Here are a few great resources that we've picked out for our site visitors. Please note that the following are suggestions only, and should be used simply as one resource in your researching. Be sure to check out the sites below thoroughly before signing up with any service, to make sure it's right for your company.
The OptionCart catalog is a great base product that helps you add products quickly and easily into your site for sale. But sometimes you need a little more functionality, assistance adding products, or a bit of tweaking to give you that perfect custom appearance. Here are a few resources that can help:
This is a great service to let you take credit cards on your site. It's easily integratable with the premium Mals-E account, fully automated, only costs $49 to sign up, charges no monthly fees, and has no limits. Plus, it does have a recurring payment feature, so it's perfect for sites like hosting companies or membership sites. Instead of monthly fees, they charge you every time you place an order - currently a fee equal to 45 cents plus 5.5% of the total order.
This is best used as an "add-on" service, not the only credit card service used, because your customers have to sign up to send you money. The fees are low, though - no setup fees, and 30 cents plus 2.9% of the total order.
Trending Solutions: Busy ecommerce store owners no longer have to worry about fitting everything in! Trending Solutions offers inexpensive customer care phone services and a distribution service for product shipments, enabling small online stores to take customer calls and fulfill orders in a timely manner without frantically trying to do it all themselves.
There are a lot of domain registrars in existence. But this one is our favorite, because of both the low cost, as well as the great customer service and security. Registering a domain is highly recommended - it gives you a level of branding and professionalism that is very needed for today's online market.
A mailing list system for small business web sites. Mailings are handled on the EZEzine's web server, so you don't have to worry about taxing your web server. Highly recommended, easy to use, and has good blacklisting avoidance setups. Free for the first thousand mailings per month; after that you must pay for services.
Your Mailing List Provider:
Another good mailing list system that is housed on external servers. The free accounts allow for a thousand subscribers and 250 MB of bandwidth; if you send additional messages or if you want an ad-free base, you must purchase services.
A CGI script that you install on your server, which allows you to send bulk mailings to customers. Mailings go through your server vs. a third party company, which makes it easier to customize your mailing setup.
A PHP script that you install on your server, which allows you to send bulk mailings to customers. Mailings go through your server vs. a third party company, which makes it easier to customize your mailing setup.
Win 32 Pad:
This is a really great text editor that replaces the default NotePad in Windows. It allows you to edit text as you would with NotePad, but includes support for larger files, plus adds line numbers and Find/Replace. This is the perfect tool to view your PHP files in, without worrying about modifying code.
XAMPP: A great free program to install PHP, mySQL, Apache and phpMyAdmin onto a Windows desktop. After installing this program, you'll be able to view your catalog on your PC. Very handy, especially for developers.
This is a terrific quick introduction to PHP, for those who want to learn more about the language.
The PHP manual contains all the functions you might need to add on to your catalog system. Please note that this is for users with PHP experience, and can be rather technical in nature.
The mySQL manual contains all the queries you might need if you want to add on to your catalog system. As with the PHP manual, this is rather technical, and is designed for more advanced users only.
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