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Thread: Need input on a proper E-Commerce setup for a firearms store

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    3

    Need input on a proper E-Commerce setup for a firearms store

    Hi All,

    My name is Steve, and I write you from a large gunstore in the northern wastes of Canada. I really, really need some input on what our business should be doing in terms of our website.

    Right now, we are running a half-arsed wordpress site that was setup by a local guy. It's somehow fallen on me to maintain it, and I am feeling more and more like this guy has kind of scammed us a little. WP does not fit the needs we have, and he seems to be unwilling to provide any kind of support or take any of the issues with it seriously. I've spent most of my free time learning HTML and am getting into CSS in order to make this site look halfway professional.

    I've determined that it might be easier to just start from scratch with a proper hosting company and format than to put any more time into trying to fix this mess. We look like a kid's attempt at a storefront, not a $7 million a year net national firearms distributor.

    So, I need some input. Here's the ideal criteria:

    1. Must be cheap. My bosses do not feel computers are worth anything for a business, and it took much cajoling on the part of my "webmaster" predecessor to even get this website up. I feel I could maybe get them to drop $50 a month on this, maximum.

    2. Must be capable of supporting some kind of actual ecommerce - as far as I can tell, WP does not allow good integration of PayPal or similar, and this is a major thing to my employers.

    3. Must be able to integrate with Sage Business Vision or BVEssentials, or have some form of inventory tracking system. We have roughly 2 million UPCs to keep track of, and while only a fraction of those will be represented on the website, I am expected to put in 6 days a week as a salesman as well as keep the website up to date. The more automation possible here, the better.

    4. Must be programmable in CSS or HTML 4/5. I will not be paid to learn a new language and do not intend to put all my free time into learning a new language.

    5. Must be smart phone compatible. Our current site is not despite it being 2015.

    6. Ideally, the site design itself could be done by the hosting company, with myself only having to upload inventory and pictures and the like.

    I think that pretty much covers what we'd need. I've done a little independent research, but it seems as though most ecommerce hosts that advertise charge based on number of items for sale, and this will not fly with the bosses. I am pretty horribly out of my depth here and (if you couldn't tell) kind of frustrated with this, but feel I could convince my employers of the benefits of a new setup if I could present them with a proper plan.

    You can see the current site here:

    http://corlanes.com/

    And here is what I am expected to make it look like/an end result everyone would be happy with:

    http://store.prophetriver.com/

    Any input at all would be really, really appreciated.

    - Steve
    Senior Salesman/Beleaguered Webmaster
    Corlane Sporting Goods

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    28
    E-commerce is made possible via electronic funds transfer, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange, automated data collection systems, inventory management systems, supply chain management and Internet marketing.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    3
    Alrighty, thanks for the response. Would anyone have any suggestions as to someone I can go to who can integrate that into the current wordpress site, by chance? Our current web designer is simply incapable of it, and I do not have the time or ability to do so either. I'd prefer a recommendation as to a company that could build us a site based around the above description, but I realize now this is the wrong forum for that.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    4
    Hi Steve,

    That what you need might be a bit complex thing. I am not sure whether you want to keep going with wordpress, but if not, I would advice you to start maybe with Magento. It's open source application and free of charge which has by default almost everything what you need. If there is some missing feature for you, there are thousands of modules which can be easily installed. Magento is based on PHP for backend and HTML/CSS for frontend. There are also thousands of themes and designs, some of them are free of charge, some not. You can try it out and see whether it fits your needs or not.

    One of the most important thing here is you first point - "Must be cheap". If you do not want to pay a lot of money for this, you can find someone who is willing to work for $50 per month, but you should expect that you will have trouble with him, as you had. Actually, if you want a quality product, you cannot rely on this. Probably as you know less price - less quality. On the other hand if you find a company to make it for you and do maintaining, probably it would cost several thousands dollars per month.

    So my advice is to start with Magento, you can download it and install on your local machine or some server. You can play around and see whether it fits your needs. If you learn how to handle with it, it will be totaly free for you, you do not need to find any external developer or company for that.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    3
    Awesome! Thanks, did not realize it was free and open source. I have no love for wordpress, so I will monkey with that a bit, and see how it turns out.

    Also good to know this can't really be done cheaply. I kinda suspected that to be the case.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    2
    Hi...Do you need a POS? We can help you with credit card processing and an Ipad pOS system.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    72
    It seems that you are facing a lot of technical problems. It is better if you will outsource your development to the expert technical eCommerce agency. They will suggest you and develop as per your requirements.
    I think, Wordpress mostly uses for a blog site, now it has features and functionality for eCommerce. Magento and other eCommerce open source are capable to solve any kind of complexity.

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