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I made a mistake. I signed up but now feel I'm not ready for my own website. Am I out any money?

 

No. A website is a big job. I want my customers to be happy with their websites. If you decide within 30 days of signing up that a WOBBookSite website is not for you then you can cancel your service and all but $20.00 will be refunded.

 

Payments & Shopping Cart

 

Do I have to offer Amazon Payments from my website?

 

No.  You have the choice of if you want to be linked directly to Amazon.

If you are linked to Amazon the website displays images, reviews and product data from Amazons database.  Per their TOS that means a method to purchase from Amazon must exist on the website.

If you are not linked to Amazon you are not required to provide Amazon payments.

The choice is yours and you may switch back and forth as much as you want.

Even if you are linked to Amazon you can have inventory items on the website that are not in your Amazon inventory.

 

Does Amazon’s A-Z protection exist on purchases through the website?

 

If an item is purchased using Amazon Payments then the A-Z protection still applies.

 

What other payment methods does the website support?

 

Paypal Standard Payments and Mal's e-commerce for other payment types including credit cards and Google Checkout. 

 

Can I have different prices on my website then from Amazon?

 

Yes and No.  If you are linked to Amazon, Amazon Payments must be supported and because Amazon does not let a website use any price other then what is on the main Amazon.com site that is the price that is used.

 

If you are not linked to Amazon you can have any price you want.

 

Even if you are linked to Amazon you control shipping prices on non Amazon Payments you can use that to raise/lower total cost to your customer.

 

Can I enter my own shipping charges?

 

Items paid through Amazon Payments uses the standard Amazon shipping charges.

 

Items paid through Paypal/Mals use a shipping matrix.  You can setup shipping charges for the 1st item, additional items, expedited, standard and international.  Different shipping can be setup for Books, DVDs, VHS, Music, Software, Electronic and software.


Can I offer coupons and discounts?

 

Coupons/Discounts for Paypal Payments and Mals are supported.  Both Item & Shipping discounts can be offered.  Discounts can be calculated by either percentages or a flat amount.  Minimum order totals or quantities are supported.

 

Since the options in the shopping cart can be different between Paypal and Amazon Payments are their ways to reduce confusion to the customer?

 

You can have custom text below and/or above the shopping cart items customized to the payment method currently chosen to help explain to the customer the differences.

 

You can choose to have on individual items a ‘Buy Now’ link, which would immediately purchase the item from Amazon along with an ‘Add To Cart’ button which adds the item to their shopping cart which allows only paypal payments.

 

By setting up your cart that way the website stays within then Amazon TOS with the ‘Buy Now’ Link but allows customers that want to buy multiple items to take advantage of combined shipping and coupons.

 

I use AOB or Fillz… will my website orders be automatically be transferred over?

 

If the customer uses Amazon Payments the orders will flow to AOB/Fillz (and any other inventory program) like any other Amazon order.

 

The website can automatically transfer Paypal orders to AOB/Fillz.

 

 

 

 

Inventory

 

 

How is my website populated with my inventory?

 

If you use AOB or Fillz your inventory adds/edits/deletes will be updated through out the day.

 

I use a different inventory program.  Can my items be uploaded directly from it?

 

  In general any inventory program that can create add/delete/edit tab-delimited, UIEE, or homebase files can be used. You just have to upload them yourself

 

 

 

Only Adds and Edits are not real time.  Before any item is displayed on the website it is verified that it is still owned.  So Deletes are real time.

 

How are my books categorized?

 

If you use AOB or Fillz and have your categories set (using the Amazon browse paths fields) then the website will use those categories.

 

Otherwise the website will automatically categorize your items for you based on Amazon’s categories.

 

A lot of my books end up in the “Other’ category.  How can I fix that?

 

Unfortunately Amazon has not categorized many older ISBNs and user added ASINs are not categorized.

 

These books can be categorized but I can not determine what categories they should be in.  You can send me a list of ISBN/ASINs and the Amazon category they should appear in and I will move them.

 

The ability to move books to the proper category by the click of a button will be supported on the websites.

 

I have non-Amazon items on AOB/Fillz. Will those show up on the website?

 

Yes.  You can add non-Amazon items to your website. You must supply the categories yourself.

 

If you do not use AOB/Fillz you can still add non-Amazon items but you will have to upload the files of the items manually.

 

You can also create user pages and manually enter items for sale on them.

 

 

Marketing

 

Will my website generate the same amount of sales as Amazon does?

 

No.  Not for a while.  Amazon.com receives millions of visitors a day.  Your website receives zero.

 

Your own website, whether through us or another provider, is a long-term sales strategy. 

 

You are in charge of driving visitors to your website and if you cannot find ways to do that then you will not have many sales.

 

That said; there are plenty of Amazon sellers that make a significant percentage of their sales through their own website. 

 

It just takes time and creative marketing.

 

Will Google (Yahoo, MSN, Others) send people to my website?

 

No.  Not for a while. (a common theme).

 

There are 2 main reasons you will not see a lot of Google referrals to your website.

 

1)      Over the past few years there have been millions SPAM websites created.  Because of this Google penalizes new websites. Think of it as a probationary sentence until Google decides they can trust your website.

2)      You have nothing new to offer Google on your website.  There are 100s of 1000s of sellers with the same inventory you have trying to sell it on the internet.  Your inventory alone does not make you stand out on the web.

 

So, now you are trying to talk me out of a website…

 

Just trying to set realistic expectations.

 

With your own website you are the one responsible for marketing.

 

You will need to plan on sending traffic yourself to your website and not rely on Search Engines at first.  After time the search engines will pick up your website and start sending you traffic.

 

What ways are there to gain traffic to my website?

 

Think of your website as no different then a B&M store.  Its URL should be on every piece of correspondence you send out just like your store phone number would.

 

Emails, Packing Slips, Invoices, Business Cards, Book Marks, Forum Posts (on forums that allow it), in forum profiles.  Never pass up an opportunity to give out your URL.

 

Many of the Book selling sites allow you to put in a home page.  If you are a member of any organizations they might have websites and might link to yours.

 

How can I help Search Engines send traffic to my website?

 

2 ways.  Links from other website and non-inventory content. 

 

  1. Links - Google (and other search engines) use links to judge popularity of a website.    It’s not easy to get links so don’t go overboard worrying about it.  Over time they will come.  You’ll get an initial link from our website which will help kick it off.  Some bookstores post link on the Book section of Craigslist.  In theory you’re not supposed to post commercial links there but if it is not too spammy looking it might stay.  If you are a member of any organizations see if they link to member websites.  Most forums have profiles where you can put you URL.  Some forums allow URLs in your signatures.  If you have a niche then maybe an author website will link to you if you push their books.

 

One thing you should not do is pay people to link to you.  There are lots of schemes out there where they try to get you to pay them for 1000s of links.  Google knows about these ‘link farms’ and actually can penalize your site.

 

  1. Non-Inventory Content – If you could write a 300-700 word article every week for a year then you’ll be receiving well over 1000 visitors/day to your website.  If you can write one article per day for a year you will be receiving over 10000 visitors/day.

What other content can you write? Books Reviews and Author biographies are the obvious ones.  Click here for some other ideas:


What are Sitemaps and does the website support them?

Sitemaps are files on your website that list every page on the site and when they last were updated.  They help Search Engines index all your pages. 

 

Do you support uploads to Googlebase (Froogle)?

Googlebase uploads are in testing at this time. 

 

Any other ideas on how to get people to the website?

 

  • Use the ‘Send Page to a Friend’ link and the Bookmark this page link.
  • You can try Google Adwords - www.adwords.google.com I haven’t had much luck with ads to books.  If you do be specific.  Put in ads for your niches.  Be very careful about how much you pay per ad and put in low daily budgets. 
  • You can try buying advertising on other websites.  (not to be confused with buying links from businesses that just do that)  If buy advertising make sure it is on a related website.

 

I have a small inventory.  Even if I get people to my website I won’t have what they are looking for?

 

  • Take advantage of the websites automatic tie-ins with Amazon.  Amazon will pay you 5-8.5% of every sale you can generate for them.  The website has settings that will list Amazon books after your search results.  That way if you get a user to your website and they search for items you do not have in your inventory you may still get a commission on the sale.
  • The website support integrating an Amazon AStore into you website.  You can have a link to the store, have your customer searches automatically search your AStore if you have no matches in your inventory.
  • You can add Google Ads or other affiliate ads.  There is a question on if that is a good on an ecommerce website.  You risk sending a potential sale away from your website for a 5-10 cent click.
  • You can try non-internet types of advertising.  Local small newspapers and news letters are fairly cheap. 

 

How long do I have to wait for my website to become profitable?

 

There is no good answer.  If you sell a decent volume and are aggressive in trying to get your customers to return to your website you can start selling off your website fairly quickly.

 

If you advertise and/or write a lot of non-inventory content quickly you might see traffic and sales pick up quickly.

 

If you do very little then you might be breaking even after a quarter or 2.  As the website becomes older traffic should pick up a little as the Search Engines start to trust your website.

 

I would definitely plan on at least a year before you re-evaluate on if the website is worth it.

 

 

 

Setting Up and Configuring the Website

 

What are the procedures for setting up a website?

 

Click here is a complete list of steps.

 

How do I create logos and create graphics for my website?

 

Warning – Be careful where you get your images from.  Some of the larger image companies such as Getty are aggressive in trying to find websites that use their copyrighted images without permission.  Some of the free image websites state that their images should not be used on commercial websites.  They do that to protect themselves because they are not always sure where their images came from.  Even some of the image CD and DVD collections can be iffy.

 

It is a good idea to keep a document listing every image you use on your website and where it came from.  This can prevent problems in the future.

 

We ( White Oak Travel Services, Inc.) assume no liability for any content on your website… including images.

 

Now that the legal statements have been made… here are some useful sites for logos, backgrounds and buttons:

 

http://cooltext.com – Create logos and buttons

http://grsites.com – Logos, buttons, backgrounds.

http://designedtoat.com – Clip Art

http://www.coolarchive.com - Logos, buttons, backgrounds, clip art

 

Here are some websites that help you coordinate your colors:

 

http://kuler.adobe.com/#

http://www.wellstyled.com/tools/colorscheme2/index-en.html

http://www.degraeve.com/color-palette/

7/29/2014