Tag Archives | wordpress

Is Shopify Better than WooCommerce for eCommerce?

two women looking at computer discussing a project

Recently, a website platform seemed to claim responsibility for a celebrity’s online success (web traffic, voluminous sales and market domination).  But what made that celebrity’s site successful?  Was it the platform they chose?  Or was the site’s success being driven by the celebrity themselves and the brand they represent?  In all likelihood that celebrity could have used any platform and still have had a successful site. They were responsible for their own online success, and the platform had little to do with it.

Your website is an extension of who you are.  It is an expression of your vision.  It is a result of hard work and creativity. And if you have an ecommerce site, then it is also a revenue source.  If you are selling something, the website platform you choose has to have your back because you have a lot invested in, and a lot riding on, the virtual space you’ve created.  You can’t choose a platform based on what a celebrity, or any successful site, uses.  You have to dig deeper.

There are two kinds of people in the ecommerce world: those who need a website and those who already have a website.

If you need an ecommerce site, the first questions you should ask are: What is my website’s intent? What am I trying say, do, express, and accomplish?  The second questions are: What am I selling and will the platform I’m looking at support the sale of my product or service?

If you already have an ecommerce site, then you are (hopefully) regularly evaluating the platform you are using to ensure your site is being taken care of in the best possible way.  You should always be asking: Is the platform I’m using reliable and are my content and business safe?

When choosing a platform, you have many decisions to make.  Will you need ongoing support, or can you be independent?  Do you need a highly customized site, or can you use one straight “out of the box”?  Do you anticipate having high volume sales, or will your site be more specialized with less traffic?

The answers to these questions will guide you through the pros and cons of many platforms. No platform is perfect, and many might meet your needs.  But if you are selling something, whether you are new to ecommerce or have an active store, there is one overriding question that must be addressed: What are you selling?

Not all platforms are ideal for all types of ecommerce.

Platforms can be tied to specific payment gateways.  If a payment gateway decides that it does not want to support the sale of a specific product or service, then your ability to sell could be denied and your store could be closed. If you plan to do, or already doing, online sales, it is in your best interest to choose a platform whose payment gateway is reliable and flexible.

Let’s get specific.

In Shopify’s Payments Terms of Service, prohibited businesses are listed in section B5.  That’s right: prohibited businesses.  If you sell or offer anything on this list, your store will likely be closed in the near future.  And remember – this list can change at any time, which means your ecommerce venture may not be safe if you use this platform.

Here is a partial list of businesses that are currently prohibited on Shopify:

  • All cannabis related businesses and products
  • Any business selling products that claim to have health benefits
  • Travel reservation businesses
  • Timeshare services
  • Flea markets

So, what’s the alternative?  Using an open source platform like WordPress with WooCommerce.

WordPress allows users to choose from any number of payment gateways and WordPress is not held hostage by the whims and demands of those gateways. Unlike Shopify, a publicly traded company that is required to meet certain criteria from its financial partners, WordPress has no such financial obligations; WordPress clients are free to choose whatever payment gateway fits their needs.

So, if you have a cannabis business with products to sell, WordPress with WooCommerce is a platform that will support you.  If you sell vitamins or health improving products, WordPress with WooCommerce is the platform for you. Whatever your business is, WordPress will support it. This is the beauty of using an open source platform.

It’s hard work to prepare, create, and maintain a virtual business. Be sure you select a platform that offers you choice and does not limit your vision.  WordPress with WooCommerce is a platform you can trust.  It has your back.

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business solutions, ecommerce, how to, woocommerce, wordpress

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30 Most Popular WordPress Plugins

WordPress plugins are sometimes the fastest and easiest way to add functionality to your site. They can range from free to premium (paid) and can help reduce development time drastically. Finding the right plugin for the right job is often time consuming and can be a process of trial and error, especially when digging through the WordPress plugin repository of over 23,000 offerings! Plugins can be a blessing and also a curse when developers don’t update them or even pose security issues and vulnerabilities. Choosing the right plugin for the right job is often based on experience, but with this list of the 30 most popular WordPress plugins you will be in good company.

WordPress Most Popular Plugins
WP Template

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WordPress eCommerce Solutions

wordpress ecommerce solutions

WordPress has become a very popular platform for building blogs and custom websites even  e-commerce and there are a lot of e-commerce plugins to choose from.  Mashable came up with a top 10 list. Some will agree and some will disagree, but we will all probably agree that there are many to choose from and they all serve a specific purpose depending on the needs of the business.

Of course one of the most popular if not the most popular is free WP e-Commerce. This plugin offers a lot of choices as far as themes and features goes. It was designed to support the most widely used payment sources, paypal and Google Checkout. One of the really cool features is product sharing through social media. This plugin is ‘THE’ wordpress plugin. We’ve found that this plugin can be fraught with bugginess and bad coding practices. Above all a site any plugin should function consistently and be easy to use.

Shopp plugin is a power and highly customizable ecommerce solution that has a more consistent and stable code base over all. It is more development intensive which means it requires more effort and time to configure and style. It has a strong user base with a good selection of extensions and payment processing options. Shopp was used by Behla Design for the  Golden Earth site to create an experience that is clean and elegant.

Another one that the designers at Behla Design are currently enamored with but that is not featured in the top ten is WooCommerce. Not only does WooCommerce.com  offer compatible WordPress themes, but WooCommerce also provides an e-commerce plugin that supports the following and these are just a few:

PayPal Pro
Google Checkout
Inspire Commerce

With only a year under it’s belt Woo Commerce has exploded on the WordPress ecommerce scene. There are over 160 extensions that have been developed and many more in the works. When you combine this with  stylish and elegant themes that are ready to go, you can quickly see the potential that Woo Commerce has to make it a business grade solution. Woo Themes recently put their solution to the test by converting their entire site to run on the plugin with over 300,000 users and high volume traffic. No small feat!

Behla Design has also used the Unsigned Woo Theme for several music sites. The theme is very user friendly, has a lot of cool features. The home page is fully customizable, there is an events module for scheduling shows, and a discography module for featuring albums. Having a theme like this is great for selling songs, cds, etc. with the payment gateway. It is all compatible and makes for a flawless site and seamless transactions.

Behla Design can help you choose a theme and payment plugin for your wordpress site and provide a custom design that is just right for your business.

Andrew Behla founded Behla Design, Graphic Design & Web Development in 2000.

Andrew and his team go out of their way to provide continual support to clients during all phases of their projects.  The team at Behla Design consists of top Los Angeles web designweb development, search engine optimization (SEO), and copywriting professionals. Contact us for a consultation.

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