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Ecommerce Blog - Fortune3

How to Keep Mobile Commerce Transactions Safe

fortune3-using-smartphone-for-mobile-securityA recent comScore report shows mobile commerce could account for $25 billion in spending by the end of this year, which means it may account for more than 10% of all online e-commerce spending.  Andrew Lipsman, VP of Analysis at the company, also notes that mobile e-commerce is growing at a faster rate than its traditional counterpart.

You can clearly expect this trend to continue to grow in the future – how far do you think it will go?

Regardless of what you think, it’s important to keep all customer transactions safe.  Hackers and scammers of all types and varieties have proven throughout history they’re willing to do whatever is necessary to get their hands on someone else’s private information or money.

What can you do now to ensure their private information stays safe?

Here are a few steps you can take to ensure that happens when they use your site:

1.  Don’t ask for any more information than necessary – Not only is this a good practice for optimizing your conversion rate on your order page, but it’s a good idea from a security perspective too.  ”Less is more” is a saying that holds true when it comes to mobile commerce.  Get the bare minimum information you need and let go of the rest.

2.  Recommend a mobile antivirus app – This is good for your customers in general and also especially for  their online transactions.  Hackers abound and often send very realistic-looking URLs from spoofed e-mail addresses that could convince your customers to give them their personal information.  You don’t have any control over this, but you can alert them to the issue and recommend antivirus as a safeguard to counteract the threat.

3.  Use encryption – HTTPS protection authenticates the web site and server your customers are communicating with.  However, make sure your entire site is hosted over HTTPS.  If even just some small portions are loaded over HTTP, then your users will be vulnerable to some surveillance and attacks.

4.  Remind your users to never use public networks – If they stop in at Starbucks, browsing the general web is okay.  However, remind them to refrain from purchasing on such networks.  They’re much easier to hack into than a private one at home.

5.  Keep your branding consistent – Because hackers try to imitate your site, make sure you keep all your branding/images/payment processes 100% consistent across your entire site.  Do the same when e-mailing.  This lets your users know they are somewhere familiar and trustworthy.

Safety and Trust Sell

The more you can sell safety and trust, the better off you will be in the long run.  Attacks from cyber criminals will only continue, and much like those who develop new security solutions, they engage in developing innovative techniques of their own.

Posted in Blogging for Ecommerce, Ecommerce Essentials & Tips, How To, mCommerce, Online Marketing Strategies

What is Ecommerce and How Do You Get Started?

What is Ecommerce and how do I get started?If you are brand new to creating online stores, you might be wondering, “What is ecommerce and how do I get started?”  You know people are shopping online more than they ever have before, but what do the statistics say?  They always provide a clearer picture of what exactly is happening in the marketplace at any given moment (courtesy of Statista.com):

> In 2011, Amazon generated $48 billion in revenue
> By 2015, total revenues for all websites will rise to $269 billion
> Online retail accounts for most of online revenues, at $162 billion in 2011
> The number of online US shoppers will grow from 137 million in 2010 to 175 million in 2016

So, as you can see, the internet provides quite a lucrative opportunity now and in the future.

How do You Get a Piece of the Pie?

The first thing you’ll say to yourself is, “Amazon clearly dominates the on-line selling space – how can I even begin to compete?”

You raise a good point by asking that question.  However, the simple fact remains you cannot compete with Amazon.  They have everything down to a science and do things much better than everyone else.

But, that doesn’t mean you can’t earn a successful, six-figure income from the internet.  The key for newbies lies in identifying a specialized niche where you don’t have to compete on a price.  For example, we know of sites selling high-end wedding apparel and products and a site specializing in selling long-range hunting equipment, both generating more than six figures in net income for each of the respective owners.

How do You Identify a Niche?

The first key to developing a successful e-commerce site lies in selling a product you really believe in.  So, you have to either have life experience with a certain set of products you’d like to sell, or start selling products you find very attractive.

That passion carries you through the hard times, as well as the boring minutia of running any business.  Once you have that passion identified, then it’s time to start performing some research.

Take a look at the existing products similar to yours and understand what your market looks for.  Once you know the shortcomings of the product in relation to what the market wants, then you’ve identified your niche.  Your product must fulfill some need not currently being met.

How Does Marketing Work?

If you don’t know anything about marketing online, that’s okay.  But, what you do need to know is that if you don’t have a company at least helping you with your online marketing, you won’t be able to stay competitive long-term.  Companies exist that help you rank at the top of Google for your targeted search terms.  They are called “SEO” or “internet marketing” companies.  There are a number of other ways to get people’s attention online, and you’ll need help doing it long-term.

Fortune3 Helps You with Everything Ecommerce

Fortune3 is a unique company in that we help you with everything related to developing a successful ecommerce site.  The idea is up to you, but we can help you with:

> Design
> Payment processing
> Hosting
> Search engine optimization
> Pay-per-click advertising

You’ll have a hard time finding all of these services under one roof, let alone a single company specializing in all of them.  If you’ve been wondering, “What is ecommerce?” hopefully we’ve answered your questions.  Please contact us if we can help in any way.

Posted in Blogging for Ecommerce, eCommerce News, mCommerce

How to Optimize Your Mobile Website

fortune3-mobile-commerceHow to Optimize Your Mobile Website

In this generation of smartphones, offering mobile websites to users is a must and not just an added perk. If you still don’t have mobile version then it is time that you get down to business. Here are some tips that you can use to optimize your mobile website for better user experience and search engine optimization.
Tips for User Friendliness

1. Understanding Mobile Consumers: Understanding the consumer is the first step in the development of any product. Mobile websites should be no different. You need to understand the thought process of the people who will be using your mobile website.

2. Decluttering: Remember a mobile website is built for a smaller screen. So, stick to keeping things simple and functional. |

3. Maintain Consistency: Branding consistency is important. Therefore, make sure that your mobile website and other version all follow a consistent branding in terms of design.

4. Don’t Use Any Javascript or Flash Files: Apple did not support Adobe Flash and now Android has announced that will follow the same lines. If you have a mobile website that has Flash or JS, there are good chances that your website will not be accessible by your users.

5. Avoid Pop-up Windows: This is not a desktop website so avoid use of pop-up windows completely. They can be a pain on mobile devices and your users will not appreciate them.

6. Include Link Backs: There should be a link back to the full website for the mobile users. Even though there are very few users who would want to access the full website, but you want to make sure that the link is present for the ones that are interested.

Tips for Search Engine Optimization

1. Use Responsive Web Design: The biggest benefit of responsive web design is that it will serve the same HTML with separate CSS. Using CSS media queries to determine the rendering for different devices. Google considers this best industry practice and encourages all websites to follow it. Without a responsive web design you will have to make sure that the Googlebot indexes the instances separately.

2. Use a Mobile URL: Google has explicitly stated that it supports mobile URLs. The mobile URL should be through automatic redirection between mobile and other devices. You can use both HTTP and JS redirect protocols depending on the website.

3. Mobile Canonical Tags Should be Handled with Care: Previously canonical tags were left from all mobile pages. However, now Google has clarified that they should appear on all mobile pages, even if the content on them is slightly different. This way your pages can rank for their unique content on appropriate platforms.

All these tips will help your optimize your mobile website so that the use experience is enhanced and tits becomes optimized for search engines. What must be kept in mind is that a mobile website is not one to make it and then forget about it. It needs to be updated from time to time so that it can continue to meet industry standards.

Posted in mCommerce

61% of Visitors to a Non-Mobile Site are Unlikely to Return

mobile commerce ecommerce statisticsWhen the almighty Google talks we listen. Yes! Google has released a stat that you have to say to yourself (if you’re an online retailer,) “OK, we need to make sure we have a mobile version of our website!” Lucky for Fortune3 customers, that is already possible for you.

According to Google, 61% of visitors to a non mobile site are unlikely to return to that website! That’s well over half of visitors that you may lose from coming back to make the final sale because you weren’t ‘mobile’ ready. But wait; there is another very big stat to look at. When a mobile site is available, consumer engagement increases by 85%! Not sold yet?

A mobile website ensures easy navigation for those on mobile devices and tables and also optimizes the speed of a website.

According to Forrester research, mobile commerce (or M-Commerce) will reach $31 billion in 2016. Do you want a piece of that? Of course you do.

“We project that 44 percent of last minute searches for gifts this holiday season will be mobile searches,” said Haines. “We’re just seeing more and more commerce activity moving onto the mobile device.”

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Posted in mCommerce

The Role of Mobile for Mcommerce Holiday Season 2011

Mobile, mobile and more mobile. If you’re an ecommerce merchant and reading the latest tech and online marketing blogs, you know how important mobile is, has become and will be even more so in the near future. The world is moving toward surfing the net more and more via mobile devices and tablets.

Emarketer.com forecast a 50% increase in mobile shopping for the 2011 holiday season! If you don’t see this stat and say, “OK, we need to make sure we’re doing what we need to for mobile,” you’ll really be behind your competition or miss out on sales. MAKE SURE your ecommerce website has a mobile version for easy and faster navigation for consumers browsing through your website.

smart phone users holiday 2011

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Posted in mCommerce

M-Commerce: Tablet Users vs. Smart Phone Users

You’ve been hearing all the buzz about tablets, especially the iPad, right? The iPad has and is revolutionizing the way consumers search and use the web. It’s yet another tech gadget that gives us the ability to do what we want from a small machine, especially use the internet.

When it comes to mobile, a recent study shows that tablet users show greater ‘mobile’ purchasing than smart phone users!

Emarketer also reports on a very interesting state which states, “Ipsos also presents a group of consumers called “dual owners”—those who own both tablet and smartphone devices. Dual owners, Ipsos determined, conduct m-commerce purchases twice as often as those who own only smartphones. Dual owners, on average, made more than 20 mobile purchases over the past year.”

smart phone users v tablet users mcommerce

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Posted in mCommerce

PPC Advertising Strategies for Mobile

ppc mobile advertising strategiesPay-per-click (PPC) advertisements are one of the most known marketing strategies in the online world. With this, PPC advertising has now spread to the world of mobile internet

Why the Mobile Platform is Different

Despite having the same marketing goal, PPC strategies do not work the same in different platforms. What works on a regular browser will not work on a mobile searching tool.

Basically, what makes the mobile platform different from a regular platform (as in a desktop computer) is the ad copy and the various goals that searchers using a mobile device have. These goals require different tactics and strategies rather than the traditional search. The mobile platform and the traditional platform differ significantly in areas like keyword selection, user intent, and specific types of mobile devices.

Extending PPC Advertising to a Mobile Platform

Once you have already succeeded in making an effective marketing strategy in the desktop search platform, you might then consider extending your advertising to the mobile platform. To do this, a separate advertising campaign will have to be created for the mobile platform. This will enable you to customize the ad copy for general mobile users, as well as for those users of specific mobile devices.

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Posted in mCommerce

Men vs. Women in Mobile Advertising and Mobile Apps

Any internet business that is trying to market or brand itself should consider creating a Facebook application. A Facebook application is a great way to engage customers and consumers with your brand.

Online marketers, especially those newcomers to the scene have questions about demographics, who uses them, how, through what devices, etc. Mobile advertising and marketing firm INNERACTIVE has made an info graphic that is telling of men vs. women in mobile apps and can help you decide certain things about your mobile applications and mobile advertising.

Some of the key findings of the data:

- The average clickthrough rate (CTR) for men is quite a bit higher, at 2.73 percent, than it is with women, at only 1.65 percent.

- The two groups generally have difference app preferences, which shouldn’t be a huge surprise, but the study also found that there are different levels of effective cost per mille (eCPM) and CTR based on the type of app.

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Posted in mCommerce

Ecommerce Marketing with Text Messages: High Conversion Rates

Mobile. Mobile. Mobile. If you’re an internet retailer and haven’t analyzed the mobile marketing or aren’t thinking about mobile design or mobile marketing, you’ll fall behind soon, and fast. The mobile market is one of the fastest growing channels with internet retail and if you can get ahead of your competition, why not?

We know how effective email marketing is. There is no one I know that doesn’t check email. Also, I’m not sure I know anyone who doesn’t constantly check their phones for text, email, etc. We’re presented with a great opportunity as internet retailers for ecommerce when it comes to the mobile market. In a split second, we can reach a consumer with a text.

Are you seeing success in your email marketing efforts? I’m sure you are. If you’re not, you may be doing something wrong. The next phase is mobile marketing and text messaging can be a great new marketing channel for you to really boost sales. InternetRetailer.com talks about driving traffic and sales through text messages and their effectiveness.

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Posted in mCommerce

The Future of Smart Phones and eCommerce

smart phone usageWe’ve been talking about mCommerce and the boom of mobile eCommerce due to the growing number of smart phone users. Marketers and internet retailers have shifted attention to those users as we see the number of consumers browsing their phones for information is increasing yearly, almost monthly.

The future for the smart phone industry looks brighter than ever which means internet retailers will continue to put focus on their mCommerce efforts. According to the latest report by eMarketer, “Most mobile owners in the US still have only a feature phone, but eMarketer predicts smartphone ownership will rise from 31% of the mobile population this year to 43% by 2015. Nearly 110 million Americans will have a smartphone by the end of that year.

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Posted in mCommerce