We're finally launching an email newsletter! After nearly 10 years.*
The Factory Review is Factory Interactive's own bi-monthly publication. Written for Factory's clients, would-be-clients, and others interested in ecommerce, subscribers will receive news about important ecommerce trends and topics, as well as recent projects we've been working on at Factory Interactive.
The Factory Review will also include our picks of great ecommerce sites and why they excel. Subscribers can also expect links to relevant business and ecommerce resources too.
Please subscribe, you'll get great value from this newsletter. And don't worry, you'll be able to unsubscribe with a single click at any time.
* Yessir, it'll be 10 years in August since we launched our business. And we're still here. We're planning quite a party.
We're getting a handle on eCommerce optimization tactics. Before we made the decision to focus our attention on online business, we neglected to create real systems and checkpoints for a website's lifecycle. Becuase we'd been building sites for so long, we just "knew" what to do by rote.
But eCommerce is a different beast. There are far more moving parts. The complexity of a well-built eCommerce site, with its bridges to other systems, API integrations, and all its business rules, has forced us to develop more formal processes.
So now we maintain a checklist of eCommerce optimizations that we can apply to any project, whether we're building a store from the ground up, or just fixing a broken one. We have more than 100 elements on our checklist, many with several sub-checklists, in 7 main areas of an eComm site:
- Homepage optimization
- Product page optimization
- Defaults/Fallbacks/Error handling
- Overall site performance
We confirm our findings on nearly every project. Let us put our experience and expertise to work for you. Contact us.
Over the years, Factory Interactive has built a few eCommerce sites. But with its renewed focus on internet sales and transactions, as a group, we're simply learning a lot more about solid, basic eCommerce design.
I came across this infographic by Invesp that summarizes the elements of a winning product page (scroll to "21 Steps to Effective eCommerce Product Pages"). When you consider Invesp's criteria for the eight most important features that influence a buyer's decision right above the "21 Steps" panel, you'll see how all the elements integrate to give the buyer access to just what she needs to make her buying decision.
Most interestingly, it's free shipping that tops the list of those things that move a buyer to say yes. I've certainly closed my browser when I've seen that shipping costs twice as much as the product itself.
If you run a small eCommerce business and the idea of offering free shipping causes you visions of bankruptcy, read "4 Ways to Manage E-Tailer Shipping Costs" on the FedEx Small Business site.
Infographic by- Invesp
CheckoutOptimization.com surveyed 136 top US retailers last summer (2012) and pulled together some interesting stats in this great infographic.
Some of the findings might surprise eCommerce site owners, most notably that ~87% of checkout processes involve 4 - 5 pages. Not 1, or 2, or 3, but 4+. Beyond that, checkout flow hasn't changed much among the big players since 2009, pointing to the fact that there are some strong conventions when it comes to checkout processes.
Companies evolve. They respond to market trends, offer services they excel at, and target niches their immediate competitors seem to neglect. In the past few months, Factory Interactive has assessed these factors in its decision to focus exclusively on eCommerce development.
Factory Interactive has been a lot of things in its nine years in business, each incarnation an attempt to find its place in the swirling, bubbling universe of internet development. In that time, we've often been asked to help companies set up "shopping carts" on their sites. But eCommerce is a complex business, especially when adopted by companies with intricate infrastructures.
And we've discovered that we're well placed to help them.
We love business. It's intriguing. We also love what makes business work: its processes, logistics, mechanisms. And given our long experience in finance and logistics -- both B2B and B2C -- eCommerce seems an obvious focus for us.
We've also rediscovered recently that we really like working with clients who have clearly defined goals. We can't understate that. And we like it even better when we have a way to see whether those goals have been achieved. ECommerce gives us that insight.
So, here again is Factory Interactive, Vancouver's smartest eCommerce development company.
Note: Applies to Drupal 6 & 7
If you've ever created a view in Drupal for a an aliased taxonomy term, you may have been frustraed to find that the view doesn't seem to work when you visit a taxonomy's URL alias.
Drupal does this because URL aliases are parsed or created at a very low level in the rendering stack, long before the system becomes aware of upper level modules like Views. So, if you've ever banged your head against the wall in rage because the View you've created to appear at some/category/url won't overide the alias of the same name to show taxonomy/term/123, just do this:
- Note the URL alias you'd like to override and go to your list of existing aliased URLs at Configuration > URL Aliases.
- Note the system URL given for the taxonomy term you've created your view for and note it (it might be something like 'taxonomy/term/123').
- Go back to your View and update the path settings for it with the system URL noted in step 2. Note: If you want the view to work for a number of categories, use Views Arguments to create a pattern the view will be applied to.
- Clear your cache if necesary and refesh your category page.
It might seem counter-intuitive to have to set your View path to the system URL when you could simply set it to the aliased URL, but without overriding or updating your module's weight settings, this is the easiest way to achieve your goal.
Factory Interactive is a Drupal development company based in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Factory Interactive is extremely proud to have sponsored Chad Shaule of Gracie Barra Vancouver at the 2012 World IBJJF Championships in Los Angeles, California, last month. Chad won a bronze medal in the adult blue belt medium-heavy weight division. It was his first appearance at the IBJJF Mundials, one of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu's most prestigious tournaments according to many in the sport.
We look forward to supporting Chad again in the coming months and years.