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  #1  
Old 12-17-2020
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Default Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Hi folks, hope you're all safe and well!

I have been growing tired of dealing with Ebay's army of incompetent call centre staff interfering in everything, and the seemingly endless string of scammers and idiots that make up their customer base, so I have been considering making an independent website through which to sell my products.

I am undecided between creating a website from scratch and then finding my own hosting etc, or just using one of the many "drag and drop" site creators/managers that are available. From what I have read, it seems that in the UK, Shopify and EKM are the two most popular recommended choices. Does anyone here use either of these services? I would love to hear some feedback or any sort of advice, as I am not sure which to choose and I'm terrible at making decisions like this. I'm almost tempted to just do both and then see which is more successful.

Also, if you use another platform besides EKM or Shopify, I would love to hear about your experiences, especially if you are a UK based seller.

Thanks in advance and I hope you all have a wonderful and profitable Christmas!
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Old 12-17-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

I wouldn't consider Shopify unless WordPress can't meet my needs. Or perhaps I'm happy to pay someone else a monthly fee to keep the service/template running. This may be fine for some folks out there, but not me. Shopify has very limited templates (under 100 or so)
It feels like a drag-and-drop service as Shopify is the way to go until you want to fundamentally change something or the UI and then realise you have to hire a Shopify coder and spend a lot more than you would have on WordPress.

Shopify does have very useful apps but they cost an arm and a leg.

With WordPress, you have total control over everything, from hosting to templates, etc and it's yours for life.

These pay to play platforms are usually not fully under your control and they are much more expensive in the long run. WordPress / Joomla and other opensource platforms are the complete opposite of that.


If you think your shop is going to be really successful and you don't mind spending and save time, then Shopify may be the way for you. Just be aware of the demerits above.

If you want to be fully in control of everything including SEO but you're on a low budget, then WordPress/Woocoomerece is the way to go. Both are free.

With the right hosting, you could even spawn a handful of individual shops for different niches with one hosting account saving you time and a little money.


If you're a workaholic or have a certain element 'deepwork' ethics within your soul, you can pull of learning WordPress to an acceptable standard in one day. There loads of Videos on youtube and a few good ones on Udemy and Lynda.

I'll leave you with a quote from Charles Bukowski "If you're going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don't even start"

Make a full flask of coffee on Saturday evening and go at it until dawn.

Good luck.
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Old 12-17-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
Hi folks, hope you're all safe and well!

I have been growing tired of dealing with Ebay's army of incompetent call centre staff interfering in everything, and the seemingly endless string of scammers and idiots that make up their customer base, so I have been considering making an independent website through which to sell my products.

I am undecided between creating a website from scratch and then finding my own hosting etc, or just using one of the many "drag and drop" site creators/managers that are available. From what I have read, it seems that in the UK, Shopify and EKM are the two most popular recommended choices. Does anyone here use either of these services? I would love to hear some feedback or any sort of advice, as I am not sure which to choose and I'm terrible at making decisions like this. I'm almost tempted to just do both and then see which is more successful.

Also, if you use another platform besides EKM or Shopify, I would love to hear about your experiences, especially if you are a UK based seller.

Thanks in advance and I hope you all have a wonderful and profitable Christmas!
I'm going to pitch in on the eBay / Amazon side of things.

Make sure that when you decide what you say is true that it's actually a fact and not your emotions. Count how much wins and loses you have had and if the wins outweigh the loses.

Even if you have more scammers and money loss it usually means that it's that category. I have experience in designer category myself and it's a huge difference the amount of scam email I get.

eBay is still profitable if you can play it.
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  #4  
Old 12-18-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pandoras_box View Post
I wouldn't consider Shopify unless WordPress can't meet my needs. Or perhaps I'm happy to pay someone else a monthly fee to keep the service/template running. This may be fine for some folks out there, but not me. Shopify has very limited templates (under 100 or so)
It feels like a drag-and-drop service as Shopify is the way to go until you want to fundamentally change something or the UI and then realise you have to hire a Shopify coder and spend a lot more than you would have on WordPress.

Shopify does have very useful apps but they cost an arm and a leg.

With WordPress, you have total control over everything, from hosting to templates, etc and it's yours for life.

These pay to play platforms are usually not fully under your control and they are much more expensive in the long run. WordPress / Joomla and other opensource platforms are the complete opposite of that.


If you think your shop is going to be really successful and you don't mind spending and save time, then Shopify may be the way for you. Just be aware of the demerits above.

If you want to be fully in control of everything including SEO but you're on a low budget, then WordPress/Woocoomerece is the way to go. Both are free.

With the right hosting, you could even spawn a handful of individual shops for different niches with one hosting account saving you time and a little money.


If you're a workaholic or have a certain element 'deepwork' ethics within your soul, you can pull of learning WordPress to an acceptable standard in one day. There loads of Videos on youtube and a few good ones on Udemy and Lynda.

I'll leave you with a quote from Charles Bukowski "If you're going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don't even start"

Make a full flask of coffee on Saturday evening and go at it until dawn.

Good luck.
Thank you for the sound advice mate! I was considering Wordpress as I have previous experience in site design (I studied it in college) but I have never created a store with payment gateways or stock management etc before so I thought maybe a "drag and drop" style service might be handier as everything will be set up automatically etc. I actually have a Wordpress video course of about 5 hours long that I can use to brush up on any forgotten aspects of it.

The other concern is the SEO, I presumed that Shopify would have a more powerful tool for that than if I attempted it myself? Or is it fairly straightforward? Plus I'm guessing that platforms like Shopify or EKM probably push your ads on other marketplaces etc?

I haven't heard of Woocommerce, from the context I'm guessing its like Shopify but allows more control over the site and presumably less "wizards" or auto tools to complete tasks?
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Old 12-18-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiJin View Post
I'm going to pitch in on the eBay / Amazon side of things.

Make sure that when you decide what you say is true that it's actually a fact and not your emotions. Count how much wins and loses you have had and if the wins outweigh the loses.

Even if you have more scammers and money loss it usually means that it's that category. I have experience in designer category myself and it's a huge difference the amount of scam email I get.

eBay is still profitable if you can play it.
Yeah I get what you're saying, I do make a lot of money on Ebay and its definitely more than I lose. But Ebay has hundreds of issues, and for most products its just 200 people fighting over pennies to the pound. I have read accounts from several ex-Ebay sellers who say they profits tripled when they got their own site set up, plus they didn't have to negotiate with Ebay over disputes or have legitimate listings pulled down because a rival reported it out of spite.
I'm grateful for the money and experience I have gained from Ebay but realistically its a slowly sinking ship, and its only get worse for sellers, especially the smaller businesses as ebay squeeze them to make way for their new Amazon style image
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  #6  
Old 12-18-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
Yeah I get what you're saying, I do make a lot of money on Ebay and its definitely more than I lose. But Ebay has hundreds of issues, and for most products its just 200 people fighting over pennies to the pound. I have read accounts from several ex-Ebay sellers who say they profits tripled when they got their own site set up, plus they didn't have to negotiate with Ebay over disputes or have legitimate listings pulled down because a rival reported it out of spite.
I'm grateful for the money and experience I have gained from Ebay but realistically its a slowly sinking ship, and its only get worse for sellers, especially the smaller businesses as ebay squeeze them to make way for their new Amazon style image
Gotcha, these people make a very very broad statement.
yes, if you know how to market your own website definitely do it.

you may make less, more, double, 10x it all depends on how you market it.
eBay already has customers.... it's a huge difference.

So don't think that only because you have a website you'll make more money and deal with less dumbasses. You'll have to make it happen.

If you can do it, or hire someone to do it, definitely!
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Old 12-18-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
Thank you for the sound advice mate! I was considering Wordpress as I have previous experience in site design (I studied it in college) but I have never created a store with payment gateways or stock management etc before so I thought maybe a "drag and drop" style service might be handier as everything will be set up automatically etc. I actually have a Wordpress video course of about 5 hours long that I can use to brush up on any forgotten aspects of it.
That's great. You're well cut out for the work in from of you than the average person as you have background experience.
5 hours of video on WordPress is not bad if you get a PHD out of it, but my guess is most of it is fluff.

I can't make up my mind which is more evil: Fluff or a heavy dose of radiation.

I'd say you should find a course that is no more than 1.5 - 2hrs hours long because you'd have to reference it many times over. Udemy and Lynda have semi straight-to-the-point videos within that length of time.


Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
The other concern is the SEO, I presumed that Shopify would have a more powerful tool for that than if I attempted it myself? Or is it fairly straightforward? Plus I'm guessing that platforms like Shopify or EKM probably push your ads on other marketplaces etc?

SEO boils down to three components: technical(or on-page SEO), Content and Linkbuilding.

The on-page is the easiest and can be completed in a matter of hours. That is the most Shopify does for you.

'Content' and Link building pack ranking power, and both of these should be ongoing indefinitely.

It isn't fairly straightforward, but it is very rewarding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
I haven't heard of Woocommerce, from the context I'm guessing its like Shopify but allows more control over the site and presumably less "wizards" or auto tools to complete tasks?
If WordPress is a framework, then woo-commerce is the aesthetic thing that sits on it.
It is an amazing, customisable plugin especially so if you use their storefront theme.
Your tutorial will likely cover WooCommerce.
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  #8  
Old 12-19-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pandoras_box View Post
That's great. You're well cut out for the work in from of you than the average person as you have background experience.
5 hours of video on WordPress is not bad if you get a PHD out of it, but my guess is most of it is fluff.

I can't make up my mind which is more evil: Fluff or a heavy dose of radiation.

I'd say you should find a course that is no more than 1.5 - 2hrs hours long because you'd have to reference it many times over. Udemy and Lynda have semi straight-to-the-point videos within that length of time.





SEO boils down to three components: technical(or on-page SEO), Content and Linkbuilding.

The on-page is the easiest and can be completed in a matter of hours. That is the most Shopify does for you.

'Content' and Link building pack ranking power, and both of these should be ongoing indefinitely.

It isn't fairly straightforward, but it is very rewarding.



If WordPress is a framework, then woo-commerce is the aesthetic thing that sits on it.
It is an amazing, customisable plugin especially so if you use their storefront theme.
Your tutorial will likely cover WooCommerce.
Yeah the course is split into 5 videos, one is about finding the best keywords via Google Analytics, and creating the logo and branding etc. , the second is about setting up Wordpress with bluehost and adding SEO plugins, the third and fourth is the actual site creation and then the fifth one is about marketing and climbing Google rankings etc. I think I might watch one a day and hopefully it should teach me everything I need to know. Thanks for the info, I had a look at woocommerce and I see what you mean, it looks like a useful tool, especially for free!
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Old 12-19-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiJin View Post
Gotcha, these people make a very very broad statement.
yes, if you know how to market your own website definitely do it.

you may make less, more, double, 10x it all depends on how you market it.
eBay already has customers.... it's a huge difference.

So don't think that only because you have a website you'll make more money and deal with less dumbasses. You'll have to make it happen.

If you can do it, or hire someone to do it, definitely!
Yeah I realize its a long road ahead, I don't intend to ditch Ebay until the website is well established and earning money though, so worst case scenario I will stay on Ebay. I'm hoping that Ebay will keep moving towards Amazon style selling, as I think they want to push private and secondhand sales to Gumtree to make way for a new professional squeaky clean Ebay. Hopefully this will lead to an increase in popularity for other sites like Onbuy. I have been using Onbuy for months now and sales are slow, however they don't get involved with disputes, and simply leave it between the buyer, seller and paypal, which is much better IMO. I always resolve issues ASAP but its nice not having to worry that Ebay will suddenly jump in and do something stupid
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Old 12-19-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
I always resolve issues ASAP but its nice not having to worry that Ebay will suddenly jump in and do something stupid
Nice approach for sure - seems like your analysis and approach is well-informed and growing
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Old 12-20-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainComedown View Post
Yeah the course is split into 5 videos, one is about finding the best keywords via Google Analytics, and creating the logo and branding etc. , the second is about setting up Wordpress with bluehost and adding SEO plugins, the third and fourth is the actual site creation and then the fifth one is about marketing and climbing Google rankings etc. I think I might watch one a day and hopefully it should teach me everything I need to know. Thanks for the info, I had a look at woocommerce and I see what you mean, it looks like a useful tool, especially for free!
I'd suggest you cut out the video about finding keywords. They could never teach you this topic as a stand-alone SEO course would. By the way, it might be aged already as SEO moves really fast. It is a waste of time to learn keywords in the middle of a WordPress course - as SEO is several times larger in complexity compared to WordPress.

The video on branding and logo should also go.
You simply don't have the time to do your branding and logo yourself.
A specialist on PeoplePerHour can do it for you.

Marketing and climbing google ranking should as well.
It is a useless waste of your time (and that's putting it nicely) to stick that in a WordPress course.

It might be more efficient to go this route and order:

Wordpress - standalone
SEO - standalone
Marketing - standalone


Eventually, you may need to get a staff or two to handle these so you can focus on upper-level management of your business.
In the meantime, you'd have to do essential grunt work.
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  #12  
Old 12-21-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pandoras_box View Post
I'd suggest you cut out the video about finding keywords. They could never teach you this topic as a stand-alone SEO course would. By the way, it might be aged already as SEO moves really fast. It is a waste of time to learn keywords in the middle of a WordPress course - as SEO is several times larger in complexity compared to WordPress.

The video on branding and logo should also go.
You simply don't have the time to do your branding and logo yourself.
A specialist on PeoplePerHour can do it for you.

Marketing and climbing google ranking should as well.
It is a useless waste of your time (and that's putting it nicely) to stick that in a WordPress course.

It might be more efficient to go this route and order:

Wordpress - standalone
SEO - standalone
Marketing - standalone


Eventually, you may need to get a staff or two to handle these so you can focus on upper-level management of your business.
In the meantime, you'd have to do essential grunt work.
I specialize in essential grunt work I usually work about 10 hours a day, 7 days a week, much to my other half's despair! But fair enough, I will look into getting separate SEO and Marketing courses. I have a friend who handles online marketing for local businesses so perhaps I'll have to buy him a beer sometime soon and get a chat about it.
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  #13  
Old 12-22-2020
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Default Re: Ecommerce Platforms for the UK - Shopify, EKM etc

well, do let us know how it goes. It'll take time and dedication but I think the result is well worth it and you'll be happy.
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