A little flavour of what's in store...

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Article - The dangers of testing your site online

As readers of this Blog will be aware, Mandy is about to launch Fabulous Photo Gifts. A new online and postal business producing personalised photo gifts. The website will launch with personalised photo jigsaws.

Because they make great ideas for school, club or charity fund raising as well as an ideal business promotion 'give away', the website also has specific information about these uses, as well as one off gift ideas.

Last weekend saw the final pre-launch testing of the online shopping basket and its integration with PayPal. One of the tests involved placing a full order.

To help achieve this, the web design team created a test product with a nominal value.

This is where the problems started.

The website under construction index page currently live had a link to a sneak preview intended for the fund raising customers. Unfortunately, an image carried onto this page contained an embedded link that if clicked on, took you straight to the basket page detailing jigsaw specifications and prices.

One such visitor happened upon this link and enquired via email about supplying a number of personalised photo jigsaws at the test nominal value.

Email correspondence followed between Mandy and the customer, and the situation was explained and a confirmed price quoted for their requirements.

So all ended well. However, it should be noted here is a lesson for all web developers.

When conducting such tests, make it absolutely clear that the basket is a test version etc just in case a visitor stumbles across it and tries to place an order.

Purple 13 web team

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