One of the biggest challenges facing small business owners today is figuring out how they can make more money with their website. This has become even more apparent with the rise in revenues from companies like Amazon, Apple and Google.
When it comes to e-commerce most small business owners find it just too difficult to get around the technology. With so many “moving parts”, most businesses don’t even know where to start.
I’m a big believer in giving yourself a good head start when it comes to building a site and by that I mean making sure that you have a site that will be flexible enough to grow with your business. That includes being able to accept payments online.
Now there are many different options out there and I’ve talked about what the best options are for your budget in another post (you can read more about that here). But today I’d like to focus on what I think is the BEST option for any small business and that’s WordPress.
You can set up a shopping cart on any type of content management system, but I still think that WordPress is going to give you the most bang for your buck here.
There are 3 WordPress plugins that I would recommend and I have used them on sites for my own clients but choosing the best WP plugin for your business all depends on what you are using it for. So let’s take a look at my top 3 picks:
This is my personal favorite, because it even thought it’s free, it offers a wide variety of solutions. You can set it up for just a small numbers of products or go all out. You can also use it for both physical and digital products or for one time purchases or subscriptions – the choices are endless.
Plus it also integrates with just about every merchant account, payment gateway and shipping service. They have a wide variety of extensions for just about every need that you can imagine and it doesn’t cost a small fortune to use.
2. Easy Digital Downloads
This company focuses on giving you the ability to sell any kind of digital product online whether you’re selling books, online courses, subscriptions or even music. If you can create a digital version of it and they can download it – this will be the plugin for you.
If you’re looking for something a little less complicated and social media friendly then you may want to go with Ecwid. Ecwid does a lot of the heavy lifting for you (they even help you set-up a shop via Facebook) BUT you do have to pay an additional monthly fee to use it because it is essentially a SaAS (software as a service).
So you will need to include their fees on top of your trans and shipping fees from your merchant account and shipper.
Bonus tip! For those of you may not be quite ready to move over to WordPress just yet, you too can use Ecwid. It integrates with several other platforms including Squarespace, Weebly, Wix, Blogger, Joomla and Adobe Muse.
You can learn more about Ecwid and see a showcase of the types of website using their plugin here: https://ecwid.com/showcase
I like all 3 of these plugins for WordPress and these companies seem to be on top of their game, when it comes to updates and adding new features. Just keep in mind that no matter what shopping cart or e-commerce plugin your choose, be sure to read the fine print.
Don’t forget about those fees can add up – quickly. So pull out that trusty calculator (app) and do your homework before you make any big commitments on time or money. OK?
Alrighty! That’s it for me this week, but as always I’d love to hear from you.
Question: What products or services do you currently offer, that you would like to sell on your website to make some extra cash right now? Share your comments and questions below.
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