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Products comparision

chinesedreamchinesedream Member
in General edited August 2007
Hi Brett,

I wonder if you have more live stores that you can show me?

I need to prepare a proposal for a new client who needs an e-commerce site, and I was comparing a few options to be included in the proposal. The foxycart kept coming up on the top despite that it costs $15 a month. Most of my end-clients (I work as a subcontractor most of the time) are small struggled business and on the cheap side unfortunately, always want something free. I actually begun to blame this myself because I was the one looking for open source free solution for them all the time. With this new one, I think I am going to take different approach, and 'educate' my client that good thing with excellent support don't come free and having an e-commerce website means monthly expenses involved.

The client sells cellphone and he needs the cart to have the products comparison. I aware that with Modx's Ditto and Tvs, many features are possible, however my experience is that, when trying to convince clients for something, a picture/example beats thousand words.

by the way, just a thought, the foxycart features you listed speak to web designers and developers, but it probably won't do the job for many business owners who want e-commerce websites; and the demo shopping cart a bit bare-bone for non-web developer - I sent two friends to look at your carts, their feedback was very similar: "I don't see many features I wanted from the demo cart". While you guy praise how wonderful your software is, these people I sent to your site told me 'can't even match with zencart, e-commerce etc...'

I am not a marketing person and very bad at it, therefor I don't have any suggestion what better content should be worded or what demo cart feature should be included. On one hand it's web designer's job to convince his client why he recommends such and such software and features for her important e-commerce site, but the decision is always on client's hand. Giving us something that allows us easily to convince to our important clients why your software is better than others, will help your business, our business and our clients' businesses I think:)

  • brettbrett FoxyCart Team
    Hi Tee.

    Thanks for the feedback. We've actually had a few people in your situation that have requested more "store-owner friendly" marketing materials. The 2 Minute Tour page might help you, but we'll be creating a one-page PDF eventually that will be more focused to store owners. In the meantime, try to convince them that it's more about being flexible (FoxyCart) than doing *everything*, but doing it less than perfectly. Example: Store owner (not web developer) I was just talking to has a ZenCart store and can't use the mailing list functionality because his list is too big, and let's face it, it's not a very solid mailing list app (esp. when compared to Campaign Monitor or others). So he's stuck and not able to market effectively. With FoxyCart, just hook up Campaign Monitor integration (in the wiki) and you now have the best tool for the job. Hopefully that's a helpful example.

    You're very right about e-commerce sites having expenses involved. Even with free/open-source solutions you still need a security certificate, PCI security scanning and compliance, ongoing maintenance for security patches. And if you're hosting it yourself on shared hosting you have another entire issue to deal with. Remember the Dreamhost FTP debacle from a few weeks back? That could be disastrous.

    Ok, back on topic ;)

    As far as product comparison goes, that's definitely more of a MODx (or other CMS) thing. If you're interested in writing a product comparison snippet for MODx I bet there'd be some interest in that. Probably a little Ditto... with a little bit of logic to feed in the proper docs to Ditto... shouldn't be too difficult. (Famous last words ;)
  • lukeluke FoxyCart Team
    I agree with you, tee. Putting together more examples on the cart would definitely help. Getting the new admin out the door was our first priority. We've also been focusing on the needs of our existing customers (DHL, FedEx and ourchase orders were all direct requests from our customers).

    We're thinking about extending the functionality of the actual cart to include images, links back to the product and more. Hopefully that, along with some really creative product form examples, will help communicate how flexible this system really is.

    Thanks again for your comments, we really do appreciate them.
  • Brett and Luke, thank you for the quick response.

    I submitted a proposal to client today, will see how it goes hopefully in a week or two.

    Regarding your suggestion on using Modx with Ditto for product comparision, well, I figured that the case too. Problem is I am only started digging in with Ditto and I know very little PHP - just started learning. As a result, I get a fuzzy feeling that the FoxyCart will only be good option for a Modx advanced user (I plan to be at that level one day).

  • brettbrett FoxyCart Team
    We'd certainly be willing to help you with MODx. Just don't tell anybody that uses any other CMS. ;)
  • Will you help me with MODx? :P
  • brettbrett FoxyCart Team
    Yeah, if you help me with FoxyCart ;)
  • Brett, thanks for the answer from other post (got it solved) and thanks for offering to help with Modx :)

    The fuzzy feeling I get from building a rather complex e-commerce website with Modx using Foxycart is getting me headache now, and I am afraid I maybe a little snake trying to swallow a big elephant.

    Ok, the basic concept I got is everything is do-able with Ditto, TVs and chunks, and maybe throw in a snippet or two for other features client requested.

    Client asked me how he is to add new products, new categories etc and what is presented to him when he logs in to the admin or webuser? All these while the picture I got is I setup a product page template, then teach him how to add new product images, descriptions and new product pages etc using quickEdit or TinyMCE.

    He had a good look on Magento and X-Cart, thought what they have are the only way he could easily understand and able to add new products, new categories himself.

    I wonder how difficult it is for me to setup something like this screencast (add product) in the Modx dmin with very basic of PHP? Or it is not possible at all.

  • brettbrett FoxyCart Team
    Quick answer: Anything is possible ;)
    Longer answer:
    Sorry Tee. Our forum ate your link. Can you repost that URL?

    Building a MODx + FoxyCart tutorial is definitely something we plan on doing, but we haven't had the time yet. The basic idea is to use a plugin like "Customize Manager Fields" or "ManagerManager" to kind of lock down the admin and hide the stuff your client doesn't need to see (like link attributes, menu title/index, show in menu, etc.). Then your client can simply add a page and enter the relevant details (product name could be pagetitle or longtitle, price could be a TV, description could be content) and save the page. Product photo(s) could be image TVs.

    Adding a new product is as easy as adding a new page in MODx, and you could use phpThumb to auto-generate thumbnails for use in category pages (Ditto call). Featured products using Ditto's "promote to homepage" type functionality (which I think is at Randomize blurbs on the homepage with Ditto's randomization. Etc.

    The advantage with Magento or X-Cart are that they're CMSs built just for ecommerce. Sometimes this is useful. The advantage of something like MODx + FoxyCart is really in the flexibility, and the ability to build the site exactly how you want it. (Also, templating in MODx + FoxyCart is arguably much easier than most other systems.)
  • Bret,

    Somthing like this (and the x-cart add products admin feature):
    I know

    Thanks again for the suggestion, I think you have slowly patching a big picture for me:)
    Client is out of town and I am going to met him in two weeks or so. It's still the very early stage on choosing which CMS/ecommerce he wanted to use, but your generous answer will help me better prepare.

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