Our Top 5 Ecommerce Website Builders for 2021

If you are looking for a web builder that you will be able to use to build your ecommerce site, then once you start to look and do research you could be rather overwhelmed by the amount of companies out there offering this to you and what they might offer. We have therefore selected five different ecommerce web builders that we think will be top for this year, in order to help you with your decision making.

Squarespace

Squarespace has lots of templates and this makes it a popular choice if you want to make your own website and want to easily have a site that looks unique. The templates can be customised as well, which means that it is easily possible to create a site that looks just as you want it. The ecommerce part will allow you to sell both physical and virtual items such as subscriptions, ebooks etc. You cannot use ecommerce on the basic plan as it is not designed for businesses but you will be able to get it on the lowest level business plan at £15 a month. Within this plan you can sell unlimited products, add in gift cards and take donations. The customer service is highly rates which means that if you have any problems, you will be able to get the help that you need. There are transaction fees at this level but if you pay £20 a month those are scrapped and you get point of sale, customer accounts, checkout on your domain, merchandising tools, analytics and items on Instagram. For £30 you also get abandoned cart recovery and the ability to sell subscriptions. Payments are made through Stripe.

Wix

Wix is the biggest web builder as it is the one with the most customers. It can be more expensive though, but it could be good value for money if it offers what you want. There are core features in the ecommerce system which make it attractive such as flexible coupon codes for discounts, free shipping and limited-time offers. You can enter shipping and tax rules which is very handy and these can be changed when necessary. It is possible to have options for products, such as different sizes or colours and you can sell digital products as well as physical goods. There are no transaction fees, but you will have to pay fees to the payment processor that you choose to use. You can send email receipts to customers. There are three pricing plans for ecommerce and the lowest level does have no limitation but the customer support is not priority by paying more you can have access to the logo maker or by paying even more you get priority support. The highest pricing plan has no transaction fees.

Weebly

Weebly is even to use and competitively priced. The ecommerce store is easy to navigate and it is easy to find all of the options you will need to use. There is also a useful guide to teach you how to use it. It has SSL encryption and all major payment options. It has a tax and shipping calculator and an inventory management system. You can even have a storefront in the free pricing plan, but it will have a Weebly advert on it which will not look professional.

Site123

You do not get ecommerce on the free plan but you do on the paid plan and you can sell physical or digital goods. The options that you can use will improve as you pay more. With cheaper pricing plans you will get offline payment methods but on a more expensive plan you can accept Paypal payments and on a even higher plan you can accept credit card payments. You can use cart abandonment emails as well, to remind people that they have not yet completed their purchase.

Strikingly

Strikingly is designed for those that want a one page website but it also offers an online store that sells physical and digital products using the Stripe payment gateway which will accept credit cards and ApplePay. Images and videos can be added to the store so that you can showcase your products well. There is a maximum of 500 items, which will be okay for smaller shop owners but if you have lots to sell, then this may be too limiting. There are no transaction fee charges. You can even set up a store with the free plan, although you can only put one item in it. This will allow you to test it before you commit to paying.

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5 Javascript Frameworks You Need to Know About

A javascript framework will allow you to manipulate the functions of software by changing the code. They are often used in website design when a site needs to be unique and customised rather than just made using templates and themes provided. There are lots of different ones and so if you are trying to pick, then it could be difficult to know which will be the best for you. We have decided to give you more details about five that we consider to be the best. Do consider what you need from the framework before you pick one. It can be tempting to choose one that seems to provide the most, but you need one that will help you achieve what you want to. Below are just a few points and you can then look at each in more detail if you think that it will provide you with a useful service that will help you to achieve what you need to do. It is important to make the right choice so that you do not waste time and you make your experience much more efficient.

Angular

Angular is operated by Google and it is one of the most powerful JavaScript frameworks and is very efficient as well as being open source. It is usually used for producing dynamic single page applications. It will enable rapid development. It helps developers to write code and contains template and testing. It makes it easy to build tags and transforms templates into code which is optimised for JavaScript virtual machines so it has advantages over written code. It provides app-like experiences and will work on Mac, Windows or Linux. It has modern development and design features.

React

React is one of the best as it can have great results for SEO and can create dynamic and superior web traffic applications. It can be utilised with other frameworks and it is flexible being able to be used on server and client-side. It offers a cross browser interface which is dynamic so nothing will be incompatible. It is liked because it has a smooth front end development without the need for a complex framework. The application is comprised of several components, each of which has access to its own logic and controls. It makes use of a unidirectional data flow and makes use of the JSX file that allows the application to be easy to code and understand.

Vue

Vue is the top growing framework with developers. It is easy to understand and develop as well as integrate. It tends to use the term library to describe itself but when used with other tools it can be easily turned into a framework. It has simple and quick fixes for applications. It is easy to use n terms of API and design and any proficient web developer will be able to very quickly use it to create applications. It can be used to create sleek and modern interfaces and it is great for anyone that likes to create code which makes sense right from when it is created. Vue can be easier to use than some other options using methods that web developers will already be used to.

Meteor

This is one of the most used backend Javascript frameworks. It makes programming much easier for developers. It can be utilised together with other front end frameworks. It can be used to create an app for web, mobile and desktop use. Any web application built with it will automatically be compatible with mobile devices and you can use it to convert your existing web apps into mobile apps. It is easy to use and has lots of functionality. It uses the same code irrespective of what you are developing – so it makes no difference if it is web, iOS, Android or desktop apps.

Ember

Ember is modern and designed for ambitious developers. It is used for building complex client-side applications. It is simple to use and have a good flow of functionality which means that it makes web app development a nice smooth process. It is easy to get started with it and there are lots of tutorials and guides that have been put together by developers so that it is easy to find out exactly how it works and what you need to do. It has traditional functionality which will enable users to provide a great application without being distracted by gleaming terms and modern frameworks that other similar frameworks have. It is open source and a huge range of web applications can be created using it. It is very adaptable and flexible.

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5 Fresh CSS Frameworks for 2021

Web developers will often spend a lot of time creating CSS and now there are CSS frameworks which will make it easier and faster to build responsive websites and web applications. There are lots to choose from and this means that it is tricky to know which you should pick. Their aim is to give a basic framework which will include things like a grid, web typography, buttons, tooltips, interactive UI patterns, icons and form elements. This helps web developers to be able to progress more quickly with their designs. They will then not have to code everything from scratch but will be able to use this software to help them out and they will be able to save the code and reuse it for different projects. It is important to find one that suits your specific needs though and so it is a good idea to review some in order to find out what they do and whether that will suit you. We have picked five to look at in more detail that we think will be useful.

Tailwind

Tailwind is a low level CSS framework and it is highly customizable. It allows you to customize your designs and therefore create a unique look and feel. You have full control of a real programming language as it is written in PostCSS which enable you to be able to change lots of different elements and properties. It means that you can build truly custom websites but if you have no experience of utility classes or Atomic CSS. It is component friendly and comes with responsive options.

Bootstrap

Bootstrap is one of the most popular CSS framework and there are lots of features that can be useful t developers. It has a quick and responsive grid which is easy to use and it is very quick to make one that will work well in all browsers and the design will look good on all screens. There is also a big library of templates, themes layouts, admin panels and UI components so there is plenty to choose from including forms, buttons, alerts and progress bars. These will save lots of time as they will not need to be designed from scratch. It is good for beginners as there are lots of tutorials and it is a very fast system so prototypes or mocks can be drawn up really quickly.

Foundation

Foundation is widely used and is flexible, easily customisable and sophisticated. It can be used to create responsive websites and web apps and many big companies use it. It is very flexible and allows the production of websites, apps and emails that will look good on any device. There is the feature of being able to produce responsive HTML emails which is very useful for email marketing. It can be a bit tricky to use though but the company who made it do have an online website training system as well as professional consulting but they do charge for this. It is flexible and easy to customise.

Bulma

Bulma is free and open-source and is lightweight responsive and mobile first. It is very popular as a result. It has ready to use components to make it really easy to build mobile friendly interfaces. It also has logically names CSS class names so that it is easy to recognise and remember them. It is pure CSS with no javascript at all. There is a big community where tips and hints can be shared which can be useful if you need help. It is easy to learn as well, so really good for those that are new to this sort of thing.

Materialize

Materialize is a responsive front-end framework and it was created by Google. It is useful for creating websites or Android web apps as it comes with components and classes that are all ready made for this purpose. There are even starter templates that you can use to get you started. It has Material design which is something that many people really like and therefore is a positive for those that want to use it. It has a 12 grid format which will allow responsive page layouts to be very quickly created.

These are just a few of the options, but if one of them looks like it will work for you, then we recommend that you look into it in more detail as it is likely to be a good option that will work well for you right away and in the future.

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Designing Your First Website? 5 Things to Remember

If you are designing a website there are quite a few mistakes that you are likely to make. Some will not matter too much, but there are some that will be fundamental to the websites success and so it is a good idea to make sure that you get those things right.

Get Your SEO Sorted Out

Many people do not think about search engine optimisation (SEO) when they are planning a website. It is something really important to bear in mind right from the beginning though. It is something that will help you to show up on search engines for the keywords that you need to appear on. It is a good idea to learn a bit about how to do this and also think about the software that you are using to build your website and whether it has good SEO tools built into it or not. It might feel like you are wasting time learning when you want to get your site finished but it will be a lot more work if you find that you have not made a good choice of web builder or you have not set up the site properly. It could mean that you will have to rewrite the website or even completely redesign it and therefore you will waste a lot of time and potentially money.

Do Not Rush to Publish

It can be really exciting to think about getting the website up and running and ready to submit to search engines and to show all your friends and family and possibly potential customers. You may have also paid for a domain name and a web builder and want to start making the most of your money. It is well worth making sure that you have a website that is working properly and looks good first. So, check every link is working, that the menus work and things like that. Make sure that you proof read it as well as some people get really annoyed when they see typos on a website and search engines will also spot them and it could impact how high you come in listings. It can be a good idea to ask someone else to have a look at the site and proof read it for you as they may spot things that you do not.

Have Your Own Domain Name

It is often tempting to not buy a domain name but to use a free one. There are companies that will allow you to have a subdomain for free. This might seem like a good option because it will not cost you any money, but it is something which will make your website look a lot less professional. Domains are not that expensive and so you should be able to afford to buy one. This will have a huge impact on the look of your website and it will allow users to trust you more. A domain is usually easier to remember than a subdomain as well, which means that you will be found more easily. If you think that you will wait and then get a domain later, this can be tricky. It means that you will have to redirect people from your old one, resubmit to search engines and basically let everyone know that it has changed. This will not look good and will be a long and difficult process. It is much easier to start as you mean to go on.

Have Quality Content

It is easy to put together a website quickly with a couple of photos and a few paragraphs of text. However, if you want to make an impact then you need to have quality content. Think about who you are aiming the website at and what they will like to see. It can be wise to have lots of information, so that they have plenty to look at and read. Search engines also like lots of text. It is important to make sure that it is keyword rich for search engines, so that you get listed highly but you do not want it to be spammy. The best way to achieve this is to have a blog with lots of informative articles. Make sure the content appeals to your potential market and then the text will naturally contain the keywords that you need to have to please the search engines. It can take time to write good quality content, but you can employ people to do this for you and it does not need to be that expensive. There are plenty of websites where people will advertise their writing services at low prices.

Make it Easy to Navigate

It is a good idea to make sure that the structure of your website is easy to understand and navigate. If you want your users to easily be able to find their way about on the page then it is a good idea to ensure there is a clear menu which is labelled well so they know exactly where to find everything that they need.

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5 Website Promotional Techniques You Can’t Afford to Neglect

If you have a new website then it is important to make sure that you promote it properly. It is key to making sure that people find you. Many people make the mistake of thinking that having a pretty and good quality website is enough. This is important but you also need to make people aware of your site so that they visit it. There are lots of different things that you can try in order to promote your site and five important ones are explained below.

Search Engine Optimisation

It is so important to make sure that your website appears in search engines. While Google is probably the most popular and most important, you also need to consider the others as well. It is totally free as well, which means that it is well worth making some effort to make sure that you do appear. You need to make sure that you use techniques within the website to appeal to search engines. You will need to use keywords relevant to your site to get listed higher in search engines for those keywords. The best way to do this is to have lots of content with those words spread through it. You need to make sure that it is not spammy with the keywords repeated too often as they will notice. You can also use SEO tools to help you which will enable you to be able get through this process seamlessly but they may cost you money, so you will have to decide whether you feel this will be worth it or that you want to do it yourself. Having good navigation on your website also helps and having links from external sources. Gaining links can be trickiest but you might be able to exchange links, put them on your social media and possibly even as your signature in forums etc.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is important as it will give your subscribers a reminder of what you have to offer them and they are likely to revisit your site if you make the newsletter appealing. It is important not to swamp them with newsletters and to keep them direct and punchy but to make sure that you include new information they might be interested in such as new products you have on offer, deals and voucher codes or things like that. You do legally have to make sure that they are unsubscribed if they wish to be but there are many email management systems that can handle that for you and many of them are free.

Blog

Having a blog running alongside your website can be a really useful way of adding lots of content. You will be able to provide articles which are relevant to what you are doing with your website. Hopefully they will be informative and interesting and will get people coming to your website. They can also be used as a way of adding keywords to the site to please search engines. If you add content to your blog every so often, it will also keep visitors returning to your website because they will want to see what new content you have added. This is also appealing to search engines as they can see that the website is evolving. If you are worried that you cannot write well, then you can pay someone to do it for you, but you may find that once you look at a few blog posts on other sites, that you will get the confidence to do it yourself.

Social Media

Social media is so important these days as most people have an account on one platform or another. You may need to consider which platform might be the best one for you to find your potential market on. Then you will need to make frequent and relevant posts which are interesting. Respond to comments and you may build up a following and you may even find that people share your posts which will create free publicity for you. You can make the same posts across different platforms and you can even set this to happen automatically. You should make sure that your website has links to your social media channels so it is easy to find you.

Online Directories

Online directories are effectively free advertising sites. They will make it easier for people to find your website if you are listed on them. Local directories can be really good if you have an actual shop or premises but there are also other places that you can get listed on which will really help people to find you more easily.

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Getting Started With Social – 5 Tips for Successful Social Media Management

Social media is really important for any business. If you want a way to be able to showcase yourself, your brand or your goods and services to lots of people then this can be a very useful way to do it. However, you could be really wasting your time, so it is important to make sure that you are getting the results that you want. There are lots of things that you can do though, so that you get off to a really good start.

Work Out What You Want

It is important to think about what you are trying to do with your social media presence. You might think it is obvious, that you want to draw attention to yourself, but is that enough? It is likely that you actually want an outcome from that – maybe you want website visits, people to buy your products, brand awareness etc. Think in very specific terms, so consider how much you want to increase sales, how many more website visits you want etc and then you will be able to measure whether you are achieving that goal. It is also a good idea to make it realistic though, as an unattainable goal will just make you give up before you start.

Think About Who you Need To Appeal To

It is really important to think about who you are trying to attract and try to be specific. If you can identify the location, age, gender, likes and dislikes etc of those you are trying to appeal to, or get other specific information it will make it a lot easier for you to target your audience. Once you know who you are trying to reach then you can design posts etc to attract them. It is easy to think that you don’t mind who it Is and try to attract everyone, but that makes it far more difficult to come up with a social media campaign. You may know who your current customers are or you can think about what sort of people are likely to be interested in what you are doing.

Select The Right Platform

It is really important to make sure that you select the platform that is best for the people that you are appealing to. It can be tempting to try all of them, but this will be very time consuming and you could end up wasting time. LinkedIn is good for businesses but will not necessarily find you customers unless you are selling business to business. Facebook will be good if you want to sell directly, but both tend to appeal to older audiences. If you are trying to target a younger audience then Instagram could work but Snapchat might be even better. You may want to look at what your competitors are using as well and see how much engagement they have and that should help you to know what to target yourself.

Update Constantly

It is important to make sure that you keep engaging all of the time. If you have an account and then do not update it much, then people will lose interest. It is important to make sure that you keep your target market in mind when you are writing content but do not always post sales things. Directing them to your website in every post can be tedious but sometimes post a link to someone else, maybe someone in the industry that has something to say that you feel will interest your target market. Even if you are posting sales posts, try to hide them a bit so it does not just look like you are begging them to spend money.

Consider Using Influencers

There are certain influences in different fields that have a huge impact on their fanbase and so if you can get them to review or recommend you and your products that will have a big impact. It can therefore be worth trying to build relationships with then and find a way that you can work with them, that will benefit them. They will need a reason to recommend you. They may, of course think your products or services are amazing and be happy to recommend, but it is more likely that they will want something else in return such as payment or free products so be prepared for this. Obviously, you need to choose someone that works for your brand as well as them recommending your brand will have an influence on your brand image so you need to make sure you are happy with this.

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