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Getting Started With Cart66

Complete WordPress Ecommerce Integration

Cart66 was one of the first WordPress plugins for ecommerce. It is a little different from other WordPress e-commerce plugins because you get a suite of hosted services that take e-commerce beyond what you can do with a plugin alone. The goal is to use the tools provided by WordPress, the most powerful and popular content management system, to design your store to deliver the most customizable ecommerce storefront. Then use the Cart66 WordPress shopping cart plugin to power your online shopping cart and your secure hosted checkout page.

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Customize Receipt Text For Specific Product

Sometimes you sell a product where you want to include some special instructions or information in the email receipt. For example, if you sell a WordPress theme, you might include a link to PDF with instructions. Or, maybe you want to recommend some related products. For example, if someone buys a coat, you can email them about hats that go nicely with the coat. Whatever the reason, it’s nice to be able to send customized information to your customer based on what product they just bought from you. Here’s a quick demonstration of how to include product specific content in your email receipts using Cart66.

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Cart66 Secure Site Seal

One of the major benefits that Cart66 brings to the table is security and PCI compliance for your WordPress store. You can use any WordPress theme, host your site anywhere on any server and you don’t even need your own SSL certificate. Simply install Cart66 and you’ve got all the security and PCI compliance you need to deliver a safe and secure shopping experience for your customers. It’s as easy as using PayPal and you can accept both credit card payments and PayPal payments. Also, with the Cart66 Cloud secure hosted checkout page you get built-in support for over 100 payment gateways. Perhaps best of all, with the Cart66 page slurp, your secure, hosted checkout page is skinned with your WordPress theme so it will look exactly like the rest of your WordPress site. That means you keep consistent design and branding throughout the entire checkout process. Now you can show your customers that your site is secure and protected by Cart66 with the new Cart66 Security Seal. Here’s how it works.

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Shipping and Package Tracking

Today we are announcing a new feature that significantly enhances the workflow for fulfilling orders in Cart66. We’ve added the ability to include a tracking number and automatically email the tracking information to your customer when you mark the package as shipped. If you are shipping with USPS, FedEx, or UPS the tracking number will automatically be linked to the shipping carrier to track the package. Here’s how it works.

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What Is A Keyword Research Tool For?

You have a great idea and have created your own business to bring it to the world. But on the internet, things are a sort of reversed. You need to bring the world to you. In other words, you need traffic for your website. This is where keyword ranking tools come into the picture. As a small business owner myself, I understand the challenge of having constraints on the size of the marketing budget. The good news is there are plenty of things you can do for free to promote your online business. One of the main things you will want to consider is content marketing. To effectively create content that reaches your audience you need to do Google keyword research. In this article I’ll show you my favorite Google keyword research tool, how to use it, and why this will make a great tool in your marketing toolbox.

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WordPress Payment Plugin

Cart66 is a unique WordPress payment plugin because, in addition to being a WordPress plugin, it includes a suite of connected services that make your life a lot easier. When it comes to accepting credit card payments online there are a lot of things to think about, some of which can come as a surprise. In this article, we’ll look at the different components involved in accepting payments. Then we will talk about differences between various WordPress payment plugins, and how Cart66 provides a complete system to safely and easily start accepting payments on your website.

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WordPress Event Registration Plugin

If you are looking for a WordPress event registration plugin, take a look at Cart66. Yes, Cart66 is a great tool for event registration because you can create your registration form and collect as much information as you need. Unlike other WordPress event registration plugins, Cart66 comes with everything you need to handle the entire process from selling tickets, including additional files with the order (like the event schedule), limiting the number of tickets you sell, and collecting payment. In addition, Cart66 takes care of all the security and PCI compliance for you so you can accept credit card payments without any hassle. Let’s take a look at how it all works.

Why Cart66 Is A Great WordPress Event Registration Plugin

Cart66 is different from other WordPress plugins because, in addition to a WordPress plugin, you also get a suite of hosted services that go beyond what you can do with a plugin alone. For example, Cart66 works with over 100 different payment gateways, has built-in inventory tracking so you can keep from overselling your event, and includes a hosted payment page so you can securely accept credit card payments without having to worry about all the technical issues related to securing an ecommerce site.

What To Look For In An Event Registration System

When you are selling tickets for an event, there are certain things you want to make sure you can do. Here’s a list of features you’ll want to look for in any event registration system – whether it be for WordPress or any other platform.

  • Collect custom information on the registration form
  • Include downloadable material for people who register
  • Limit the number of people who can register (so you don’t oversell the event)
  • Sell multiple types of tickets for different prices
  • Offer coupon codes
  • Set an early bird discount / sale price
  • Connect with your email newsletter
  • Securely collect payments
    • Accept credit card payments
    • Accept payments through PayPal

Cart66 includes all of these features. Let’s take a look at each one and how it works in Cart66. You will see how Cart66 is more than just a WordPress event registration plugin – it is a complete, comprehensive event registration system.

Event Registration Form

Sometimes you just need to sell a ticket and you don’t need any additional information from the person attending the event. In that case, you can have a simple “Buy Now” button to let your attendees purchase their tickets. Other times, your event has some details and options that require some input that you need to collect during on your event registration form.

Suppose you are hosting a conference, maybe something like a WordCamp, that spans two days, involves lunch, you give out a t-shirt but need to know what size the person wants, etc. You will want to create an event registration form that asks all of those questions and collects that information. It’s not complicated to do and it’s all built right in to Cart66. You just create a product and treat the additional information you need to collect as variations of the product.

In Cart66, product variations can be multiple choice – like radio buttons or drop down select boxes, or you can have check boxes to let registrants select multiple options for the same question. You can also have free form text to collect notes and other comments.

Here is an example showing a few variations for an event registration form.

event registration form options

Given these variations, the event registration form looks like this:

WordPress event registration form

Include Downloadable Files With Registration

After someone registers for an event, it is often helpful to be able to get additional information to the attendee such as the event schedule. If you have the schedule in a PDF, you can easily attach that file to the event registration form so that when someone registers for the event, they will get a link to download the event schedule (and any other files you want to include).

Just upload the event schedule into the Files section of your Cart66 Cloud dashboard, then you can attach the schedule to your event registration form.

upload event schedule to WordPress ecommerce site

event schedule

When people register for the event, they will see a link to download the event schedule. The receipt will also be emailed to them and will include a download link as well. The receipt will look like this:

event registration receipt

Maximum Number of Event Registrations

For most events, you can only host a finite number of people. Suppose your venue can only hold 400 people. Once you sell 400 tickets the event needs to be marked as sold out and no more event registrations may be made. Use the inventory feature in Cart66 to set the maximum number of tickets you sell.

inventory tracking for event registrations

Once you start tracking inventory for your event, you just set the inventory to maximum number of event registrations you want to permit. So, if your venue can hold 400 people, set the inventory to 400 like this:

set inventory amount

Selling Multiple Types Of Tickets

Sometimes you want to sell more than one type of ticket. For example, maybe your selling tickets to a concert and there is a performance on two different dates. You can do this in two different ways depending on your needs.

Single Form For Multiple Events

You can use a single form and allow people to pick which event they want to attend. In the example of the Friday Night and Saturday Night concerts, you can just create a product variation and have people select which night they want to attend. The event registration form would then look something like this:

Using a single form for multiple event registrations

You can still track inventory for each night. If the venue only holds a maximum of 400 people, you would set the inventory for the event registration product to allow 400 registrants for Friday night and 400 for Saturday night. It would look like this:

Tracking inventory for multiple events in one form

Of course, if you need significantly different information collected for your different events, you can just make to separate products – one for each event.

Coupons and Discounts

All of us who have planned events know how nice it is to know how many people are coming. The sooner we know that, the better prepared we can be. To help encourage people to register sooner rather than later, you can offer early bird discounts. This can be done in several different ways.

Setting A Sale Price

A simple way to handle your early bird discount is to simply put the product on sale to encourage people to sign up early. If you start advertising for your event 3 months out, you can start with your deepest sale price. Then, the next month, reduce the discount. On the last month, you can stop the sale and sell the event registration at the regular price.

The sale option is in the Basic Info section of your product.

early bird discounts for event registration

That will make your event registration form look like this:

early bird discount for event registration

If you want to get fancy, you can customize the price label to say “Early Bird Discount” – by setting that in the Cart66 Cloud Dashboard on the Basic Info tab for the event registration product.

Customize price label to say Early Bird Discount

Now your event registration form will look like this.

early bird discount on price label for event

Coupons For Discounts

Another way you might choose to incentivize people to sign up is with coupons. In your Cart66 Cloud dashboard, go to the Coupons section and create a Product Coupon for your event. The basic information might look like this if you wanted to offer $5 off.

basic information for early bird discount

There are other settings you can use to help add a sense of urgency to use the coupon. You can limit the number of times the coupon can be used. So, you could send out an email newsletter with your EARLYBIRD coupon code and say that the first 100 people to register for your event get $5 off the price. You just set the Max Redemptions  for the coupon to 100.

Or, maybe you’d rather have the deadline be a date. You could allow people to use the coupon up until a certain date by setting the To Date value for the coupon availability. This is what the coupon availability settings look like.

coupon availability restrictions for event registrations

Connecting With Your Email Newsletter

Cart66 currently integrates with MailChimp (more integrations coming soon) so you can have your customers sign up for your newsletter while they are checking out. It’s just a little checkbox on the checkout form so it’s easy for people registering for your event to stay connected with you via your email newsletter.

Event Registration Payments

One of the strongest features of Cart66 is the secure hosted payments page you get so you can safely and securely accept credit card payments. Many times people think they have to use PayPal because accepting credit card payments is too hard because of all the security and SSL certificates. Cart66 solves that problem by letting you accept credit card payments on your own hosted payment page that looks exactly like the rest of your WordPress website. By skinning your hosted payment page with your WordPress theme, you keep all the design and branding for a smooth and consistent checkout experience. Here is a quick video that shows how the hosted payment page system works in Cart66.

For more information, on how the hosted payment page works, check out this article describing the PCI compliant hosted payment page system.

WordPress Event Registration Plugin Summary

We have gone over a lot of information. The main point is that Cart66 makes a great WordPress event registration plugin because it gives you an entire platform that meets all the needs for creating and securely paying for event registration forms. You can collect all kinds of custom information, promote your event with coupons and sale prices, integrate with your email newsletter, limit the maximum number of registrations and securely accept credit card payments. Cart66 handles all the technical details of securing your payment page so you don’t even need your own SSL certificate.

 

 

 

Selling Product Bundles With Buy Now Links

Cart66 has a built-in way to create a link that, when clicked, will place a product in the customer’s shopping cart and direct them to either the view cart page or the checkout page. These “Buy Now” links are great for sharing on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, email newsletters, etc. They don’t just have to be text links, you can wrap images with these links to make your own Buy Now buttons. Now, we have the ability to create Buy Now links that add multiple products to the cart at once. This is great for selling product bundles! Let’s take a look at how to do it.

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