Posts Tagged ‘mail order manager’

Come Learn from the Experts: M.O.M. and SiteLINK Training

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Posted by: Christine Amodio, Dydacomp Technical Writer/ TrainerChristine Amodio, Dydacomp Technical Writer

Do you wish you had the opportunity to sit down with M.O.M. experts and learn the details that will help you optimize your use of Multichannel Order Manager?  Well you are in luck as we are quickly filling seats for the two and half days of M.O.M. training plus an additional half day SiteLINK training as well! “The Getting the Most from M.O.M” training is quickly approaching on January 19 – 21 and the deadline for registration is even closer on January 7th. The training sessions will be held at our offices in Totowa, NJ and we provide you with coffee and breakfast to start off the morning right and lunch in the afternoon each day.

Our staff has designed the training to include in-depth topics ranging from simple customer entry to more complicated accounting and order processing tips. Our goal is to provide you with hands-on training with the software that will then enable you to capitalize on your investment and get the most from all of M.O.M.’s useful features. The training is especially beneficial to those who have only recently started using M.O.M.  If you are new to M.O.M., you can learn effective business practices to start running your business more efficiently.

Even if you have been using M.O.M for some time, you will definitely be surprised to see what new tips and tricks you can learn from our experts.  It has been proven that the Dydacomp customers that attended at least one Dydacomp training event are conducting 18% more business than those that have not.

The ½ day SiteLINK Training Seminar on January 21 is perfect for any level M.O.M. user who is looking to develop the skills necessary to build and maintain a SiteLINK powered store online. SiteLINK staff will be on hand to help you with any questions or advice you need!

Don’t just take our word for the benefits of training. Adam Wolter, from www.PJTool.com, attended the M.O.M training in June and was willing to share his experience:

“We had been working with M.O.M. here at PJ Tool & Supply for about 6 months before attending their customer training. Within those 6 months we had learned enough on our own to get by. We decided to try the training in hope of clearing up a few issues that we were having with the program. We ended up clearing up all those issues plus it opened our eyes to all the capabilities that M.O.M. has to offer. The training carefully combs through every facet of M.O.M. In doing so it helped us use M.O.M. more efficiently with shortcuts, clean up product listings and learn how to adjust inventory properly to get more accurate reporting. M.O.M. has become the backbone of our business and attending their training class was a great investment for us. I recommend it to anyone using the program.”

The training follows a schedule of topics to cover, but there is plenty of time for you to ask questions throughout the training. We encourage all training attendees to bring personal questions as our staff will be available to work with you  to answer those questions during breaks or even after the training is over each day.

If you are interested in attending the M.O.M. and SiteLINK training on January 19-21, please contact your sales representative or call Dydacomp sales at (800) 858 3666. I look forward to seeing you there!

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Posted in Dydacomp News, SiteLINK News, Support | No Comments »

Holiday Preparation

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Posted by Al Pascale, Manager of eCommerce Services and Michael Nardini, VP of Customer Satisfaction of Dydacomp

With the Thanksgiving holiday this week, we wanted to share some changes and procedures we’ve put in place to provide extended support to ensure a smooth weekend and make sure you’re prepared for a successful Cyber Monday.  Our offices will be closed tomorrow, 11/25, for Thanksgiving, as mentioned in earlier emails, but we will be open on Friday. On Friday we will have a bit more than a skeleton crew with about ½ the Support staff coming in between the hours of 10-4 EST to help with any issues relating to your system being down or other high priority issues.  Since we’re going to be running with a short staff, some of the basic or “how do I” non-critical issues may not be addressed same day on Friday but all critical  issues (system down or site down) will be answered.

In addition to the available staff during the day on Friday, there will be also be separate representatives available to handle the 24/7 emergency SiteLINK phone and, if you’re utilizing our Platinum Support benefits, you will have the ability to call in 24/7 for a M.O.M. system down issue all weekend.

If you’re a SiteLINK client, besides the Support reps that will be responding to your needs, we’ve also taken a few pro-active measures to ensure better quality SiteLINK performance.  We have done a number of things including purchasing additional RAM, upgrading all of the servers as well as doing re-index routines on each of the databases to clean up any potential issues for data slowing down your web store. We have also upgraded our redundant network connection to our data center to ensure a quicker fail-over if the need arises. This is important because if our main network line goes down or speed degradation occurs while running on our redundant connection you will see no downtime.

In addition to the hardware and network upgrades, we have improved our monitoring system to more frequently ping each site, which will automatically reset a slow/unresponsive site to get you back up and running then send an automated message to the SiteLINK team for further research.

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Big Retail is Winning Online

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Posted by John Healy, CEO of Dydacomp

According to a recent report from Comscore, a research company that tracks a consumer’s online advertising and purchasing patterns, there has been a significant upswing in the last year in overall ecommerce sales to the top 25 retailers.  Check it out:

Some of that number is misleading.  For instance on Amazon.com a ton of small business ecommerce happens through their Seller’s Central channel but gets counted as Amazon sales, the same is true for eBay.  These marketplaces are so important to most of our clients that we have build integrations to Multichannel Order Manager (M.O.M.) to work more efficiently with them.

Expect Amazon to have aggressive, increased competition from the top 25 retailers because other big multichannel players are catching on.  Both Wal Mart and Sears have created marketplaces for small merchants that have unique product lines.  So the good news is you’ll have more channels, but the bad news is you won’t be in control when there is a rule change and these marketplaces will change the rules on you often just like eBay Power Sellers have found out.

Our advice to clients is to take a more balanced marketing approach than ever before.  One potential strategy is to:

1) sell on your website using SEO and PPC tactics to drive inbound traffic (with an appropriate ROI)

2) merchandise certain items on the big marketplaces like Amazon

3) liquidate seasonal/old stock on eBay

4) insert your catalog in the orders shipped to Amazon and eBay customers (all marketplaces actually)

5) email weekly to your customer file and try to segment it as best you can

6) stay in or get back in the mail to distribute a catalog or promotional materials for acquisition, continuity and reactivation

A lot of folks might think I am off base recommending mailings.  It is my heritage so I have a bias, but, you are not going to be on page 4 of a Google search in a mailbox that belongs to a past customer or a high potential prospect.  Plus, “Big Retail” can’t out PPC you on every keyword term imaginable in the mail.  Finally, there is no solution online that lets a consumer look at 300 different items from you in a manner of minutes like a 48 page catalog.  Never mind the fact, that consumers will usually keep your catalog around for a little while and refer back to it more than once.  Yes, in all likelihood they will put the order in online at your SiteLINK store or other shopping cart, but the attention, interest and desire for your product will come from their experience with your catalog.

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Want to Increase Your Search Ranking? Take a Look at the Your Product Pages Today!

Friday, November 19th, 2010

Posted by Rob Coon, President of Dydacomp

Google can do a lot but it can’t look at the photos and videos on your website and know what they contain so they can serve your content up when they get a visitor searching for a product like yours.  They can count key words on your product pages which was the original premise of Google way back when.  So if you are looking to increase your search rankings, let’s start with the descriptions on your product pages.

If you get a chance this weekend, take a look at your top 50 product pages and see what the words and terms say about the product.  Are they very descriptive?  Does the description include the way someone may search on that product?  Does it link to other pages on your site for more information?  We looked at the 200 pages on the Dydacomp website and rewrote most of them using this formula.  Take a look at a before and after of one of the pages:

BEFORE

AFTER

Now there are many other things you can do to improve your rankings like naming your pages with the product’s name the page describes, getting more links to your site from reputable third party sources and blogs, but our recommendation is to start with content and by the looks of many of your sites this might be a fast and inexpensive pick up for you.  We can help if you don’t have time to do it.  We’ll improve the key word density of the top 50 pages of your site for $995.  Over a couple of month period as your click throughs improve from this exercise,  Google will start to reward you for “being found”  and the more Google visitors that click on you the higher your ranking goes as well.  Caution:  You will also need to continue to refresh this content to remain relevant to the search engines.

All of this information applies regardless if you are using our cloud hosted SiteLINK ecommerce solution or another shopping cart that you have plugged into Multichannel Order Manager.

I didn’t mean to give you a homework assignment for this weekend but it is one that I think will get you a really good grade for your website.

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Posted in Ecommerce, Search Marketing | No Comments »

Downloading Previous Orders from SiteLINK

Monday, September 20th, 2010

Posted by Christine Amodio, Technical Writer and Trainer

Christine Amodio, Dydacomp Technical WriterA customer recently told me they had a power outage while downloading orders from their SiteLINK store.  Some orders made it into Mail Order Manager, but some orders did not.  I advised them they can go to their SiteLINK admin page to get order download files from previous downloads.  They were happy to see there is a way to recover orders so they didn’t lose the sale and ensure customer satisfaction.  Once the order file has been downloaded from the admin page, it can be imported with M.O.M.’s import/export module.

Watch the video to see how to get a previous download file from SiteLINK.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnvvfZ2FbM4

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Enabling Fraud Monitoring Tools

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Posted by Art Vivino, Technical Support Supervisor

Many Dydacomp customers enter a fairly large number of orders per day and using tools to catch fraud is something everyone wishes they could do more efficiently.  There may be times when orders manually entered are not carefully scrutinized and more importantly, orders imported that need to be checked by an automatic system so that they can be flagged for a manager to determine if certain potential fraudulent parameters or restrictions are met.

An effective way to monitor fraud today would be to use the Manager’s Authorization checkpoints in conjunction with the Dashboard feature within the User’s Profile of Managers and Owners.

In Global Parameters / Order Processing Design there is a check box to enable the Manager’s Authorization settings.  These settings will prevent an order from processing unless a user with Manager’s Authorization allows the order to be released.

There are a number of different settings you can use to restrict the order from proceeding unless it is approved by a user with Manager’s Authorization rights.

For example, I set a trigger to force Mail Order Manager (M.O.M.) to place an order on ‘review’ if the total dollar amount for the order exceeds $100.00.

After adding all the info required, the order will go into ‘review’ status.

To review and release this order, there is an icon to the left of the order status field.

Once you click the icon, another screen will appear requiring the input of the Manager’s user id and password.

Once the manager signs in, there will be another screen showing why the order is on review.

There may be more than one reason why the order is set to review.

A Manager should also have the ‘Manager’s Dashboard’ enabled in order to view all orders that are currently on review. To enable this, go to the user’s ID under:

Check the box next to “Enable Manager’s Dashboard”

On the Dashboard tab, select ‘Orders’ and then check the box below.

Log out and back into MOM.

In the main menu, there will be an icon to view the Dashboard.

When you select this icon, any order on review will display.

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Cut Your Abandoned Shopping Cart Rate with the Right Shipping Offers

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Posted by John Healy, CEO of Dydacomp

John V. Healy, CEO of Dydacomp.Customer acquisition is going to become more difficult as large retailers are maximizing organic search and pay per click to sell more efficiently on the web and as comparative shopping engines handle more and more traffic.  Additionally, comparative shopping engines typically serve up the big sites first because they are able to offer lower prices and well known brand names, making it tough for you compete.

As a result, when you finally do have someone on your site, you need to do everything in your power to convert them during that visit.   One of the marketing “weapons of choice” retailers often use to try to accomplish this is “free shipping.”

We at Dydacomp have been telling our clients to be really careful about their shipping offers.  Shipping is a hard cost that has to be covered with a fee.  We estimate that Dydacomp clients spend around $150 million a year just in shipping.  Covering this cost can come at the expense of more sales:  according to Comscore Research a little over half of consumers surveyed are “somewhat likely” to cancel their entire purchase if free shipping is not offered.  But there is good news and that is almost 70% of those same consumers are willing to pay $9.99 and under for shipping:

ComScore Data

Carefully look at what Amazon does with shipping as well.  Most of the time they are trying to keep it below $9.99/order and this shipping expense issue is certainly one of the driving reasons they want to do fulfillment for you on the items you sell on Amazon.com (as well as speed of delivery).  Speaking of delivery speed, one of our Client Advisory Board members pointed out to us recently that you need show the consumer value in paying for shipping.  In his example free shipping can be offered as a tier, with a 7 – 10 day delivery window, while the paid for shipping options get the order delivered to the consumer faster.   One other benchmark: Many sites offer consumers free shipping over a certain dollar amount or if you are a member of their loyalty program both of which you can handle using Mail Order Manager.

Finally a shipping rule of thumb from Dydacomp: you can probably get away with charging for shipping on orders under $100 if the shipping costs are close to what the consumer would have spent in sales tax for a reasonable delivery date, possibly 3 -5 days from placing the order.

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Posted in CEO, Ecommerce | No Comments »

Dydacomp Sees a Significant Trend in Taxing Out-of-State Merchants

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

Posted by John Healy,  CEO of Dydacomp

John Healy, Dydacomp CEOIn the last few weeks I have made several posts concerning Colorado and Oklahoma’s attempts to hold their citizens accountable for sales tax on goods purchased and shipped from out of state companies.  These states ask you to supply the information to both them and the consumer annually.   Luckily, Mail Order Manager and Dydacomp can help you with this administrative nightmare.

Unfortunately, there is one issue we cannot help you on.  According to the Direct Marketing Association, The Ohio Commercial Activity Tax (CAT) imposes an aggressive nexus standard known as a “bright line” nexus standard.  Under this standard a taxpayer is deemed to have nexus if at any time during the year it has any of the following:

  • $500,000 of taxable gross receipts
  • $50,000 worth of Ohio property
  • $50,000 of Ohio payroll or other compensation for services in the state
  • At least 25 percent of its total property, payroll, or gross receipts in Ohio or is domiciled in Ohio

This is NOT a sales tax.  This is a direct TAX on your business.

The DMA

I strongly suggest that you attend a free webinar on this subject put on by the Direct Marketing Association, Wednesday August 25th, 3 – 4 PM EST.  Click on the link below or call to register in advance.

Online: Register Now

Fax: 212.302.7643

Phone: 212.790.1500

Mail: Printable Form
DMA Customer Service
1120 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036-6700

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Internet and Mail Order Sales Tax Idea Spreads to Oklahoma

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010

Posted by John Healy, CEO of Dydacomp

John Healy, Dydacomp CEOIn previous posts we’ve addressed the sales tax situation in Colorado, now the sales tax reporting law has now spread to Oklahoma.  Here is an excerpt from an email that the Direct Marketing Association recently sent out on the subject:

“DMA filed comments this week on the draft rules implementing the new use tax notice law in Oklahoma.  The draft rules closely mirror the legislative language in contrast to the expansive and highly prescriptive regulations adopted in Colorado.

The draft regulations can be found here.  Please note that these are not in effect yet.  As we (DMA) understand it, there will be a hearing following the comment period before the regulations are adopted and go into effect.”

We at Dydacomp will keep you posted like we have for the Colorado law as the implementation of the regulation in Oklahoma becomes more clear.  We also suspect that this is a trend that will continue as states try to balance their budgets any way possible.  In an earlier post, we took you through an analysis that the individual states are showing about a $112 billion deficit, or roughly a 17% deficit on average.  That deficit has to be made up as most states have passed balance budget amendments so look for more activity.  The only fortunate part is that Mail Order Manager can help you with the necessary reporting to be compliant.


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Dydacomp Clients Post Record Sales Growth in June 2010

Friday, July 16th, 2010

Posted by John Healy, CEO of Dydacomp

John Healy, Dydacomp CEO“Same store” sales for Dydacomp clients combined grew almost 5% year-over-year in June 2010, bringing the year to date growth rate up to 2% compared to the same time period last year.  In fact, almost 50% of the year to date growth came in the month of June alone.  Here are the results for selected verticals that affected the results:

Although not in the graph, the more interesting stat was that average order size was up almost 5% in June and drove all of the growth because number of orders was basically flat.  So merchant efforts to sell more per visit to their website or call to their contact center is working very well.

Major verticals that had a tough year in 2009 are beginning to see some positive momentum in June, specifically Auto Parts, Toys, Tools and Jewelry.  The Book Sales vertical as well as Food/Health and Sporting Goods are all surprisingly strong in June as well.

This is all good news in a not-so-good news market.  Also, we are recently seeing new license sales for Mail Order Manager up significantly from the past several months.  In fact, July is starting out to be one our best months of the year which is leading us to believe that merchants are in fact spending for products that are easy to implement, save them time and money and help them sell more like Multichannel Order Manager and SiteLINK solutions do.  The U.S. Department of Commerce will issue their report on retail sales shortly and we expect there to be good news based on the information above.  One in a row does not make a streak, so let’s see how July does as well.

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