December 6, 2012 jkdavis

eCommerce – How to spot a fraud

As we are in an era with web design becoming almost required for any business, eCommerce is becoming more and more prevalent online. Small businesses are hiring web designers to create affordable websites that deliver their product online as well as driving sales to their store location as well. Search Engine Optimization is the same way, even small business owners are able to take advantage of this valuable tool to drive traffic and sales to their business. eCommerce refers to websites that sell products via their website to customers. This is usually handled in an automated way so that business owners require little to no interaction with the eCommerce website to finalize a sale.

eCommerce Customers

These customers are a key factor in this model of having a successful eCommerce website. Without customers to your eCommerce website, you have no sales. Us as web designers need to make sure that this does not happen. Even with the best Search Engine Optimization services in the world, if you have a complicated, hard to navigate, “not user intuitive” eCommerce website, then your business will suffer. We receive many phone calls of businesses needing our professional help to fix their website that their friend or family member had made. While it may seem great to have a friend or family member create a free website for you, it may not be the best idea. Would you trust someone with zero experience with taxes handle your taxes at the end of the year? The same goes with web design; hire a professional to do it right, and you will avoid unnecessary complications.

No sales = No money = Failed Business
Hire a Professional

“I hate to say it, but your friend or family member is not a professional.

eCommerce Market Trends

From our analysis of our website sales since we began eCommerce web design is that eCommerce websites are becoming more and more prevalent online. It is to no surprise that small business owners are looking for an effective, low-overhead, way to sell their goods online. With hosting only costing $100/yr and a domain name of only $14.99/yr, there is really no drawback to start getting your products online. Granted, you can spend thousands upon thousands of dollars into anything to receive the best of anything, and it goes the same for eCommerce websites. But as a small business owner, you really only need a website that can get the job done, and be simple for your customer without being overwhelming like a major retail website with thousands upon thousands of products. eCommerce is on an upturn in the past year and we see no signs of it slowing down.

eCommerce Design

With websites being designed every day by thousands of web design firms, we notice a trend in eCommerce design. We find fully functional eCommerce websites that are poorly designed. These are people that are coming to us requesting help as they were charged several thousands of dollars and given a poorly designed website that they can’t even update personally. Right now in 2012 you can hire a professional web designer to create an eCommerce website for you (under $1200) that you can update your products on and it would be professional. We at Kesil Consulting do this, but it tears at us that many web design firms don’t. They lock you in for the life of your website to pay for outrageous maintenance charges that you could have avoided from the start.

Take your time – Research – Ask Questions about long term goals

You can find websites for as low as $50 online, that promise all of the riches, glory and never ending profits from their services. You can also find the same thing from places that will charge you $5000+ for the exact same service. Interested yet? You can spot how your website will turn out by following these few short steps:

Review the Company/Freelancers Portfolio

- Like what you see? Good – Bad – Ugly? (Hint: Don’t go with the first place you look over, take notes, and ask yourself questions)

Review their pricing

- What do you get the more you pay? Web designers need to make a living as per anyone else, so don’t expect to be paying someone $5/hr to give you something outstanding. If you are wanting a website for $100, that only gives the web designer a few hours to do a 50 point list for even the most basic website. Do you want your website to look like it has been rushed? You built your business slowly and correctly; allow your business the same courtesy if someone else is taking it into their hands.

Look for a phone number

- Call them and request more information on their web design packages. Is the company from the USA or are they sourcing work overseas to someone that doesn’t even speak your language? If they can’t speak your language, how do you expect them to understand what your needs are? Try to stay away from 1-800 numbers, they can be sketchy.

Ask a friend

- Don’t ask them to design your website, but have them sit down with you and look over things with you. Perhaps they will catch something you do not and save you quite a bit of time and money.

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Comment (1)

  1. “Don’t ask them to design your website, but have them sit down with you and look over things with you.”

    You saved the best for last, Justin!

    This is one of the biggest mistakes I see people make when it comes to website design: surrendering their design work over to a “friend” who created their own website, thinking somehow that they know more about it than they do. Or, they make an even bigger mistake by surrendering it “lock, stock & barrel” over to a web designer who may take advantage of their naivete.

    No one knows you better than you, including your friends. They may be able to provide some quality feedback as you say; but ultimately, it comes down to trusting yourself and setting some parameters for your web design no matter who performs the work.

    Great post!

    - James Artre

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