SpyPen.net My First Online Store Goes Live


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As you might remember my post about buying a domain as an end user. The name I bought was SpyPen.net for $550 on Bargain Domains. I have spent the last week or so building out the domain name and so far I am pretty happy with the way it looks.

I use the theme Quickrise from ThemeForest which was $35. It comes with a few color options and is easily customizable. I think it is a great looking theme that works well with the overall look of a spy gear website.

I had the graphics done by people on namepros including the logo and the two other graphic banners about the shipping from the USA and also the Lockpick sets on sale.  Overall the logos and banners cost $20.

I took a long time looking for a shopping cart and in the end I chose to go with PhPurchase which so far has all of the options I need. I like it because you just insert the Add to Cart button and you can design your page the way you want to this gave me the design freedom I wanted. It also works well with different shipping options and offers inventory management.  They run a deal where if you tweet about the product you get $20 off so its only $39 and a great deal.

I am setting up the twitter account for the site now and I plan to try and use twitter to try to find people looking for spy pens. I am also starting my SEO work on the domain to try and get it ranked for related terms, having the exact match domain should help.

As this is my first store online I just want some feedback as to what you think of the look of the site, do you trust it what could be better etc. Thanks so much for the help and I will keep you updated as to how the holiday sales go.

P.S. Just in case anyone wants to buy a spy pen or $9.99 lockpick set they are cool little things and work great at small funny gifts I set up a coupon code "TeenDomainer"

Related posts:

  1. Update on My Store SpyPen.net
  2. The First Live Domain Auctioneers Online Auction Results
  3. The Problems With Running Your Own Ecommerce Store

Comments

21 Responses to “SpyPen.net My First Online Store Goes Live”

  1. Mike Sullivan
    December 6th, 2010 @ 8:50 am

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    The site looks great. I’m impressed with how quickly you were able to put together a nice looking, functional site. Good luck with this one!

  2. Anderson
    December 6th, 2010 @ 9:09 am

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    Checked out your site last night actually. I love the overall design and features. It’s amazing how you had it set up within a relatively short time. Bravo and good luck.

  3. Michael
    December 6th, 2010 @ 9:19 am

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    Hey Brian,

    Congrats on the site, looks GREAT! I wish you luck with it. Maybe one suggestion, I think the pens flash too quick from one to another, the customer doesnt have time to read about it or check out the price. Maybe just have it sit a few more seconds before it transitions.

    Just my opinion, it was the first and only thing I noticed. (Its funny how I am learning to develop from you and here I am offering up my opinions haaa)

    Good luck!
    -Michael

  4. Anthony Hanner
    December 6th, 2010 @ 9:22 am

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    Nice name and a good buy, Brian.

    Great job in such a short time…I do have a couple of things that stand out to me that you may want to take a look at…this is coming from my consumer self and not as a domain investor…

    The scroll outs across the main images on the home page are a little frustrating…they are very fast and there is no time to read them. They also have some code stuck in them as well.

    I would recommend slowing them down and also not having the item numbers and price in there…but to fill that with catchy and descriptive text…it is meant to grab the user and make them want to click. As you know, it may just be a few seconds you have to get them to and that space is a major spot in this design to make that happen.

    I would also consider getting rid of the blogroll and archives.

    Very nice domain name…I look forward seeing updates on this one.

  5. brian k
    December 6th, 2010 @ 9:59 am

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    The site looks really good
    Congrats.
    How much would you charge to set up a similar site for me for bbguns.net?

  6. Greg
    December 6th, 2010 @ 10:02 am

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    very clean looking site. I would move the cart widget higher or even to the top so its easy to find the checkout, its in the middle right side bar now, under the 250 ad so i know i overlooked it. Use an rss submitter to get the site listed fast. looking at who is listed front page search you should get listed in a few hours.

  7. Will
    December 6th, 2010 @ 10:26 am

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    Brian, do you mind telling us which vendor/supplier provides the pens?

  8. chris
    December 6th, 2010 @ 11:02 am

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    Very clean and great looking site – congrats! I agree with the above – make the transition of pens longer allowing people to view them for a bit longer.
    I do like the checkout process – 1 question – where does someone put the coupon code you mentioned?
    I was also going to ask about the spy pen supplier

    overall its a great clean looking site

  9. DomainerHub
    December 6th, 2010 @ 11:09 am

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    Overall, looks nice. But, for improving conversions, i guess it’s a good think to fix the think with credit card.

    People send their credit card info into a non-secure environment. Also, it’a a good a ideea to check the non-functionality of “View Cart” option.

  10. DomainTweeter
    December 6th, 2010 @ 11:57 am

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    Congratulations on the launch – great looking site and nice job putting it together so quickly. Had a couple random suggestions…

    You might want to work in some text on the front page highlighting the benefits/possible uses of spy pens, both to help your conversion rate and to have some more unique front page content to help with SEO.

    If ‘Ships from the USA’ is a prime differentiator between you and your competition, you might want to help avoid ‘banner blindness’ and make it part of your main logo, possibly by adding a tagline. E.g. High quality spy pens, hand tested and shipped directly to you from the US. My example is a little long, but you get the idea.

    Noticed your meta description (which is likely to appear on search results pages) is focussing on your $39.99 product:

    The best value spy pen on the market today, it is only $39.99 it can record for hours and the video and audio are crystal clear

    Since people often start shopping based on price and end up buying a better model once they are on site, you might want to focus on your $28.99 product in your description and upsell them once on your site. This would give you the lowest price on the current Google results page (including product and Adwords ads) and should boost your click-through rate, helping your site rise to the top 3 positions more quickly. Possibly something like this instead …

    High quality spy pens starting at $28, hand tested and shipped directly to you. US owned and operated.

    Also just sent you a message which might give you a good jump start with your link building.

  11. Paul J. Kapschock
    December 6th, 2010 @ 12:21 pm

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    Congrats and best of luck with the site…looks good.

    I second most of the listed suggestions and will add a few of my own:

    1) Get some TERMS/CONDITIONS/POLICIES up asap.

    2) I went to order a product and it was out of stock…maybe have alternative? Something else to recommend? (2G Spy Pen)

    3) SPAM ALERT…Those LEAVE A REVIEW at end of products…you will get killed with spam on those.

    4) “ADD TO CART” When I order a pen, I clicked on ADD TO CART button…I didn’t really know I added that to the cart……shpould have something telling folks..or maybe taken to cart? Some kind of better hand off or notification/alert.

    5) Clean up index/home page. Get rid of all that Blogroll; Meta, etc.

    You can add articles and sales content with links to pages….more products….affiliate ads..etc. Very valuable space for that info.

    6) SALES..have a few products and a new heading for SALES or DISCOUNTS. That is killer category and folks love it….add that to top nav.

    7) SEARCH Box. Should have abig search box on top of site. Folks want that asap…so place on top…BIG box with “search”..let folks know.

    You can keep the one you have….may have to hack some code for the SEARCH…but worth it. You can even add Google Search and take make some money with those ads?

    8) SEO..I saw a misspelled word in second sentence under Site Description.

    Great start,…some small stuff to work on..but you have more balls then most…. actually doing stuff!

    Keep it up…it all adds up!

    Paul

  12. Johan
    December 6th, 2010 @ 2:00 pm

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    Nice to see you get it up so quick. Looks good!
    I suppose that you´re still working on it, but here are a few quick things I noticed…

    I think you should work on the “About” page, right now it´s only the default WordPress “This is an example of a WordPress page…”. That doesn’t help to give me confidence to buy anything.

    Also you might want to get rid of the default WordPress blogroll. I don’t think linking to the WordPress Codex will help your sales :)

    I hope you’ll keep us updated on the progress and results from the site! Looking forward to reading about it!

  13. TeenDomainer
    December 6th, 2010 @ 3:29 pm

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    Thanks everyone for the comments I am working on getting everything fixed now. This is my first time and I know I will mess up but its nice to hear that overall you think it looks good.

    Paul the only pen I have right now is the 4GB waiting on the others to arrive. They take a long time to ship from china.

    Thanks again so much everyone!

  14. Victor
    December 6th, 2010 @ 4:26 pm

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    Great site. You do website right?

  15. Jamie
    December 6th, 2010 @ 4:29 pm

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    Don’t tell people where you buy from ;) ever! Then they just skip “the middle man” and it hurts your business.

    Several nice suggestions added above already, but I would remove where you purchase from.

  16. Jeff Edelman
    December 6th, 2010 @ 4:35 pm

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    It looks really great to me on first glance. Very impressive for what you say is a fairly basic site. I can definitely see you making sales off of a site like that. Good luck, Brian!

  17. Luke Summers
    December 6th, 2010 @ 7:04 pm

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    Congratulations on getting your first store up and running, the site looks good.

    Thanks for sharing information about the development process along the way, it’s been an interesting read.

    I agree with Jamie’s comment above – one piece of information not to share, is the source of your stock.

  18. TeenDomainer
    December 6th, 2010 @ 7:07 pm

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    Lol I removed it but if people really want to know they can email me. They have thousands of products you can make your own store from.

    Thanks for the tips everyone I updated the site sliders time and cleaned it up a bit

  19. Anil
    December 7th, 2010 @ 10:35 am

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    Wow! e-commerce website in such a short time. Great! Congratulations and thanks for sharing all useful info.

    Many comments added above already cover what I wanted to comment, so I won’t repeat them here.

    Curious to know & looking forward to updates on your this new project.

    Best Luck!

  20. whatever
    December 11th, 2010 @ 12:59 pm

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    Great effort!

    Ditto the above suggestions. I would also suggest collecting a persons email address for the out of stock items. Something like, “Want to be notified when this item is back in stock?” Then send a simple email when you get the item back in inventory. Should help sales.

    Also, under the heading “CART” in the right hand column…. the “View Cart” and “Check out” doesn’t appear to work. I think it just refreshes the current page.

    I want to ask what you think about PhPurchase now that you have implemented it? Is it as easy as it seems? I get the drop and add feature but any difficulties on the back end… where it connects with PayPal? I am looking for something similar and think this may be the answer.

    I would also like to know your source in China. Not interested in spy pens but you mentioned they have thousands of products.

    Good luck with the site! I think you’re off to a great start!

  21. Update on My Store SpyPen.net : Teen Domainer
    February 23rd, 2011 @ 10:25 am

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    [...] put up my site SpyPen.net on December 6th last year and I wanted to share how it is going. This is my first [...]

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