as well as their variants Google found when crawling your website.&#8221 The Information Keywords report can also be one of the most misinterpreted reports searching Console.

Content Keywords

It’s nothing related to concepts like &#8220keyword density&#8221 or the number of occasions you repeat a thing on the page. It does not have a great deal to use a URL’s relevance.

Actually, John Mueller stated in 2012 that content keywords &#8220are not associated with the way we view your website&#8217s relevance in web-search, it’s purely a count of words from crawling.&#8221

Therefore if it’s only a count of words from crawling &#8211 how if you work with it?

Two ways.

First, consider the Content Keywords how you checked out the interior Links report. Consider it as an entire. Don’t concentrate on the individual words. Will the &#8220theme&#8221 from the content keywords report reflect your site?

Content Keywords Usefulness

Were you to give the are accountable to somebody that had not been aimed at your website, are they going to have the ability to you know what your site is generally about? If so, then you’re good. If no, then you’re likely not detailed &amp descriptive during your site.

For instance, have a plumbing website.

  • Is the Homepage entitled &#8211 &#8220Home&#8221 or perhaps is it entitled &#8220Acme Plumbers&#8221?
  • Is the Services page &#8211 just &#8220Services&#8221 or perhaps is it &#822024/7 Plumbers in Atlanta, GA&#8221?
  • Is the Contact page form &#8211 just entitled &#8220Contact&#8221 or perhaps is it &#8220Get A Plumbing Project Quote!&#8221?
  • If it is the previous, you’ll just see &#8220Contact&#8221 and &#8220Home&#8221 and &#8220Services&#8221 within the Content Keywords report. You can start to determine plumbing, atlanta, drainage, etc.

Second, search for keywords that shouldn’t be there. Disregard the miscellaneous terms like pronouns. Search for stuff that do not have anything concerning your product, services or content.

If you notice anything for the blue pill, gambling, etc &#8211 your website continues to be hacked.

Blocked Sources

By May 2014, Googlebot can execute JavaScript and cargo CSS files to obtain a full picture of the website. For those who have blocked Googlebot from being able to access individuals files, you’ll discover here.

Do whatever this report informs you to definitely do &#8211 essentially, unblock all assets.

Remove URLs

To bar Googlebot from indexing a webpage that you don’t want individuals to find (ie, a coupon, thanks or internal resource, etc) &#8211 it’s important to implement a NOINDEX instruction.

But, that instruction doesn’t start working until next time Googlebot crawls the page. Meanwhile, this can be used tool to rapidly remove a URL from Google’s index.

Bear in mind the tool is only going to temporarily hide the URL before you can use a NOINDEX tag.

Crawl

To obtain your URLs into Google’s Index, Googlebot must crawl them (ie, &#8220click&#8221 in it. Which section helps improve Googlebot&#8217s crawl using your website.

Crawl Errors

This teaches you what errors Googlebot has experienced while crawling your website. The errors are listed by priority.

You may also click the URL to discover where that URL was linked from. With this information, you are able to identify and proper the mistake.

Crawl Error Report in Search Console

The most typical error is really a 404 Not Found error. If you’re able to switch the link, then change it. If it is from your exterior site, you are able to achieve to ask to get it fixed. Otherwise, you need to implement a 301 redirect from that Hyperlink to the most appropriate one, that will tell Googlebot how to locate the right URL.

There’s a caveat though. This report is also referred to as the &#8220go home Googlebot, you’re drunk&#8221 report. It’s normal to locate URLs and damaged links that don’t exist. Make sure to really check whether something is definitely an error or otherwise before trying to repair it.

Otherwise, I take a look report &amp fix issues about monthly to make sure Googlebot is crawling my content &amp links efficiently.

Crawl Stats

This provides you with statistics about how much Googlebot continues to be crawling each day. It shows 3 charts. Here’s what you’re searching for &#8211

Consider the Pages crawled each day and Kilobytes downloaded each day together. They ought to roughly reflect one another.

Crawl Stats in Search Console

If Googlebot is crawling lots of pages, however is not installing many kilobytes, then it’s likely crawling plenty of duplicate or thin content.

If Google bot is installing lots of kilobytes, however is not crawling many pages, then it’s likely encounter large assets (big images, PDFs, etc).

Make sure to operate a site:[yoursite].com search in the search engines to determine which Bing is showing within the SERPs.

Combine all of this analysis to understand a tough benchmark for the website. While you implement best practice changes (more internal links, faster website, etc), you’ll be able to consider anomalies &amp identify issues. If you’re managing a large website, you may also make use of this data to estimate how lengthy it will require Googlebot to locate &amp index site changes.

Note &#8211 if one makes any major changes to your website, there’s often a &#8220spike&#8221 in crawl rates.

Time spent installing a webpage report will help you identify server issues. If you’re seeing regular spikes, you have to run regular speed tests in your server. In case your speed information is also sporadic, then you should think about upgrading, improving or altering your site hosting.

Fetch As Google

Fetch As Google enables you to view a URL in your website the way in which Googlebot sees it.

Go into the URL and only &#8220fetch&#8221 it (Googlebot will crawl it) or fetch and render (Googlebot will crawl it and demonstrate how Googlebot sees the page).

After fetching, you are able to Send It In to Google’s index. This can be a effective tool when you really need Google to locate page changes at this time. Whenever you undergo index, Google may have the updated page in the index instantly. For those who have a brand new website section that should be re-crawled immediately, you may also tell Googlebot to crawl all linked URLs.

Fetch As Google

To identify a technical issue, you are able to click the page line to see both visual and source rendering that Googlebot has for that page.

You can find out if you’re blocking any sources Googlebot must see the page. Make sure to check both Fetching and Rendering tabs.

If Googlebot couldn’t access all of the page sources, you’ll discover what they’re, where they’re located, as well as their priority underneath the made page.

Fetch As Google Tool

Robots.txt Tester

The Robots.txt Tester tool shows any errors, warnings or unintended effects inside your robots.txt. Keep in mind that your website’s robots.txt is primary method for controlling how bots access your site.

Make certain your robots.txt file is blocking use of files that you simply don’t want crawled &#8211 with no more. It’s a blunt, but effective tool.

Determine whether your robots.txt file is blocking a particular URL using the tool underneath the dashboard. Note that you could switch Googlebot user agents if you’re getting difficulties with indexed video, images or news.

Sitemaps

Search engines like google use sitemaps to enhance their crawl of the website. Consider them like a &#8220map&#8221 of the website. As Googlebot crawls your website, it will likewise review your sitemap for guidance &#8211 and the other way around.

XML Sitemaps

Sitemaps need to be in XML filetype. XML Sitemaps should have couple of or no errors &#8211 otherwise Googlebot will begin to neglected (though it’s generally less callous as Bingbot).

Find errors that should be fixed. Utilize it to reverse engineer pages that aren’t being indexed.

URL Parameters

The URL Parameters tool is definitely an advanced tool for &#8220coaching&#8221 Googlebot’s crawl online which use page parameters. It’s mostly employed for large ecommerce websites.

You&#8217ll want to use it if Googlebot gets trapped crawling exactly the same page due to parameters. However, I’d recommend employing an Search engine optimization consultant you never know what they’re doing.

It isn’t effective (inside a positive way) by itself. You typically need to make technical changes for this compare unique car features together with your site’s crawl. Around the switch side, the URL parameter tool can hurt your site when used by itself incorrectly.

In case you really desire to use yourself to it, you have to make a catalog of your site’s parameters. Determine what each does whenever your website generates parameters and just how they behave.

Within the URL Parameters tool, you’ll then tell Googlebot what all of individuals parameters does. Also, you’ll give Googlebot instructions on how to handle individuals URLs.

Security Issues

Site hacks are harmful to you and your users. Regrettably, a hack will go undetected for some time. If Googlebot finds proof of a hack, it will show you here.

Other Sources

Google has numerous other sources focused on specific issues. You’ll find individuals tools here regardless if you are a nearby business, ecommerce store or perhaps a developer.

Resources in Search Console

Next Steps

Regardless of how small your site is &#8211 you must have a verified Search Console account. Make certain all versions of the website have established yourself.

Next, keep in mind that Search Console is really a tool. It doesn’t do anything whatsoever by itself for the website. Start finding out how to utilize it, exactly what the data means, and implement website changes to help keep enhancing your website &amp marketing.

Editor&#8217s Note &#8211 I authored this publish for DIYers and non-professional SEOs. Let me simplify a few of the jargon &amp data to ensure that non-professionals may use it effectively. I fact-checked all statements against Google statements &amp respected industry tests. However, should there be any details or phrasings that you believe are inaccurate, please get in touch!

The publish Using Search Console (Website owner Tools) Effectively made an appearance first on ShivarWeb.

“”

Web.com Hosting Review: Pros, Cons & Alternatives

Web.com Hosting Review

Web.com is really a website hosting &amp website builder brand of the net.org Group. They are among the largest and earliest brands in the market. The Net.org Group also owns brands like Network Solutions, Register.com and 1ShoppingCart.

Together with GoDaddy, they have several the greatest brand recognition in everyone because of their huge investment TV, radio, billboard and traditional advertising. In Atlanta, I believe they’ve purchased a significant area of the bus stop ads. Additionally they sponsor the second tier professional golf league in the usa.

Web.com Offline Ads screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

That sort of offline advertising plays for their core marketing message because the one place to obtain your website, internet marketing and everything to choose it. Though from a technical perspective, Web.com offers only entry-level hosting &amp a do it yourself website builder application with upsell marketing services.

You should check out Web.com’s plans and prices here.

Because of my skepticism using their offline ads, I’ve never formerly attempted Web.com. But following a friend was asking about the subject, I made the decision to try them having a small trial website.

Here’s my Web.com Hosting review &#8211 structured with pros &amp cons according to my recent experience like a customer.

Skip towards the conclusion &amp next steps here.

Disclosure &#8211 I receive referral charges from companies pointed out on this web site. All opinion and knowledge is dependant on my experience like a having to pay customer or consultant to some having to pay customer.

Pros of Web.com Hosting

There are plenty of Web.com reviews online &#8211 usually with user-generated reviews according to anecdotes and private experience. That&#8217s fine however i have a different approach. Like I’ve stated in other hosting reviews, there’s no such factor like a “best” hosting company. The “best” may be the right fit for the project according to your objectives, budget, experience &amp expertise. Simply because one company isn’t a good fit for you personally does not necessarily mean it’s a bad fit for another person.

Web.com differs.

Web.com’s only pro is it works okay for somebody who desires a really fundamental drag type website while they have the cash for something better.

The very best example for Web.com is really a Hamburger King that charges hipster all-organic hamburger restaurant prices. On a single hands, they’re technically supplying something which works, however, you would not utilize it when they didn’t advertise everywhere using very specific marketing messages.

For “meh” companies, I attempt to drag out some benefits of using on them others. But I can not look for a single need to use Web.com.

Every potential advantage turned to be a fantasy.

For instance, they have the symptoms of solid discount prices, however it auto-renews at high rates. Their speed &amp performance made an appearance to become great, however they have really low memory limits and sources (so performance is just good on really small sites). They’ve phone support &#8211 but have awful DIY customer care (as well as their phone reps focused more about upselling than answering my fundamental questions).

If you’re interested in the facts, I’ll cover more within the cons section below. Or skip towards the conclusion and then steps for alternatives.

Cons of Web.com Hosting

Greater than many web hosting companies, Web.com has disadvantages. Listed here are the disadvantages which i found while using the Web.com for hosting.

Prices

Web.com markets themselves like a one-stop shop to obtain your website. They provide free website help along with a free website builder &#8211 you just pay single low rate per month.

Their 30 days opening rate (for that website builder product) looks attractive at $1.95/mo &#8211 but it features a major asterisk.

It escalates to $22/mo following the first month, and quickly will get much more costly with add-on after add-on. That $22/mo is much more costly than the most costly website builder plans available &#8211 in which you would a minimum of obtain a better website builder &#8211 like Squarespace or Weebly.

Web.com Signup Rates screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

Should you search through the website offers and then try to register *only* for hosting to set up WordPress or some bit of website software, you’ll get prices that’s a little bit more competitive. However, it’s still more costly compared to most costly brand hosting, plus much more than affordable starter hosts.

Aside &#8211 even their domains are absurdly overpriced. They offer a “free” website name with purchase, however that same website name will renew at $37/year&#8230.when compared with $14.99yr w/ GoDaddy and/or perhaps a typical hosting company or $10/yr with NameCheap.

Plan Structure

When you purchase any product which can help you make a website, a core area of the plan’s hosting (ie, a spot for your site files to “live”).

Most website hosts either sell the hosting with complimentary website building tools or they’ll sell everything like a package. Here&#8217s one website landing page on Web.com selling the &#8220free website package&#8221 with ongoing charges.

Web.com Misleading Marketing screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

Web.com takes both approaches. You pay different prices based on what approach you select, while you are becoming exactly the same factor within the finish (hosting with built-in website builder tools).

Web.com Plans Structure screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

For instance, Web.com sells a do it yourself Website Package. It offers hosting along with a website builder. It’s $1.95/mo and rises to $22/mo. They likewise have Hosting plans under Other Products. Diets likewise incorporate the web site Builder tool, but start at $5.95/mo and renew at $12.95. Quite simply &#8211 same product, different names and various prices.

Web.com Pricing screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

Web.com Hosting Backend screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

&nbsp

Observe that within the second image &#8211 I have the website builder despite the fact that I purchased a normal hosting package&#8230not the &#8220website builder package.&#8221

I known as customer support relating to this discrepancy (I had been completely unclear about things i had subscribed to) &#8211 and she or he confirmed. They’ve different prices and various packages with respect to the “customer’s feature focus.”

In either case, their hosting plans have low caps for databases, disk space and domains, and emails on every tier &#8211 such as the Premium Hosting level. These caps mean that you’re restricted to on the best way to expand your website &#8211 or add new microsites.

User-ambiance

To become fair to Web.com &#8211 there can be some value in offering packages that sell simplicity or hosting plans with low caps. Not everybody really wants to compare different plans or search for more features when fundamental features is going to do fine.

However, if you sell simplicity, your process should really the simple. Web.com’s register process, their backend as well as their tools are just “user-friendly” inside a 2006 kind of way.

Web.com Onboarding screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

Actually, many areas of their register process and website setup process appeared so user-unfriendly it forces people to call customer support&#8230who then upsell other things Web.com offers.

Here’s what their backend appears like &#8211

Web.com Hosting Backend screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

Everything regarding their backend is proprietary to Web.com (unlike a business standard backend like cPanel) &#8211 which means you are stuck searching through their help documentation or calling customer support again.

Furthermore, their user-unfriendliness even would go to their cancellation process. After I required to cancel a free account &#8211 I couldn&#8217t get it done. The machine forced me to customer support where I needed to discuss my reasons having a repetition while hearing several sales pitches.

Web.com Cancellation screenshot for my Web.com Hosting Review

Lastly, not just is the register process and backend user-unfriendly (and ugly), additionally, it hides lots of features that some DIY customers want use of &#8211 which results in the following major drawback to Web.com.

Backend Features

Although Web.com claims they provide a full-spectrum of support for programming languages and website software (like WordPress) &#8211 I discovered the particular backend features to possess a couple of problems.

First, the backend hides fundamental server information. In case your domain is registered somewhere like GoDaddy or NameCheap, you have to point the DNS nameservers to Web.com. This method informs visitors’ browsers who key in your website name to visit Web.com’s server (where your site lives). Web.com’s DNS details are available only via customer care.

And that’s only the start &#8211 small things like MX records (you’ll need individuals to setup Gmail) and software versions were maddening to locate.

Second, once you discover the program, it might or might not work or supply the options that you’ll require. For instance, Web.com advertises a “one-click WordPress install” like other hosts. They’ve it, however, it unsuccessful the very first two occasions which i attempted to operate it. Furthermore, you can’t install software within the “root” folder of the account &#8211 meaning you are able to only install WordPress inside a subfolder of the website (ie yourwebsite.com/blog rather or yourwebsite.com).

Web.com Hosting WordPress Install

Web.com Install Fail

Which means that used that if you would like WordPress to power your whole website, as well as your homepage, you need to perform a manual install of WordPress. Their auto-install only creates subfolder.

Aside &#8211 I attempted to perform a manual 5 minute install of WordPress, but threw in the towel following the Web.com database creator stored dying on me.

Another example is tracking scripts for his or her website builder product. They merely script that you could place is Google Analytics. AdWords conversion tracking, Facebook retargeting, Search Console tags, etc &#8211 none can easily be bought the actual way it is by using most website software.

Third, Web.com dedicates precious couple of sources towards the applications that you could install around the backend. I’d be unable to operate a feature heavy website on Web.com. For instance, should you added a little ecommerce store with a lot of imagery for your WordPress website, you’d have a problem with performance. Exactly the same issue would hold for installing a Listserv or any type of application. Here&#8217s a screenshot of the speed test of the really small site &#8211

Web.com Hosting Performance

Customer Care

Like I mention in other hosting reviews, calling customer care / service like a pro or disadvantage is difficult. Only people within the organization determine if customer support is viewed as an expense or perhaps an investment.

Outdoors of the organization, customer support reviews usually devolve into “they are horrible since i had one bad experience” or “they are excellent since i had one great experience” &#8211 neither being very useful.

Rather, I love to take a look at customer support’s availability and just how the organization invests in customer care infrastructure.

Despite the fact that my customer support conversations were enjoyable, Web.com seriously fails on measures. Their customer support works merely a little outdoors US business hrs. They route just about everything via phone, though they are doing possess a ticket submission option within their backend.

There’s hardly any DIY customer care. There isn’t any forum section, chat, knowledgebase or help center whatsoever. It appears as though any investments that Web.com makes go for their phone support&#8230which is heavy around the upsells after they solve your condition, which results in the final disadvantage.

Upsells &amp Messaging

Upsells aren’t inherently bad or annoying. They offer choices for customers that are looking them, and prices low for everybody who doesn’t would like them.

However, Web.com does a couple of things wrong with upsells. First, they seem at virtually every chance rather of just when I’m searching (say at checkout or perhaps in upgrading section).

Second, their messaging for a lot of upsells is oversimplified. You’ll be able to oversimplify to the stage that you’re laying at worst or misleading at the best. Web.com comes awfully close using their upsells.

Backend Web.com

Web.com Misleading Marketing

Their Search engine optimization upsells preach features that haven’t mattered since 2002 (you don’t need to &#8220submit your website to Google&#8221 and directories aren’t a silver bullet). Their SSL upsells don’t provide any context. Their security and backup upsells makes me question what belongs to their actual plans.

The mixture of oversimplified, overpriced upsells pitched at each random chance is both annoying and results in me to question who they really are really searching out for.

Conclusion &amp Next Steps

Overall, I had been tossed just how bad Web.com was. I believed that any organization that spends a lot cash on offline advertising should have another business design than most competitors, but Web.com really sets a brand new standard to have an costly low value product. If you’re still offered in it, go try them out here.

If you’re searching for any webhost with excellent prices, service and product, then I’d recommend looking at Website Hosting Hub here. You may also take a look at HostGator here if you would like cheaper plans and also the choice to pay monthly. Learn to generate a website together here.

If you’re searching for a multi functional drag website builder, then I’d recommend looking at Weebly (review) or taking this site builder quiz here.

If you’re searching to have an all-in-one ecommerce platform, then I’d recommend looking at Shopify (review) or taking my ecommerce platform quiz here.

Web.com Hosting

Web.com is among the best brands within the website building industry with a lot of offline advertising.
Web.com Hosting Review
Date Printed: 03/01/2016
Web.com doesn’t meet the marketing and messaging. Their prices, features and support make sure they are a really poor lengthy-term option for an internet site builder or webhost.
2 / 5 stars

The publish Web.com Hosting Review: Pros, Cons &#038 Alternatives made an appearance first on ShivarWeb.

“”

Square VS Vend

Square-vs-Vend
Finding a robust POS app that is also affordable is basically like ordering a really delicious cupcake with just the right amount of icing. Finding one that has mobile support and an integrated eCommerce store? Well, that’s akin to the holy grail for new and small business owners.

Vend is something a bit unconventional in the POS space. Its POS app is entirely browser-based, powered by HTML. That means you can run it on both Windows and Mac computers — as well as iPads! Everything is stored in the cloud, meaning you can access your information everywhere. There’s also an integrated eCommerce store, and integrated payments.

Square is best known for its mobile payments app, which lets anyone accept credit card payments with just a smartphone and card reader. But the real advantage to Square is a powerful, completely free POS app — and an entire ecosystem of business products that can help entrepreneurs exceed. Everything is stored in the cloud, as well. And did we mention you can sell on Square’s marketplace or through pretty much any other shopping cart software, too?

All of this sounds great, right? Good.

Vend will charge you a monthly fee for its POS. There are multiple subscriptions depending on what features you need. You have a limited selection of payment processors (at least for retail setups) with no transaction fees, and a simple, but functional, eCommerce setup (if you opt for the mid-tier plan).

Square is entirely pay-as-you-go. The POS is free — you pay only the processing fees, plus a monthly fee for whatever a la carte services you choose to add on. eCommerce support is entirely free beyond processing fees — you can use Square’s hosted solution or integrate with something else.

Both services have all three core offerings: a retail setup with a solid POS, mobile capabilities, and eCommerce setups. But as you’ll see, both have different core strengths. I highly encourage you to think about where most of your business comes from and evaluate which features are most important. Then crunch the numbers and look for the most cost-effective strategy.

Read on to see how Square and Vend match up on core features, extra services, cost, support, and more!

Products and Services:

Winner: Tie

Square and Vend are both omni-channel commerce solutions. They’re integrated so well that you can sell pretty much anywhere and keep all of your sales data and inventory in one centralized dashboard. Let’s take a look at how each of the 3 sides of Square’s products (the POS app, payments, and eCommerce solutions) match up. We’ll also take a look at the integrations and extra services available.

POS App

Sometimes I am genuinely shocked that Square doesn’t charge at all for its POS app (and a bit disappointed that it won’t let you use the app with a different payment gateway). It is without question the most robust free mobile POS (mPOS) out there. While it’s definitely friendly to both iPhones and Android devices, you get the most functionality out of an iPad. This is especially important in a retail setup.

Vend’s core offering is its POS — it’s taken the easy path toward integrating payments and eCommerce as well. So its app really is the biggest draw. Here’s the thing, though: I have a hard time really calling Vend “mobile friendly.” Since the POS is primarily browser-based, it runs on Windows and Mac computers. There is also an iPad-exclusive POS app — no Android, not even iPhone. That said, you can absolutely make do with an iPad as your mobile solution for pop-up shops or booths at events. I just don’t think Vend is really designed with mobile as a priority.

Square POS App Features:

  • Unlimited registers and up to 75 locations: Note: if you want to track individual employees, you’ll need to add the employee management subscription. But if you don’t need that individual data, this feature is free.
  • User permissions: This is fully customizable — you determine the role and what features they can use. But you have to be using Square’s Employee Management system. Otherwise, it’s all default.
  • Credit card payments: Accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express at 1 flat rate.
  • Transaction records: Record cash and check as well as accepting cards. This still allows you to take advantage of the customer database and loyalty program features.
  • Split tender: Accept cash and card in one transaction.
  • Inventory: Square’s inventory feature is basic, but it does allow you to keep track of stock levels in-store and online. Square will send you low-stock alerts and let you set your own threshold for them. Square also integrates with Stitch Labs for more comprehensive inventory support.
  • Import/Export via CSV: Populate your online and retail stores with products in one go.
  • Product Variants and Add-Ons: Technically, Square calls variants “price points” — but the point is the app supports them. You can also add item modifiers, which are essentially add-ons.
  • Email/SMS/print receipts: Your choice (and your customers’, too).
  • Full and partial refunds: Self-explanatory.
  • Gift cards: Order your own custom designs. There’s no redemption fees or activation fees. You only pay processing fees if the gift card is purchased on a card.
  • Offline mode: Square’s offline mode is pretty unique. Most “offline” functions for POS apps allow you to accept cash only — no cards. But with Square you can swipe a card as normal, and as long as you reconnect to the net within 72 hours, the transaction will go through. The caveat is that you eat the cost of any declined transactions.
  • Sales tax and tip: Square’s sales tax feature is basic, but very functional. Toggle sales tax collection on or off and set multiple rates as necessary, if you are selling in multiple locations or move around. You can also enable tips, which is something Vend does not support.
  • Loyalty program: Square’s loyalty program (add-on for $25/month per location) works by giving either free items or percentage discounts. The system is tied to the customer’s mobile number.
  • Reporting: Square won’t give you the advanced reporting of a full-scale POS but it does pretty well in this category.
  • Customer-facing display: This is a beta feature, but one that puts Square closer to full-fledged POS systems.
  • Customer database: Square’s customer database isn’t quite as advanced as you’ll find with more expensive CRM software, but it’s definitely worth looking into, and it’s improving all the time. In addition to the loyalty program, there’s a feedback feature and custom segmentation, and it links directly with Square’s email marketing service (starts at $15/month).
  • Special Offers: Send automated email campaigns linked from your customer database if you use Square’s email marketing.

Vend POS App Features:

  • Sell through one or multiple outlets: While multi-outlet support will cost you more (a point we’ll come back to), you can get a boatload of features that will make managing each location easier.
  • User Permissions: You can choose from pre-set roles with limited customization, but this is an entirely free service.
  • Accept Credit Card Payments: Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express through one of Vend’s partners. You can also use non-integrated solutions through another payment processor if you choose.
  • Record cash payments: No check support, though.
  • Split tender: Accept cash and card.
  • Inventory: Vend has options to help you manage your stock orders in the dashboard as well.
  • Import/Export via CSV: Vend allows barcode printing, too.
  • Product variants: The POS technically supports 3 types of products: Standard, Variant, and Composite. Standard products are individual items with no other versions. Variants are products such as clothing, which come in different colors and sizes. Vend’s system allows you to create 3 modifiers per item. Composite products are those assembled from your inventory into a grouping — such as gift baskets. You cannot have separate inventory for composite products; it’s based on inventory for your other products.
  • Parked sales: This lets you save ticket in the POS and pull it up later, which is useful.
  • Price Books: You can create different price books for different stores, or for promotions, or for loyalty customers, or for whatever other reason you want. In Square, the best way to accomplish this is by setting individual item modifiers, so Vend is definitely far more functional.
  • Full and partial refunds: Self-explanatory. You can also do exchanges, a feature not available with Square.
  • Email or customizable print receipts: Your choice.
  • Store credit: This is a new feature, still in beta, but I would expect to see it roll out to everyone soon. Unlike Shopify, which lets you issue store credit but doesn’t have a proper way to track it, Vend’s store credit feature lets you keep track of it in your customer database. Currently this feature integrates with Xero, but not QuickBooks Online.
  • Gift cards: Gift cards work in store and online, but you can’t order them from Vend the way you can with many others (including Square).
  • Offline mode: Vend has an offline feature — but like Shopify and many other POS systems, it really only lets you accept cash payments and record sales. No credit card sales. In addition, you have to be signed in before the outage, and in offline mode has limited features. That said, it will get you through an outage mostly OK if you can survive on cash alone.
  • Sales tax: There’s no tip feature in Vend at all. However, its sales tax features are pretty advanced. You can set a single tax rate for everything, or create groups of tax rates. You can also set tax by location. The one flaw I see in the system is that creating tax rates doesn’t apply them to any existing products in your store. If you’ve already loaded products into your store, you’ll need to open up those products and modify the tax settings.
  • Loyalty program: Vend’s loyalty program is very simple, based on a dollars-for-dollars system. Spend so much and earn so many dollars to spend.
  • Reporting: Vend has some pretty advanced reporting — you can generate pre-populated reports or create your own custom ones.
  • Layaway program: This is included at no charge, with no integration required.
  • Customer-facing screen: A useful feature available at no-extra charge. You can only have one register linked to a display, but you can link multiple displays to one register.
  • Customer database: Obviously the database is good for having a loyalty program, With Vend, it’s possible to segment databases by groups and even create different price books for them (such as rewarding particularly loyal customers with special offers). Vend’s API can link it to another CRM if you want. Note that Vend doesn’t have its own email marketing service; you have to integrate with another.

While Square’s app is incredibly robust for an mPOS, it’s still not quite quite on par with a full-fledged POS like Vend. You’ll get an incredible array of features, but if you are looking for some highly advanced, retail-specific capabilities — like store credit and layaway, you should look more toward Vend. Of course, Square also supports more service-based companies with many of its features, notably restaurants. And you get a lot of integrated services in a single place (email marketing, loyalty program, even timekeeping and payroll). They’ll cost you more than just the processing fees, obviously, but the convenience of everything being consolidated in one place, with a single log-in and no need to bother with importing/exporting data, certainly can’t be overlooked.

eCommerce

As my fellow writer, Jordan, noted in her review, Vend’s eCommerce offering is basic. It was something added later, and so it’s not as refined as the POS system. You get everything you need to run a web store in tandem with your retail setup, but it’s not feature rich by any stretch. Here’s what you get:

  • Free hosting
  • Free domain (or bring your own)
  • Multiple responsive themes to choose from
  • HTML and CSS support
  • Integrate with Shopify’s eCommerce store for greater functionality (and higher cost)
  • Inventory sync across retail and online stores
  • Customer accounts (can be linked to customer profiles in database)
  • Sales and promotions through Vend price books
  • Social media integrations
  • Integrated reporting features
  • Flexible shipping
  • Customizable tax settings
  • Pay Later (to support ACH or in-store cash payments)

There are some drawbacks, however. The eCommerce system isn’t particularly friendly to dropshipping, and there’s no integrated blogging system or email marketing (but you can get email CRM with an integration). You can’t support individual promo codes, either. Inventory is based on a single outlet, and you can’t change the outlet later. The system also doesn’t support partial payments using gift cards — the entire balance must be paid using the gift card.

But honestly? Square’s eCommerce feature isn’t amazingly complex, either. Unless you choose to integrate another shopping cart), you sell through Square’s marketplace (which gives you a hosted domain and URL, and not much else). The store designs you can choose from are responsive but there isn’t a lot of customizability. Square’s features include:

  • Free hosting
  • Free domain (or bring your own)
  • Multiple responsive themes to choose from
  • Choice of responsive templates
  • Support for digital and physical products (this is one of the biggest differentiators from Square)
  • In-store pickup available
  • Integrated reporting
  • Customizable tax settings

If you want more advanced features, or even just your own domain, you can integrate with Weebly, BigCommerce, or Ecwid or play around with Square’s API for a custom solution — but that’s only if you’re comfortable playing around with such things. Again, there’s no blog at all, and shipping options are somewhat limited — but you can enhance the options using an add-on such as ShipStation.

I think it’s important to remember that unlike a service such as Shopify, which was always meant to help people sell online, both Vend and Square started off serving different markets — Vend is a POS system for retailers, while Square’s core feature has always been mobile payments. It’s not surprising that both of these are lacking in eCommerce options. However, I look forward to seeing what both of these services introduce next as omni-channel commerce becomes more important.

Payments

I appreciate the simplicity of Square’s payments system. But no matter what kind of volume you do, you pay the same flat rate — 2.75% for swiped cards, 2.9% + $0.30 for eCommerce. There’s no reduction in fees until you hit a very high volume — much higher than would qualify most merchants for a solid interchange-plus plan. The good news is you don’t have to deal with any sort of tiered pricing or qualified cards, all of which can be frustrating for merchants. You even process American Express at 2.75%. You can’t use any other payment processor with the app. But at the same time, it’s worth noting that you don’t pay for the POS at all — and you don’t have to pay for a more advanced eCommerce option unless you want to.

Vend decided, rather than try to implement its own branded solution like Shopify or ShopKeep, to simply partner with some other payments providers. Vend is an international product, and so there are other solutions available in other countries, but in the U.S., if you want an integrated processing solution in-store, your options are PayPal and Vantiv Integrated Payments (formerly Mercury).

The biggest problem with this is that PayPal is about the same price as Square (2.7% per swipe, 2.9% + $0.30 for eCommerce), on top of Vend’s monthly fee. And Mercury/Vantiv Integrated, while not the worst company out there, has a record of spotty customer service and hidden fees and expensive contracts, and Vantiv tends to have a liquidated damages provision in its contracts.

However, there is a silver lining,of sorts. You can choose a non-integrated processing solution and use whatever merchant service provider you want. The one draw back to this is you’ll have to enter the transaction amount in your terminal and process it, then complete the transaction in Vend separately. It adds an extra step that not everyone wants to deal with. However, that said, it could easily be worth the trouble if you opt for a processor like Helcim, which will give you interchange-plus AND debit card rates for processing.

You can also choose from a variety of gateways (including Authorize.net) and connect your account to process eCommerce transactions. It’s a bit sad that Vend has disabled Authorize.net as a gateway option for the POS, but you can at least use it online so you can use virtually any payment processor.

None of these options is a terrible choice. When you want mobile processing, Square’s rates are absolutely competitive — as I’ve said, PayPal is very similar, and so are many other mobile options. I like that Vend will also give you special discounts once you clear $10,000 a month with PayPal. I also like that Vend doesn’t charge you any sort of transaction fees for using a non-integrated solution. Plus, with PayPal will let you start processing almost right away.

All I can say is, run the numbers. If you’re leaning toward Vend, talk to some of our top-rated processors and request a quote from Mercury. Don’t overlook PayPal, either. It might not be interchange plus, but there are some benefits: an affordable EMV reader, instant access to funds, and even a truly mobile option (PayPal Here) if you absolutely need to be able to use smartphones to process cards, not tablets. Plus, with the PayPal debit card, you can access your funds anywhere without needing to transfer them to your bank.

If you’re leaning toward Square, you have an advantage in that you pay no monthly fees, just card processing rates, That is, unless you opt for a monthly add-on service (like Employee Management). You can also get set up pretty much right away.

Compatible Hardware:

Winner: Tie

If you’re going to process credit cards, you need some sort of register setup, right? I like that both Vend and Square give you some flexibility in that department.

Vend Hardware

With Vend, you have a few choices for what platform to run your POS on:

  • Windows Computer: Requires Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10 or Microsoft Surface Pro and Google Chrome.
  • Mac Computer: Requires Mac OSX Mountain Lion, Mavericks, Yosemite, or El Capitan and Google Chrome
  • iPad: Requires iOS 8 or later. Download the app from the iTunes store.

All the hardware is sold via POSportal.com, which doesn’t offer any laptops but does have iPads available.

Vend’s hardware kit consists of the bare bones: a cash drawer and a USB receipt printer, plus a cable. If you opt for the tablet package, you also get a tablet stand and an upgrade to an Ethernet receipt printer.

The upside to this is that Vend’s hardware kits are fairly affordable (starting at just over $300 for Mac or PC, for $500 for the tablet version). You can also pick and choose your own hardware and build a custom package that includes a thermal label printer, a barcode reader and dock, and more. In all, that’s not too bad.

You’re probably noticing there’s one big thing missing: card readers. That’s because it entirely depends on who you choose for processing. PayPal has just a single EMV-compatible reader (chip and PIN) available for $149, that also supports NFC. Mercury offers a choice of EMV-compatible wired and wireless terminals, as will any non-integrated processing service you choose. Costs will vary, so be sure to shop around.

And if you already have some hardware, it might be compatible with Vend, no new purchase required! You can check whether your hardware is compatible here.

Square Hardware 

Square is far more flexible as far as hardware is concerned. While it can’t run from desktops or laptops at all, you do have a large range of mobile devices and tablets to choose from:

  • Android: Works with tablets and phones. System requirements vary, check the list of devices with known issues.
  • iOS: Works with iPad, iPhone, iPod. Requires iOS 8 or later, but some hardware may not be compatible with iOS 9, only 9.1.

It’s worth mentioning again that a handful of Square’s features are iPad-only. You can also check the compatibility between your device and specific hardware here.

Square also offers an assortment of hardware bundles, all of which fall in the $500 to $700 range. These include a tablet stand, a receipt printer, and a cash drawer, as well as receipt paper and a free magstripe reader.

That means the EMV-compatible card readers are sold separately. However,you do have a few options:

  • EMV and magstripe reader: $29
  • EMV/NFC (chip and sig): $49 (includes a free magstripe reader)
  • EMV/NFC (chip and PIN): $129 (Note: This isn’t a branded Square reader, but a Miura m010, which supports iOS only).

The Square Stand ($99 or included in some kits) also has a free magstripe reader built in. You can get a dock for your EMV/NFC readers, as well as a bar code scanner. Square doesn’t officially support a label printer, but it says many customers have used a Dymo printer in their setup.

Both Vend and Square give you some very flexible options as far as hardware goes. You have multiple cash drawers and receipt printers, and even card readers. It really depends on what you need. Frankly, though, the low cost of Square’s EMV readers is a big draw — they are the the lowest prices I’ve seen anywhere.

Fees and Rates:

Winner: Square

It’s absolutely essential that your business find a POS and payment solution that fits your budget. There’s no sense in paying for more than you need, or letting yourself be conned into paying much higher credit card processing rates than you have to.

In that sense, Square has the advantage. You don’t pay for the POS, just card transactions. Here’s the basic transaction fees:

  • Swiped transactions: 2.75%
  • Invoice transactions: 2.75%
  • Keyed-in transactions: 3.5% + $0.15
  • eCommerce transactions: 2.9% + $0.30

If you want some of the additional services, here’s what you’ll pay:

  • Gift cards: Per-card cost (starting at $2 per card and dropping as you order more)
  • Appointments: $30 for one person, $50 for 2-5 staff, $90 for unlimited staff.
  • Payroll: $20 monthly subscription + $5 per employee paid (available in limited states)
  • Employee management: $5 per employee
  • Email marketing: $15 per month and up, depending on package

With Vend, you can choose from multiple packages:

Free Plan ($0/month)

  • 10 active products
  • Customers: 1,000
  • Users: 1
  • Community forum support only

Starter Plan ($59/month on yearly plan, $69 billed monthly)

  • Single-outlet support
  • Active products: 500
  • Customers: Unlimited
  • Users: Unlimited
  • Live chat and email support

Advanced ($85/month on yearly plan, $99 billed monthly)

  • Single-outlet support
  • Active products: Unlimited
  • Customers: Unlimited
  • Users: Unlimited
  • eCommerce store
  • Live chat and email support

Multi-Outlet ($169/month on yearly plan, $199 billed monthly)

  • Multiple-outlet support
  • Active products: Unlimited
  • Customers: Unlimited
  • Users: Unlimited
  • eCommerce store
  • Live chat and email support
  • 24/7 phone support

Remember that this is on top of any processing fees you pay. On the one hand, $60-$70/month sounds expensive because Square is free, and Shopify’s basic plan is $29. If you want an eCommerce store, that costs even more.

But that kind of thinking overlooks the fact that Vend gives you unlimited users and hardware integration for free. Shopify will charge you $40/month for those capabilities, and Square will charge you $5 per employee per month.

I like that Vend won’t charge you any transaction fees if you choose a non-integrated solution. If you use Shopify, you can wind up paying an additional 2% per transaction on top of your processor’s fees. And Square won’t let you use anyone else for payment processing at all.

If you use a different eCommerce gateway with Vend, you could wind up paying an additional charge for that. And if you choose an add-on (such as Shopify’s eCommerce integration), you’ll pay more for that, too. The same applies if you choose to integrate Square with another eCommerce provider, like BigCommerce.

This is really a matter of what you can afford vs. what you need. Since Square is entirely pay-as-you-go, it’s a good starting place if this is your first foray into retail. If you definitely need Vend’s capabilities, be sure to shop around and find the most affordable and convenient solution for card processing. Remember that you can use the import/export features both Vend and Square provide to move your data over if you ever decide to switch providers.

Contract Length and Early Termination Fee:

Winner: Square

With Square, there’s no contracts, no monthly fees. You can stop using Square whenever you want with absolutely no penalty. That is a significant advantage. You can also try the add-on services for 30 days completely free.

Vend gives you the option to save some money by paying for a full year in advance. Otherwise, you can go month-to-month and pay more for each package. That’s pretty common for most SaaS (Software as a Service) providers. I recommend starting with the month-to-month plan and see how it works before you invest in Vend for a whole year. There’s a 30-day trial where you can decide if Vend is right for you. You can also try the free plan, although it has very limited offerings.

The other thing you need to consider, though, is who you choose as a processor with Vend. PayPal is entirely pay-as-you-go, so if you stop using Vend, you can stop using PayPal, too, with zero penalties.

The problem is if you choose Vantiv Integrated/Mercury. While if you look at the Vend site, it says that Vantiv offers no-term contracts, that’s not the case across the board. The company does lock some of its vendors into multi-year contracts with ETFs. So even if you can stop using Vend whenever you want, you may still be stuck with a Mercury contract that could be potentially difficult to get out of.

Sales and Advertising Transparency:

Winner: Tie

Square has always been well known for its transparency. Clear, flat-rate processing, not hidden fees. There’s no pushy sales people, shady gimmicks or to-good-to-be-true promises. There’s a detailed knowledge base you can search without even needing an account, plus a solid blog with helpful resources for businesses, and social media (Twitter: @Square or @SqSupport, Facebook, LinkedIn).

I like what Square is doing in this department — though there is one niggling issue: account holds and freezes. Square isn’t exactly forthcoming about what causes them, and plenty of merchants are understandably upset. We’ll come back to this point in just a bit, though.

I also like how transparent Vend is. You know exactly what you’re getting and what the fees are. Again, there’s nothing that stinks of too-good-to-be-true. There is a sales force — you can request a consultation and Vend will send someone out to meet with you. However, I can’t find any evidence of Vend’s sales team using sketchy practices or hard selling techniques, which is good news indeed.

You can search Vend’s knowledge base before you sign up, and the blog is also full of great resource for merchants. Vend has a Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, as well as a YouTube and even a Pinterest.

The problem of course, is that payments aren’t integrated. PayPal is generally fair and transparent — flat-rate pricing, no shady gimmicks for businesses. You’ll see, if you dig into PayPal user reviews, that it still has an issue with holds and account terminations, but I can’t find any evidence that Vend users are affected by this.

The only “gimmick” I can find that Vend offers is a deal with PayPal that will give you a 50% discount on Vend when you sign up for both. The half-off deal lasts for three months. And if you process more than $10,000 monthly, you also get discounted PayPal rates.

Vantiv Integrated also has its own flaws with transparency (namely disclosure of that ETF). Quite a few complaints about Vantiv, especially recently, focus on merchants being overcharged for processing, which is understandably upsetting.

Customer Service and Technical Support:

Winner: Vend

Square and Vend have both managed to keep their prices down by looking for cost-effective support…which meant neither company offered phone support at all initially. Fortunately, that’s changed, but I think it’s a bit of a stretch to say either company is completely rocking it in terms of customer service.

Check out any user reviews of Square, and the lack of customer service — especially decent phone support — is one of the most common issues. Square’s knowledge base is extremely detailed so you can solve most problems yourself. There’s also email support, and a new community forum. But to get on the phone, you need a customer code, which some users have had trouble getting (and something people with frozen or terminated accounts can’t get at all). There’s also a dedicated Twitter customer service channel, @SqSupport, and you can reach Square on Facebook as well.

Vend’s free plan doesn’t give you customer support at all — just access to the community forum. For the Basic and Advanced plans, you get access to a very detailed knowledge base, as well as email and live chat support — which is good. I like to see live chat as an option because honestly, waiting on hold and dealing with automated systems really sucks. However, if you really do prefer to talk to an actual person, Vend’s 24/7 phone support is only included in the multi-outlet plan. If you have one of the other paid plans, you can add phone support for $20/month. I don’t like merchants having to pay for customer support at all, but at least you get email and live chat at no added cost.

I do like that both companies have a service that will let you know whether the system is fully operational or whether it has issues. You can check out Vend’s status here, and Square’s here.

Something else worth mentioning is that if you need it, Vend has a lot of other resources to help. There’s Vend U, which is included at no charge with any paid subscription, and gives you a wealth of lessons and resources. If you’d rather pay an expert for their time, you can find Vend’s official list of partners here and look for someone in your area.

Negative Reviews and Complaints:

Winner: Vend

There are two very consistent complaints with Square:

  1. Its tendency to hold or terminate accounts with no warning and very little room for appeal
  2. Dubious customer support, especially after having your account frozen or terminated.

As far as holds and freezes go, that’s an unfortunate side effect of Square’s business model: it aggregates payments rather than opening individual merchant accounts for every single user. On the one hand, this means you can start processing much sooner, but on the other it means you may find yourself shut down with no warning. Square seems to be doing much better at mitigating the risk over all, and it’s definitely taking strides to improve its customer service, as well. However, if you are in a high-risk industry, I highly encourage you to avoid both Square and PayPal as your processors.

Vend’s complaints are a bit less focused. Some of the issues that come up most often include lack of various features, including limited cash management, or glitches in accounting integrations. Vend is constantly adding new features and rolling out improvements, though. There are also a handful of complaints about the quality of customer support — but these are very, very few and far between.

Positive Reviews and Testimonials:

Winner: Tie

It shouldn’t be so surprising that Vend and Square have a lot over overlap in the “Good Things” categories — namely, customers like how easy-to-use and intuitive both POS systems are. They are easy to set up and get running. Because everything is stored in the cloud you can access your data everywhere. Just grab your iPad and open up the app to run your reports and check on sales. Beyond that, here’s what else what people like about each:

Square

  • Easy to set up: You can start processing through Square pretty much right away.
  • Truly mobile: Unlike Vend, Square is truly mobile friendly. While the iPad gives you the most functionality, you can still run the system from a smartphone and have all your data in one place.
  • Offline mode: Square’s offline mode is the best one out there. It’s the only one that I know that will still let you process credit cards during an outage. Yes, you accept the risk yourself, but depending on your business it could be a nonissue.
  • Inexpensive: With a free website/shopping cart, a free POS, flat-rate processing and everything else, it’s hard to argue with the value that Square offers. When you throw in all the affordable monthly add-ons… it might not be the most advanced system, but Square has everything most businesses need at a very attractive cost.

Vend

  • Customer Service: You will see the few odd complaints about Vend’s customer service but overall, users really seem to appreciate it. You can get phone support if you want, but otherwise, live chat, email, and the knowledge base should see you through just fine.
  • Affordability: Vend sounds more expensive than Square, but compared to many other cloud solutions or full-fledged POS systems it is very affordable.
  • Feature set: Vend doesn’t have everything everyone could ever want — but it certainly has everything you need, and then some. Even better, the company is always introducing new, more advanced features. Overall many people are happy with everything Vend offers.

Final Verdict:

Winner: Tie 

In this case, it is honestly difficult to point out a clear winner. While Square and Vend have similar offerings, comparing them isn’t a perfect apples-to-apples comparison. Vend is a cloud POS that happens to work on an iPad; Square is a mobile payments app that happens to have a very effective POS that also works on an iPad.

As always, the issue ultimately boils down to what features you need and what you can afford. Vend is a great option for retail environments, but it requires a monthly or yearly subscription, plus you pay processing rates. Square is an excellent mobile solution, and it has everything you need to run a retail register setup as well. You pay only processing rates and the monthly subscription fee for any add-on services you want.

You get comparable options for hardware. Square gives you an online store at no additional cost, while Vend offers one in its mid-tier subscription plan. Both also give you inventory management and a choice of add-ons and integrations to expand the functionality.

If you’re unsure of your budget, you don’t need as many advanced features, or mobile is a genuine concern, Square is a viable option. You only pay per transaction, which is great if you’re just starting out. Just know that Square’s aggregating model isn’t quite as stable as a traditional merchant account.

If you can afford Vend and need the more advanced features it offers (exchanges, store credit, etc.), by all means go for it. You’ll certainly get better customer support, but for the most part everything is so intuitive you should not need much guidance. Make sure you shop around for the best processing option, and consider a non-integrated solution from one of our top-rated merchant account providers if you want the lowest rates and best service. .

I hope this helps you make a decision! Be sure to check out our other iPad POS options as well as our mobile processors.

The post Square VS Vend appeared first on Merchant Maverick.

“”

Top 14 WordPress Styles for Landscaping & Outdoors

Top WordPress Themes for Landscaping &amp Outdoors

Are you currently attempting to build or update an online business for Landscaping or Outdoors-focused business or blog &#8211 but without blowing your financial allowance? WordPress Styles may be the platform to kickstart your ability to succeed!

With WordPress styles, you may create a completely functioning website for your company or blog, and on top of that, no coding understanding is needed! WordPress styles includes a simple setup and enables you to definitely maintain control of your site rather of coping with the contracts and lengthy-term commitment of website design firms. Plus, WordPress is definitely an open-source software so you’ll have a lot of sources helping in the network.

Here’s a summary of the very best WordPress styles for Landscaping and out of doors &#8211 focused companies or blogs curated from your favorite theme marketplaces to help you get off around the right feet.

Disclosure &#8211 this site receives customer referral charges from companies and merchandise pointed out on this web site. All data &amp opinions derive from ShivarWeb staff&#8217s independent research and professional judgement.

Anaglyph Lite

Anaglyph Lite Theme

Anaglyph Lite is really a free WordPress theme having a responsive design, therefore it will appear good on any device (including mobile and tablets) with no need to create separate code. Due to it’s simplicity, this theme enables you to pay attention to content &#8211 and it is really pretty versatile. All of the design features are simple to personalize (fonts, colors, layouts, etc). It is also suitable for WooCommerce &#8211 the very best eCommerce wordpress plugin available. Take a look at Anaglyph Lite here.

Be Theme

Be Theme

Be Theme is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a multipurpose &#8211 and extremely flexible &#8211 design. It arrives with over 180 pre-made templates, and all sorts of elements of design one each on are simple to personalize using the drag editor &#8211 so that your fonts, colors, layouts, etc could be precisely how you would like it. The admin area is simple to navigate and it is also suitable for WooCommerce. This theme is value for your money. Take a look at Be around.

Birch

Birch Theme

Birch is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a creative design &#8211 together with a beautiful homepage slideshow option. It’s a style packaged with versatility within the design and compatibility. All of the design features are customizable and it is compatible with the essential plugins you’ll need. It’s very easy to integrate with social networking and it has an element video option too. Take a look at Birch here.

Businesso

Businesso Theme

Businesso is really a free, responsive WordPress theme having a clean, sharp design. A great option if displaying images is really a priority. All of the elements of design could be customized &#8211 colors, fonts, layouts, menus. Additionally, it includes a pretty sweet menu option, with some theme options that will help you produce the look you&#8217re opting for. Take a look at Businesso here.

Challenge

Challenge Theme

Challenge is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a professional feel into it, and also the theme is incredibly effective. It’s several demos which are worth building from &#8211 but all of the elements of design and layouts are simple to personalize too. A few additional features include Google maps integration, prices table options, Lightbox for stunning image display, and WooCommerce compatibility. This theme is a superb comprehensive package. Take a look at Challenge here.

Inovado

Inovado Theme

Inovado is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a crisp and clean feel into it &#8211 It features a gorgeous interface! It’s flexible in a lot of ways &#8211 the look elements are simple to personalize and it is compatible with your major plugins (including WooCommerce). Additionally, it provides extensive helpful shortcodes to evolve the website for your preferences. Effective and solid platform to jumpstart your web presence. Take a look at Inovado here.

Preferential Lite

Preferential Lite Theme

Preferential Lite is really a free, responsive WordPress theme having a unique design and all sorts of functionality you’ll need for the website. It’s a breath of outdoors &#8211 specifically for the cost of free! All of the elements of design could be altered, also it provides extensive useful elements incorporated within the theme like message boxes and social networking integration. It is also child-theme ready, which means you don’t need to bother about updates altering your design without your permission! Take a look at Preferential Lite here.

Rolec

Rolec Theme

Rolec is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme by having an awesome design &#8211 its professional yet unique having a smooth-scrolling experience. Initially meant for real estate market, it can make displaying images of your experience and work very simple. It features a effective backend, and all sorts of elements of design are simple to personalize. Take a look at Rolec here.

Rustik

Rustik Theme

Rustik is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a clean, minimalist design &#8211 but it’s full of some good features. It’s original design meant for whenever of eCommerce store, speculate it’s so flexible, it might work superbly together with your landscape or outdoors site. It is also suitable for MailChimp &amp Aweber, and all sorts of elements of design are simple to personalize. Take a look at Rustik here.

Salient

Salient Theme

Salient is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a multipurpose design that’s incredibly versatile. It arrives with a lot of prepackaged demos that may be tweaked for your design preference. Salient has quite a number of theme options too, like custom publish pages, that induce amazing squeeze pages for the site. It is also eCommerce-ready. Take a look at Salient here.

Striking Multiflex

Striking Multiflex Theme

Striking Multiflex is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme that features “your site, your way” &#8211 also it totally comes through. The look is extremely professional and user-friendly, and completely customizable in most aspects. It’s suitable for eCommerce and all sorts of fundamental plugins you should power your site. You may create amazing portfolios and squeeze pages with this particular theme too. Take a look at Striking Multiflex here.

UDesign

UDesign Theme

UDesign is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a professional yet fun design. Since it’s a multipurpose theme, her functionality to power an incredible landscape or outdoors website. It is simple to change or personalize the look elements like colors, fonts, layouts, etc using the drag feature. Using the custom widgets along with other theme options, UDesign is really a solid choice if you are searching to have an “all-in-one” package. Take a look at UDesign here.

Vertex

Vertex Theme

Vertex is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a modern, sleek design along with a effective backend. In the layouts completely lower towards the seamless scrolling effect, this theme results in a stunning experience. It’s an excellent option if you are website is image-heavy, and in addition it is able to create a number of pages &#8211 like contact forms, galleries, location specific squeeze pages, and just how-to pages. Take a look at Vertex here.

Webly

Webly Theme

Webly is really a premium, responsive WordPress theme having a unique feel to it’s design &#8211 however that doesn’t hinder its functionality whatsoever! This can be a versatile theme with all sorts of custom options. The look elements all can be customized &#8211 fonts, palettes, layouts, etc. It’s very useful shortcodes and theme options that will help you produce the site you picture. It is also compatible with the plugins you will need. Take a look at Webly here.

Conclusion

WordPress Styles make the perfect and versatile method to increase publicity and also be your Landscaping or Outdoors business/blog. You are able to take complete possession &amp increase your potential using the design functionality while impressing your customers with stunning designs and quality content simultaneously!

Only a word of caution &#8211 make certain to make use of styles rich in coding standards, and don’t forget that the good theme is flexible &amp utilizes plugins. You could browse around for other styles that won’t be particularly for Landscaping or even the Outdoors, but could easily transform itself with couple of plugins and custom code!

If you are wondering ways to get began on creating your site, here’s an in depth tutorial regarding how to create one on your own.

If you are a new comer to WordPress world, here’s the Beginner’s Help guide to WordPress &#8211 videos incorporated!

Best of luck!

The publish Top 14 WordPress Styles for Landscaping &#038 Outdoors made an appearance first on ShivarWeb.

“”