Having a small business can be as tasking as it is exciting. Who can relate?
Luckily, several services provide you with the tools you need to launch and build an online store.
So, in this article, we thought we'd take a look at the Yahoo Store and what it has to offer.
Does that sound good to you? Let's dive on in!
How Does a Yahoo Store Work?
In short, if you're looking for a reputable place to sell your goodies, Yahoo Store might be worth considering. It's one of the oldest search engines in the business, launched back in 1995; it's safe to say it has a good reputation. They have all the experience and expertise you need to help you create the perfect online store.
Yahoo makes it easy for you to customize the design of your site, shift the layout to suit your vision, and if you need, provide a helping hand along the way.
It's safe, secure, and a great start to your business.
To get started, sign up for a plan that fits your business model and capacity. Yahoo Store has different templates to pick from. So, it doesn't matter if your store is large or if you're just starting out, you should be able to make the most out of what Yahoo offers.
Each of their plans includes an SSL certificate, an order management service, an online shopping cart for customers, and a customized web domain…to make you store even more presentable.
For those of you who don't know, it's the SSL certificate that ensures your customer's data is kept secure.
Once you've chosen your preferred plan, you can then pick a layout for your site and set up your store.
Yahoo Store's Key Features
Several elements earn Yahoo Store a place among the best e-commerce services. From customer satisfaction to the transparent management of your inventory, Yahoo has all the tools you need to run a successful digital shop.
1. Customize the Look
The first thing customers see is the look of your store. That's obvious.
So, the layout of your site is vital. If it's cluttered, visitors won't bother searching through your products. Period.
Instead, it's a bright design and a convenient layout that wins customers. Rest assured, Yahoo Store provides plenty of optimized templates for you to pick from.
Alternatively, you could hire a professional web developer to customize your store and integrate additional services (if you feel you need them).
2. Live Insights
Yahoo's ‘live insights' allows you to monitor visitor engagement rates, traffic, and how your audience prefers to interact with your store.
You'll get data from the moment they click onto your store. Within an instant, you'll get a feel for their demographic and what interests them most. With this info at your disposal, you can then better fuel your sales techniques and advertisements.
You can even connect this feature to a mobile device, to keep watch while you're on the go. That way, if anything goes amiss, you can respond much quicker!
3. Inventory Management
No matter which paid-for plan you choose, you can list an unlimited number of products. You'll also enjoy infinite bandwidth.
Not to mention, we love Yahoo's ‘Bulk Products' feature. This allows you to upload tons of products (and their details) to your store, all at once. You can only imagine how much time and effort that saves you!
If you want to stay informed, you can set up alerts for your sales. Additionally, the catalog tool allows you to edit product info and reupload it in next-to-no time.
You also have full control over checkout flow. Yahoo Store allows the owner to select which steps they want to include in the procedure. And you don't need us to tell you, the more convenient the checkout process, the better the conversions. So, make full use of this feature!
4. The Shipping Integration
UPS (a package delivery and management company) integrates with Yahoo Store. So, you can be confident your shipping is in safe hands.
You can also print labels that reflect your brand and set up custom shipping rates. This is convenient for those just starting out, who are still split testing their pricing methods.
You should note: Once you set your prices, taxes are calculated automatically.
5. Built-in Marketing
Yahoo, as a whole, is no stranger to SEO optimization. Therefore, Yahoo Store has excellent options when it comes to marketing. You can set up email promotions for your subscribers, maybe offer discount codes to loyal customers or use traditional SEO practices to generate more traffic.
6. Customer Support
Should you need help with anything technical, Yahoo Store offers 24/7 customer support. When you notice something isn't working as it should, their friendly team should help solve the issue.
If you continue to expand your business with Yahoo Store, they might even offer you a dedicated accounts manager — how handy is that?!
7. Risk Detection Tools
A good company takes the time to sift through the ‘real customers' from the ‘fake ones.'
This is where Yahoo's Store risk detection tools come into their own.
This helps prevent fraudulent shopping. No phony shopping orders will take up the valuable space of genuine paying customers.
One of the tools you can easily integrate with your shop is the Google ReCaptcha feature. You've probably seen this on a plethora of other reputable websites. This is just one of the many risk detection precautions you can adopt to ensure your site's that bit more secure.
And if those features aren't enough, you can always extend the overall functionality of your store with their apps. This could be anything from a Google Store integration to improved SEO auditing. They have loads of free and paid-for apps. The price of the integration all depends on how complicated the feature is.
The Disadvantages to Using aYahoo Store
Despite all these excellent features, there are several things you should keep in mind while using this service.
1. Transaction Fees
Yahoo store charges transaction fees no matter what plan you use. To some, especially if you're selling relatively ‘low ticket' items, these fees may seem reasonable. But, as your sales increase, this may become an issue.
2. Payment Options
Yahoo Store uses First Data Merchant Services. As such, you're limited to offering customers credit card, debit card, or PayPal as potential payment methods. While they're all widely used, if a customer wishes to use a different payment option, you might lose sales.
3. No Preview
Yahoo Store doesn't have a trial plan. To see if this solution is suitable for your store, you'll have to sign up for one of their paid-for packages from the get-go. Most competitors offer a trial period (usually at least 14 days), so this is a massive setback for Yahoo Store.
Yahoo Store Pricing: How Much Will a Yahoo Store Set Me Back?
Now let's get down to brass tax. How much will a Yahoo Store cost you?
As we've already mentioned, there are a few paid-for plans for you to choose from. These are:
- The Starter
- The Standard
- The Professional
Each package ranges in price, options, and services they offer. Naturally, the highest tier has the most to offer, but pick the best bundle for your business model and store size.
1. The Starter Plan
The starter plan costs $33.95 per month.
This is what you get for your money:
- You can upload an unlimited number of products
- Access to infinite storage space
- You can pick and use a custom web domain for your store.
- An online store optimized for mobile devices
- Credit card and PayPal payment options.
- Built-in SEO tools
- Templates that ensure uncluttered store design.
- You can register as many as 1,000 email accounts.
- Communicate with customers via live webchat.
Basically, the Starter plan provides all the features you need to launch your online. However, there's a 1.5% transaction fee, so factor this into your budget!
2. The Standard Bundle
The Standard plan is the most cost-efficient of the three. It's $84.95 per month, and you're only charged a 1% transaction fee. It offers all the Starter plan features, but also adds a few new options to help boost your sales.
For instance, you get an inventory and accounting system integration. That's in addition to up-selling and cross-selling tools. To further engage with customers, you can also sign up for Yahoo's gift certificate option.
Lastly, you get access to all of Yahoo's 3rd party apps. This works wonders for further customizing your store (this utility comes with API access to ensure extra stability and personalization).
3. The Professional Package
The Professional plan is the most costly of the three. It costs $254.95 per month and includes all the features in the previous two plans. It does'not offer additional options. The main attraction is its 0.75% transaction fee. So, you'll have to do your own cost-benefit analysis on that one!
A Yahoo Store or Shopify?
What about the Yahoo Store alternatives? Its closest competitor would be Shopify (read our Shopify Reviews). Both are e-commerce solutions and offer many of the same features when it comes to stores. However, there are also differences.
1. Store functions
Both of the choices have the basic idea of a store perfected. But, Yahoo Store, has more years of experience. Yahoo, as a brand, also has more business-related services, such as web hosting, email, and others. However, Shopify has a more straightforward design, and their templates might be easier to navigate when it comes to customizing the template. So, it's swings and roundabouts really.
Both of the services offer three plans each, but Shopify prices are a bit higher than Yahoo Store's. The lowest is $10.95 for Yahoo Store and $29.00 for Shopify (per month).
While you can edit the price of your products on either service, Shopify makes it very clear how you can offer your customers discounted rates (depending on the plan you're using).
3. Transaction Fees
Transaction fees are possibly Yahoo Store's biggest hurdle. Shopify doesn't have this charge, so you, as the merchant, can enjoy a larger income. Other fees for various payment gateways are still applicable for both e-commerce services. But for specific costs, you'll have to contact your chosen payment gateway directly.
In the end, it's up to you which features interest you most. Yahoo Store has experience in both customer service and the e-commerce industry because it was one of the first services of this kind. Shopify, however, is growing fast and offers packages that are a bit more user-friendly for beginners.
For more info on this be sure to check out our exhaustive Shopify vs. Yahoo review.
Is it Worth Launching a Yahoo Store?
Despite a few setbacks, it's a well-established and recognized e-commerce service. Your store will be well optimized, SEO friendly, customizable, and in general, well taken care of. The specialists working for Yahoo Store have years of experience, so you're bound to get the support you need if you get stuck!
Granted, they might be a bit lacking in payment options, but the most popular means of payment are there. Not to mention, transactions are safe and secure with anti-fraud protection and an SSL certificate. All in all, despite the competition, Yahoo Store still holds up as one of the more popular e-commerce services.