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  #11 (permalink)  
Old September 27, 2009, 03:13 PM
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Agree, that is why I want to outsource it :) Traffic goes up, so it better to make it more professional...
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Last edited by Dazmode; September 27, 2009 at 09:10 PM.
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Old September 27, 2009, 06:34 PM
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Hey Daz - Having used a few shopping cart backends, I would suggest sticking with what you have with "Zencart" which I have had the most success. It is free and open source, and has a good number of plugins for Canadians. Some of the themes for it can be rather simple, but there are some great (I can't believe I'm saying this) but "Monster" template files that actually look decent and professional. One thing though, be sure when you go about doing it, especially with Zencart that you take all security precautions.


If you want to drop a bit of coin however there are some good paid alternatives.

Magento would be my #1 pick. It has a great community, a ton of plugins + good Canadian support for things like taxes. It is somewhat simple to use, though I would rate it as the more difficult of the paid commercial solutions.

Xcart and Sunshop aren't half bad, good support but not a great number of plugins.

Interspire's shopping cart is something to avoid. I find it looks great, but for the price, and especially for Canadians, you are very limited.



From a pure business standpoint - those who don't understand the world of online shopping may be a little scared off by the stock look of the your existing webstore if they come in straight off Google and have no prior knowledge of you. Personally, having used many of them - You can never judge a book by the cover and have ordered from plenty.

One thing you may want to consider, is looking into getting an SSL cert. Depending on where you host your website, you can set it up for relatively cheap. The cost is having a dedicated IP + $40/y for basic cert.
If you have your domain name with namecheap, you can get their basic PositiveSSL for free, and most hosts provide discounted rates on basic Comodo certs or Geotrust. It gives you that added layer of protection and makes the consumer feel protected.



Unfortunately I don't have the time right now to do a whole redesign, but have no problems giving some pointers if your looking to switch backends - or if you want to stick with your existing Zencart backend, I have a whole list of typical plugins that make life a lot easier. Feel free to PM me, though I'm swamped atm so it may be a day or so before I can reply.
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Old September 27, 2009, 09:08 PM
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Excellent points FiXT. Should be sticky for anybody who want to open a webstore.

I agree on ZenCart as reasonable solution and I have SSL certificate from the very beginning, otherwise I couldn't process Credit Cards and so on. I'm with networking background myself, so I understand that security is must and other basics....but I'm no web designer or programmer (professional).

What I want to change is the front page of the site with proper menu and other graphics (not flash) with Store, Forum and other secondary pages behind it.
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Old September 27, 2009, 09:55 PM
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I was thinking, I noticed on the stores page, tiny banners that show sales on certain products, on the site's homepage (not store).. you could make a new page for Reviews, and put all of them there, or on the right or left sides, and then whenever you have new products, or sales, or even the featured products could be listed in a bigger size (thumbnails), and those sale banner could also go there..

Just a thought though :)
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Old September 27, 2009, 11:38 PM
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Oh shoot sorry you are dealing with SSL - My bad - I totally looked at it too during the checkout process and apparently there was a miscommunication between brain and eyes :P
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Old September 27, 2009, 11:45 PM
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I'm a little behind in the times when it comes to web design, but I'll second (or third...) the need to have the page centered. It makes for a much cleaner, and more professional look. The only other thing I would point out is that your main page has too much information. It is just really long. That page should be a general introduction, and provide enough info so that people go and read the rest of your site. That is unless you want it like a blog.

Another thing I just noticed is the continuity between your menus. The store categories change between the main page and any of the store links. The whole site actually gets centered, but I imagine that is because you are playing with it at the moment.
Also on the main page the store links on the left are kind of lacking in punch. it hard to tell that DazMode is even a store (from the main page that is). Personally I think this should take emphasis over everything else, as it is your main business. Having the reviews and support are great, but I would see them as being secondary. The dazmode.com address should go straight to the store.
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Last edited by Andy; September 27, 2009 at 11:51 PM.
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Old September 28, 2009, 02:23 AM
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Weird. When I was on the site earlier yesterday, it was centered for me just fine. But when I look at it now, it's left-justified.
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Old September 30, 2009, 06:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MpG View Post
Weird. When I was on the site earlier yesterday, it was centered for me just fine. But when I look at it now, it's left-justified.
Actually you are right guys . I centered main page, but left centered the store pages.

Good points Andy. The store should've be the Home page, the reason it is not - I don't want to learn PHP to modify store pages, so I made HTML page as front end. I also want to keep doing testing and reviews and it's hard to integrate them under store format.
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Last edited by Dazmode; September 30, 2009 at 06:56 AM.
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Old November 30, 2009, 01:08 PM
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I ended up asking professional designer for graphics advice and put together new face for Dazmode site past weekend.

Thank you all for the valuble input, I followed many of your advices, like putting 'log in' link on main page, darker background and many others... Now I need organize my content in back-end pages...

Any other suggestions I will be happy to consider!
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old November 30, 2009, 03:43 PM
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Well i'll put my 2 cents in if it isn't too late. I reckon you need to add some flash to your page for the parts you sell. That way the entire page doesn't reload just portions of it. EG pictures. I have a couple friends who do both... one is a back/front end online shopping programmer. One of his main clients sells car posters and another sells models or something so he understands all the security issues to maintain a safe online buying enviroment. The other friend is a flash/design wiz kid who used to partake in the high end computing. I guess it just depends how much your business can afford.... pm me if you'd like to contact either of the two.

I'd be happy to contact them for you if you like.
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