Which Shopping Cart or E-commerce System
Have I Found to Be
Above All Others?
Welcome to my personal note about the e-commerce system I have found
to stand out from every other system I have seen.
I started selling my first product online in August 2002. In just 18
months I was thrilled and proud to have over $144,000 a year rolling
in. And my mailing list of 8,000 was up to 25,000. How great is the
But when I started, I found it really confusing to pick an e-commerce
system. In fact, I didn't even know I was looking for an ecommerce system!
I just wanted a shopping cart - without realising how the entire package
I'm a self-taught nerd when it comes to the web and programming, so
I really investigated this stuff when I got started. And seriously -
in the end it was such an easy decision; once you really understand
all the features, the company I went with does seem to stand head and
shoulders above the rest. (At least if you want to sell more than say
$1,000 a month).
Why am I writing this?
I woke up one morning, and said to myself: "David, you promote
several third party products on the web. But out of all the products
you promote and use, is there one you really believe in?"
And funnily enough, the answer is my e-commerce system. It's the one
thing I just couldn't do with out, and the one thing I'm still in awe
of. It's rare to see a product so far ahead of it's time.
So I decided to write this personal note to share my experience of
the one thing I'm using online that just doesn't seem to have any peer.
(Boy, I'm sounding like a Mac user now, aren't I? But I'm PC through
Free Download....Want to See the Inner Workings?
It's one thing to hear about this whole system. But what's it like
to drive it?
I've created a special video showing you the inner workings of my entire
ecommerce system. You'll see the individual control panels, along with
my explanation of what each screen is for. (In fact I'm using the System
to send this to you, so you'll get a feel for how the customised forms
work.) At the moment I'm happy to give it away.
Important: We have a zero tolerance spam policy;
your email address will never be rented or sold to a 3rd party.
OK - once you've submitted the form, let's continue....
Of course, if you're busy or just really keen to get started, I realise
you may want to jump straight to the name of the company, and take advantage
of their 30 day trial.
The Shopping Cart Itself
Frankly, I don't care too much about the actual cart. To me they are
all very similar - what really makes a difference are the database and
marketing features which I'll discuss below.
Still, I was really happy to find this cart has advanced features like:
a) 'Creating Offers' by bundling products together
b) Creating Timed and Limited Number discounts
(More? You can see how the cart works for one of my 'bundled' offers
Boy did I get headaches when I was first researching this. The short
version is you can use any merchant you want with the Professional Cart
Solutions system. But I suggest you try out their sister company Practice
Pay Solutions if you are in North America. They are just about the cheapest
rates I've found, and they use Authorize.net; without getting too technical,
it means you can do cool things like accept echecks, and handle recurring
If you're outside North America you'll need to shop around, as PPS
won't offer you the same rates. (I know!). But once you choose your
merchant account (and online gateway), then you come back
Sound a little complicated? Well, for example I use WorldPay as my
merchant account plus online gateway, and Professional Cart Solutions
for the rest of my e-commerce system (which I'll discuss below). I could
perhaps use the National Australia Bank as my merchant account, www.eway.com.au
as my online gateway, and then Professional Cart Solutions for the rest
of your e-commerce system. But in North Amercia just use Practice Pay
Solutions as your merchant account, which means Authorize.net as your
online gateway, and then Professional Cart Solutions for the rest of
your e-commerce system.
If you don't already know, you'll soon learn that online marketing
means automated. The biggest bonus of being online is you can follow
up repeatedly with your customers, over say a year, while you are asleep!
Let's start with one-off emails. They fill in your form, and an autoresponder
(AR) sends them an information pack. Or the first issue of your newsletter.
They buy a product and the AR sends download instructions.
But why stop at one email? If you sign up using the form above to access
my screen shots, I'll use an AR to send your access instructions for
the pictures. I'll then follow up in a few days to see if there are
any other questions I can help with. If I could think of something else
useful - I might send that a couple of weeks down the track with my
compliments (all with unsubscribe links at the bottom of course).
Just imagine following up with 1000 customers, in an automated, targeted
fashion for the next 12 months. That could be 12,000 emails arriving
at just the right time, without you even thinking about it!
Professional Cart Solutions allows you to set up unlimited autoresponders.
Further, you can say 'When they subscribe to the AR for purchasing Product
A, then UNSUBSCRIBE them from the AR that encourages them to purchase
Product A'. Very powerful.
This is critical. Professional Cart Solutions allows you to create
your own forms which talk to it's database. Not a programmer? Then your
web designer can do it for you. You get to decide what fields appear
on the form, what AR's to subscribe them to (5 separate ones if it's
appropriate and in context - e.g. see www.solutionbox.com/freedownload.htm
where they can select several different options) and how it looks.
I've created about 10 custom forms to take in the data I need from
a prospect or customer, and then send it all over to Professional Cart
Solutions. Example? Just see the form above for a quick example. You
MUST have this feature in an e-commerce system.
The main plus with this system, is you can use merge fields. So instead
of 'Dear friend, we have a special for all countries', you can write:
Because you are in <$country$> we can offer....
We have your work number listed as <$workphone$>, is this correct?"
Starting to get the idea? It's a very powerful broadcasting system.
Another plus is a coded 'remove link' at the bottom of each email,
so YOU don't have to do it. Never again will you have someone ask to
unsubscribe, but not be able to work out which email address you sent
I didn't even know about this when I signed up - it was a complete
surprise and a big bonus. Say you have a Google ad that costs 40 cents
per click that reads "Your Next Career", and another ad that
costs 80 cents per click and reads "Executive Career Coaching".
Which ad is making you money? Both? Neither? Which is best?
There's practically no way to know unless you have ad tracking, which
Professional Cart Solutions does. It tells you how many people clicked
on each ad, how many signed up for your newsletter, how many purchased,
and the VALUE PER CLICK! (Records all dollars sold for each ad, divides
by number of clicks - in other words it's how many dollars you're bringing
in for every click on that ad). So if Value Per Click for each of the
ads above was 60 cents, you'd only keep the first one which only costs
you 40 cents and gives you a profit of 20 cents for every click.
This is the only way to manage advertising; I'm constantly ditching
ads and enhancing ads based on the hard numbers which show which are
making a profit.
Ad Split Testing
Wow! I hadn't even though of this one, and initially thought it was
But consider this - you have three possible headlines for a sales page
- A, B and C. How do you know which to use?
Professional Cart Solutions allows you to enter all three in your control
panel and will give you a specific URL to direct people to (instead
of your sales page). It will then rotate your three sales pages (i.e.
every third visitor will see Headline A), and record the sales results.
After three weeks you take a look, and keep the best performing headline.
I haven't stopped using this feature since it was released.
I used to use Outlook and record all my subscriptions and unsubscriptions
by hand. Let's face it, if you want to sell products online, or even
handle large newsletter subscriptions, you need to have an online, real
time database. Sales are linked to it. Your autoresponders are linked
to it. Your subscriptions are entered into it. Your affiliates are linked
to it. And you broadcast from it.
Professional Cart Solutions has all the standard data fields, plus
10 you can customise to suit yourself.
When the times comes to have other people sell your products, you'll
need an affiliate program. More importantly, you'll need an affiliate
program which is integrated with your database. And you need one integrated
with your shopping cart so the affiliate module knows when a purchase
is made. (A completely separate one would be a headache).
Professional Cart Solutions is not the best affiliate module on the
market, and I've had to customise a few things to get it really fancy
(you're welcome to view the advanced customisation I've added on top
of the PCS module. You get get a login here).
But, I still use it because it's integrated seamlessly with all the
other features, and that's the main thing.
The run some free teleclasses which will be useful for the person new
to internet marketing, and also trains you up quickly on how to use
the shopping cart and all the modules.
The support is very good. You can either call and get phone support,
or they are pretty good responding via email as well. Plus - they're
always releasing new features so you know this cart will keep up to
To be honest, initially I didn't spend a lot of time comparing prices.
When I found out there was a 30
day trial period, I jumped straight in. When I realised the other
carts/systems didn't come close, I didn't even check what others were
charging. It just seemed like a no-brainer.
However, it looks very reasonable. It's nothing for 30 days, and then
$19 per month for the basic features (or $199 if you sign up for a year.
I figure you may as well go for the long term option, as they will refund
you if you decide to pull out later).
It took about 12 months before I upgraded my database from 10,000 to
50,000 members because I was growing so fast, which doubles the fee.
(I'm quite happy with this ratio). And soon after that I upgraded again
to include all the advanced features like unlimited autoresponders,the
affiliate module, and ebook password delivery. (If you would like to
experience their affiliate module from the affiliate side, you can sign
up for my coaching
I'm so into this stuff I've even looked at developing my own system
from scratch. I'm always dreaming up advanced features faster than they
can create them. However, when I found out it could take years, $100,000
and my sanity to even come close to this shopping cart, I realised how
lucky we are to be marketers at this point in time. Five years ago we
couldn't do 20% of what we can do now, and for less than $1000 a year!
This shopping cart really does a good job.
How do I check them out?
I suggest starting with the free 30
day trial. At the end of 30 days you'll have learned a lot about
e-commerce and can decide if you want the basic or advanced package.
I know how confusing this area can be....I've been through it! So I'm
happy to be available for questions about this system (within reason
of course<smile>). And if you do sign up, please keep in touch,
because we may be able to help each other with the more advanced shopping
cart tips and tricks. (I'm doing some things the developers probably
aren't even aware of).
You can reach me at
And if you feel this information was helpful, and you're willing, I'd
appreciate you using my affiliate link to sign up. It doesn't cost you
any extra, and it gives me a little additional income:
Affiliate Link to Shopping Cart Web Site
Best of luck in your online journey!
Professional Certified Coach
P.S. Here is the link for the free
30 day trial.