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Easily add ecommerce buttons and a shopping cart into your Vistaprint website to create a professional looking Vistaprint store. ShopIntegrator's Vistaprint ecommerce widgets bring a huge range of easy to use ecommerce features to your Vistaprint website. Simply follow the steps outlined below to turn your Vistaprint website into a Vistaprint store using the ShopIntegrator Vistaprint ecommerce shopping cart widgets.
In the Vistaprint editor click in your webpage ready to insert a new element, then from the site editor control bar, click the Extras button in the Insert section of the site editor tab, which will open the Extras popup window for your website.
Scroll down the list of Extras until you find the Handy HTML Widget, click on this and you will be show a text entry box for you to Enter Your HTML Code. Sell multiple products - The plug-in options under this heading tabulate a group of products in the same category.
Shopper cart Information - This plug-in provides summary information of what is in your customer's shopping cart. Select the Product you will be selling with this ecommerce button add-inNote: You will need to set up your Products in the Product Manager of ShopIntegrator's web admin. Clicking the 'Use This Instead' button for the 'Interactive Buy Now Price Tag' selects this ecommerce button add-in. By default Vistaprint creates a narrow HTML widget block and as a result will crop the ShopIntegrator content shown in the web page you Preview unless you change the size of that Vistaprint HTML widget in your page to be big enough to display the full content. To resize the block in your Vistaprint editor, drag the corner of the HTML widget block to increase the size of the Vista print HTML widget to be big enough to display the full ecommerce button and contents, about a 2 inch (5cm) square will do it for the moment.
Click the Vistaprint Save button for your webpage, then click the Preview button for your Vistaprint website and you should now see your ecommerce button working in your web page. Easy point and click customisation for a novice to use, powerful capabilities for a web designer. We have step-by-step ecommerce integration guides available for adding ecommerce into many different Content Management Systems (CMS) and DIY site builders. ShopIntegrator becomes an approved Total Web Solutions shopping cart provider partner with direct integration via the checkout to provide UK merchants with an easy low cost solution to take secure online card payments. Normally, when I start testing another website builder I use the following list of criteria to help you quickly jump to the point of interest: ease of use, designs, pricing, feature set etc. Vistaprint doesn’t have its own site builder – the company is primarily providing printed and promotional material as well as marketing services to micro businesses and consumers. I speak to many small business owners at local networking events, and very many of them have a website set up for their business using the service offered by Vistaprint. Vistaprint are one of the biggest players in the business printing industry, and many small businesses (including myself) take advantage of their huge range of templates to get their first business cards printed. Very poor search engine optimisation – you have to pay extra to get any SEO tools at all, and if not used correctly they are likely to do more harm than good to your search engine rankings.
I’ve seen many a small business owner caught out by the domain name registration practices of Vistaprint, and this on its own is enough for me to warn people off using this service. Generic Domain – The cheapest and most basic option is a to use a subdomain on the Vistaprint address, eg.
WARNING: If you take this path, Vistaprint will register the domain name in their name, not yours.
Existing Domain – You can use a domain name that you already own, and point it to the website. I have encountered plenty of businesses who’ve given up on their Vistaprint site, and started a whole new website elsewhere, with a different domain name. Choose pages – there is a choice of different types of pages, and you have a limited number. Possibly the most annoying aspect is the tendency to constantly pop new windows all over the place whenever I try to do something. Please, all that is needed is one tab of my browser with the website dashboard, another tab for the site itself. As with most Vistaprint products, the primary purpose of this package seems to be to draw you in and get you to sign up for as many extras as possible, and then make it difficult to downgrade or remove features.
I ended up signing up for several extras just to get what’s really the basics of a decent website.
After about 15 minutes of searching I concluded that there is no easy way to downgrade again. Basically, if you want to change anything in your subscription, be prepared to get on the phone. Code may not seem important to the casual observer, but it does affect a whole range of things, including page load times, search engine optimisation and accessibility to users with disabilities.
The most basic elements of an HTML page are paragraphs and headings, and tags are used to indicated these elements. These coding issues affect search engine optimisation and accessibility, which are discussed further below. You have to pay extra to get any search engine optimisation tools at all, and if not used correctly, they may do more harm than good. Writing Wizard – This gives you some nice marketing speak for your industry, and you just fill in the blanks. Standard home page text – As above with the writing wizard, the site comes with generic welcome text on the home page, which could be relevant to almost any business.
Incorrect markup – As described above, the poor coding of the website makes it very difficult for search engines to understand the structure of the information on your page, and know what the important information is.
Non-text links – The links in the main menu are created from images, not text, so search engines cannot read them, and therefore have no idea what is on your site beyond the home page. People use a range of different devices to access the web, and it’s important (and not difficult!) to build sites so that they can be accessed via any device.
Missing field labels on forms – A web form needs to have labels in the code to make it easy for vision impaired users to know what information goes in which field. MapQuest Map too small – Rather than using the more common Google Maps, Vistaprint have decided to supply a MapPress map to embed on your site. There is no facility to add a newsletter signup form to your website, so the only way to build your email list is to manually take email addresses and enter them yourself.
Being a print company, Vistaprint’s idea of an email signup form is a printed form to write emails into. The e-commerce is done through PayPal, and it’s not too difficult to set up that part and connect to your paypal account. There are limited shipping options – you can only charge a flat rate per product if calculations are to be done on your site. As an absolute starter, with very few products to sell, this would probably suffice for a while, but it would soon become cumbersome and unworkable for an ecommerce store of any substantial size. As with Vistaprint’s print products, there is a dizzying array of templates available, of varying quality.
For an extra $4 per month, you can opt to have a mobile version of your website, and I have to say, that in this aspect, the site brushes up quite well. Print and web are very different media, and Vistaprint websites fail in so many areas that it is clear they have been coded by someone without the least interest in, or regard for, website best practices. Enter your email address to subscribe to our blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.
However, it’s important to note that Vistaprint isn’t as good as Webs. In particular, Webs has features that Vistaprint does not, for instance the RSS feed and members-only area.
While ‘direct’ users can enjoy amazing new features as the builder grows, those who decide to go with a ‘partner’ simply stuck on an old version of the software. Their business model is evident right from the beginning, though, enticing you in with offers of free business cards, after which you’ll pick lots of extra options to eventually end up with something that looks good enough to represent your business, and costs significantly more than you started out with. It is possible to get it back from them when you want a new site elsewhere (for a fee, of course), but many unsuspecting business owners don’t know this, and end up losing their domain name and starting again with a new domain name (losing any incoming links and search engine rankings their site may have already built up). If you really want to have your website with Vistaprint, register your domain name elsewhere first. This is not surprising, as it took some serious hunting down to find information on their website about how to transfer your domain name.
Just as with choosing a Vistaprint business card design, there are literally hundreds to choose from, and you can select categories and styles to narrow the choice down. At one point I got a strange inexplicable error message when I tried to add a page, which was followed by another message saying I already had the maximum number of pages and I needed to upgrade my package to add more (surprise!) There was, however, no obvious link to how to go about upgrading. It takes you step by step through adding text, uploading images, adding a map to your website and editing your contact form.
After working away at it for a while, and trying things out in different areas, I had a dizzying array of windows open all over my desktop.
Just as scanning a regular document by eye for headings and paragraphs can give you a rough idea of the gist of the article, so the same elements on a web page allow search engines and screen reader devices to easily see what your web page is about. Specifically, the most important heading tags, indicating the name of the page, were completely missing.
Unfortunately, if you use this, you’re in grave danger of duplicate content penalties.
A quick Google search turned up hundreds of websites with this, or an only slightly edited version of it, on their home page. The forms on the website are missing these, making it difficult, and maybe impossible, for some users to contact you. This gives you a dashboard where you can add or import your email contacts, and design, compose and send your email campaigns.
It prompts you to log in to Facebook and then to give the Vistaprint app access to your account.
So I can see no real purpose in giving the Vistaprint app access to your Facebook account (other than, of course to allow Vistaprint to gather more information about you).
So if you start out with just a product listing, and then decide you want to sell online, you have to start again, rather than having a way to simply add a Buy button to existing products. To get a website that has some hope of gaining any kind of search engine ranking, or of looking at all professional, requires purchasing many of the added extras, by which time your website is starting to get into the realm of $50 per month, rather then the $17 you initially thought you were signing up for.
As even some free services provide better quality websites than what Vistaprint offers, I’ll try and bring some good news in my next article! What’s more, Vistaprint locks some of the important features such as eCommerce and mobile-friendly design for their most expensive plans – while Webs includes these features in every plan.
The more I read about their offerings, the more confused I became. During sign-up they show you monthly prices, and later on it appears all packages are paid annually. It isn’t worth your time. Why risking and choosing uncertain future for your website when there are so many established, tried-and-tested website builders out there?
But websites are about a lot more than what you see on the surface, and the average small business owner has very little idea what makes a good website, and unfortunately, these websites offer very little of what is required to succeed online, and what is available, is all at an extra cost, making them overall, very poor value for money. This is a big flag to the world that your business is too cheap to even buy its own domain name. Search engines pay little or no attention to keyword tags these days, and having lots of keywords in your meta tags, that aren’t reflected naturally in the accompanying text, is regarded as keyword stuffing, and is likely to get your site downgraded or banned altogether in search engine results. Google penalises duplicate content in its page ranking algorithms, so having the same, or very similar, text as hundreds of other sites, is a good way to ensure you don’t get onto page one in Google. This especially effects the main navigation menu, which for some strange reason, has been created as an image, making it completely invisible to both vision impaired users and search engines.
Beyond that, all it appears to do is to take you through to some instructions for setting up and using a Facebook business page. I want a site that I can add all social media platforms too and link easily to and one that I can add blogs to and edit easily.
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