Help With Establishing Budget

My family owns a small lighting store in Florida. We have a current website that is not good. I have been slowly saving money to build a nice site that really reflects what we offer in addition to allowing ecommerce purchases.

I have no idea what my budget should be for this sort of thing. I contracted with a small local web company and they quoted a price of $2200 for the project. The project turned out to be a complete failure in that the shopping cart could not handle our quantity of goods in some sort of manageable fashion. I ended up just writing off the amount and going with a pre-done industry website. There are lighting website providers that provide turnkey websites with product in categories. The issue with this solution is that every brick and mortar lighting store uses them. I do not want to look like joes lighting 5 miles away and jan lighting 10 miles away. Plus I think the website sucks (although not worse than mine)!

I want a website similar to in terms of search-ability and content of goods.

I would imagine total skus of 5000 plus on the site and would like to be able to have clients search by manufacturer and category (i.e. chandelier / contemporary)

Right now my site is averaging around 500 - 800 visits a month from what I would consider good local traffic.

Do you think I will be throwing money away with this level of visitors? Is my project going to cost a million dollars for this many skus???

I need help and am scared of throwing away a ton of money on something that is going to fail again.



Agree with tigerlanes.

May be do a trial.
If you can’t see bright future/road, ask much more opiions from web professionals before you make the decision.

eg Big commerce cart (hosted version) from interspire .com (Heard that growing very fast upwards)
Their effective dragon head is at twitter with good response.

For reference only.

Ked :slight_smile:

There are many ecommerce platforms that are free and you can even plug in your domain and the tracking is on their already.

Also you can plug in google check out and paypal and also add a merchant processor if you want to.

Also, I would recommend a yahoo store with a customer template or big commerce.

If your business will grow you will need dedicated server in future (and owned license).
So make sure that it is possible to transform hosted solution to self-hosted easy.

Additional information - I realize this is not going to be inexpensive, I just want to know if 50,000 US cuts it or am I looking at 250,000+ US for something like this.

There are many shopping cart platforms that will work for this solution. We happen to use Magento which is pretty robust and should handle the features you need.

I think your past problems were due to the local web company trying to use or develop their own shopping cart platform that they developed. I have seen this many times where web designers refuse to use anything but stuff they code themselves.

Check out the website and see the some of the samples of stores that use the platform.

If you decide on Magento, base your store generally off of one of the many template frameworks available, you should be able to get a store designed and running for under $2500.

PM is you have any questions or need more detailed feedback