Small Business Forum
 
Home


Go Back   Small Business Forum > SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE > 05 - Business Operations
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read




05 - Business Operations Management, P&L Control & More

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 07-08-2008, 12:00 PM
rightside
 
Posts: n/a
Default Various questions

I'm going to be launching a new online advertising / marketing company very soon. After completing my business plan and various things, i have a few holes. Any help would be appreciated!

1. Should i have customers mail checks? Or what type of shopping cart would i need for my website if im only offering 7-8 different services( Most i find are for catalogs 30-200 size, and are quite costly ) I want them to feel secure and trusted when purchasing my services..

2. What other organizations are there similar to LeTip. Since my business markets to other businesses i would really like to join other local groups to drive business.

3. What office necessities do you recommend for at home? Second phone line really worth it?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 07-08-2008, 12:37 PM
Uk-netmarketer
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rightside View Post

1. Should i have customers mail checks? Or what type of shopping cart would i need for my website if im only offering 7-8 different services( Most i find are for catalogs 30-200 size, and are quite costly ) I want them to feel secure and trusted when purchasing my services..
In my experience - take payment online or you won't sell diddly-squat. A FEW people will want to post you a cheque (1 in 100). The rest of the orders will happen online. 1 in 10 will want to call up and speak to someone with some made up excuse for a question to check you're real first. You need to get the shopping cart right or you'll, again, sell naff-all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rightside View Post
2. What other organizations are there similar to LeTip. Since my business markets to other businesses i would really like to join other local groups to drive business.
Don't bother. concentrate on your market and your marketing plan. You have to advertise to have a business. Doing things that are not advertising are a waste of time. You might sell shoes for a living, but going to a football match just because there are loads of shoe-wearing people there will do you no good. Advertise and get response, or direct market and pitch - the choice is yours but I don't think anything else works. Not really. If you have some spare time to kill and don't want to watch re-runs of Dallas or Dynasty, then network by all means.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rightside View Post
3. What office necessities do you recommend for at home? Second phone line really worth it?
I personally feel it's important to look and feel like a business so would always present an address and contact details, fax etc, that look like I expect a business to look like. But it's what the customer expects that matters.

I have a small business that operates with one phone line and a broadband but use a decent-sounding pbx and voicemail system and on-hold music that sounds like a business. Being able to put people on hold and transfer calls makes the business 'feel' the right size.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 07-08-2008, 01:02 PM
rightside
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Thanks a-ton for your reply

Anyone elses opinions would be greatly appreciated!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 07-08-2008, 01:38 PM
Uk-netmarketer
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rightside View Post
Thanks a-ton for your reply

Anyone elses opinions would be greatly appreciated!
I'd prefer "Everyone else's ".
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 07-09-2008, 09:25 PM
HostRail.com
 
Posts: n/a
Default

I agree. Mailing checks is like asking someone to play a record on their ipod. There are lots of cart options out there to choose from. I use osCommerce for my clients' cart hosting systems. It the most secure and user friendly. If you have specific cart needs, there are thousands of free plug-ins to choose from to best facilitate your check out needs. I also recommend not using google check out or paypal, as this requires the customer to be forwarded to another site, breaking down their sense of security. Set up a merchant account and get an SSL certificate instead. It takes a lot to get a customer to get to the check out point as far as confidence goes and just one little thing can make them turn around and leave.

Let me know if I can help,
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 07-10-2008, 12:19 AM
rightside
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Well thanks a ton!
A question, where do payments get made to using a shopping cart? Have you set up a company checking account? or credit/debit account?

Since im only selling 5-6 items, using a whole catalog is quite a waste. I just want to integrate it into my current web design (perhaps a 'purchase' link) which opens a new window
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 07-11-2008, 04:09 PM
HostRail.com
 
Posts: n/a
Default

The checking account can be your personal account. Or you can setup a business account or doing business as account if you have filed that with your local secretary of state office or an online firm like legal zoom. Once you have an account you can apply for a credit card processing account. This will cost About $100 to setup plus $50 a month. Once you are accepted to take credit cards you can input your merchant ID into many cart systems and start taking orders. If you dont want to use a cart system you can have a website designer/programmer wright the necessary code to submit credit card purchases.

If you dont want to go that route you can add 'buy now' buttons to your site that send them to paypal or google etc... but I don't recommend this, as most people find customers leave once they are sent to google or paypal
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 07-13-2008, 12:52 PM
Spider
 
Posts: n/a
Default

For a small number of sale per month, I would recopmmend PayPal.

PayPal is easy, it is trusted and will accept payments from anyone with a creditcard (ie you do not have to be a member of PayPal to make a payment.)

But the item that is most important for me - as a buyer and a seller - is security. As a seller, I do not want to have to worry about the security of my computer system. As a buyer, I do not have to worry about the security of the seller's computer system. I mean, I am quite confident that the security of PayPal is topnotch, but I have no idea if a website selling homemade handmade pottery items has any security at all!
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 07-14-2008, 10:31 AM
huggytree
 
Posts: n/a
Default

i recommend Paypal...everyone has used it and trusts it...i feel more secure on Paypal than anything else....everyone has experience with Ebay by now..no one would question it....sending checks will turn people off...

i belong to a BNI group....ive been in for 9 months and i am up to $45,000 worth of business....some people do $2,000 worth and some do $1,000,000(realitors)......it depends on how you present yourself at the meetings and if your business is marketable to them...Some groups are great and some are leakers...visit as many as possible before you make a decision...it has made the difference in my business from 'making it' to 'doing well'....Chamber of commerce is a leaker in my opinion...i go to everything and network.. everyone passes out cards and probably throws them out as they leave...never got 1 call

i recommend a 2nd phone line and a 3rd fax line....everything you do needs to look like youve been in business for ever....look professional on day #1....when i find someone who shares a fax i know they are small time or starting out...people will put you into a catagory which is not positive in my opinion...why let them..spend the money and add it to your costs.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 07-17-2008, 10:41 AM
chizarium
 
Posts: n/a
Default

use Volusion shopping cart platform, it blows away every other cart on the market in terms of usability, optimization, etc
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:49 AM.


Powered by vBulletin™ Copyright © 2011 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.