Status
Not open for further replies.

JMR

New Member
Hi,

I need to build an eCommerce site to sell approx 20 products to consumers in Ireland.
I am fairly computer savvy but know nothing about web development. I've looked at and got quotes from a couple of web development companies (eazyinternetmarketing.ie and equinox.ie).
Their prices vary from €1500 to €3500.
Then I came across register365.ie and their premium eCommerce package for €249 per year.
So obvioulsly the major difference is that with Register365 you build the site yourself using their templates and with the web developers you get their expertise and most likely a better built site??

Question is, for somebody who knows nothing about web development (but is an automation engineer, so should pick it up quickly enough) what would be the best option to take?
Has anybody got experience of beginners using Register365? They could not provide me with a list of example sites that I could look at, which I found odd!
Has anybody got experience of the 2 companies mentioned above or could recommend anybody else?

Thanks for taking the time, appreciate your help
 

Tom

New Member
It's pretty much as you say, with a web development company you'll most likely get a more professional end result quicker and usually with more flexability etc. But it costs more. With diy hosted site builders you have to spend some time learning how to use them, you still need to create any custom design elements, the end results can sometimes look more basic and "templaty" and usually they sacrifice flexability for simplicity and so are more restricted in what you can do.
 

MOH

New Member
You may also have problems moving to a new host down the line if you're tied into a host specific system.
There's a number of free shopping carts out there, of varying degrees of complexity - anything from Magento down, ZenCart probably has less of a learning curve, to plugins for Wordpress.
You can look at free or premium template to customise the look of it.

Depending on how straightforward your shop is, what kind of payment method you're looking at, and what options you want it might be as simple as setting up Wordpress (very straightforwad) and adding a shopping cart plugin, then looking for a theme that suits you. All of which you could do for nothing more than the cost of the hosting.

But as with anything, you get what you pay for. You'll also have to invest time in learning the setup, and you'll have no one to fall back on if things go wrong. You also to consider other elements of the site design like SEO, getting analytics set up.

If time isn't a factor and you have hosting maybe it would be worth you having a look at it yourself first to see how you get on. But if you want to get up and running quickly you might be better off paying someone else to do it.
 

JMR

New Member
Thanks for the reply's guys.
I dont want to spend weeks trying to get the site setup so may go with a web development co.
Any opinions on the 2 companies mentioned above or any other recommendations?

Payment method will be PayPal as I think there may be too much effort required in obtaining a merchant license.

Thanks again
 

FergusM

New Member
Hi,

If you want to get a shop up fast then it might be good to go with a hosted shop. It can be a bit of a minefield but if you search for shopping cart reviews you will some comparison sites. These are affiliate sale site but they do give give you the key functions that are needed in a cart. Take a few trials and see how you find the admin dashboard and the front end. If the admin is hard to use, you won't use it and if the front end is hard your customers won't use it.

As far as I know (others might give you advice here) if you have an .ie address and want to sell in Ireland you can host anywhere but if you have a .com address and want to sell in Ireland you will need to host in Ireland. This last point means getting a hosted shopping cart will be difficult other than from the source you already mentioned. I know there is someone in Dublin offering a hosted cart but they charge commission on your sales. An instant partner that does not share the losses.

If you use a hosted solution be careful that the package bandwidth is enough and that you know what the charges for going over. I believe that the conversion rates on eCommerce sites is about 2% so the bandwidth is an issue and given the low conversion rate how good the cart is also a huge issue. Using the one from a general hosting company might not be a great idea. Big Commerce have a hosted cart with a great dashboard. Volution are meant to be OK as well but I have seen complaints on forums about the additional bandwidth costs that were incurred. Check out more carts though.

Don't jump straight in as you might only have to change the shop over to another one later and still have to do all the research that you could do now.

As for spending that sort of money you mentioned. Well here is my opinion on that. They will use a free open source shop for your project, do quite a bit of work but not enough. You will still have to learn a huge amount yourself to operate it properly or have to pay them to maintain and upgrade it for you.They will never be able to do as well as you could in time.

Hope this helps.

Regards
Fergus
 

unrealindeed

Administrator
Staff member
There is a lot to learn in Magento, its a big system and you probably wont/dont need half of it.
I use Virtumart on a Joomla platform (All Free), and after becoming very familiar with it, I like it.
 

link8r

New Member
I am fairly computer savvy but know nothing about web development.
From a critical-thinking (critical=judging=reaching a decision; not to be a critic) point of view

I did but I now no longer see any relationship with being tech savvy and being able to build a web-based business anymore than I see someone who owns a shop understands it either. I was a software engineer/programmer/automation engineer 14 years ago - I don't get involved in web design at all. There is a "technical element" - i.e. writing PHP code, designing a database, creating a HTML layer - and then there is a presentation layer (what do you say, what does it look like, how is it represented) and no matter what you think - getting the first bit right doesn't give the second bit - and the second bit is the more important bit.

So what do you want - something functional (i.e. it's technically a shopping cart and technically speaking, somebody could purchase someone on it if they wanted) or something that will sell. Is that something you can do?

By the way - if you haven't done that before, then technically speaking you cannot do it. You can try, practice and learn. But you cannot right now. So why is it an option?

I've looked at and got quotes from a couple of web development companies (eazyinternetmarketing.ie and equinox.ie). Their prices vary from €1500 to €3500.
It's difficult to comment on, I haven't seen their work, I don't know what the ec system is based on, what your requirements were but €1,500 sounds really low to me (so you're going to get about 15-30 hours ?) and €3,500 seems low too. You're comparing product and services here (see the next one). They're not comparable. I don't know how people engage on fixed priced service-as-a-product.

Presumably, product information, shipping, payment gateways need to be uploaded. But how many categories will you have? What ancillary and informational pages will you have? Will your site calculate shipping costs and how? Will they plugin all of the Google toys for you? What about ongoing support? Also, who did the overall digital strategy - is there a marketing strategy or is it build-it-and-they-will-come.

Then I came across register365.ie and their premium eCommerce package for €249 per year.
So obvioulsly the major difference is that with Register365 you build the site yourself using their templates and with the web developers you get their expertise and most likely a better built site??
I'm guessing that the end product will look like it cost less than €25 to design and therefore you could be doing yourself a disfavour.

Question is, for somebody who knows nothing about web development (but is an automation engineer, so should pick it up quickly enough) what would be the best option to take?
Has anybody got experience of beginners using Register365? They could not provide me with a list of example sites that I could look at, which I found odd!
Has anybody got experience of the 2 companies mentioned above or could recommend anybody else?
I presume because it violates their customer privacy / they didn't design them so should they showcase them / its not really surprising given past experiences :)


Thanks for taking the time, appreciate your help
You're welcome!
 

FergusM

New Member
Starter shops from hosting companies tend to be easy to set up shops for newbies. If they were any good you would not get it for nearly nothing. Do plenty of research and when you can answer your own questions above you will be able to choose a shop. The difference between a good and a bad shop, along with your own skills, is wheather you can put your shop on main street Google or back behind some hill where nobody can see it. The back-end dashboard of a shop can either make or destroy your on page SEO. Above all make sure you get a shop with a paid up support and upgrades or your shop is likely to fall apart over time. But of course if it is not worth getting a merchant account I would wonder how much effort it is worth putting into the shop.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Award-winning Mac antivirus and Internet security software
Top