Sunday, October 29, 2006

Free InstantCafe Feeder

I downloaded and installed Adam's InstantCafe Feeder last week. Yesterday I got the registration key and immediately went on to try out the program. I had no trouble running the software and setting up the variables. It was super easy.

I did have one problem. My prices came out wrong, but thanks to Adam's quick response that problem was fixed. It had nothing to do with the Feeder, the setting on my computer was messing up the prices.

I had a feed for my premium shop in no time. It took me an hour or so to make feeds for all my basic shops and compile them all into one big file. I still remember the time when I ventured into making the feed manually and wasted hours and hours adding products one by one into an Excel sheet. That was torture. This was a breeze.

The premium shop feed was accepted in the first attempt to upload it to Google Base. The feed for the basic shops, however, returned a failure. When I go to see the details, they say that the feed is being processed and that it will take up to two days for the processing to be over. That, of course, has nothing to do with the InstantCafe Feeder, that's just Google making my life difficult. Doesn't matter, the feed for the premium shop was the important one and that one went through just fine, so I am happy.

It is so generous of Adam to make such a useful tool and let shopkeepers use it for free. I give five stars and two thumbs up to both Adam and his InstantCafe Feeder.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Design Theft

Design stealing is such a terrible issue. It has not happened to me, fortunately, but I read a lot about it lately. It makes me sad and angry and I can just imagine how frustrating it is for the creative people who had that happen to them.

What is design theft? It's when certain people are too lazy, too unimaginative and lacking self-confidence to make their own unique designs, so they feel the only way to succeed is to steal other people's designs.

My question to these people would be... Why steal designs when you can sell them as an affiliate??? Why waste all that time making a copy of a design, than setting up a shop or section in your shop, putting the products up, writing descriptions.... etc... When you can be an affiliate and earn 20% just by linking to the product??? The affiliate commission is just slightly lower than the shopkeeper's commission and in some cases I can imagine it even being higher than the shopkeeper's commission. There is no doubt that being an affiliate is the way to go, it's the only fair way to go.

I know, no matter what I say there will always be people who will steal designs. Some things can't be changed. Still, too bad... Playing fair so much more fun!

Friday, October 06, 2006

CafePress Coupons

CafePress Coupons is a wonderful site that offer support to both shopkeepers and shoppers.

The website offers codes that can be used to get a discount when shopping at CafePress. For shoppers, the benefit is obvious, they get to save money while shopping.

For shopkeepers the benefits are multiple. CafePress Coupons offers a script that can be included into the shop's html and which would than automatically update the shop with new coupons as they get available. A shop with a discount coupon looks and feels more friendly to the shopper and put together with the nice discount makes the shopper more likely to buy something.

Additionally, shops that include the script in the code get a chance to be listed on the front page of the site. The Google PageRank of the site is 6, so a link from would be very valuable for search engine ranking of the shop.

Considering that only premium shops can add a script to the html code, the full benefit of CafePress Coupons is reserved for premium shop. Still, the basic shop shopkeeper can copy the coupon code and paste it as text into the shop description so it can be seen right under the logo. Although there will not be a chance for the basic shop to be listed on the CafePress Coupon website, the coupon can still motivate a shopper to buy something from the shop.

CafePress Coupons website is a great tool. I recommend it wholeheartedly!