Magento will be a truly superior ecommerce software when it will help its users not only jump start and maintain their business, but also expand/grow it. Usually the process of expansion doesn’t go as fast as business owner wants it. There is a way to speed up the process a little bit by using your own store to help selling to others.
I am a small mobile phones store owner. I have 15 phone models in stock. According my business strategy i will be able to add another 10 models to my stock in 6 months and 15 more in 12 months.
I have to compete with big retailers .
to create universal XML feed parser which will allow to read any merchant affiliate feed and assign different fields from the feed to corresponding product fields in my store.
Item title ---> Product title
Item description ---> Product description
Each product in the store will receive additional state: “Affiliated”
This means that when the user hits “buy this item” , this item doesn’t get added to shopping cart - user gets transfered to original product page that was mentioned in XML feed instead.
When the store receives an item in stock, there will be no need to create new item page , new description etc - the item already exists, and the page (probably) has been already indexed by search engines. The only thing that store admin will have to do is to switch product state from “Affiliated” to “in stock” and adjust the price.
Why this is good
- Generating % from affiliation referrals is good, because it make you money
- Getting product data (description etc) from XML is good, because it save time
- Having lots of product pages is good, because it increases store’s exposure to search engines.
- Having the store pretty much complete allows to start (and to invest into) full blown advertising campaign immediately.
Why this is good for Magento
It would be possible to “fork” Magento and create a “light” version, which will be stripped from shopping cart / shipping functionality concentrating solely on comparison of affiliate products / prices, based on Magento catalog..
None of the current ecommerce carts offer this feature now (to the best of my knowledge)
Parser must know how to parse
* XML or CSV variant data source
* Parse strings, local files or Internet URLs
* Affiliate Product Feeds
* RSS and Atom Feeds
* SOAP responses
I totally agree!!! This would provide a great way for small ponds to offer an ocean-like store, adding tributaries as needed (ok, probably too much with the water metaphor, but you get the point). I recommend adding this to your priority list (along with your plan to implement an affiliate program for Magento).
Thank you all for your great work!
GoldenCan and DataFeedFile offer similar functionality for affiliate driven ecommerce stores. Problem is the merchandising software is weak. I would take advantage of this feature in Magento. Right now I’m using Web Store by Amazon but I’m limited to the Amazon catalog for affiliate product inventory.