I am trying to decide on the best shopping cart solution for my company.
I have much experience with frontpage and a good grasp of operating computers.
I am not afraid to learn new things, but I do not want to dedicate my life to it.
We are a company that sells primarly wholesale to retailers. Our current website
is basically a static catalog. Our prices shown are "retail" prices, our wholesale
customers get a discount off the retail price (depending on wholeslae level). I have
made many sales from the website at retail prices to end-users and want to continue doing so.
I have looked at over 50 shopping cart solutions and most do not meet our needs.
However a few come very close, but with some comprimises
>Here is my wish list...
We offer over 5000 items, so the site must be database driven. I can export inventory and
customer details from our current order entry system to excel and convert to .csv etc.
We need to provide wholesale customers with a log-in so that they may see their price.
Additionally each price level may be offered a discount for quantities of specfic items.
Item # 16612 - Widget Thingy
Retail Price- $10.00
Retail Price- $ 9.00 For 3 or More
Wholesale A - $ 6.00
Wholesale A - $ 5.50 For 10 or More
Wholesale B - $ 5.00
Wholesale B - $ 4.50 For 5 or More
Basically, a look-up table for each item.
Upon check-out we need to offer different payment options for retail vs. wholesale customers.
Retail would be credit cards only.
Wholesale would also be offered COD and Open Account Terms (established)
We also would like the system to remember customers previous orders and allow them to add
selected items from previous orders to current orders.
Real time credit card processing is not neccessary for wholesale level, but may be needed for
retail. We have established merchant accounts.
We also need to be able to create static pages for info such as trade show schedules,
about us etc.
I would also like to be able to add pages with .pdfs for my customers to download instrucion
manuals, sales data sheets etc.
Some of these pages need to only be available to wholesale customers.
>Some other wishes...
Support for more than one image per item - like a click for details page.
Items can be listed in more than one category.
Generation (automatic) of pages for search engines. (not sure how this works?)
Some sort of tracking tools for visitors (really like to know what they are searching for
and looking at on our site and where they come from or how they found us)
Coupon support - Discounts for customers
We do a few custom engraved items where I may need an inscription field for an item.
Nobody has to register before adding any items to cart. And you are not taken away from
the page to add an item to the cart (I just love those side bar mini cart types)
Removing items from cart is a simple click , not change qty to '0' (drives me nuts)
Also a customer who is wholesale, but does not login can login at checkout and item
prices will be updated.
Advanced search (within site) - by item number, description, item type and I would like to be
able to add hidden keywords (Like common misspellings)
Ebay support - Submit listings? Customer Checkout? We have sold on ebay before and may
go back at some time.
>Budget / Costs
This is the great unknown, our customers are used to a printed catalog and phoning or faxing
orders to us. (which we will continue to do). I want the website to attract some new customers
by using it in connection with some bulk snail mail pieces as well as new trade magazine
advertisments (i.e. "see our website for more info).
Intially we do not want to spend a kings ransom on the site.
Perhaps no more than $ 1000.00 for software and $100 / mo Hosting.
Do not want to blow the budget on support either.
I also do not want to spend the next six months setting this thing up.
Anybody have good workable solutions / experience / suggestions?
My top choices at the moment:
x-cart : PROS - looks real good, inexpensive, plenty of outside upgrades available
CONS - Not too sure about support & setting it up.
Monster Commerce : PROS - Looks good also.
CONS - Locked into their programming, at their mercy for hosting, customizing.
Storfront.net : Seems expensive, I didn't dig too deep.
PDGsoft : Also needs further review
I know that some items might not be possible under my current budget but I may want to add them
Thanks in advance for any advice. And sorry for the long post.