Thoughts, information and reflections about technology

ecommerce

Instant Cafe Feeder and Google Base

We have a couple of Cafepress stores. One of the ways to drive traffic to the stores is to use Google Base. Google Base allows you to submit a feed of your items that will then show up in the Google Shopping search.

The problem is building the feed. One store has about 60 items and the other has about 20 or so. You could build the feed by hand but that would take a good bit of effort. There is an application that is currently donateware called the Instant Cafe Feeder. You can find it at http://feeder.instant-cafe.com/ It’s a nice little app that will generate a feed for you. It can be a little tricky to set up but once you figure it out, it’s great. There is also some limited support for it to be found in the cafepress forums. Continue reading

I heard a radio advertisor telling people to email their credit card info to him

I was listening to home improvement show on the radio today. The guest told customers that they could purchase his priducts by emailing their name address and complete credit card information including their ccv. He was using a verizon email address.

If this isn’t a disaster waiting to happen, I don’t know what is. I’m sure that the guest was legitimate and was not running a scam. However, email is horribly unsecure. Continue reading

Urgent Contact ICann immediately to prevent skyrocketing domain name pricing

The new draft of the ICANN regulations has the potential to allow the registrars to charge exhorbitant fees for domain name renewals.

Under the current system, .com domain names are subject to price controls. Under the proposed system, there is the possibility of a nightmare scenario where someone could work like crazy to build a website and domain up and then find that the registrar wants hundred of thousands or millions of dollars to renew that domain name. Supposedly you can lock in the pricing for up to 10 years. However is is obvious that 10 years is simply too short of a timeframe. Continue reading

An amazing example of interactivity

Check out this amazing interactive shopping site.(link may not be safe for work depending on how prudish your boss and co-workers are) A model will try on different lingere. It is NOT a porn site. Just an amazingly creative example of interactivity.

It’s a site from the other side of the Pond from the same folks who brought us Benny Hill and Are you Being Served. Gotta love the brits.

New York to try to charge sales tax on Intenet Purchases

New York State is trying to make online retailers collect sales tax from purchases made by New York residents.

Given the state of the Internet right now, this is going to be a nightmare for online merchants. Currently they say they are only going after ‘large retailers’. In truth, given the way that government is known to work, they will require all online retailers to collect NY Sales tax (remember that politicians buy votes by confiscating money from one group of people and handing that money out to other groups of people. Their appetite for taxes is insatiable) Continue reading

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