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sales@webafford.com
Online Store / eCommerce
What's Included

Selling Products Online

Whether you are selling one important product or service, or a thousand items, we have a platform that will meet your needs.

Things to think about:

  • Marketplace integrations
  • Payment processing
  • Selecting platforms
  • Item maintenance
  • Advertising and promotion
  • Onsite communication
  • Online chat sales
  • Interactive lead generation
  • Call-to-Actions
  • Affiliates
  • Coupon / discounting

*We can do whatever you want, it just needs to be included in the website plan, so that it’s part of our quote to you

48% of people cited a website’s design as the number one factor in deciding the credibility of a business.

Cost

Cost of a business website

How much does a business website cost.  We found that the following is a general consensus of how much.  With WebAfford each project is different and we tailor a project to your business needs.  But that said, here is what we found.  Simple custom designed websites 1 – 10 pages can run from $400 to $10,000.     A more complex site with highly specialized functions and programming can run from $10,000 to $25,000.  The range for professional small business websites that do a great job of communicating and creating an image for the business range from $2,000 to $6,000, that’s an average of $4,000, that’s why we are more affordable, our average runs about $3,000.

Why is the quality and speed of a business website so important?

94% of people cited web design as the reason they mistrusted or rejected a website.

Training

One-on-one Training

Even though we provide support to change and expand your website, we will also provide training so that you can add, edit and change content as well.  We will design a training plan with you based on your needs.

One of our team members will walk you through the basics and provide you will the details you need to maintain or access the site.  We can put together documentation to help with your routines.

Training directly affects the organizational cost of having a effective website.  Training reduces costs and gives confidence to users to keep the website dynamic and to take a personal interest in its success.

Training gives users a better understanding of what can be accomplished with a flexible and powerful website.  Help the internal team brainstorm ideas for marketing and promotion and include the website in those strategies.

Technology

Choice Selling Platforms

Through experience we match technology to your needs.  When it comes to online stores, there is a need to use eCommerce platforms to manage customers and transactions. We build you a store on one of these platforms.  We select a platform that is correctly matched to your needs and future growth projections.  Each platform has its place in the small to medium sized business range, we will select the right one for your online store based on the requirements we gather from you.

Platforms

Online Store or eCommerce solutions

We build on and support the following eCommerce platforms: WordPress/WooCommerce, Shopify, Squarespace and Magento.

These platforms are the top in their market space. WooCommerce is the no. 1 online store platform for WordPress and powers many of the internet’s online stores,

Shopify and Squarespace provide stability where WooCommerce provides openness and flexibility. It’s a balancing act to know which one to select.  This is why the interview process is so important.

Payments

Collecting Payment Online

If you don’t already have a payment processor that will integrate with one of our store platforms we can make recommendations.  Most any type of payment transaction, whether credit card, paypal, or ACH check can be processed online.  Many offer manual processing and self-service solutions, so that you can enter payments for customers if need be.

We can also select a solution that supports point of sale activity, if you have a brick and mortar business.

Long Term Cost

Cost of Ownership

There are monthly subscription or licensing costs associated with running an online store. There is hosting cost and components licensing from developers, as well as payment merchant fees. You will also have normal business costs such as shipping and sales tax if applicable.

What features are chosen for the online store directly affect monthly cost for hosted platforms like Shopify and Squarespace.  Beyond the basics, developers have created advanced features to enhance shoppers experience or to meet your specific business needs, the standard practice is to charge monthly or annual licensing fees, these can add up for stores with many added features.

WooCommerce developers have adopted similar practices, but licensing may be one time and license renewal may not be mandatory unless a change or support from developer is needed.  Magento is more similar to WooCommerce.

WooCommerce

Content management and Online Store

The benefit of this solution is the integration with WordPress which provides for a complete websites in combination with an online store.  You can have traditional web pages full of supporting information, images, videos, anything you want to support to selling process. This enables you to build brand awareness, customer interactions, pre and post sales communication, announcements and many many other marketing activities.

Woocommerce is highly customizable as is WordPress, they are very popular and well supported.  Another benefit of this platform is that you can take it with you, whereas Shopify and Squarespace are hosted solution, they will always be hosted by those organizations on their hardware and they own the code.

Shopify

About Shopify

Shopify is a Canadian company that operates as an Saas (Software as a service) solution. The platform is easy to maintain and has an integrated payment solution. Even though Shopify is customizable, it is less customizable than WooCommerce on WordPress, but in exchange it offers slightly more stability because of stricter development standards.  Shopify is not open software and you cannot take it with you. Also, Shopify is not design to be a content website with traditional pages and blog posts, but it can be used by service companies to sell services as well as products.  See Cost of Ownership.

We can build a custom design on Shopify and customize many aspects of design. Adding features to improve the shopping experience or to meet business requirements is possible, but these extensions are more expensive than for WooCommerce and there is less flexibility, but managing the store is easier from a user perspective.

Square Space

About Square Space

Square Space is based out of New York and designs tend reflect this.  Square Space is not just a Online Store Saas (Software as a service) like Shopify, but also offers websites that are aimed at content management and blogging.

Square Space is similar to Shopify in that you are hosting with Square Space and you cannot take your store with you, or easily port or migrate your design to another solution, this is common with Saas solutions, however, stability and ease of use have made Square Space and Shopify popular.

We can build a custom design on Square Space and customize many aspects of design. Adding features to improve the shopping experience or to meet business requirements is possible, but these extensions are more expensive than for WooCommerce and there is less flexibility, but managing the store is easier from a user perspective.  See Cost of Ownership

Shopify vs SquareSpace

Comparison

Both are Saas or Software As A Service solutions.  Everything happens on the hosted platform and if you want to leave, you will have to recreate your store somewhere else, although you can export content that’s been put into the site, you won’t be able to take the design or features with you.  There are many payment integrations in both, and major merchant solutions like Strike and Paypal offer integrations to both.

Please read the Cost of Ownership, it is our opinion that licenses is more expensive on Saas platforms than on WordPress/WooCommerce, so if you’re look at long term ownership costs, this is something to consider.

Both are less customizable than WooCommerce and Magento.  But due to strict development standards, the features and extensions they do offer are less buggy than some WordPress/Magento extension.

Magento

Full Blown eCommerce

For more robust requirements and larger inventories, we use the number one solution for Small to Medium Sized eCommerce stores.  Magento is powerful and used by some relatively large companies. But it is also used by some high volume small businesses, there are many inventory and accounting integrations for Magento, it’s a real powerhouse for eCommerce.

Point of Sale

Brick and Mortar

If you have a brick and mortar store and are looking to use a POS (Point of Sale) solution, we can work with you to solution your POS requirement with your online store.  There are some new cutting edge technologies that put the two together nicely. For example, Square Space has a tablet solution and Lightspeed has a more sophisticated solution and can even work with a WordPress WooCommerce site or you can create an online store on the Lightspeed platform and have Lightspeed POS in your brick and mortar.

Customization

Customizations and 3rd party Extensions

All of the platforms we support can be modified making the design and user experience unique to your business.  However, when it comes to how transactions happen, we are more constrained as to what we can accomplish  due to the effort it would take to rewrite the code another developer has already spent thousands of hours writing.

Extensions from 3rd party developers are the main reason web designers and developers are able to offer prices that are less than what it would cost to program something from scratch.  Fortunately, there is a lot of competition and options to customize how your store functions.  We evaluate available extensions for fit and reliability, and select the best answer for the problem or functionality needed.

Support

Three Support Plans

After your project is complete, you may want support. We offer three support plans to help keep your site updated, secure and growing.

  • Basic Maintenance and Performance Hosting for $100 per month.
  • Active Support and Performance Hosting for $300 per month. Gives you all the basic maintenance features and 5 hours of support beyond maintenance.
  • Full Support and Performance Hosting for $500 per month. Whatever it takes to get it done.
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