I have been a BUSY BEE!!!
On Saturday my blog post was about the EXPERIMENT I'm embarking on. Folksy vs My Very Own Shop!
As I mentioned in my last post I decided to go with a 'free' shop providing website thingy (I'm not the best a technical terms .. I'm sure there's a proper name for these things, but don't have a clue what it is!)
So every spare minute for the last few days (when I wasn't fighting off Twitter hackers - ARGGHHHHH!!) I've spent setting up my new shop on Shopcreator
I fairly quickly got to grips with the tools available and now have a shop ... yay!!
I'm using the Transact product on Shopcreator, a supposedly 'free' shop. And it is free ... so long as you don't sell anything! Assuming you do (and that is kind of the point!) you start paying a % of your turnover. 5.5% up to the first £500 ('first'?!? I'd be extremely grateful, and frankly astounded, if I get anywhere near a 'the only' £500).
Because it is 'free' it definitely has its limitations ... but equally it does what it says on the tin, and it pretty easy to use. So here are my pros & cons of Shopcreator Transact:
The GOOD BITS
:o) There is a very straightforward 5 step process to setting up your shop (template, logo, products, other info, payment & shipping)
:o) You can buy your own domain name through Shopcreator and it automatically does all the set up for you - perfect for a numptie like me!
:o) If you buy your domain name from Shopcreator it will forward any email address made up 'something-or-other' @yourdomainname.co.uk to the email address you have registered with Shopcreator. It works ... I tried it ... with some really bizarre 'something-or-others'!!
:o) If you already have your own domain name you can use this too ... I didn't use this option, so can't comment too much ... looked slightly more complicated than buying it through Shopcreator, but if it is like anything else on the site which I've tried, I doubt it would be too onerous.
:o) Listing your items is really simple and quick (much quicker than Folksy!) and you can chose up to 3 categories in your shop to put them into.
:o) The categories themselves are very clever (to simple little me!). If there is nothing in a category, the category doesn't show in your shop .. genius!
:o) The email support works: I had one problem, which I couldn't find an answer too in the Shopcreator forum, so I emailed them. I got a response within a couple of hours ... turned out the problem was with them not me (always good!) ... and it was sorted very quickly afterwards.
The NOT-SO-GOOD BITS
:o( There are only a limited number of templates to use, and as far as I can tell, apart from changing the colour theme, there ain't much else you can do to improve them
:o( Though you can receive email using 'email@example.com, I haven't work out yet if I can send messages from 'firstname.lastname@example.org or use it as the standard contact email address which gets automatically posted on your site.
:o( You can only post one pic per item in your shop, so I need to make sure it's a good 'un. ... I'm working on my photography skills, so hopefully they'll improve with time!