Monthly Archives: July 2014

  • 3D Printed Toy 3D Printed Toy

    The invention of 3-D Printing is expected to transform the world. When it becomes mainstream and available for all, it's projected to cut down medical prosthetics to a fraction of the cost, challenge the make up industry, and make everything easier and cheaper to produce (like having a mini China hooked up to your laptop).

    While 3-D printers aren't available to the public quite yet, Amazon is still allowing consumers to reap the benefits. Amazon, an e-commerce dominating giant, just opened a new online store that allows consumers to create their own 3-D printed toy. Consumers are given a template of available objects and Amazon allows them to customize the color, design, and virtually anything else. So if you want an action figure or a bobble head with your face on it, check out Amazon's new store! But be prepared to shell out anywhere from $40-$100.

  • gallery-pro

    A new version of Photo Gallery, Photo Gallery Pro Ver. 5.0, was recently announced in the marketplace, which allows for more opportunities to visualize products and show customers their best properties. Furthermore, powerful configuration options also allow merchants to organize the gallery easily and promptly.

    Photo Gallery Pro is an add-on within Magento that allows merchants to create photo galleries, and customers to visualize the products offered within an e-store. The program allows you to read album descriptions, browse photo thumbnails, full-sized pictures or view a slide-show depending on the options that are selected.

    Visitors can view additional images of any product in the store, as the module allows one to link photos to any product page. It's a perfect solution for e-Commerce stores to increase customer response with an alternative content. Photo Gallery also offers SEO-friendly URLs and multistore support.

     

  • Have you considered what factors may be affecting your e-commerce business? Certain aspects influence whether or not a shopper will abandon their cart and successfully complete a transaction. Below is an infograph from MarketingProfs that will give you an in depth analysis of what works and what can be skipped.

     

    e-commerce shopping habits e-commerce shopping habits

     

     

  • Use Hashtags Use Hashtags

    Hashtags are becoming more prevalent in the social media marketing world. However, in case you haven't been acquainted with it, we're here to help.

    Hashtags (#) are used on twitter, Instagram, vine, tumblr, facebook, and pinterest as a filter system. When you hashtag a picture or post with a certain word or phrase, it allows people searching for that specific word or phrase to find it easier. When it comes to e-commerce, hashtags can be used to optimize search results and to easily reach target audiences.

    As the social media world expands, hashtags are also expected to expand across platforms. For example, if you post something with hastags on Twitter, it should be transferrable to Facebook with the same trends.

    Although there are a lot of popular social hashtags going around, they're not necessarily effective for e-commerce. Below are some tips to effectively hashtag for your e-commerce business.

    1. Content. The content of a hashtag is very important. A hashtag (#) is followed by uppercase and lowercase letters or numbers. There cannot be any spaces or unique symbols (!@$%^&*()<>) because those character indicate the end of the hashtag.

    Correct: #Harapartners, #Harapartnerlovesecommerce

    Incorrect: #Hara Partners, #HaraPartners<3E-commerce

    2. Don't Overuse Hashtags. Too much of a good thing can turn out to be a bad thing. It can turn off or confuse a reader to see a mass of hashtags. Generally, we recommend 3-5 hashtags max for twitter since there is a character limit, and 6-10 max for other platforms.

    Correct: Check out the new Hara Partners blog! #ecommerce #harapartners #coolblogs

    Incorrect: Check out the new Hara Partners blog! #ecommerce #harapartners #coolblogs #blogs #hara #partners #consulting #onlinesolutions #ilovehashtags #newblog #newpost #checkitout #haveyouseenthis #newblogpost

    3. Choose the best hashtag. There might be a million hashtags that are relevant to your post but choose the best one. Think about what is most likely to be searched along with which hashtag would reach the best audience.

    Correct: Check out the new Hara Partners blog! #ecommerce #harapartners

    Incorrect: Check out the new Hara Partners blog! #shopping #onlineblog

    4. Relevance. It might be tempting to hashtag your posts with the most popular hashtags so that it will reach a broader audience, however this is a bad idea because you could be labeled and punished for being a spammer.

    Correct:  Check out the new Hara Partners blog! #ecommerce #harapartners

    Incorrect:  Check out the new Hara Partners blog! #selfie #byefelicia #WCW

    If you have any other questions about how to use hashtags, please comment below. We would love to hear from you. #contactus

     

     

     

     

     

  • If you've been to the bottom of any of our webpages, you may have noticed that we feature several trust seals from established businesses. These trust seals show that we've passed some of their security standards.

    Earning a trust seal for your business can be the difference between a client's trust and skepticism. Whenever a visitor to your site sees that your brand's security has been verified by a trusted name like PayPal, they have that much more reason to pay for your services or do business with you.

    paypal_LOGO

    Different Types of Seals

     

    Of course, before rushing off to snag a seal for your website, why not read up on what your options are?

    • Privacy Seals - Privacy seals outfit companies with privacy statements suited to their business practices. They also help companies identify potential privacy threats that would otherwise go unnoticed.
    • Business Identity Seals - Business identity seals verify the legal, physical, and actual existence of businesses by verifying multiple parameters such as contact details and management details. They represent due diligence certificate for businesses.
    • Security Seals - These are the most popular types of trust seal verification. Security Trust Seals can perform daily scans for your server, and ensure that customers are protected under normal circumstances by testing for common security vulnerabilities.

     

    Keep in mind that most trust seals have an expiration date, and need to be re-validated at specific dates once they expire. Check for details on the trust seal website of your choice.

  • Social media has been a successful marketing outlet for many retailers, but many social media platforms are taking a step towards becoming an e-commerce platform themselves.

    Facebook Buy Button Facebook Buy Button

    Facebook has just launched the new buy button. This new features allows shoppers to complete the transaction process without ever clicking away from the Facebook page.

    This new feature is expected to increase convenience and bring more retailers to Facebook. For now, a few selected small and medium sized businesses are allow to test the Buy button for free.

    Twitter Buy Button Twitter Buy Button

     

    Twitter also allows retailers to add their own buy button to their tweets to make advertised products easier to purchase. Although the idea of the buy button are in elementary stage, many social media platforms are expected to follow suit.

    What do you think about the new Facebook buy button? Leave us a comment below.

  • It's been known throughout the centuries that men and women have different interests. However, merchants are still not putting that knowledge to use in their marketing strategies. In several studies, we have found that one huge mistake that many merchants are making is that they market products the same way to men and women. From shopping habits to the type of products, it's important to keep in mind these gender differences to optimize sales. Check out the info graph below to learn more about the e-commerce battle of the sexes.

     

    menvswomen1

     

     

    Please let us know in the comments below what you think!

  • Groupon VS Living Social: May the Best Deal Win

    Groupon and LivingSocial are pretty similar in what they do. They offer consumers flash deals in everything from eyelash extensions to iphone speakers. However, with so many deals that are flying around, how do you really know if you’re getting the most for your money? We have put together a very brief comparison between Groupon and LivingSocial so that merchants and shoppers can see what the difference really is.

    Groupon Logo Groupon Logo

     Groupon

    For Merchants: Groupon has a bigger audience than Livingsocial.

    For Shoppers: Groupon offers the best deals in terms of discounts. Research has shown that groupon discounts are typically from 50-80% off, while livingsocial rarely offers discounts above 50%. Groupon also updates their website more often and offers more deals per day.

     

    LivingSocial Logo LivingSocial Logo

    LivingSocial

    For Merchants: Living social has better customer service. LivingSocial doesn’t just rush out a deal, they take into consideration trends and seasons to optimize each sale.

    For Shoppers: Better quality? Some consumers argue that since Livingsocial offer less deals that they are more selective about their merchants. While only consumers can attest to this, it is a worthy point to consider.

     

    Verdict: 

    While it seems that Livingsocial is currently a better space for merchants while Groupon is a better place for shoppers, perhaps both companies can take time to learn from each other.

    Which one do you prefer? Groupon or Livingsocial? Let us know below.

     

  • In a recent study done by comScore, a sample size of 5,800 consumers were surveyed on their online shopping experiences. The following may surprise you but the stats offer insight on how to improve your e-commerce business.

    Online Shopping Online Shopping

    1. Call for mobile improvement! While studies have shown that mobile e commerce is on the rise, consumers feel that smartphones need to up their game. Online shoppers who shop on multiple devices prefer to use a desktop computer because of the larger and clearer images. Websites are also more clear and easier to navigate on desktops. When asked to compare a mobile site vs the full website, 41% of consumers preferred the full website.

    2. Social Media matters. Social media is a way to connect to your consumers. It makes products easier to share and gives consumers an easy platform to review favorites. The largest platforms used by consumers today are Facebook (86%), Twitter (34%), google + (23%), Pinterest (21%), and Instagram (19%).

    3. Omnichannel drives brand loyalty. Consumers expect and demand more cross-channel convenience. A retailer who optimizes every channel available to consumers are more likely to deliver a positive shopping experience which leads to more sales.

    4. Delivery costs are a big factor in purchases. 58% of consumers have added more items into their shopping carts in order to qualify for free shipping. 83% will wait longer (average 2 days longer) for delivery if it’s free.

    5. Step up your return policy game. 82% of consumers are more likely to buy an item if they are reassured that it is returnable (and with free return shipping).

    If you have questions or comments, please leave a message below! We would love to hear from you.

     

  • Instagram isn't just a place for foodies and selfies anymore. More and more businesses are turning to Instagram as a place to showcase products, build brands and relationships, and ultimately increase sales.

    Instagram is a unique platform that allows businesses to show their personality on stage and behind the scenes. Here are three reasons why Hara Partners loves Instagram!

    1. Visuals. As more products and websites flood the internet, there simply isn't a desire to read long paragraphs. The easy and fun layout is eye-catching and easy to browse. Instagram also doesn't have a set algorithm to gauge what people see. Therefore, everything you post will be shown and it will stay in your gallery and archives.

    On the merchant side, it is also easy to create and upload images, making visual marketing and branding fun and simple.

     

    Hara Partners Instagram Hara Partners Instagram

     

    2. Facebook is reaching its decline. According to webmarketingtoday.com, a business's content reach on Facebook has fallen 50%. A study done in March this year shows that the organic reach for brands on Facebook hover between 2 and 6%. This ongoing decline is driving away businesses and causing them to look for alternative ways to market their products via social media.

     

    Hara Partners Facebook Hara Partners Facebook

     

    3. Instagram is the largest growing social media platform. Recently, it has surpassed over 200 million monthly users, 20 billion photos shared over the course of its lifetime, and an average of 60 million photos shared daily.

     

    Follow Us Follow Us

     

    Follow us here! (we have puppies)

    If you have questions or comments on Instagram e-commerce, please comment below. We would love to hear from you!

     

     

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