Clickbank or BigCommerce: Which is Best?

Ecommerce bandwagon
Ecommerce bandwagon

Everybody these days seems to be jumping on the Ecommerce bandwagon. Rightly so, because there is potentially a good chance to make a pretty penny off your Ecommerce business. Many merchants started off as have an online store for a side business, many of which converted into full-time merchants earning their sole bread and butter off this business. The charm is quite strong since it’s a lucrative industry, which is also getting quite competitive.  Since we have so many options, it is the duty of any prospective or current merchant to take a look at all the different options out there currently. Obviously the needs of an already established merchant are different those of a newbie merchant. Nonetheless, there are a few aspects where nobody wants to compromise; a few being affordability, good service, and more traffic at your online store.  Two Ecommerce solution providers selected for comparison today are Clickbank and BigCommerce.

What are you in for?

It might be unfair to pin these two Ecommerce companies together, because although they both offer similar services, they also capture certain niche markets. Clickbank is primarily for E-book authors who are aspiring to sell their books to the marketplace online. Clickbank does offer a wide range of other products also, around 10,000 of them. The ease of setting up your store is also amazing since it literally takes a few clicks and you are up and running with your store.  BigCommerce on the other hand, is a more focused company which is in its prime. BigCommerce offers different packages starting from the Bronze Package, which allows you to sell up to 100 products. If you need to sell more products you can purchase the Gold or Platinum package, which allows you to have 1000 and unlimited products, respectively. For a larger store owner, BigCommerce would be a wiser choice. Another big difference between these two companies is that Clickbank can be limiting because it doesn’t track your potential clients once they enter the store. However, BigCommerce does, and this is quite beneficial in terms of developing your store and making it more attractive to the potential consumer. On top of that, if you are a Clickbank affiliate, you need to get paid by at least 5 customers in order to actually receive the check.

What suits me better?

Clickbank vs BigCommerce
Clickbank vs BigCommerce

There is a fundamental difference between these two Ecommerce solution providers. Clickbank offers you a commission on the sales you make, and a whopping one, because you have to select a product to sell from their list. Sure they have 10,000 products available, but if you are thinking of selling something besides the items provided on their list, then you are looking down the wrong alley. Clickbank is convenient for those merchants who are willing to give a large commission fee off every sale they make. Sometimes even up to 25%. Regardless of the amount, you will still receive your commission checks every two weeks.  In addition, merchants who are not willing to spend much time designing their online store and want to put minimal effort into their business while still making sales will appreciate what Clickbank has to offer. BigCommerce though, gives you the option to sell pretty much anything you want. So there is no feeling of restriction, yet you will still get charged a certain percentage of your sales, but it’s not as much as Clickbank. Of course, to get a BigCommerce store up and running, you will have to put in a fair amount of time to develop your store and add products to your line.

Conclusion

So it really depends on whether you are looking for a quick and instant solution for ecommerce with smaller profits, or a more involved ecommerce solution with potentially higher profits. BigCommerce will let you control the reigns of you Ecommerce business and ride the way you want, to where you want. Clickbank will be appeasing if you don’t mind losing some control over your business as long as you are reaping steady profits from your online store.

Wells Fargo BLOWS

Wells Fargo bank is terrible to use. They nickel and dime you with a million different fees and then try to upsell you to new accounts every time you deposit checks. Not even to mention the huge amount of junk mail they send.

Flat Fee Child Support Proposal

Our current child support system incentivizes people who are unsuccessful at life to have children while penalizing those who are successful. Child support is currently based on income- the more you make the more you pay.

I suggest changing that to a fixed monthly fee- $1,200 a month no matter who you are.

This will encourage natural selection by codifying it. The most successful people will be able to easily afford having the most children.

Another effect is that it will reduce a big problem America has- poor unwed mothers. Poor men will have Uncle Sam enforce shotgun weddings. Beautiful.

Bought Droid X & Switching From ATT to Verizon

I just purchased a Droid X (the best smartphone currently out) and am switching my service from AT&T to Verizon. I am sick and tired of getting no service in my apartment building and need much more reliable service.

I was an AT&T customer for 6 years and wasn’t happy the quality of service they offered so I finally am switching over.

I’ll have a new phone number, but it won’t be activated till September 9th or 10th. Until then my old phone will work and be my primary device & number to reach me at.

Droid X
Droid X

Venice Beach Topless Parade

I just attended the 2010 Venice Beach Topless Parade. It wasn’t nearly as interesting as a topless parade sounds. It mostly consisted of 15-20 ugly girls wearing tape on their nipples, 40 old creepy guys marching with them in bras and 100 people taking pictures and videos.  Speaking of people taking pictures & videos of the Venice Beach Topless Parade, mine are below:

National Go Topless Day on Venice Beach 2010 Today

Today is the celebration of the greatest religion known to man: the “Raelian Movement”. Essentially they believe that a UFO came to earth and created man and woman and that we are masterpieces of engineering and should be nude to display the great artistry of the Elohim. They have a march down the Venice boardwalk in front of my apartment that ends at the Muscle Beach Gym. Aaron and I may go march to show our dedication and belief to this one True Religion.

Best Part of this pic is the fat guy in the top left leering at the girls
Best Part of this pic is the fat guy in the top left leering at the girls

Simple & Ideal Taxation System Idea

Current systems of taxation are complex, unfair to many groups, expensive to administer, and lead indirectly to much societal damage.

I suggest a much fairer way to operate the government and one which would place natural limits on government size and power:

Change the Constitution to only allow an estate tax of 75% and a personal gift tax of 75% (except for charities which will abide by strict rules). It would be limited to estates over $100k or gifts in a year over $10k.

If set up correctly to avoid loopholes, this system of taxation would naturally limit the size of government expansion and force politicians to more carefully prioritize and monitor government spending.

The estate tax also helps to eliminate one of capitalisms unfortunate side effects- rich kids who dont deserve inherited wealth.

Also put in place would be strict rules disallowing the government from taking on debt. Force politicians to live within their means and not to build careers on the backs of tomorrows children.

Emerging Adulthood

I just read an interesting ten page article in the NYTimes about a psychologist named Arnett putting forth a new theory adding a stage to the development cycle: emerging adulthood.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/22/magazine/22Adulthood-t.html?src=me&ref=homepage

Emerging adulthood is supposed to be a new life stage that in modern life comes between adolescence and adulthood. Adulthood has been traditionally defined as obtaining a job, getting married, and having children. Basically you move right into adulthood after your adolescence ends in your early twenties

Many young people in their mid to late twenties today don’t have a job, wife or children. They are confused about the purpose of their life and what to do. Almost always they are sponsored by their parents.

My opinion?

The new stage is bullshit and these “emerging adults” just need a kick in the ass to go do something. Parents are at fault for continuing to financially sponsor and emotionally baby their children long after the umbilical cord should have been cut. If I had someone paying all my expenses, I’d probably be a lazy useless turd too instead of a successful entrepreneur. The most successful people my age are ones who had parents that gave them lots of freedom and responsibility early on.

These parents are doing a severe disservice to their children by not letting go.

Magento – Disadvantages and Problems

Ecommerce websites are an effective way to make money online. But only few websites, like BigCommerce (currently the best), is SEO friendly and fulfill all army-men-carrying-comthe potentials required by search engines. Magento ecommerce is one such solution like BigCommerce (though not quite as good), which is both, open source and SEO friendly, and proves to be a better shopping cart than many other ecommerce solutions. It is constantly being worked and improved by a team of developers. Magento is a professional shopping cart in town, but its users still face some problems.  If you wish to find out more about how Magento compares directly to other shopping carts, check out my new July 2010 ecommerce solution review.

Although it is one of the most popular and flexible ecommerce solutions, it still has some disadvantages and problems. Following are some of the complaints that I have seen myself and other people have made regarding Magento:

  • Users have complained that the Magento is relatively slow than other ecommerce solutions. One possible reason can be that Magento is not effectively written on Zend framework which makes it slow while running. On PHP, it does not work on standard 8mb but requires at least 20mb to work properly. An effective, well dedicated server might be one of the solutions.
  • Magento's Problems & Disadvantages
    Magento's Problems & Disadvantages

    It is a complex system and not one that is easy to work with. Built on Zend framework and using MVC approach, customizing is not that easy as with other shopping carts. Any of your requests to do customization will take a good developer more time to bring changes. It looks as if it does not use object-oriented programming or other best practices because it has a heavy layered and complicated code that takes a lot of time to learn and make changes accordingly. Therefore, to get a job done properly and efficiently, you need to have a proper budget in order to work with Magento.

  • Magento is unusable in shared hosting environment and requires about $25 per month for hosting as you need a semi-dedicated VPS server.
  • Magento developers are rare and difficult to find. You really need to put an effort to unearth good team of Magento developers and designers. Particularly, it is difficult to find a good set of skills for web design field professionals i.e. designers, server side programmers and client side programmers. Plus, it has got a mixture of many tools and technologies that makes it complicated for a person to understand its working.
  • You need to have a good hosting environment and store management in order for Magento to run. If proper hosting environment is not set-up, you can experience problems with speed.  Unlike simpler systems which can work anywhere, such as WordPress, Magento performs poorly if the website services are not as required, which means you need to have good server along with a good team to set and maintain server.
  • Installation is not as intuitive as it should be in admin area. You should use the option of safe mode during installation.
  • Unlike BigCommerce, Magento is resource intensive and requires much space and memory. Therefore, appropriate optimization is required to cut down resource usage and ensure a better performance.
  • Technical documentation is available in limited space which makes it difficult to customize and modify the program. The software offers some very convenient features, but it is hard to remember at times as it provides rough documentation along the software.

While Magento does offer some advantages and fulfill promises, for e.g. multiple stores, friendly SEO links and great third party integration, but on the other hand, it lacks fundamental things like complicacy and lack of RMA system which can turn life into a nightmare. Magento’s problems and disadvantages make it a shopping cart I don’t use. Comparing from other ecommerce shopping cart solutions though, Magento is one of the best shopping cart solutions, but with new matured versions and firm productivity in the long run, it can be near perfect platform in future.