Saturday, June 30, 2012

3dCart Adds SEO, PPC

3dcart, used by tens of thousands of Internet businesses, is considered one of the most dependable eCcommerce platforms on the market.

With its latest service offering, the company now makes Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay Per Click management (PPC) available to its customers, along with a dedicated Search Engine Marketing (SEM) team. This gives 3dCart clients high-end online marketing at a fraction of the cost of major search marketing agencies. And because the 3dCart SEM team knows the many intricacies of its eCommerce platform, there is no learning curve between marketing strategies and execution.

In addition to 3dacart's new marketing solution, the 3dCart SEM team has begun a blog aimed at educating online merchants about the shopping cart's long list of SEO-friendly features. The blog is also available to the public at Instructions on managing SEO guidelines within the shopping cart software is a primary focus. Their new blog also features an area for anyone to submit SEO questions, which are often publicly posted and answered. This is done in an effort to educate merchants on SEO and how to better optimize their own websites -- and probably to show off the expertise of the 3dCart SEO team!

3dCart's SEO benefits include a focus on categorization and meta tags for individual pages; the ability to specify keywords that best describe each page's content, which makes optimizing each item easy and efficient; and 3dcart's 301 redirect control panel allowing its users to manage the URL of every page to keep the same page URL's within a new shopping cart system.

Friday, June 29, 2012

TurnTo Joins Demandware LINK Partner Program

TurnTo Networks today announced that it has become a Demandware LINK Technology Partner, joining a community accelerating adoption of eCommerce technologies complementary to the Demandware Commerce platform.

Through the LINK Technology Partner Program, TurnTo has developed a pre-built integration between its Social Q&A Platform and Demandware Commerce, making it possible for Demandware clients to implement its Social Q&A solution in a fraction of the time normally required.

“Demandware is excited to have TurnTo as part of our LINK Technology community.  Fresh, unique content is increasingly important to successful online merchandising, as is meaningful shopper engagement.  The TurnTo solution delivers on both these goals, providing a key element in a well-rounded ecommerce strategy,” said Jamus Driscoll, Senior VP of Marketing for Demandware.

Active Outreach
TurnTo’s social approach to product Q&A enables shoppers to get their questions answered by previous purchasers of the product they are considering.  The patent-pending “active outreach” model delivers answers in under an hour, on average.

Merchants experience conversion lift of 300-900% for shoppers using the system and SEO benefits from tripling the user-generated content (UGC) produced by their customer reviews tool.

“Being able to easily add our Social Q&A system to sites built on the Demandware Commerce platform is exciting for us and great for retailers. Several Demandware clients have already experienced the ease of integration and witnessed firsthand the amount of UGC our system has generated for them on their product pages,” said Cathie O’Callaghan, TurnTo Director of Marketing.

Demandware LINK
The Demandware LINK Technology Partner Program provides Demandware clients with a rich of set of pre-built integrations to eCommerce technologies and applications that support revenue-generating opportunities and enhance the brand experience. By reducing the cost and complexity of integrations, Demandware LINK allows retailers to adopt innovative third-party technologies quickly and cost-effectively, allowing them to accelerate time to market and realize a faster return on their investment.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

3dcart Adds Bizelo to Partner Group

Bizelo has joined the suite of partners for 3dcart to provide for management of centralized inventory, plus supply and returns management, between multiple online stores.

Bizelo pulls in disparate streams of data, running them through a central hub and sending them back  to sync inventory, supply, returns and accounting information in real-time. For 3dcart merchants managing storefronts on other software platforms (like eBay or Amazon), the tool simplifies how sales channels are managed in four key areas:
  1.   Inventory: Merchants can manage what’s in stock, how items are priced—anything relating to inventory. When an item sells on one channel, inventory is updated through Bizelo.
  2.   Supply: Navigating relationships with suppliers can get tricky. Through Bizelo, 3dcart retailers easy ways to manage the supplier relationship from end-to-end.
  3.   Returns: Product returns and inventory restocking are simple with Bizelo. Whatever the channel, the application handles returns smoothly, updating data on all fronts.
  4.   Accounting: Bizelo simplifies bookkeeping by bridging multiple sales channels with the merchant’s accounting software solution.
Bizelo App Preview
“Partnering with 3dcart opens up our potential audience to more than 15,000 online merchants,” said Evan Schwartz, Bizelo community manager. “The 3dcart integration makes our solution more comprehensive for all of our customers.”

“Maintaining multiple sales channels is a crucial way that online merchants extend their influence and gain more sales,” said 3dcart CEO Gonzalo Gil. “Bizelo is one of the easiest tools available to ensure those channels are managed efficiently through centralized, synced order processing.”

Monday, June 25, 2012

PA To Tax Cloud Computing

In a private letter ruling issued May 31, 2012 (Letter Ruling SUT-12-001), the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue stated that accessing pre-written software via the Internet is taxable if the purchaser and the user are both located in Pennsylvania.

The ruling represents a departure from the Department's earlier treatment of cloud computing whereby access to software solely through the Internet was not a taxable transaction, as long as the server did not reside in Pennsylvania.

"User" is defined as either an employee or a customer of the software purchaser/owner (according to the Letter Ruling, "In order to access the software, Taxpayer's customers either pay a subscription fee to Taxpayer or pay Taxpayer on a per-use basis. Both Taxpayer's employees and customers may collectively be referred to as 'end users' of the licenses to use the software.")

The reasoning for the new ruling is that computer software is "tangible personal property," and therefore, the charge for electronically accessing such software is taxable if the user is accessing the software from within Pennsylvania. However, if the end user is located outside the Commonwealth, the transaction is not subject to tax, even if the server is located in Pennsylvania.

If the billing address for pre-written software accessed remotely is a Pennsylvania address, all users associated with that billing address are presumed to be located within the state. To show that some users are actually out of state, the purchaser must submit an exemption certificate to the seller stating the percentage of users who are located outside the Commonwealth (this presumably applies only to employees, not customers).

So, in a nutshell, it doesn't matter where the server is located. If the user is in Pennsylvania, the user pays a tax on a subscription or per-usage charge. What the letter does not really address directly is software used only in-house, and not by customers. Presumably, there would be a one-time tax levied at the time of purchase (or on installment payments made by the purchaser).

While this seems like an effort to "rationalize" the taxation process, it may have the effect of discouraging companies from locating facilities with a large head count inside Pennsylvania, or encouraging those (few, these days) who are expanding to look elsewhere (if they use cloud-based solutions on a pay-as-you-go basis to run their business, which businesses increasingly do). And it will certainly discourage companies who offer access to software to their customers on a subscription or per-use basis from locating in the Commonwealth (although only PA residents will be so taxed, but PA is the sixth most populous state). Yes, this can be said of any tax, but unless and until nationwide treatment of situations like this are resolved at the Federal level, states will have to decide between trying to collect additional revenue or encouraging large employers to love Pennsylvania.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

GoECart Cited by Connecticut Quality Improvement Partnership

GoECart, a leading provider of fully integrated on-demand eCommerce solutions, was honored on June 5th by The Connecticut Quality Improvement Award Partnership Inc. for the outstanding innovation of its latest eCommerce suite, GoECart 360.

Web merchants require not just eCommerce storefront technology but robust order management, inventory management, and CRM capabilities. GoECart 360 provides merchants with all of these applications in one unified system using a single data source.

For 25 years, the CQIA has been promoting and recognizing innovation in Connecticut organizations. It is America’s first state-level quality award utilizing the Malcolm Baldrige Performance Excellence criteria.

“At GoECart, innovation is critical to our vision and we are thrilled to receive this award from CQIA this year," said Manish Chowdhary, GoECart’s CEO. “This award recognizes the tireless dedication of our team and our outstanding new multi-channel eCommerce suite that was designed from the ground up with one idea in mind—to help SMB merchants succeed in today’s hyper-competitive eCommerce world.”

GoECart 360 empowers emerging brands and established merchants with affordable software as a service (SaaS) eCommerce solution that includes full multi-channel integration with online marketplaces such as and eBay, plus robust reporting with built-in dynamic dashboards and drill-down reports.

GameQuestDirect, a leading retailer of video games, has seen order volume increase 40% since migrating to GoECart 360 from three systems., a recreational sporting goods outfit, migrated to GoECart 360 and eliminated all in-house IT in the process.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Alternatives to QR Codes

Quick Response (QR) Codes are slowly catching on in print media, from magazines and newspapers to product labels and billboards (a dangerous variation, in my opinion). Many people still don't know what they do, and the majority of marketers aren't yet using them, but they are a handy way of letting you scan a link with your smartphone taking you to the Code owner's Website or landing page.

There are numerous free online generators to create QR Codes for any URL.

But they are not the only game in town. Apart from standard 2D bar codes that have been around for decades, there are other kinds of 2D and 3D bar codes that encapsulate much more data than the standard 2D bar code, and in a more compact space.

There's the colorful Micorsoft Tag:

The MaxiCode tag:

 The Data Matrix

The JagTag:
QR codes by JAGTAG allows feature phones to take action on bar codes too
And image recognition tags like the Blippar and some specialized Custom Tags using image backgrounds (produced by Microsoft).

In short, even before QR Codes have become widely adopted, there are numerous competitors. And with image codes, the sky's the limit on how we will be interacting with Weblinks and smartphones in the years to come.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

eCommerce Recommendation Site Uncovet Wants To Own The “Style Graph”

Interested in knowing how recommendation sites like Fab and Ofakind work? TechCrunch sheds some interesting light in its profile of the latest reco site, Uncovet (debuting today), that wants to "own" the “Style Graph." Take a look.

Uncovet screenshot 1

Thursday, June 07, 2012

giggle Selects Demandware Commerce

Demandware, Inc., a leader in on-demand eCommerce, has announced that giggle, a major baby specialty retailer ("the one-stop source for today's new parent"), has relaunched its eCommerce site,, on Demandware Commerce.

The site features giggle’s Best Baby Registry, a sophisticated, interactive section that ushers expectant parents through the process of creating the perfect baby registry for their unique needs.

“Our mission is to make the transition from not having kids to having kids simple, easy and fun. Our Website and Best Baby Registry are critical vehicles for reaching and servicing our customers. We needed a digital commerce solution that gives us the functionality and brand control necessary for delivering a superior shopping and gifting experience. With Demandware, we now have a flexible, scalable platform that we can leverage to grow our brand and continue to expand our reach,” said Ali Wing, CEO and founder for giggle.

giggle required an eCommerce platform that could scale to support its growth and provide its team with full control over the user experience and site functionality. The company switched from an on-premise platform to Demandware Commerce, which provides a robust set of multichannel commerce capabilities, a fully customizable development environment, and a scalable world-class infrastructure readily available for giggle to plug into.

“giggle wanted to feel confident about site reliability and functionality with its online business. With Demandware, they get peace of mind, knowing they have a best-in-class cloud commerce platform with industry-leading performance and uptime, capable of supporting its digital commerce strategy today and tomorrow,” said Jamus Driscoll, senior VP of marketing for Demandware.

Friday, June 01, 2012

NetSuite Announces "Commerce as a Service"

NetSuite Inc., a vendor of cloud-based business management software suites, has announced NetSuite “Commerce as a Service” (CaaS), enabling businesses to manage their interactions with other businesses and directly with consumers via a cloud platform that delivers the customer experience, via any current or future device, directly on the core NetSuite cloud ERP/CRM business management application.

At the heart of the CaaS initiative is NetSuite SuiteCommerce, a new commerce-aware platform that provides a central system to manage all transactions and associated customer interactions with consumers and other businesses regardless of touchpoint (Website, smart phone, social media site, in-store, etc.).

“Over the past decade, NetSuite has transformed how our customers operate their businesses internally. Over the next decade, NetSuite will transform how businesses operate with other businesses and with their customers through NetSuite Commerce as a Service. Our new NetSuite SuiteCommerce offering is at the heart of this transformation,” said Zach Nelson, CEO of NetSuite. “By transforming the NetSuite business application into a commerce-aware platform, we enable our customers to extend the richest set of cloud operational capabilities available anywhere directly to their customers, regardless of the device those customers are using – be it a smart phone, a tablet, a personal computer, a point-of-sale system, or touchpoints not yet developed.”

Increasingly, the proliferation of new end-user preferred “touchpoints” such as smart phones and social media has increased customers’ expectations of a tailored, individualized experience. Consumers assume businesses have full visibility to their transactions across touchpoints and will use that knowledge to provide an optimized experience. Likewise, businesses expect their suppliers to have insight into their business relationships, and assume that they will deliver a B2B experience as compelling as a B2C website. Finally, physical products increasingly include commerce-embedded capabilities, which enable machine-to-machine (M2M) commerce without the involvement of humans, based upon defined business rules for predictable needs.

The Architecture
NetSuite SuiteCommerce is architected to enable companies of all sizes to deliver rich, touchpoint-agnostic experience to their customers,” added Zach Nelson. “The secret sauce is an integrated back-end system that combines core business processing capabilities with rich customer profiles, to deliver the brand promise of a personalized experience, anytime from anywhere.”

SuiteCommerce exposes native NetSuite commerce capabilities -- including merchandising, pricing, promotions, payment processing, support management, and customer management -- as services that can be leveraged by any presentation layer, while providing an integrated back-end business management system. The NetSuite SuiteCommerce platform includes several new important technologies:

SuiteCommerce Experience – The SuiteCommerce Experience is the page serving and development framework that enables companies to deliver rich user experiences, regardless of touchpoint. The SuiteCommerce Experience is flexible so as to enable designers to create any type of customer experience – from page layout to interaction design. SuiteCommerce Experience offers sub-second page times by avoiding the redundant rendering and downloading associated with traditional presentation frameworks. Leading eCommerce design agencies including Fluid, Sweden Interactive, Live Area Labs, and Pod1, among others, joined as initial customer experience partners supporting the SuiteCommerce Platform.

SuiteCommerce Services –The SuiteCommerce Platform includes a new group of services called SuiteCommerce Services that expose NetSuite’s back-end commerce functionality and data as services to the SuiteCommerce Experience and any other commerce front-end application. These services, combined with associated SuiteCloud development tools, enable customers to develop new business logic and leverage that business logic across multiple touchpoints. For example, promotions can be implemented once and enabled across online, telephone and in-store transactions to augment the core transactional capabilities, and customize the system to their exact requirements. Leading B2C and B2B commerce providers such as Square, Stripe, SPS Commerce, and Retail Anywhere have announced new product offerings to support omni-channel commerce on top of the SuiteCommerce Services platform.

NetSuite Commerce Platform –The NetSuite Commerce Platform provides the core native business processing capabilities to run modern commerce operations, including order management, inventory management and payment processing with personalized promotions, merchandising, account management and support management technologies. The power of providing an integrated experience and cross-channel business logic with SuiteCommerce is apparent in the following use cases: 
Retail: When customers appear in a retail setting, not only will they be recognized, but store clerks will also be able to see on their point-of-sale system what is in their eCommerce shopping cart or wish list as they serve them.

Multi-Channel Business Logic: Since SuiteCommerce offers a single back-end system for processing orders, managing inventory and generating offers, a business rule such as a maximum number of purchases on a sale item, can be implemented once and enforced across the website, in-store and via telesales.

Rich Customer Profile driving promotions: SuiteCommerce provides a single system for customer history, product/item details, and promotions management. For example, a promotion could be created in seconds targeting customers who have purchased more than $1,000 across any channel and offer a limited time 30 percent off promotion on any item with a gross margin greater than 50 percent.

Product Configurations
There are two versions of NetSuite SuiteCommerce, one designed to meet the needs of small and mid-sized enterprises and one designed for large and very large enterprises. NetSuite SuiteCommerce Mid-market is available immediately and includes the core functionality of SuiteCommerce Services, as well as access to a number of add-on modules including product feeds, ratings and reviews, and loyalty programs. It is designed to support companies with smaller order volumes and product catalogs. NetSuite SuiteCommerce Enterprise includes the entire SuiteCommerce offering (SuiteCommerce Experience and SuiteCommerce Services Platform). It provides support for enterprise scale order volumes and product/item catalogs.
Web Analytics