Monthly Archives: January 2014

  • Magento Imagine 2014 at the Hard Rock Hotel Las Vegas Magento Imagine 2014 at the Hard Rock Hotel Las Vegas

    Magento just announced that the registration for the Magento Imagine Conference 2014 Imagine eCommerce Conference is now open.

    You can start registering today for the Magento Imagine Conference taking place on May 12-14 at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas.

    It's great to see that Magento decided to move closer to the Strip. Our recommendation, stay at your favorite hotel on or off the Strip, rent a car for about $20/day. Parking in Las Vegas is free or very inexpensive.

    The Magento Imagine Conference 2014 is mostly for solution providers how want to showcase their e-commerce or industry solutions to technology strategists, Magento designers and developers, and of course Magento systems integrators.

    This three-day event features a mix of thought leading keynotes from world-renowned speakers as well as a full lineup of practical business, marketing and technical breakout sessions, along with unique networking opportunities.

    Let us know if you're planing on going. Join Hara Partners in Las Vegas. We will keep you posted on parties and events around the conference.

  • Go Mobile with Magento Go Mobile with Magento

    We don`t conceive daily life without a smartphone or a tablet next to us at work or while having fun, as consequence it`s essential to update ecommerce solutions to this reality and go mobile with Magento. Nowadays, customers expect to use friendly, fast and interactive apps for shopping or a simple browsing.

    So how do you go mobile with Magento?

    As you are aware, the market of apps is a crowded one for both the Android and iOS platforms. Some ecommerce apps are more affordable, while others will surpass $100. Before choosing a certain app, as a developer you should decide what you expect from your mobile ecommerce app: Is it an improved accessibility? Is it a fast search? Is it a flexible shopping cart? Is it the quick checkout? Is it social media interactivity?

    Globally, a Magento ecommerce app is able to deliver a suite of minimal, yet essential features for online marketing, such as a fast selection of categories, newsletter subscription, instant search for the product your customer has just typed, large buttons to facilitate common commands on mobile gadgets or an improved tactile interface allowing better navigation of products selected for zoom or modification of quantity selected or other product options. Probably, the favorite feature promoted by the Magento on every mobile platform is the quick interchangeable view optimized for portrait or landscape screen orientation. Magento once optimized for mobile viewing can quickly serve up either the mobile or desktop view according to the user`s will.

    Merchants who go mobile with Magneto are also interested in expanding its compatibility and optimized functionality for any platform (not only Android and iOS, but also Blackberry OS or Windows Phone), performing an easy change of design or an impressive visual resolution. The visual usability is a major criterion for a successful Magento mobile site. Apple`s gadgets based on retina display for example are able to render more vivid images than the majority of Android-based models.

    Magento can be used to create any type of mobile ecommerce solutions for Android or iOS. The open-source solution is designed to fit the unique need of your business through reliable control, speedy content upload, completely scalable interface, which transform Magento into a powerful marketing tool.

    For instance, your business can benefit from a mobile optimized platform, featuring a structured catalog, so that visitors could easily navigate through subcategories and find the product they are looking for. Once a customer is ready to checkout, a mobile optimized experience for a faster process in order to lower cart abandonment can be implemented. If customer feel the need to share your discovery with friends, you can fully support this functionality on your mobile platform and even use the devices native sharing functions. There is no better way to tie your online store into social networks of your choice, including: Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. Similarly, payment and checkout related process can be sped up, and using mobile payments may optimize your experience depending on your product offering.

    When you go mobile with Magento with Android and iOS, your business will enter a new phase, marked by unmatched flexibility and functionality. Intuitive, search engine optimized and with rich animations, Magento can provide the ultimate mobile solution for your e-commerce goals.

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    Getting Started with E-commerce Getting Started with E-commerce

    Thinking about getting started with E-commerce for your business? E-Commerce has been growing and growing for many years now, and there is no reason to believe it will slow down any time soon.  Businesses who take advantage of the e-commerce boom are the ones who make it to the top and stay there.  Whether your business is strictly online based or you have a storefront shop, getting started with e-commerce will help drive expand your reach and profits.

    Primarily, you need two things to getting started with e-commerce.  The first is a user friendly website and the second is good SEO (Search Engine Optimization).  SEO allows you to be found through search engines when consumers are not looking for your business specifically.  You control your own SEO settings with things like keywords and the names you give pictures on your website.  When consumers do find your website, they need to be able to navigate it easily and find what they are looking for quickly.  If your site is not well set up, users are likely to hit the “back” button out of frustration.

    While you are improving the functionality of your website, make sure it is mobile friendly.  If you think people are not going to view it on their phones and tablets, you better think again.  Blogs such as this Hara Partners Blog are also a great way to drive traffic.

    Let us know if you’re thinking about getting started with e-commerce.

  • Group Deals

    Group Deals - Integrate Your Magento Store

    Group Deals integrates your Magento Store with all the features of a Group Buying website.

    Our Group Deals extension is the most ADVANCED and FLEXIBLE extension of its kind as you can see from our Demos and Features list, and we are constantly adding new and exciting features to maintain its status as the best extension of its kind.

    Display and sell both normal products and deals under the same store, each with it's unique design.

    Display Current, Recent and Upcoming Deals

    Fully customizable Flash/Javascript Countdowns (compatible with Mobile Devices as well)

    Target/Orders Bar
    Sharing (Facebook, Twitter, Google +, etc.)
    Merchant system with Merchant Login
    Deal Subscriptions
    Generate and Email Coupons to your customers and merchants

    With the Group Deals Magento extension you can offer products and services at significantly lower prices. The deal takes place when a minimum required number of people buy the product.

    Moreover, Group Deals is integrated with the Sociable Magento extension allowing your customers to spread the word about a knock-down price and make the most of your store with collective buying power!

    Features:

  • Unlimited number of deals
  • Separate blocks for category and product pages
  • Four deal types
  • upcoming
  • featured

  • active

  • close

    Email notifications sent to customers and admin about:

  • deal succeed
  • deal failed
  • deal expiration
  • Coupons auto-generation
  • Ability to set up a coupon expiration period
  • Ability to set up coupons quantity generated for each deal

  • Ability to bind coupon to a certain product
  • Personalize your deals by configuring

  • name
  • picture
  • short description
  • description
  • store view
  • Ability to schedule deals to be run automatically
  • Ability to specify maximum allowed purchases
  • Optional deal auto-closure on succeed
  • Auto-count of the discount and “you save” price
  • Ability to insert any deal via CMS
  • Ability to configure each deal type
  • Ability to change coupon code status manually
  • Deal overview
  • Sort order for deal types tabs
  • Linked-to-deal product visibility
  • Ability for customers to print coupons
  • Ability for customers to view deals
  • Main product types support (except bundled products, grouped, and gift cards)
  • Complete multistore support
  • Integration with the Sociable extension from aheadWorks
  • Integration with the Order Tags aheadWorks extension
  • With many new clients signing up for the Sales Tax automation provided by the SalesTax.com Magento Module by Hara Partners, we wanted to share some of the sales tax best practices and tricks on how to get up and running fastest.

    New SalesTax.com Magento Module Release on Magento Connect

    A new version of the SalesTax.com Magento Module has been released on Magento Connect and can be downloaded at:

    http://www.magentocommerce.com/magento-connect/sales-tax-saas-connector-by-wolters-kluwer.html

    As of the writing of this article the current version is 3.1.4.

    New Features of the SalesTax.com Magento Module

    New features recently released for the SalesTax.com Magento module include subsidiary support and the ability to send any information from the SKU over the UPC to tax classes or other identifiers. The products can be mapped or dynamically queried against the sales tax data on the SalesTax.com SaaS.

    Installation and Configuration Guide for the SalesTax.com Magento Module

    Please find the latest information on how to install and configure the SalesTax.com Magento module  at:

    http://www.harapartners.com/sales-tax-magento-module-installation-guide

     

    Advanced features provided are a test account and dynamic validation of your Sales Tax SaaS credentials.

    For further assistance do not hesitate to contact us any time.

     

  • Recently spotted email subscription ads on Google Adwords. Google enabled the capturing of emails directly from its Adwords ads as shown below.

    Email Subscription Ads on Google Adwords Email Subscription Ads on Google Adwords

    Initially this was rolled out as a limited project and recent rolled out to a wider audience.

    Email marketing is still the most effective way to market and reach audiences, and building a relevant and large email list is a critical aspect for most e-commerce merchants. Our marketing team had great success capturing over 40,000 email addresses for one of our clients by just asking.

    Google also offers the option to enter zip codes and redirect your prospects to the most relevant landing pages. An example is the find dealer ad for Honda Civic.

    Find Dealer Ads on Google Adwords Find Dealer Ads on Google Adwords

    Have you seen the new email subscription ads on Google Adwords? What are your thoughts? Please comment below or contact us to get help with setting up your email subscription ads.

  • SEO for Magento website www.harapartners.com has been working very well, and resulted in the Hara Partners website to reach the ranks of the top 80,000 websites in the world as measured by Alexa.com.

     SEO for Magento website Hara Partners working as shown on Alexa

    SEO for Magento website Hara Partners working as shown on Alexa

    Alexa, owned by Amazon.com, is a service measuring the popularity of the world's top websites. Alexa provides a world rank as well as a rank by country.

    Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Magento - How was it done?

    There was a considerable effort to do search engine optimization (SEO) for the Magento site. Hara Partners as a premier Magento System Integrator, uses Magento for its own website. While some people say that SEO for Magento is hard; but it boils down to providing valuable content. Hara Partners has focused on providing expert knowledge and sprinkled in some fun. As more valuable content was added to the website, this also coincided with multiple Google updates. You may have heard of the Panda and Penguin updates. These are in fact a series of updates, some of which were more drastic than others.

    The conservative and slow approach taken has paid off in the long-run as Google and other search engines made a big shift towards quality content. The SEO for Magento approached used was one of "building a house slowly, by putting one brick stone on top of another", rather than using some scheme to create link farms or pump out fluff content.

    The approach our SEO team uses for Magento SEO is based on research and content creation. And the only shortcut we use is to work hard and to work smart, i.e. work result oriented and guided by data.

    Please let us know what SEO challenges you have encountered with Magento and what has worked for you. Leave a comment or learn more about our Magento SEO Audit.

  • Windows introduced the Internet Explorer Compatibility Mode after the release of Internet Explorer 8 in 2009. The main reason for this was the stricter adherence to standards published by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).
    Previous versions of Internet Explorer used proprietary rendering interpretations, often in conflict with other browsers and modern technologies. In part this was due to the rapidly evolving technology as well as the fierce competition between Internet Explorer and Netscape.

    Web designer Jack Reichert's submission to CSS Zen Garden called Gemination presents the differents in interpretation beautifully, albeit his example precedes Internet Explorer's Compatibility Mode. A similar problem arose between the drastic changes of Internet Explorer version 6 and version 7.

    CSS Zen Garden Example of Adaptive Design by Jack Reichert CSS Zen Garden Example of Adaptive Design by Jack Reichert

    With Internet Explorer 8, a form of version targeting was implemented and a new header meta tag, which can trigger the compatibility mode automatically and can define which version to be used:

    <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=EmulateIE7" />

    What does this all mean to you?

    As the web evolves you want to make sure that your website is up-to-date, and that you signal to the worlds what version your website works with the most recent browser generations. Today, this fortunately means to adhere to the common standards developed for browsers. However, you may also want to make sure that your website can be rendered by older browsers. We have heard of merchants using the Internet Explorer compatibility mode to test for how their website looks in older browser versions.

    CSS Zen Garden Example of Modern Adaptive Design by Jack Reichert CSS Zen Garden Example of Modern Adaptive Design by Jack Reichert

    Please share your feedback with us and comment below.

  • American Express released some aggregated numbers in this recent post indicating that e-commerce growth is still going strong.

    Customer spending numbers for growth sectors by region and cities are been shared.

    Growing US Cities and Towns Growing US Cities and Towns

    According to this post e-commerce growth is still going strong at 15.9% based on the "Quarterly Retail E-Commerce Sales" report published by the U. S. Department of Commerce.

    E-commerce Growth Still Going Strong E-commerce Growth Still Going Strong

    How has your forth quarter been?

    We had a very busy holiday season and subjectively think that growth has continued? Do you see a 10-20% growth in your e-commerce business? How do you manage this growth?

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