Mountain Orchids Nursery Web Site:

View live Mountain Orchids Nursery  web site designCompletely overhauled in late 2008, this dynamic web site (using PHP) represents not only an example of attractive product presentation, but it was also developed as a live & working demonstration of what can be accomplished with a Zen-based e-commerce platform. View the Mountain Orchids Nursery web site design.

The utilization of this new shopping cart & CMS system offers extensive features & amenities, among them are:

  • a Flexible XHTML based output
  • an Integrated Shopping Cart
  • many available Ship & Payment Modules
  • Numerous built-in marketing and upselling features
  • an Internal Newsletter System
  • a Gift Certificate e-System
  • an Integrated Product Search function
  • Detailed Product Info - supporting multiple sample images and product attributes
  • Statistical User and Sales Reports
  • Internal generation of Invoices & Packing slips
  • Handles intangible products (digital downloads)

View live Mountain Orchids Nursery web site design - List-based Product Layout

In this project, several experimental design & layout techiques such as z-index layering & png transparency were incorporated into the sites' template theme. These techniques are knowingly neither fully backwards compatible with older browsers, nor always cross-browser friendly, but as this site was intended partially as a test bed and a proof-of-concept project, such trade-offs were considered acceptable.

This site's Content Management System (CMS) (see below) provides multiple avenues for product presentation. Each organizational category is provided a result-set (in a list based format - See View at Right). This view allows users a quick scan on the product catalog's contents in that category. Users are even afforded the option of adding multiple items directly to their cart in this view. View live Mountain Orchids Nursery web site design - Detailed Product Specific Listing

In addition to the "list view" , each product is also provided a detailed, product specific page unto itself. This view allows for extended information on each product, a presentation of multiple alternate images - with available larger pop-up views of each.

Multiple useful marketing tools are made available on this, as well as most other pages. Logged-in users are provided a running tally of the cart contents, the convenience of "quick-click" lists of past purchases, the ability to forward notifications about products to others, and the ability to write and post product reviews. All users are presented with product feedback such as previous shoppers' reviews, access to past related sales statistics, and much more.

Content Management (CMS):

Sorry, there is no active preview for the Mountain Orchids' Product AdministrationThis content management system (CMS) is both extensive and very thorough in its capabilities. The administrative CMS side of the site allows its owner, or any designated administrative user, to log-in via a web-accessible browser and then access myriad configuration and administrative tools. The most frequently needed of these are the tools for managing existing as well as adding new products and page-related data as well as those used to manage or address incoming online orders.

This system offers a vast array of functions and tools for managing data. However unlike some of the other custom CMS sytems I've built, this one tends to also carry with it a bit more of a learning curve for new users.

This eCommerce solution does not rely upon third party shopping cart providers but, instead, incorporates this service into the content management sytem itself. For clients who are not set up as retail merchants, this system like many others will interface with numerous payment gateways. These gateways also include PayPal - for those wising to not incur a monthly gateway fee (PayPal basic service charges a flexible per-transaction fee).

Primary Site Design Points:

  • A working example of the new E-Cart Installation.
  • Demonstrate what could visually be done via CSS and the internal template system.
  • Attractively display products in an easy to navigate & searchable manner.
  • Utilize a non-Americart shopping cart system.
  • Utilize many useful upselling features.