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A Catalog website or eCommerce system lets companies or organizations put all their products on a website so they can offer their products and services to customers all over the world. We like to use the analogy of “pay at the pump” in that once the catalog site is launched the customer does all the work. They go and find the product they want, put it in a shopping cart and then pay with a credit card on line. The store owner is sent an email notifying him that an order has been placed. It’s a great way to make money while you sleep.
There are 2 big advantages to an online Catalog website. First it allows stores or organizations to offer their products and services to a much broader audience…not only in that city but all over the world. Secondly, it allows the store or organization to do business after hours, 24 hours a day 7 days a week. With more people working now more and more, this is a much more efficient way to do business and it will continue to increase.
We often get asked: Why should we not get a friend to build their catalog site or use one of the canned packages available? If your sales are less than 5000/month, you may want to try this if you have a lot of time on your hands and are computer literate. If you are planning on doing more than 10,000/month, it may be better to have a professional company build your catalog so you can grow with it. You also need to have support for your system. We hear so many stories of a catalog site being built and then the builder leaves town or gets too busy to give support. You do not want to get hooked up with a system that cannot work with your type of business.
What about cost? The REAL cost is not having a web based catalog if you have products and services to sell that are not typically found in a WalMart. Every day a catalog is not on line it is costing you money in lost sales.
There is also a high performance catalog for businesses or organizations doing more than 30k /month. The High Performance catalog website allows for an unlimited number of products, importing products and prices from some other computer system which may already be in place and can also be made to work with accounting systems such as Point of Sale or Quickbooks.