Here at eTrader, we understand the garment decoration industry. We simply just get it. 

Creating an online site for your business is often a complex process full of perils, stresses, with numerous advantages and disadvantages continuously being weighed up.

The costs are enormous, the time it takes to develop is astronomical and you often wonder where you will find the time to undertake such a huge project. The garment decorating/printing sector is more challenged than most. We rarely have time for lunch yet alone develop a fully functioning e-commerce system and visually pleasing website for our customers!

The key to success is doing it right, you don't need to throw valuable money at web designers and create over purposed sites which most of your customers won't resonate with, and the key is making your businesses webpage fit for purpose. eTrader understands you and your business, what you want to do and where you want to go. After all, the direction you are looking to take your business on its online journey is crucial for your printing/embroidery businesses future success.

We have met many business owners over the years, nonchalant and blasé  who often suggest they will just throw money at going online and the results will follow (needless to say it hasn't panned out this way). 

Then there is the polar opposite, the other end of the spectrum. The everyday garment decorator, printer and embroiderer. The small business with limited online resources and limited cash flow to develop their online site. The majority of businesses in the sector are like this in nature, small, diminutive but hard working & honest. These businesses often utilise free resources available to them. The vast majority often use free website providers, with WordPress with its e-commerce plugins proving hugely popular.

This isn't the worst ploy in the world, a cost effective measure in a tight economic climate. But there are drawbacks; there is no sense of ownership using free software. Limited controls, set parameters restricting what you can/cannot do with your website, all culminating in undermining your businesses online image and professionalism as your website looks 'home made' and slightly lesser in appearance than your nearest competitors. All in all not ideal or fit for purpose.

This widening gap between the business owners looking to spend huge amounts and the low end cost effective small businesses has led to the development and creation of the eTrader. The eTrader system ultimately fills the service gap, which is why our product is thriving within the UK.

We quickly realised that the complexity and diverse range of products in the garment decoration industry did not translate easily into the world of online shopping. This was largely due to the bespoke nature of printing or embroidering a garment/product and indeed the vast array of products available from 100’s of brands, styles, sizes, shapes, positions, stitch counts and colours. 

Our e-commerce platform is available to print and embroidery companies all over the UK. We continuously work with a specialist team of web designers & garment decorators to discover what is required for businesses in this sector to succeed. 

eTrader offers all of our valued customers ultimate flexibility and control at a very low price in comparison to other service providers offering similar packages. Our system develops a fully personalised website with a full e-commerce system in place. The website knows no bounds, the customer has full control of the administration side of things covering areas such as customising brands & categories, 'Marking Up' products and pricing structures. The customer also controls the creative aspect of the businesses page. Our web page layouts are fully customisable & SEO friendly, working alongside our fully customisable content creator and adjustable banners giving businesses an array of marketing tools for their homepage to stand out from the competition. 

Customers often say the biggest advantage of using our product is significantly saving time and importantly cost, the websites are live and running within weeks and the costs are significantly reduced compared to web developers. We fully understand the industry; and its customers. We listen to our customers, we know what they want and we provide it to them at a reasonable price. And as for the results, we often let them speak for themselves....

What is Responsive Design?

Simply, when a website is responsive the website is adaptable across various platforms– based on the size of the screen viewing the website. A responsive website automatically changes to fit the device you’re viewing it on. Mobile Responsive Websites are aimed at all manner of sized displays – varying from small screen handheld devices to large widescreen monitors covering every other size in between.

Why Have Responsive Websites?

The need for garment decorators to deliver online is at an all-time high, the marketplace is intense and the competition is tough.

So garment decorators need to use any tool necessary to stay ahead of the fierce competition!

You want your customers to keep coming back; you want them to have the best experience possible through any means necessary. And this now includes your businesses website! Previously, businesses just create websites and the online platform will look after itself. However the continuous rise and development of tablet and mobile technology has meant viewing websites has become an ‘on the go’ experience – customers are not afraid to purchase using their phones and tablets anymore. The chances are your nearest competitor is not making use of responsive design, so why not make the most of this new development and stay ahead of the competition?!

What Does This Mean For Your Business?                             

We all understand Google & SEO are crucial for your businesses online performance. Google fully values responsive websites and the customer’s online experience. Google has recently not so subtly stated the desire for all websites to eventually go this way. It is much easier and much more efficient using responsive design from Google's SEO perspective - Google's bots find crawling websites, indexing and ranking pages much simpler using responsive design as it simple requires just one URL!

 The value for your decorating business is incredible – 24% of Google searches are now being performed on tablet and mobile devices and 26% of e-mails received are viewed on mobiles, with a further 11% on tablets. The development of handheld and compact technology has led to the fast tracking of mobile responsive design– it’s a new concept to web designers but customers from all sectors are already demanding it.

With the development of a responsive website, the sky is the limit! Decorators alike can rejoice – your business can now provide customers with quality online service wherever they are, whatever they’re doing 24/7, 365 days of the year.  The use of responsive sites can also generate greater leads; the multi-platform nature of the website furthers your reach to customers outside of your traditional audience!

Here are some of our favourite examples we have found from garment decorators around the UK. Try them out on different devices & see how they ‘Respond’ - giving you the best user experience possible!

Kustom Kits 

Kustom-Clothing

Axent Embroidery

 It’s a simple, but highly innovative concept. Mobile Responsive Design provides an all-round solution to your online services covering all your customers viewing devices. It’s beneficial for both your print business and your customers. Your customer gets the optimum online experience using your website and you simply provide them this using just one platform.

Using just one platform also allows you to reach wider audiences at a relatively low cost, but the greater benefits are in term of SEO – your campaign becomes much easier to manage.  Instead of managing each platform’s SEO, using responsive sites make managing a much simpler process – only one SEO campaign has to be managed instead of potentially having to manage several. Saving your business both valuable time & money!

Pros

Cons

·      A single website for three platforms

·      Expensive to Set Up

·     Only requires a single URL

·     Time Consuming & Requires Web Developers

·      Easier SEO

 

·     Wider Audience Reach

 

·      Enhances Customer Experience

 

 The customer experience is vital for any business but more so in the print & decorating business - retention is critical (See last week’s blog for more on that)Mobile Responsive Design on your site is a simple but effective way of providing your key customers what they want, when they want and wherever they want!