Archive for the ‘Guest posts’ Category

PayPal vs. Stripe: Which Payment Solution is Best for Your Website?

By Yan Kulakov, Tuesday, June 7th, 2016 in Articles, Guest posts

Hello!

Guys from Hosting Facts help you choose between the two most popular payment services—PayPal and Stripe. From this article, you will learn interesting facts about these payment services and their pros and cons. Cool infographic included.


Which payment solution is best for your business and your website?
We take a look at PayPal vs. Stripe.

If you run an online business, you need to accept payments. But getting paid via an online portal has all kinds of challenges. You need to make sure your solution is secure, functional, and easy for customers to use.

You can have a web payment solution custom built for your site, but software solutions have already solved the biggests challenges, and you can buy their services for a reasonable price. Two of the most popular are PayPal and Stripe. Websites around the world accept payments from these two companies.

Today, we’re going to explore PayPal and Stripe. We compare the two on a number of factors—fees, security, APIs, and more, to help you discover which payment solution is best for your site.

What do PayPal and Stripe do?

PayPal and Stripe both accept credit card payments online and in mobile apps. Both solutions can be seamlessly integrated with an existing website. The two aren’t new to this game—they process billions of dollars every year, are two of the most trusted solutions for accepting mobile payment.

What’s the Deal with PayPal?

PayPal was founded in 1998 by Luke Nosek, Max Levchin, Peter Thiel and Ken Howery under the name Confinity. In 2000, Confinity merged with X.com, Elon Musk’s online banking company. Soon enough, X.com would focus exclusively on PayPal, which was generating significant interest and respect.

PayPal had its IPO and was bought by eBay for $1.5 billion in 2002, and became eBay’s default payment solution. Today, PayPal operates all over the world. It has become an independent company again, spinning off from Ebay. PayPal moved $228 Billion dollars in 2014 alone.

What About Stripe?

Stripe is much newer than PayPal, as it was founded in 2010. Founders Patrick Collison and John Collison created Stripe as a turn-key solutions for web developers who wanted to integrate payment processing into their websites. Stripe stands out from the competition because of how easy it is for software programmers to use.

Stripe received funding from Y Combinator in June 2010, and quickly grew. In 2014, Stripe landed a major partnership with Apple Inc. to help power Apple Pay.

Pros to Paypal and Stripe

  • Easy to use for non-coders
  • Extremely secure and the security isn’t on you
  • Customizable to your brand

Cons to PayPal and Stripe

  • Transaction fee charges
  • Not designed for brick-and-mortar locations

Other Web Payment Solutions to Check Out

PayPal and Stripe are two favoured payment solutions, but there are others that may better fit your needs. Here are a few worth checking out:

Authorize.net

Authorize.net is a comprehensive payment solution, allowing you to accept payments online, via mobile, or at a store. Authorize.net is a very high quality payment gateway, and the 24/7 support is unrivalled. Your customers can use any credit card, or even use PayPal.

Fees: 2.9% 30¢ transaction costs, $49 setup fee, plus $25 recurring charge

Braintree

Braintree is a simple, robust way to accept payments or enable buying from almost anywhere—in your mobile app or online. On top of the full breadth of PayPal and Venmo customers, Braintree’s integrations give you access to multiple payment methods, simple pricing, security, and customer support.

Fees: Your first $50K in standard card processing volume comes fee-free. This applies to all card and digital wallet transactions not through PayPal or Coinbase. After you reach $50K, it’s 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction, with discounted rates available for businesses who process over $80k per month.

CS-Cart supports PayPal and Authorize.Net out of the box. Get Stripe and Braintree in the CS-Cart Marketplace.


About the author:

John is the CEO of Hostingfacts.com, a web
hosting review site that boasts human edited and tested reviews of hosting
companies from around the world. He loves to code websites, make them
visually appealing as well as improving them UX wise.

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3 Important Features for an eCommerce Store

By Yan Kulakov, Thursday, October 1st, 2015 in Guest posts

You’ve decided to build an eCommerce store. You have an idea that you feel is profitable, and you want to give it a try. First steps are always the hardest, learning the ins and outs of selling online and how it all comes together. Building an eCommerce store is a stepping stone, most lessons start to appear once you’re concluding business.

As a beginner, you may get ahead of yourself and invest time in business areas that don’t need your attention until later on, and by doing that you risk of forgetting the truly important parts of an eCommerce store. I am talking about design, social, and content.

1. Design

The most important feature of an online store is to make it easy and accessible for customers to buy products. This means investing in good navigation options, optimizing each sales page with great descriptions and visual content, as well as optimizing the site for optimal speed performance.

CS-Cart offers more than 200 unique themes that are optimized for all of the above mentioned points. Why spend thousands of dollars hiring a developer and a designer, when you can invest in a spectacular pre-built theme for just a fraction of that sum.

2. Social

Social media is a powerful tool for driving new customers to your site through special offers, promotions, and involvement in the business field you are working in. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are the traditional social media sites you want to be a part of. Also, don’t forget to invest in Pinterest and Instagram—visually appealing social platforms that can be used to advertise products directly.

Remember to be a part of a community, and besides sharing your own products, promote other businesses and their ideas as well—it helps you gain trust, and nobody likes to look at a social media account that only does self-promotion.

3. Content

Sales will not drive to you themselves, especially if you’re working without a marketing budget. Content marketing is a viable option for building a following that’s based on your knowledge and experience in the field.

Several of the leading brands understand the importance of content, and invest in a properly developed content strategy to drive sales, build brand awareness, help others, and contend for organic search traffic.


Without implementing these three important features in your eCommerce store, you risk of being seen as inexperienced and lose potential opportunities, but most importantly—customers.

About the Author:

Alex Ivanovs is an online entrepreneur, and a writer who is passionate about self-improvement. You can find his works on SkillCode, and his Twitter handle @skillcode.

Header Navigation and SEO

By Yan Kulakov, Wednesday, August 26th, 2015 in Articles, Guest posts, Tips and tricks

Often, people may only have a vague idea of what they’re looking for in the Internet. That’s why many people search by a broad keyword.

Broad keywords such as shoes, books, and sports are short and not specific. These keywords are difficult to rank #1, because so many other websites might have articles that mention shoes, sports, or any other broad keyword. However, if you rank well for a broad keyword, you will be receiving a great deal of traffic.

To rank your store for a broad keyword with a high level competition, include the keyword into your header navigation. The trick works because the header navigation has the benefit of being the same on every store page.

How the Trick Works

For example, CS-Cart uses a Product Mega Navigation concept to include links to main categories and subcategories. The Mega Menu links are visible only when the customer hovers a mouse cursor over the header. When the search engine crawlers visit the site, they crawl and index all of the pages in the Mega Menu.

Because CS-Cart Mega Menu links to many categories, all of those categories receive a share of link juice. And because that header with the Mega Menu is the same across every page of the site—every page shares a small amount of link juice it has with these category pages as well. That’s amazingly powerful for SEO.

By contrast, you can use the left navigation that will contain links specific only to the category, or filtered product set that the customer has navigated to. The links in the left navigation have local link juice power. The links in the left hand category navigation share link juice that those less juicy pages have with each other. But they do not get a share of link juice from other departments or from the homepage of your store.

Only links in the site-wide navigation elements, such as the header, benefit from whole-site link juice infusions.

Other site-wide navigation elements, such as the footer or your right or left navigation, will also work fine, if they are the same and present on every store page.


About the Author:

Fotis Kourmadas
Owner and SEO at CSCart.biz and CS-Cart Hellas:

Thank you guys for the great opportunity to guest blog at CS-Cart Blog. If any readers have questions or comments, I will gladly answer them. Just contact me at info@dvs.gr or just post the question below the article.

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Generate More Sales with Yotpo’s Social Reviews

By Konstantin Molchanov (CS-Cart team), Wednesday, April 10th, 2013 in Articles, Guest posts, Tips and tricks

Yotpo

There is nothing better to drive up sales and increase brand loyalty than word of mouth advertising. Online retailers need a quick and easy way to generate likes, shares and user-generated content related to their products, so they can take full advantage of the massive social networks we all spends hours on each day.

Yotpo is a free plug-and-play social reviews solution for CS-Cart and many other e-commerce platforms that takes full advantage of our social nature online to help online stores generate more traffic and sales. Yotpo generates more reviews than any other product reviews service and integrates social at its core.

After a quick registration process and adding Yotpo as an add-on to your store (full installation details can be found here) you are ready to start customizing the widget to fit your store, activating the mail-after-purchase feature and pushing user-generated content to Facebook and Twitter.

Yotpo turns your customers into marketers

Yotpo helps stores gain more social traffic and therefore more sales by prompting customers who write reviews to share their reviews on their social networks. Traffic which comes from these shares converts at a higher rate because there is already context between the new visitor and the product.

Yotpo’s social sharing feature allows you to connect your Facebook page and/or Twitter account to your Yotpo account. Once your social accounts are connected, Yotpo allows you to send reviews to your social networks.

Provide your visitors with validated reviews from past customers

Yotpo’s mail-after-purchase feature sends emails to each of your customers after a set number of days (you set the number) asking them to write a review of the product they purchased. Reviews which are generated through the mail-after-purchase feature have the highest level of validation (post-purchase) and this automated process of generating reviews for your store provides the best value to your visitors.

Yotpo is bringing out new features all the time as it strives to become the e-commerce standard for product reviews. For more information on Yotpo, visit our website and don’t forget to check out our blog for more tips, tactics and methods to generate more sales from social reviews and user-generated content.

About the Author:

Justin Butlion is the Content and Social Marketing Manager of Yotpo. Justin loves to blog about e-commerce, online marketing, web development, and entrepreneurship. Check out his latest posts in the Yotpo blog or contact him directly at justin@yotpo.com.