Cloud-Based Responsive Ecommerce Solution (online shop)
Merchant System™ is a Google-friendly, responsive, hosted ecommerce solution that automatically adapts its presentation to suit the viewer's PC, tablet or smartphone. It provides you with a professionally branded ecommerce website, together with the means to stock its virtual shelves in an attractive and contemporary way without having to understand the complexities of ecommerce software code. In short, it enables you to promote and sell your products via a feature-rich, professional looking ecommerce shop that will be visible to the widest possible audience.
“Sinclair Design has been a central partner to our business since 2001. They provide an excellent website solution that not only reaches customers outside of our traditional geographical trading area, but doubles as a useful sales tool for our shop staff. We have found Sinclair Design to be professional and innovative, and have no hesitation in fully endorsing their services and expertise.”
Merchant System Screen Shots (click or tap to view)
Summary of Merchant System features:
- Search Engine Friendly – the best looking online shop is useless if no one knows it's there, so Merchant System has been designed to help your products get noticed by search engines. From the basics such as control of header and meta tags, to the technicalities of valid code and fast delivery, through to the niceties of human readable URLs (addresses), social links and an XML site map, you have the tools to maximise your search engine rankings. Furthermore, we offer an effective and competitively priced SEO and social networking service if you'd rather leave such things to us.
- Responsive Website Design – RWD is a relatively new concept, but is essential for any commercial website to be effective from here on in. Why? - a 12/2013 Forbes report shows that mobile phones have overtaken PCs as the most common means of accessing the Internet worldwide, and that 25% of Americans use only mobile devices to view the web (UK mobile usage is higher than the US and the rest of the world). Accordingly, Merchant System's website shop adapts its display to suit any size of device, from hi-res monitor to smartphone, using valid and semantic HTML5 and CSS3 code.
- Solid Core Codebase – We previously hand-coded our own ecommerce systems, but the rapid growth of customer expectations for features like those offered by Amazon and Tesco, and the unbelievably differing range of retailer's operational models, means that the only feasible way forwards is not to reinvent the wheel, but to build a responsive website shop solution around an existing, well-supported open source ecommerce engine - we've chosen OpenCart. This is now the only sensible way forwards: to stand on the shoulders of giants and use our coding skills to make a great system magnificent.
- Contemporary Features – Merchant System offers an array of modern features such as multi-language, -currency, -gateway, -store and -product pictures (with zoom), individually priced product options, product attributes for filtering and comparison ('compare'), product ratings and reviews, best sellers and new products displays, multiple delivery mechanisms, eBay integration, pre-timed discounts and offers, customer grouping with separate pricing and discount mechanisms, and account facilities with automated password reset, wish-lists, gift-cards, loyalty points, multiple address selection, previous orders, invoice downloads and returns handling etc.
- Off-the-shelf Extensions – Further to all of the above, we are able to choose from a phenomenal range of off-the-shelf system extensions (extra charges may apply) to add features such as responsive sliders, product carousels, real-time product filtering, Google shopping integration, manufacturer-based delivery charges - the list goes on and on. Not all extensions are of a high standard, but as coders ourselves we can sort the wheat from the chaff, modify them and fix bugs if necessary.
- Personalised Features – We are primarily application developers of cloud-based business management software, and part of the global open source community. This means that if you need your ecommerce website to do something 'outside the box', we can probably oblige. Whether this entails building a Content Management System within OpenCart's framework (a first, we think), or integrating with your back-office or warehousing system for real-time order processing and stock control, we have the skills to make the system dance to your tune (additional fees may apply).
- Personalised Design/Branding – Sinclair Design started out as a design consultancy specialising in corporate communications (brand management), and even though those services are no longer primary to what we do, we still understand this complex subject at an expert level. So when it comes to the design and branding of your online store, we are confident that we have what it takes to make your shop stand out from the crowd whilst being easy to use and true to your brand.
- Fast and Secure – We run our own private cloud of servers for our mission-critical business management systems, and this same platform delivers Merchant System to the world, speedily and securely. Combine this with OpenCart's caching systems, then add Sinclair Design's quest for coding efficiency and technical excellence, and the result is much faster than many other platforms, given the number of images, sliders and carousels that shopkeepers like to display on their home pages (we urge our clients to minimise the bells and whistles where possible, in favour of speed).
- Interested? – Call 01490 450369 during working hours, or complete and submit the form on the left.
“We have been working with Sinclair Design for the last 15 years or so. They have always delivered a highly professional service, even for the strangest of requests! Sinclair Design are easy to work with and will always try to understand our needs and treat us as a unique business rather than just another company on the books.”
The set-up and standard annual licence fees cover 'reasonable' telephone or email support during UK working hours, but we expect you to read the user manual provided in the first instance. The idea is that we create the personalised/branded online shop shell and you populate it (fill it) with your product details and content (text and pictures). Whilst we are happy to help with specific presentation problems, our fees do not include building your entire shop for you unless you contract us to do so as a specific service.
If we get time, we will also review your website from time to time (especially during the initial build up) and might make reasoned recommendations for changes. After all, if you are not using Merchant System to its best, it doesn't show our product at its best!
You can access the admin area of your online shop whenever and wherever you like - all you need is your username, password and internet access. Once you are logged in, and provided you are the administrator or have been given the necessary permissions by your designated administrator, you can make whatever changes you like to whatever products or pages you like. Thus if you suddenly have to withdraw a product whilst on holiday in Africa, find yourself an internet cafe and disable the relevant page on your website. Failing that, give us a call and we'll do it for you.