Instructions for the use of our Online Store
Over the past few months I have been in discussions with our online store builders, revamping and improving it and taking advantage of improved technology resulting in much greater functionality. Some of the major changes are summarised as follows–
- The site has been separated into two sections, Wholesale and Retail. Where previously only retail or RRP prices were displayed, now wholesale prices/costs will be available to approved wholesale customers. All wholesale prices are exclusive of GST.
- Customers will be able update quantities from both grid and list formats where previously that was only possible in the list format or in the shopping cart.
- Freight costs for wholesale customers will no longer be added to your invoice which tended to distort the value of your order.
- Payments options have been modified allowing customers to pay for the ordered goods using a credit card as part of the checkout process. That is consistent with other online stores and uses a long established payment gateway.
Look and Feel
The site continues the same bright and ‘fun’ look as the previous site. There are more images, related products, options to display new lines and generally feature products of significance. The online and customer use principles remain very similar to others sites and the previous dL Confectionery store. Whilst the Information Tab has been moved, the headings and drop menus have been repositioned but the information contained in this section is the same. The search facility continues to be a powerful tool.
Included on the home page are two new sections – New Arrivals and Featured Products. When you mouse crosses each item a link will appear and when you click on it you are taken to that item details.
All customers will be able to continue with their present login and password, at least initially. A number of businesses have changed ownerships in recent times so some may be required to re-enter their details to bring my information up to date and to satisfy my legal responsibilities. Others may also have to re-register to satisfy some transition issues that may arise from the old to the new platform. Should you need to re-register, you will note that the information fields are designed for both the business environment with ABNs etc. as part of the registration process and individuals/sole traders.
Comment - I am also informed that the transfer of data from the old platform to the new one has been difficult and that may mean that some long established accounts may also have to re-register. Unfortunately that may only be known when the initial login is done or order is submitted. I will endeavour to inform those customers should the re-registration be necessary.
New customers will require ‘Admin’ approval prior to being able to use the site, shop etc. I am alerted by email to the registration of new customers and will address each new registration as quickly as possible. This should not be necessary with existing customers, at least initially, unless you may have to re-register as explained above.
Pricing – As a wholesale customer, you will only see the online wholesale price, exempt of GST. You will be able to see the online RRP (Recommended Retail Price) so that you can calculate your line by line margins. The Supplier Allowance/Ullage Allowance will not be a separate line item, but will be included in the nett item cost.
Grid and List Options - The quantity to be purchased can be entered in both grid and list formats. A nice feature is the ease the quantity can be changed simply by clicking the mouse in the quantity field the amount is automatically highlighted ready to be amended. Note the (boxes) icons immediately under the section heading – scroll the mouse across them to see the grid and list options.
Wish List – I can see this new feature being used by all outlets as a list of regularly ordered products without having the search all sections for every order. The ‘heart’ icon next to the quantity field places the item into a list of favourites and accessible from the Headings bar.
Compare Option – It is a feature that may not be regularly used given that we carry very few similar products from (say) different suppliers. Maybe the gift boxes and perhaps the cartons may be compared with this feature. The parallel arrows RHS of the Add to Cart field will activate this feature. Items compared will be recorded at the top of the page. Click on Product Comparison to see those you have selected for comparison.
Adding to Cart - You will notice each time an item is added to your shopping cart that a confirmation ‘pop-up’ with image will appear which you will have to address, Go to Cart to add, amend or cancel, Go to Checkout or Continue Shopping options. A count of your cart items appears on the top Heading bar towards the top right corner of the screen.
Shopping Cart – Another handy feature is the sorting of the shopping cart into the Item Code (Model Number) order regardless the order in which items are added. Quantities may be amended, products deleted at this point in the checking out process.
The checkout process is very similar to the existing site, with options for delivery, billing etc. Wholesale approved customers will not see nor be charged freight. All line items will be at your cost excluding GST. In the checkout process, the GST is included in the total of the line item. The subtotal (after the list of products) is the amount excluding GST. The total GST will then appear after the Excluded Total, towards the bottom of the invoice.
Invoices – The online invoice is the one on which you will use to make payment. Whilst the online invoice does not have the RRP, the invoice that is sent to your nominated email address will also carry the Recommended Retail Price (RRP). I know many outlets use the RRP as a guide to your pricing policy. The discretionary supplier/ullage allowance that I offer in lieu of returns etc. has now been ‘built in’ to the wholesale price.
Payment Options – This feature has been designed to reflect the payment options that you currently enjoy with only minor exceptions. Many outlets currently use my EFTPOS facility at the time of the delivery. Others call me a few days later with credit card details and make the payment by phone and some do a direct deposit subsequent to the delivery. An even smaller few outlets prepare cheques.
Comment - All these options will continue with the new site though it is my intention to remove the Bank EFTPOS facility I carry with me in favour of the online credit option. I do not need nor do I want to pay for two facilities doing the same job.
Credit Facilities – Presently, I am only able to offer a fourteen day account to those that do not use their credit/debit cards or pay Cash on Delivery. Credit card payments are able to take advantage of bank’s credit facilities and get access to up to 55 days of credit, depending when payment is made and when your card payment falls due. It is fair to say that I am encouraging the use of credit card payments as it offers you, the customer, greater credit facilities that I am able to provide.
Direct Deposit – This option will be available to those who wish to take advantage of this method of payment. It is offered on the basis that payment must be received prior to the shipment of goods. It also offers an alternative to the use of a credit card. There should be sufficient time to make a direct deposit prior to delivery as orders should be placed by the close of business each Wednesday.
14 Day Accounts – This options is given to those customers who regularly pay within the 14 days, usually by direct deposit or cheque but always within my credit terms. This will continue to be available to those customers though any departure from that regularity may see the payment status changed. Customers falling into this category will be able to see this option and may take advantage of this offer. Credit card payments are also an option.
Cash on Delivery – If you have been a regular payer of cash at the time of delivery, nothing will change and you may continue to do so. You will also have the option to use credit card facilities at the time of purchase should you wish to take advantage of credit facilities offered by the bank.
Checkout – Using a Credit Card
Important – The gateway being used is one developed by PayPal. You DO NOT NEED A PAYPAL ACCOUNT to use this facility. It is a means to provide a secure gateway to pay for the goods you have purchased. PayPal will not impose any charges on you. I pay all associated charges as part of my obligations for using their system – just like any bank charge if a bank supported gateway is used.
You will notice in the checkout process that there are two options, PayPal and Credit Card.
Screenshot 1 – PayPal vs Credit Card).
The Credit Card option in the one I recommend and prefer. It is simple and does not require you to have a PayPal account. The PayPal option will require you to use your PayPal account
Comment – This system has been strongly recommended by the builders of my online store. It is consistent with purchases from other online stores.
Once the Credit Card option is selected the following screen Screenshot 2 – Customer Card Details, will require completion. If this option is selected, the PayPal logo may still appear BUT it is NOT a PayPal transaction. The payment will be taken from your nominated credit card. Please note the little check box at the bottom of this page – I believe that it is a legal requirement for online stores.
Credits – These will continue to apply where faulty goods have been detected or where there are other reasons for doing so. These can be applied online through a coupon system where I can generate a code for you to use when next placing and paying for an order. Alternatively I can refund the amount using the details used to make the initial payment. The coupon system will apply mostly to credit card payments. Credits where other payment options have been used will still receive a credit/adjustment note as is the past.
Online Invoices – Whilst you will be able to see your invoice for your online purchasers, the actual invoice will be sent to your nominated email address where it can be printed or otherwise stored in your accounting or filing system. I believe that where an online payment has been made, the invoice will reflect the payment.
The new site has many of the features of the old one though with some enhancements which were not available to me at the time of the original build. I have attempted to make the site as intuitive as possible yet incorporating the necessary features and facilities of a modern website.
I ask that you be critical in its appraisal and convey to me any comments you may have, good and bad so that any problems I may not have detected can be addressed and amended if required.
I offer personal assistance to anyone who is unsure about the operation and use of the new site. Please contact me so that I can arrange a suitable time.
Lastly, this set of instructions will be placed online under the information tab so that all may refer to if necessary or for clarification of any matter. Feedback on these Instructions is also welcomed.