Take A WooCommerce Holiday

Take A Holiday From Your WooCommerce Store

Taking holidays isn’t that easy when you run your own business. This is especially true if you have an online store. You can’t just set up an auto responder that says “Gone fishing.”

If you’ve built a business with a good reputation you don’t want to risk that. Leaving your online store with someone else might lead to mistakes and upset customers. Social media gives upset customers a megaphone.

So where do orders go wrong? You might have different suppliers for different products that need to be contacted. Perhaps you have products that are similar and can easily be incorrectly ordered. Your delivery requirements might differ from product to product. You might have products that are only sold occasionally. Even with great training, good team members might not remember how to do something they don’t do regularly.

Capturing your knowledge and getting it to the right person at the right time helps you hand over your business and take your holiday.

Our WooCommerce plugin After The Order is designed to help WooCommerce store owners record their knowledge so it can be brought to the attention of staff when needed.

Here’s how it works. Owners set up a store wide checklist that applies to the processing of every order within their store. They also set up reminders about important information that relates to specific products.

When the order notification email arrives advising a sale has occurred, it includes the relevant notes for that order (site wide and order specific).

This means staff get an order as well as the instructions on what to do to fulfil that order. There is less to remember, find or look up. Important details they need to know is right there with the order email.

After The Order is about having a system that helps your staff manage orders efficiently and deliver a high quality customer experience every time.

So how easy is it to set this plugin? Very easy. You can purchase and download After The Order and follow step-by-step instructions yourself to get started.

Purchase After The Order

Suddenly that beach holiday seems a little more possible.

Here’s a short video that tells you more about After The Order.

Announcing After The Order Plugin for WooCommerce

Our New WooCommerce Order Management Plugin

We’re excited to be launching our third WooCommerce plugin, After The Order.

The idea for this came from some of our WooCommerce clients who sometimes had issues with staff making errors when fulfilling online orders. We also use WooCommerce ourselves, and had developed a note taking system for infrequently ordered services in our own store so we could save time.

The new plugin lets you record special instructions with the product information. When orders occur, the special instructions appear as part of the order email generated by the WooCommerce store.

In essence, the plugin is helping you implement a better system for order management in your business. Good systems make your life easier as well as making it possible to delegate to others. Your system shall set you free!

Typical uses for After The Order might include:

  • Non standard shipping instructions
  • Specific up-selling and cross-selling reminders
  • Instructions for service delivery
  • Alerts for products that are more likely to trigger returns
  • Special supplier instructions for non standard products

The plugin is designed to help store owners get specific instructions in front of their staff right at the moment an order is being processed. Staff don’t have to rely on their memory or look up manuals if the critical information is right there in front of them.

This is not a complex plugin that needs an expert to install. It’s simple to buy, download and get working straight away. Even if you’ve never installed a plugin before, our instructions will walk you through it.

We’ve been working on this project for the last few months and we’re really excited to see it launched. It’ll be interesting to see all the different order fulfillment uses our clients come up with.

Most importantly, we’re hoping it makes it just a little easier to take that next holiday. Here’s more about After The Order and what it can do to help you run your WooCommerce online store.

After The Order

Dawn Meader, Artist

Colours and Spirit

We’ve had the pleasure recently of working with Dawn Meader to relaunch her website.

Working with a wide range of colours is a fascinating process. Dawn’s works make such incredible use of colour, it looks effortless – and of course it isn’t. It takes such talent to balance colour, composition and subject. The artworks are amazing, and speak for themselves.

Read More

A bet is a Bet

On the weekend, the Hawthorn Football Club won the 2013 AFL Grand Final.

We at OM4 have a friendly relationship with the crew at Goin’ Off Safaris, who are keen Hawthorn fans.

The relationship is close enough that Glenn was silly enough to place a bet with Lunch at Goin’ Off Safaris:

  • If Fremantle win, the goinoffsafaris.com.au website would display the Dockers’ colours for a day
  • If Hawthorn win, the om4.com.au website would display the Hawks’ colours for a day
Read More
Integrate WooCommerce with 230+ web services

Automate your WooCommerce Store with Zapier

Today, OM4 in collaboration with WooThemes and Zapier have launched a simple and powerful way to integrate your WooCommerce online store with 230+ third party web services such as Highrise, Twilio, Campaign Monitor, MailChimp, Xero, Zendesk, Dropbox, Google Docs and more!

Once you purchase, download and install the WooCommerce Zapier Integration plugin, you are able to send your WooCommerce order and customer data to Zapier.

Typical use cases would be sending WooCommerce order data to the following types of systems:

  • Billing & Invoicing
  • CRM
  • Email Marketing
  • Phone, SMS and Email Notifications
  • File Management
  • Help Desk

To make it easy to get started, there’s a website that illustrates the services that are likely to be the most useful to someone running a WooCommerce store. This includes 20+ recommended Zap templates.

I also suggest reading the official announcement on woothemes.com, as well as the announcement on zapier.com.

For a limited time only, the plugin is available for an introductory price of $59 USD, and new Zapier users will receive 100 extra tasks when signing up to Zapier via this link.

We’ve been working on this project for the last few months, and we’re really excited to see what kind of integrations people come up with.

SEO Webinar – helping customers find you online

How do you position your website so that your customers easily find you online? 

Spend two hours in OM4’s SEO Concepts Webinar on Thursday, September 12 and begin your SEO learning journey.

To join us you can register here.

LET’S START AT THE VERY BEGINNING

Search engines look for the same signals as your customers.

They want you to be relevant to their search. They want to see that you are an authority.

Learn how to send these signals to a search engine using:

  • Keywords. Using the language of your customers.
  • Link Building.  The power of networking with other internet businesses and resources.
  • Local Search Tools. Working with tools like Google Local that trigger for local businesses.
  • Adwords.  Increasing visitors to your site by paying for well-targetted advertising.

Learn about measuring SEO success using Google Analytics. Analytics shows you how many visitors view your website; where they come from; the pages they visit; and the time they take visiting. Use Analytics to put a little more science into the art of SEO.

REGISTER NOW

Your investment for this introductory webinar is $95.

Join us for 2 hours from 9am (11am AEST) on Thursday September 12 by completing this registration form.

OM4's 6th Birthday!

6 years ago today, OM4 was born. 2,190 days later, we are fortunate enough to have fantastic customers in 6 different countries (Australia, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia & the USA), across many different industries.

OM4’s small team of 7 people (in 3 different countries) would like to thank all of our valued OM4 customers.

Although we are 6 years old (young) today, the opportunities in the WordPress website industry are still abundant, and we feel good about what the future holds.

Incidentally, later this month is WordPress’ 10th birthday!

Thanks once again for being a part of the OM4 story.

Kind Regards,

Glenn Nicholas (co-founder & managing director)
James Collins (co-founder & chief technology officer)
Fanita Farcic (design & web development)
Judy Weinert (support)
Alison Mather (business development)
Erana Hastie (web development)
John Gallant (web development)

The OM4 Team

Choosing a Hosted Email Provider – Google Apps, Rackspace Email & Zoho Mail

Choosing an email hosting provider for your business email (e.g. yourname@yourdomain.com) is an important decision. Email is a vital tool for business, and it matters if it doesn’t work properly.

We help our clients setup their business email, and we’ve recently added DNS support for Zoho Mail, slotting in alongside Google Apps and Rackspace Email.

Late last year Google Apps stopped offering their free mail service. Both Google Apps and Rackspace Email have strong email services, with large quotas on mailboxes, support for large messages and strong anti-spam filters.

Pricing wise, the choices were:

  • Google Apps ($5/user per month or $50/yr)
  • Rackspace Email ($2/user per mth with a minimum of 5 users).

Zoho MailWith the addition of Zoho Mail to the mix, our clients once again have a free, business grade option to choose from. The Zoho Mail options are:

  • Lite: free for up to 5 users, with a 5Gb mailbox
  • Standard: $2.50/mth (10Gb mailbox) or $3.50/mth (15Gb mailbox).

Zoho has a nice clean interface, which is refreshing. Rackspace and Google pack in the features, but could learn something in terms of ease of use from the Zoho crew.

Looking forward to seeing how they go, and how long the free option lasts for. I suspect with the demise of the free Google Apps option, Zoho will see a lot of businesses trying them out, and they’ll probably build their user base substantially.

Distraction Free Writing with WordPress

Adding relevant, informative content to your website is an excellent way to increase your authority for your readers, and for search engines.

Distraction Free Writing iconAs true as that statement is, most of us find putting words on a page challenging. WordPress now offers a feature that removes at least one of the possible distractions when you want to get creative at your keyboard.

Take a look at the Distraction Free Writing icon in your Post and Page toolbar (it’s towards the right end, in the first row).

This button toggles between the full editing screen and the distraction free screen.  When you first toggle to distraction free, you will see a minimal toolbar at the top of the page.  The first option in this mini toolbar is the toggling back to the  full editing screen.

Once you’ve started writing the mini toolbar disappears too, returning anytime you hover your mouse over the top of the page.

Read on to learn more about distraction free writing with WordPress.

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