What is the best eCommerce solution for a very small, very simple, one product company?
I'm setting up what I view as a trial company - i.e. I can't validate the demand, so I'm going to try it and see if demand exists. So I need something very simple and very cheap. I don't have a website set up yet. Here are the requirements:
1) No HTML coding required (I'm smart, but don't want to learn it).
2) Must have form creation capability, including ability to upload an image.
3) Minimal cost. My entire start-up costs aside from the eCommerce solution are going to be <$500, so it doesn't make sense to spend $1000 for someone to build a website for me.
It's a physical product which is customized for each customer. Cost will be about $20-25, which is considerably cheaper than customer make it themselves. My COGS should be about $5 per unit. Shipping will be a constant (1st class mail).
My marketing will be done primarily via Facebook ads. SEO is not going to be the primary driver.
I've tried to learn what I can about sites like Shopify, as well as Wordpress based solutions and Paypal type solutions. Now I'm more confused than ever.
I'd appreciate any input and suggestions.
To build an effective eCommerce website, I recommend you to use a pre-designed bootstrap theme from this resource: https://www.templatemonster.com/bootstrap-website-templates/ . Those are cool themes with tons of great features to set up and run great eCommerce. They are designed to help you build your online store without wasting valuable time.
Wix eCommerce would probably be a good option for you, just like BigCommerce. They both are cheap and very easy to handle, so you don't need to have any specific knowledge to use them. My advice is: watch some tutorials to see which one meets your requirements best. Here's a useful article where they both are mentioned - http://ecommercebuilders.blogspot.com/. Best of luck!
Go with Shopify. It supports good SEO and Facebook integrated for marketing. You can purchase good themes as well. I implemented for one client and he is happy with quick delivery and customization done.
You cannot go wrong with free http://www.webstarts.com/ builder. There are also very attractive templates and affordable hosting plans for your websites.
Joomla and Virtuemart. Easy to modify and setup if you are good with figuring stuff out. You could also do Joomla / Wordpress and integrate Paypal, which is fairly simple as well
Good luck with your venture. Wix has an ecommerce solution for $8.08 per month. Simple drag and drop website builder with over 30 ecommerce templates to choose from. They also have a help center with information on how to build a design an ecommerce website.
Go to www.wix.com to check out the options.
For something experimental like this, I think your simplest option is to make a landing page where users will be directed when they click your Facebook ad. Ideally, that page should reveal your product, the description or sales copy, and an "Add to Cart" button so they can purchase it. You're also probably thinking of adding a form so they can contact you.
To achieve this, here's the only thing you need:
Step 1: Create your free website at Big Cartel
* Sign up for a free account to upload up to 5 products (1 photo each). If you need more photos, then get the Titanium plan at $9.99 per month because it lets you upload up to 5 photos per product (and 25 products max). If you're only running the ad for less than a month then that $9.99 is all you have to pay.
Here's their signup page: https://www.bigcartel.com/signup/
* Good news: Your big cartel website already comes with a free contact form.
If you need a different kind of form, you can make one (drag-and-drop style) at https://www.emailmeform.com/. Copy the form's generated code, then paste it on your big cartel "custom page" section. Easy.
Step 2 [Optional]: If you really want to have your own ".com" (I'm not sure if it's that important to you at this stage), then I suggest you get one at GoDaddy.com. Just purchase the domain name and nothing else:
Hope this helps.
I can help you test the waters with out any website, HTML, or any time wasting stuff. It's easy & powerful , you can do one click upsell, or multiple offer within the sales funnel with out asking user details again. It works perfectly with Facebook ads. The entire process will take less than 30min to set up once you identify your audience properly.
After reading all your requirements including budget , I would like to recommend you Yo!Kart which is a multi vendor eCommerce platform to start an eCommerce marketplace. You can buy Yo!kart copy at the price of $250. It is becoming best choice for startups who want to enter in the eCommerce industry in less investment.
Yo!Kart has many advanced features including :
- Three layer security
- Robust report generation;
- Free hosting for 1 year
- New Features/Auto Upgrades
- 1 year free tech support
- Customizable design.
Below are the Multi store and Multi-Vendor Specific Features of Yo!Kart which you should check:
- Multistore: You can create as many shops/vendors as you want with option to manage all shops from single admin.
- Stable and reliable: Its continuous development and enhancements makes it a stable eCommerce Platform.
- Scalability: No matter what is the size of your business, Yokart can help you to succeed. Supports unlimited number of products, shops, categories & brands.
- Easy in administration: The control panel is clear and convenient so no special technical skills are required.
- Convenient site navigation: simplicity and intelligibility of the interface.
- Optimized for search engines: It helps to define SEO friendly URLs and add meta tags for every products, category, shops, brands & Content Pages.
- Easy to Understand & Customize: Basic html and css knowledge is enough to handle.
- Responsive: Supports all major mobile devices.
- Major payment gateway supports like Paypal, Authorize, Payu etc...
Multi-Vendor Specific features of Yo!Kart :
- Unlimited Number of Vendor Accounts.
- Multiple Vendors, Single Storefront.
- Products from Multiple Vendors in One Order.
- Vendor Shop page management.
- Vendor Products on shop page.
- Vendor Ratings and feedback.
- Separate Area to Manage Orders/Sales for Each Vendor.
- Common Payment Processing.
- Withdrawal System to request payouts.
- Vendor Dashboard with Total sales, latest orders, Chart.
- Product Specific - Shipping Methods, Duration & Rates.
In addition to this, you will also get features like order processing, customer groups and intuitive interface for as low as $250. I think, Yo!Kart is fulfilling all your requirements and you may want to check more about it :) View further details about Yo!Kart here: http://www.fatbit.com/multi-vendor-ecommerce-system-yokart.html
You might be able to get a cheap website but will it help you sell your product?These are two separate things. If the site does not have the correct UX strategy your bounce rates might be high. Which means your conversions rates will be low (little to no sales) Creating a design that is professional and trustworthy and showcases you the product features takes time. Furthermore, online users are raising the bar on websites. They expect a nice, friendly user experience. If you don't have the UX strategy done right its a problem. Good luck! Would love to see a follow-up on your project.