X-Cart:Adding CMS/blog to your store
Why need blog
Current e-commerce industry involves not only selling goods, but also creating and maintaining communities around your store. This approach - when your website provides not only an opportunity to your visitors to buy goods, but also includes sections, where they can learn more about your company, communicate with other visitors, share their own ideas about the shop and so on - works much better than the traditional one - when your website is merely a storefront, and nothing else, as it creates a group of people united around your store.
When there is a community, it is easier for the owner of the store to meet buyers' expectations, as the owner is aware of buyers' needs and wishes. On the other hand, buyers know that sharing their opinion counts, because they know that the owner takes it into consideration. Finally, the bigger a community is, the faster it grows; that means more customers in the future and, hence, the growth of your sales and profit.
Now, what can you do in order to create a community around your store? The simplest way is to start a blog. This might sound funny, but indeed it might help you at the first steps.
You can write whatever you find interesting. It can be from occasional posts describing how your company looks inside, including photos, to regular reports on your achievements, milestones and future plans. The more people know about you, the more they trust you.
This brings us to the idea of creating a blog. Surely, you can create it on blogger.com, www.livejournal.com or whatever else, but why not just build one up right near your web-shop? Your personal blog near your storefront is a major advantage, as your customers do not leave your website to have a look at your recent updates; plus, the design of the blog perfectly matches the design of your shop. Basically, your entire website should be that cozy place where people sharing similar interests meet and communicate; and at the same time, they can buy products recommended by others with just a couple of mouse clicks.
Major blog engines on the market
So, now we need to decide, which software to choose for running a blog. Frankly speaking, at this moment, there are three blog-script monsters out there:
All of them are free and amazing, but it is necessary to understand the pros and cons of each of them. We are not going to give the full comparison of these CMS here, only a few notes:
|Wordpress|| + Wonderfully easy to install and start blogging in a glance, even for a newbie.
- Its architecture keeps developers from its customizing. It is possible, but still quite hard.
|Extremely user-friendly, but quite developer-unfriendly. Great for personal blogs, but for large and medium projects it's better to find a replacement.|
|Drupal|| + Huge great community, tons of modules already done, architecture allows to customize Drupal as much as you need, very powerful application.
- Complicated for end-user. Requires certain programming knowledge from developer.
|Awesome for large and medium projects, especially if you are going to continuously update or extend them.|
|Joomla!|| + Great community as well, countless themes, requires average developer skills, quite flexible for extension.
- Still quite complicated for end-user, but easier than Drupal. Even though it is flexible, it does not provide Drupal's flexibility.
|Fascinating for medium projects which are not going to be hugely extended.|
Setting up blog with your store