E-commerce

One of our biggest strengths at Namhost is our ability to roll out professional E-commerce solutions. We have built a variety of online e-commerce solutions, including the one you are viewing right now. While a simple cart with a checkout can often do the trick, we improve the typical flow by finding more ways to monetize during the checkout process. We do this by understanding the business requirements and making sure this ties into the design of the website.

What do I need in order to sell online?

  • Software on your website that is e-commerce enabled (required)
  • A payment gateway that processes credit card transactions (required)
  • A bank account (required)
  • A merchant account with your bank (optional, because certain payment gateways don't have this limitation)
  • An SSL Certificate (required)

What software do you use?

It really depends on the requirements of the project. Drupal remains our number one weapon of choice and we have been able to implement cost-effective but highly professional e-commerce solutions using Drupal for many years now. We have also implemented pure PHP e-commerce solutions and a variety of e-commerce solutions using popular frameworks like Zend and Laravel.

When we decide on the best solution for clients, it is only after we have done a thorough analysis of the needs of our clients. We don't believe in one-size-fits-all solutions, but we have found that in most cases, if selling online is the goal, a combination of Drupal and well-programmed custom modules can go a very long way in delivering a robust and scalable solution.

What payment gateways do you use?

There are a variety of factors to take into account when choosing a payment gateway. We are very big supporters of 2Checkout and have written a long article describing why we love 2Checkout. Unfortunately 2Checkout isn't the best solution for everyone, particularly due to their extremely high transaction fees. That is why for those that are able to go through the efforts of getting a merchant account from their bank and willing to pay a monthly fee, we recommend MyGate.

MyGate and 2Checkout are our favourites out of the more well-known options in South Africa and Namibia, but we have also implemented payment solutions using other Payment Processors like Setcom, Paypal and a few others. For international companies PayPal is a more popular choice, but there are even more options for those who aren't geographically limited to Namibia or South Africa.

There really isn't a one size fits all solution when it comes to E-Commerce and only after we understand how your business works can we make a professional decision as to what would work best for you.

Shipping Integration

With most e-commerce solutions some or other item is ordered at the end of the checkout process. In many cases these items also have to be shipped to clients. We have successfully integrated with Fedex and Dawn Wing in the past. We have been extensively involved in the processes behind the scenes that can become very complex. Integrating with a shipping company requires advanced workflow management on the sellers side. If you loose track of a parcel or can't match up an order, you are going to have many unhappy clients.

Client Support using a Professional Helpdesk

When we first build an e-commerce solution for clients, they often overlook what will be required of them by their clients once the website is live. Your clients might not be happy with their order or they might want to change an order or some other issue could pop up. All of this will end with them contacting you. If you don't have a rock-solid support system in place, this can become a nightmare. 

We implement advanced ticketing and support systems that allow you to easily and professionally respond to clients while keeping track of all correspondence between yourself and the client. Namhost offers some of the best support in the country and it's all thanks to the way we implement our helpdesk. We would be totally lost without it and would have many unhappy clients. But thanks to our sophisticated solution that ties in seamlessly with our business processed, we have the best support in the country and our clients will be testament to that.

Conclusion

E-commerce in Africa has exploded in many ways. If you sell products or services and you are not doing it online, you are missing out an a lot of sales and new customers. For many the main deterrant is the fear of the unknown. We would like to calm that fear and in fact completely take it away from you, by implementing a solution that will work for you and help you grow your company.

If you like what you hear and want to talk to us a bit more about getting an E-Commerce solution going for your business, please use the quotation form below.