E-commerce

Trading Online

E-commerce

Trading Online



E-Commerce or Electronic Commerce is one of the most important aspect of the internet. It facilitates the exchange of goods and services immediately with no barriers of time or distance. Any time of the day or night you can go online and purchase virtually anything you fancy.

It has been analysed and projected that by 2020, global mobile e-commerce and alternative payments method will account for the majority of the e-commerce transactions. And that cross-border e-commerce will be at least one third of all sales. These are the opportunities the ever increasing power of the internet is providing. You need to be aware of the trend and the destructing nature of new technology in side-lining what was hitherto the "new kid on the blog" (tech wise) yesterday. The emergence of smartphones with specifications almost comparable with some desktops and laptops has changed the landscape on how we consume content on the internet. In retailing, this indeed has become transformative. As a retailer, designing your website to leveraging the aforementioned ubiquitous device is paramount else your compititors will be smilling all the way to the bank while you might end up closing up - so to speak.

How to leverage on mobile and alternative payment methods? How to deal effectively with cross-border e-commerce? Here at Torometech, we will help you provide some ideas on how to implement a fast, secure, simple and flexible payment solution to grow your e-commerce business.

How does it work?


As a customer moves through a web site they will occasionally stumble across a service or gadget they find rather interesting (aimless web surfing). In the more general case, a customer will judiciously go to a specific site or sites to purchase certain goods or merchandise. Once you are satisfy with the general description of the good and sometimes the terms and conditions provided by the site, you will click on a "Add To Cart" button which adds the item in to a shopping cart (an electronic one of course). When you are done with your shopping you then click on another button labeled "Check Out". This moves the process to a transaction server where all the information provided is encrypted.

From the processing server it is carried over to a payment gateway where the issuing and acquiring banks either authenticate and completes the transaction or terminates it. The aforementioned processes will last for approximately two to three minutes (Assuming you haven't got a Platinum American Express plastic to buy the entire store - if you do it will take a little bit longer ; you are supposed to smile at this juncture)

Want To Receive Payment On Your Site?


To receive payment online, you will need an Internet Merchant Bank account and a Payment Service Provider- responsible for processing the plastic card information before passing it over to the bank. Alternatively you can go for a Payment Bureau which is a one-stop solution - it collects and does the processing of the plastic card on behalf of the web site business. Thus circumventing the need of a Merchant Bank Account and a PSP setup. An even cheaper option is the Person to Person or Person To Business Payment Service- discuss in more details later.

1 .Using an Internet Merchant with a Payment Service Provider (PSP)


The Acquiring Bank:

An acquiring bank is a high street bank that offers credit and debit card processing services. They acquire the money from the customer, process the transaction and credit your account. You need to apply for a merchant bank Account (service) if you want a bank to handle your Electronic payments. Obtaining an Internet Merchant Service from an Acquiring Bank is quicker and easier if you already have an offline card processing facilities set up with the bank. Please be aware that there is a difference between Merchant services for taking payments offline (in a shop) to an Internet Merchant account for online payments. If you currently have an offline Merchant account you will need an Internet Merchant account as well. Check with your bank for their current charges.

The Payment Service Provider (PSP):

A Payment Service Provider is a "virtual" PDQ swipe card machine that collects the card details over the Internet and passes them to the acquiring bank. To take Electronic payments over the web, you will need a PSP at a small cost. Some PSP's charge a monthly amount whilst some charge a percentage of each transaction.

2 .Using a Payment Bureau


A Payment Bureau:

A Payment Bureau is a one-stop solution collecting and processing the card details on behalf of the business without requiring an Internet Merchant Service with an Acquiring Bank or a separate PSP to be set up. A payment bureau is the simplest way of taking payments online as they do all the work for you. Their simple application process makes bureau services a popular choice for online payments and an ideal solution for SME's (small to medium size enterprises) first step into e-commerce. However, they tend to hold on to your money for longer before crediting your bank account.

    Advantages:
  • These services will accept most types of business
  • Trading record or length of trading will not usually be an issue
  • Fast turnaround for applications - a few working days compared to weeks - for a new merchant acquiring applications

    Disadvantages:
  • Merchants' funds are held for longer
  • Transaction charges are higher

3.Person to person or person to business payments


These methods rely on individuals setting up an online account and can be used to take both credit and debit card payments.

    Advantages:
  • Free to set up apart from a nominal and variable charge (for example 32p)
    that is levied to check that that individual is the owner of a particular bank account or credit card.
  • Charges are relatively low per transaction
  • Fixed low costs for withdrawals to external bank accounts
  • If your web site is backing up your auction sales then the majority of your customers will have one of these accounts.
    Disadvantages:
  • A customer has to have or setup an account prior to paying for your products or services. This can be lengthy and awkward.
  • This is a "clunky" method for any but the smallest retailers or micro businesses.
  • Tends to give a less professional appearance to your business


The Shopping Cart


Yes, one last thing and that is a Shopping Cart. This allows your visitors to add products / services to a virtual shopping basket. This functionality provides the user the ability to edit the quantity they require, remove items, check their running cost etc. etc and finally checkout.

All online shops have the same fundamental elements - a catalogue of products which customers can browse or search through and a payment gateway system that processes the transaction (discussed earlier). Since the catalogue in its basic form is just a list of items, it can easily be built with static HTML incorporating all the necessary links which when click, take you to detailed product pages respectively. While it is entirely possible to write product pages as static HTML, the odds are that you will quickly want to drive page content from some form of data source (most commonly a database). To do this, the pages must use an application server such as ASP, ASP.NET, Cold Fusion, JSP, or PHP. Thus, for a small business selling couple of items ( i.e. less than 10) which do not change that frequently, there is no need to go and buy an off-the-shelf Shopping Cart or E-Shop (Actinic, webAssist, ClickAndBuild, Cubecart, ShopFactory to name but a few).

Any savvy web designer/developer should be able to design couple of pages with links that connect to pages displaying your various products (in a more detailed format). If business starts to boom, and you have got let say over 10 items (which aren't static), a small database can then be implemented using ASP, PHP or JSP for the backend processing.

To all intends and purposes, all of the commercial products utilize a similar scheme to the one just described but to a larger scale with templates. Instead of static HTML pages as mentioned earlier, they are provided from a data source dynamically (most commonly a database). The final process is to link your product detailed pages with a payment service provider (Paypal for example). Here you will provide detailed information for each product or service you are offering such - item_name, price, size, colour, etc. etc. Pay pal will then use it dedicated server to process the transaction when a customer click the add to cart or checkout button for a particular item on your site. You will of course need to have a Paypal account (which you can get by registering on the Paypal site - free). And there you are with an Online Shop spending only a penny or two (Ok a bit more than that).

The point here is that, an Off-The -Shelf shopping cart is not necessarily the solution for every body who wants to implement e-commerce on their site. It is a case of Horses for Courses. If you have got the budget or capital by all means go out and splash it. If on the other hand you are a small business with extremely tight cash flow don't be put off. E-Commerce can still be implemented for you.








Our Most Recent Projects

Please do note that the clients listed below all came to us as a result of personal recommendations. They very much new nothing about the web let alone the fundamental technologies involved. One thing the knew for certain was that it is where everything is happening. They needed someone to take their ideas and make it happened so to speak on the web - And that's what we do here at ToromeTech.

Click on the vertical tabs on each client 's section to see how the sites were designed

Website Design - Project1

    Salient Features: Click on tabs to see content:

Ezeogu Publication

Preserving Igbo Heritage

Their Objectives:

We are here to take you on a journey to discover and appreciate not only the Igbo language but also the culture to which it gives expression

  • To contribute our bit to the crusade for the preservation of Igbo language and culture
  • To bring the Igbo language to all Igbo children growing up in the Diaspora who are eager to connect with their heritage language
  • To provide a tool and to be of assistance to anyone (Igbo and non-Igbo alike) who has a genuine desire and interest in learning to read, write and speak the Igbo language
  • To create awareness on the current state of the Igbo language and the need to preserve it for the future generations

The Brief

A Complete Responsive Design

General theme should exude subtle colours and large expanse of margins and paddings that depict an uncluttered interface

  • Published Books will be sold on site
  • An interactive flash design game will be played on the site on a subscription basis
  • A dynamic content page showing Igbo phrases and their English equivalent
  • A dynamic picture gallery page

The Design Process

From Wire-frames To HTML5

In the design process, the business imperative as narrated by the client is of the essence. This is why they've come to us. Our design methodology is encapsulated in these four phases: Discovery - Design - Deployment - Delivery. Each of these consulting phases, defines a clear step in the process of taking the solution of a business problem from concept into production. The client is alway in tune with what is going on. This facilitate a smooth transfer of control after completion.

  • A wire-frame mock-up of the interface is the starting point
  • Basic graphic assets are added into mocked design to improve visual for client to get a handle
  • intended graphic assets from client are then modified and edited in Photoshop to attain proper dimensions and resolution as per design
  • Responsive design is implemented with a skeleton backbone of components from Bootstrap framework
  • Various CSS3 style sheets are created to render the HTML pages with the desire effects
  • Java-script files are created to drive the front-end interactions
  • PHP script files are created to power the back-end applications

Progressive Development

Client's Input At All stages

To effectively bring the client in to the design and development processes, a common venue had to be established. The most convenient and suitable location was the internet. thus, a private area was setup where client can log in and see how development was progressing. More importantly here,they could query issues they were not happy with and the development team can respond for them to see the immediate effect of their suggestions -

    Advantages
  • Very convenient for both parties
  • Significantly reduce glitches and typos
  • improved client satisfaction

Delivery

Deployment

This final stage of the design cycle was rather straight forward because it is invariably dependent on the preceding phases. Thus it was merely transferring the entire package from it testing platform on to a production one. Here, the databases for managing both the on-line book selling functionality and administering access to the on line Interactive Audio Application were implemented and tested. Paypal was the obvious choice for completing the e-commerce section due to it simple and intuitive modules.

Final Features

  • Site with interface as envisaged by client and then some
  • Java-script providing intuitive interactive elements at the front-end
  • Publish Book can be bought on site
  • Interactive - Audio Media can be played on site with access control
  • Client has total control of back-end activities













Website Design - Project2

    Salient Features: Click on tabs to see content:

Fabu Publishers

Publishing Books With Moral Values

Their Objectives:

Fabu Publishers is a Foundational Publishing house based in London. We have developed into a leading publisher of historical, cultural, educational and religious publications to name but a few. Our books focus particularly on fostering a better world order and promoting self-transformation. Our themes are Self-awakening irrespective of your denomination. Foundational thoughts are not merely academic but real food for thought for the discerning.

The Brief

A Complete Responsive Design & Branding

General theme should exude a bright colour specified by client

  • A dynamic book display gallery on home page
  • E- commerce integration
  • Published Books will be sold on site
  • A means of subscribing to weekly news letter from home page
  • A dynamic detailed content page showing main attributes for each book
  • A blog and news section

The Design Process

From Wireframes To HTML5

Our design methodology is encapsulated in these four phases: Discovery - Design - Deployment - Delivery. Each of these consulting phases, defines a clear step in the process of taking the solution of a business problem from concept into production. The client is alway in tune with what is going on. This facilitate a smooth transfer of control after completion.

  • Mapping - A wire-frame mockup of the interface is the starting point
  • Mapping is very subjective due to the fact that your personal feelings (emotions) and experiences are the driving force. It starts from your brain where you envisage how everything will be positioned in a given time - space disposition.
  • The transfer of these brain concept on to paper (mockup) is the starting block for the interface to come into realization
  • Basic graphic assets are added into mocked design to improve visual for client to get a better visualization

Progressive Development

Client's Input At All stages

To effectively bring the client in to the design and development processes, a common venue had to be established. The most convenient and suitable location was the internet. thus, a private area was setup where client can log in and see how development was progressing. More importantly here,they could query issues they were not happy with and the development team can respond for them to see the immediate effect of their suggestions -

    Advantages
  • Very convenient for both parties
  • Significantly reduce glitches and typos
  • improved client satisfaction

Delivery

Deployment

This final stage of the design cycle was rather straight forward because it is invariably dependent on the preceding phases. Thus it was merely transferring the entire package from it testing platform on to a production one. Here, the databases for managing the on-line book selling functionality , contact form , newsletter, blog and news functionalities were implemented and tested. Paypal was the obvious choice for completing the e-commerce section due to it simple and intuitive modules.

Final Features

  • Site with interface as envisaged by client and then some
  • Java-script providing intuitive interactive elements at the front-end
  • Publish Book can be bought on site
  • A blog section
  • A news section
  • A news-letter section
  • Company stationery consistent with wed interface
  • Client has total control of back-end activities









Website Design - Project3

    Salient Features: Click on tabs to see content:

The Nigerian Community

Joining The Motion

Their Objectives:

The Nigerian Community Waltham Forest (NICOWF) is a charitable organisation born out of the necessity to foster and strengthen the bonds among Nigerians living in the borough

  • Strengthening Capacity For Self-Help
  • Providing Economic Opportunity
  • Delivering Relief In Emergencies
  • Influencing Policy Decisions At All Levels
  • Addressing Discrimination In All Its Forms

The Brief

A Complete Responsive Design

The general theme should reflect the national colours (GREEN-WHITE-GREEN ) with large expanses of margin and padding that depicts an uncluttered interface

  • Lots of videos will be shown on site
  • Lots of pictures will be shown on site
  • Details of Nigerian embassies in the diaspora
  • Useful public information from the The High Commissioner s Office in London
  • A dynamic blog and news section
  • An opened architecture for accommodating new features

The Design Process

From Wire-frames To CSS3

There are multitude of different screen sizes across phones, tablets, desktops and TVs,. Screen sizes will always be changing, so it’s important that your site can adapt to any screen size, today or in the future. Responsive web design, responds to the needs of the users and the devices they’re using. The layout changes based on the size and capabilities of the device. For example, on a smart-phone, users would see content shown in a single column view where as a tablet might show the same content in two columns.

The fundamentals of the responsive design concept is based on a grid structure made of columns. A maximum of 12 will be utilized to display content for a typical desktop and anything bigger (TV). Tablets , smart-phones and smaller screen devices will use progressively less. The magic in rendering the same content for devises of varying screen resolution and sizes is in the css file (CSS - Cascading Style Sheet)

  • Mapping - A wire-frame mockup of the interface is the starting point
  • Mapping is very subjective due to the fact that your personal feelings (emotions) and experiences are the driving force. It starts from your brain where you envisage how everything will be positioned in a given time - space disposition.
  • The transfer of these brain concept on to paper (mockup) is the starting block for the interface to come into realization
  • Basic graphic assets are added into mocked design to improve visual for client to get a better visualization

Progressive Development

Client's Input At All stages

To effectively bring the client in to the design and development processes, a common venue had to be established. The most convenient and suitable location was the internet. thus, a private area was setup where client can log in and see how development was progressing. More importantly here,they could query issues they were not happy with and the development team can respond for them to see the immediate effect of their suggestions -

    Advantages
  • Very convenient for both parties
  • Significantly reduce glitches and typos
  • improved client satisfaction

Delivery

Deployment

Final Features

  • Site with interface as envisaged by client (based on the Nigerian Flag)
  • Java-script providing intuitive interactive elements at the front-end
  • Dynamic Photo Album
  • Dynamic Video Player
  • A Blogging Section
  • A News Section
  • Client has total control of back-end activities















Be Properly Informed

 

Publishing no more a privileged few

The main broadsheet and television to a certain extent have always argued that the principle of reviewing books that are only published through well-renowned publishers had inbuilt quality control they could not do without. It now seems the quality control factor was merely a smoke screen for maintaining the old school boy network. This hitherto sacrosanct principle is now being reviewed,revised or ditched completely. There now seems to be a change in the wind - or to put it bluntly a revolution in the making. As more self-published authors hit the big time, that reputation (of vanity,flagrant ego etc,etc.) is definitely beginning to diminish. Self-published authors are now thought of as entrepreneurs, energetic souls determined to forge their own identity and destiny in the cultural landscape.


Anyone can get published

Here at Torome Tech, we have the expertise to help you bring your dreams to fruition. it is generally said that, everyone has got a book in their head. Be it fiction or non fiction. The problem has always been the expense in getting it published. Well to a certain extent that obstacle has been rendered obsolete. Not because of the caprices of the big publishing houses but due to innovation in technology and the increasing power designers and programmers have in affecting how information is presented and consumed on the Internet platform. Thus you do not have to have a physical book so to speak(i.e printed) . Your book will reside on the internet to be consumed in a digital format only. That is to say people can read it online on their chosen platform (Tv,desktop,laptop,tablet, or smartphone). You can give it gratis or incorporate a charging scheme of your choice.This by and large, will be on a pay-access basis. Just in case you are one of those averse to digital books, the tangeable option can easily be realised from this juncture. You just have to say the number of copies you want and it get send to the printers - and that is it. You only need to have your story out of your head and we will do the rest. Interested - talk to us.


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