Sell online

From websites to shippers, digital tools allow your rural small business to profit from ecommerce.


Sell from WordPress.com with Shopify

WordPress.com, the world’s most popular content management system, (ordinary people call such systems websites and blogs) now offers plug-ins that let users link their WordPress site to Shopify, the online ecommerce service.  This is good news for people with a relatively small number of goods to sell. Those with an extensive inventory are better off using Shopify as their primary sales venue.


Get best rate to ship ecommerce purchases

Shippo  negotiates low rates with multiple carriers like FedEx and UPS by buying in volume on behalf of a host of shippers. You enter the shipment information, Shippo finds the cheapest way to ship it. The company also provides a tracking tool that shippers host on their own websites, so customers tracking their orders keep returning and being tempted to buy again.


Google lowers mobile-unfriendly sites in search

Google recently announced in May  it will increase the importance of having a mobile page, and sites that are not mobile-friendly will rank even lower in search results than before. Since so much shopping is now done on mobile devices, you can’t afford to have a site that’s not optimized for mobile, especially if you have an ecommerce site.


Test your website’s mobile friendliness

Paste the URL of your website’s home page into this Google page to find out whether your site is mobile-friendly enough to not be hammered in the search results and lose potential customers seeking to buy from you.


See how mobile friendly your site is

You can get a look at how your website looks on screens of different sizes by putting your domain name into the box at the top of this page.


Learn how to make a mobile website

Flexible, the folks who offer the website viewer mentioned in the post above, also will teach you how to use the Flexible Grid System to create web applications.  To take advantage of their free help, you need to know  HTML, CSS, Sass, Less or Stylus.


Social media is where buying starts today

Social media is highly influential in customers’ decisions to buy products. In a Forbes study,  81 percent of  respondents indicated posts from their friends and family directly influence their purchase decisions.

Not all social media posts lead to sales, however, Learn what your social media posts need to do—and not do—to drive retail sales.


What mobile users want from a website

Mobile users  were  asked what items a website must have before they’d consider it mobile friendly. Their responses may surprise you.  Can you guess what 90 percent of mobile users said they shop for on their smartphones? The answer is in the article.


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