Internet start-up eForsale has launched a package it says offers a step-by-step approach to building retail web sites.
The Windows-based system, eD.I.Y, lets customers create e-commerce sites by entering data into boxes and loading catalogues. It provides a shopping cart, credit card processing, a search engine and tools to add and remove products, change prices and manage customers and graphical images.
The company is owned by Auckland importer and distributor Stephen Power and software developer Michael Glaser of Christchurch. Glaser developed the system over 18 months. It is written in Visual Basic and utilises Microsoft SQL Server.
Glaser says the aim of the service is to make website construction as simple as possible. "We lease the software and customers subscribe to our service. They have the software locally installed on their machines. They connect to our database via the internet and make changes," he says.
Since the business was launched in August, Glaser claims nine customers including Custom Electronics, Kiwi Rack Systems and Tool Barn of Auckland and South Island Components of Christchurch.
Kiwi Rack Systems director Trevor Mayor says he found Microsoft Front Page difficult to use in constructing a website. He had considered using a firm to build one, but it would have meant changes would be too costly. A month ago, he obtained eDIY.
"It is very simple. It took three to four hours to put stuff on the site and, bang, it's instant. We are going to use it as a wholesale portal. I cannot fault it," he says.
Meanwhile, Auckland marketing company The Visual Group has begun offering to create websites for small and medium-sized businesses, through www.local-retailers.net, from $142 ex GST. And Hamilton developer Reuben Jackson released software worldwide that lets businesses build their own websites, create content and manage databases online through Web-widgets.net.