We would like to give you £60

Yep that’s right, we would like to give you up to £60 for every sale you refer to us though the Open Mind Commerce affiliate scheme. Sound good to you? Then read on…

The Program
Dead simple this one, we will give you 10% of the excluding VAT value of all sales generated by you referring customers to our site. This could result in up to £60 in commission for customers who purchase a license from us along with our bespoke design service.

At the the very least you would earn £8.90 if they just bought a single license so your commission could quickly add up to quite a bit!

Because we’re lovely people we’ll not only also give you £20 as a thank you for signing up but if you refer a new affiliate to us through your link, you will get 20% of their earnings as well!

The program is completely free of charge to join and you can start adding a range of banners and text links to your site straight away…

So to summarise:

1. You earn 10% for every completed sale
2. We give you £20 just for signing up
3. We also give you 20% of all earnings that your referred affiliates generate

Signing up is very simple, click the link, fill out the form and you’re done…

The Nitty Gritty
Just a couple of points to make things clear…

1. Commissions are based on the ex. VAT value of the sale
2. Payments are made on the 1st of the month via PayPal or cheque as long as you have at least £100 “in the bank”
3. You earn commission on referrals up to 90 days after they click the link even if the customer visits via another affiliate
4. You may not refer yourself for purchases, sorry!

So you’ve read about the program now do something about it. Join today, earn yourself £20 for five minutes work and start driving money out of our pocket and into yours!

Open Mind Commerce Featured as Cart of the Week by Practical eCommerce

For Immediate Release

Open Mind Commerce, an established eCommerce solution provider based in the UK, today announced that the product has been featured as “Cart of the Week” by Practical eCommerce. (http://www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/1449-Cart-of-the-Week-Open-Mind-Commerce)

During an in-depth interview, MD Phil Williams gives an insight into the system as well as describes plans for the future of the software.

Phil Williams commented “Being featured on Practical eCommerce is big news for us as they are a highly respected organisation and it gave us a perfect platform to talk about our product as well as spread the word about the system.”

In addition, the company also announced that v1.4.1 of it’s software is released today and advanced development is in place for v2.0, codenamed The Novus Project, which will feature a complete rewrite of the system making it one of the most flexible and powerful commercial eCommerce platforms on the market.

About Open Mind Commerce
Open Mind Commerce is a trading division of Open Minded Solutions Limited. We are a full service ISP established since 2004 and we are based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Open Mind Commerce is our flagship product and allows SMEs to quickly and easily trade online.

Web: http://www.openmindcommerce.co.uk
Tel: 08456 445 789

About Practical eCommerce
Practical eCommerce was launched in July 2005 by Kerry and Joy Murdock in Grand Junction, Colorado, USA. Its mission from the start has been to provide down-to-earth articles and advice to help smaller businesses succeed online.

Web: http://www.practicalecommerce.com

EKM Powershop and PCI compliance.

Recently news surfaced that one of our main competitors, EKM powershop, have had to dramatically change the way their software works as it was revealed during a PCI audit that some store owners had been storing sensitive credit card information within their store database and then not removing the data after it had been processed via an offline terminal.

Now for quite some time Visa and Mastercard have been pushing the regulatory standards behind PCI compliance for the simple reason it is there to protect cardholder data from fraud and misuse.  In addition, it has been the case for a long while that storing the full card details including the CV2 code for longer than is necessary to complete the transaction was a practice to be avoided at all costs.

The net result of the EKM powershop audit was that their own proprietary gatway allowed store owners to obtain card details and then process the transaction offline through a terminal. They also advised customers to immediately delete card details after they had been processed.

Now there are two separate issues at play here…

Firstly the very fact that the software allowed card details to be stored in the first place is not a great practice to follow.  EKM powershop are not alone in this scenario as there are a number of eCommerce software packages out there which allow store owners to do this.  The crux of the matter is that the practice renders the software users in possible breach of PCI guidelines.

Secondly EKM powershop had to act swiftly to remove this gateway as it had transpired that certain customers were not removing card details after they had been processed.  This is in breach of the PCI guidelines and these merchants were leaving themselves open to fines and possible withdrawal of their merchant service.

Personally I feel that the store owners have been cut a raw deal here. The fact that the software allowed them to store card information in the first place simply should not have been available as an option.  Granted that the merchants were putting themselves in the firing line by not deleting the card details but software vendors such as EKM powershop and ourselves have a responsibility to their users that the software does the job required without raising possible security issues. There has obviously been a failure here…

For the record, our eCommerce software does not nor ever will store any kind of card information within its database or files.  This is simply to protect the cardholder and the store owner from this type of situation. With all this in mind I am willing to make the following offer to any EKM powershop store owner affected by this issue.,..

If you are considering changing to an alternative software provider I am willing to offer a 20% discount on our license fees and design services plus import as much data as possible from your current EKM powershop store.

If anyone wishes to take up this offer I will need clear tangible evidence that you are an EKM powershop store owner. For more information or to claim the discount voucher, please contact us through our support help desk

I don’t normally do this with competitors but on this occasion I personally feel the situation is quite shocking and a lot of people have been let down for a variety of reasons hence the offer of support…

Phil Williams
MD – Open Mind Commerce

Hosting Technical Support Position – Tentative Applications Required

Open Minded Solutions Limited are currently in negotiations with a leading UK merchant account & payment gateway provider to supply our eCommerce software to their merchants. At this stage it is anticipated that negotiations will be complete by late June.

Now a new partnership of this size does bring a new set of challenges to an existing, thriving business such as ourselves and a primary area of those challenges is exceeding customer expectations through an unrivalled level of customer support to new and existing clients.

We are therefore seeking tentative applications for a new position that will be based in our Edinburgh office.

The Position
The ideal candidate for this new and exciting position will be an individual who is passionate about providing an extreme level of support to clients in a manner that would exceed expectations. From a technical perspective they will also have:

  • A strong working knowledge of Windows and Linux web hosting platforms
  • Experience with troubleshooting and resolving network related issues, DNS, FTP, IIS and Apache platforms
  • Experience of the technicalities of domain name registration and transfers, SSL certificate provisioning and PCI compliance testing.
  • A background of providing superb customer service in an environment containing a mixture of businesses from small SMEs through to multi-million pound corporate clients
  • A working knowledge of various server side scripting languages such as ColdFusion MX, PHP, ASP and .NET
  • Although a wide programming knowledge is beneficial, the ideal candidate will have a strong background in developing and maintaining ColdFusion MX applications
  • Be based in Edinburgh or the surrounding area as they will be required to work from our offices based in Edinburgh South.

The Benefits
Aside from working with an established and rapidly growing company, the chosen candidate can expect:

  • An excellent starting salary based on background and experience
  • Performance related bonus scheme (after qualifying period)
  • Profit sharing scheme (after qualifying period)
  • Sick pay and holiday entitlement
  • A very friendly and exciting working environment
  • Joining the company at ground level but with unlimited opportunity to grow all the way through to director level

At this stage the position is tentative but should negotiations be successful it is anticipated the position will be available from late July 2009.

So does this sound like you? If so please forward a detailed CV of your background and experience to Phil Williams at contact <at> openmindedsolutions.co.uk and we will contact you in due course.

Flogging a dead horse?

Three years ago Alex Tew of www.milliondollarhomepage.com fame cam up with a fantastic and simple idea that made him a boat load of cash. He even popped up on a business forum I use when at the time I said it was a great idea:


His next idea www.pixellotto.com flopped miserably but now he is selling a limited run of 1,000 posters of the MDH home page with 100 signed by him:


This will easily net him a cool £25,000 in sales so is he a shrewd entrepreneur or is just lucky and flogging a dead horse?

Personally I think he had a great idea but just failed to capitalise on it’s success.

So true on so many levels…

The next time a web designer, graphic designer, writer or anyone else involved in a industry that regularly attracts freeloaders gets asked for a freebie saying it will enrich the designers life and make them rich and famous; show the requester this video…

I see this on a daily basis on the business forums I frequent and it gets so far up my nose it occasionally pops out of my ears! It really gets my goat that people honestly expect something for nothing and this chap sums it up very well…


Dragons Den, not exactly fire breathing, more like smoking…

Well lets see what loonies they wheel in this week…

The DIY doll lady couldn’t be faulted for her enthusiasm but her product was cack, described as a one hit wonder would be right and I was surprised any of the dragons even raised an eyebrow in interest. TP delivered once again by slating the packing and quality, erm sorry mate but it’s being produced in her house so it aint gonna be top notch just yet is it? Muppet…

The learning cards lady got completely tied up in knots by her nerves. Overvaluing the company and not knowing her figures, not to mention losing the dragons and probably half the nation with her pitch, she did herself no favours at all. The dragons taking the mick out of her didn’t help, but oh wait, it’s entertainment isn’t it…

Bat poo and a folding iron board, no comment just don’t let the door bang you on the arse on the way out…

On target, great name for what I though what as a good product. It’s a fairly original idea on the sticky spiders you sometime see in pub urinals and I was very impressed with his pitch and his ability to stand up to the dragons attempting to extract the urine, no pun intended!

I was very surprised that they didn’t invest, good product and good sales so far but I have to ask, how on earth did he spend £70k of his own money on a product that is basically a floating ball that you wee on??

Anti-spiking drinks, erm I put my thumb in the top of my bottle and don’t leave it lying around. Wheel in two scantily clad models and although easy on the eye was a completely pointless exercise…

Not sure if the kebab bloke was crying or just sweating, either way it was another non-starter. So 17 minutes in and yet to see anything of value…

The alert couple couldn’t be more nervous by the looks of things but surely this is just another comparison site? It didn’t get me excited about it at all but the revelation that TPs better half plays online bingo is hardly surprising, probably for escapist reasons I would have thought…

Their projected figures were pretty unrealistic to be honest, why do people do this?? Fast route to the door by over valuing. PJ got angry about the other business and rightly so, he was spot on that he didn’t think thy would put their heart and soul into it. TP actually played an interesting game by throwing the equity question back to the pitchers, surprise, surprise after some suitably dramatic pauses and music (since when did DD become X Factor?) the 25% was rejected.

30% wasn’t exactly a move in the right direction either and unbelievably TP went for it!! I really cannot see him making that back but I suppose time will tell.

To be honest DD this week was a bit lame, they seem to be struggling slightly to find really solid ideas and real entrepreneurs. Remember the coin slot counters from last series? Brilliant original idea and had the dragons fighting over them. I only hope this series finds another winner like that but on this weeks performances I’m beginning to doubt it…

Return of the Dragons Den…

If I hear this phrase one more time…

“Let me tell you where I am…”

Oh really? Please enlighten me? Are you currently hovering six foot off the floor? Currently having an out of body experience and examining your own arse?


…and breathe…

I thought the student party organisers were nuts to go with PJ. They looked at it from a financial point of view with a slightly better deal but I would have sacrificed more for DMs experience in the industry and in particular in that area of the country. Despite the fact that she looks like she eats lemons for breakfast, lunch and dinner…

The gold plate chap was a lucky b*****d to get away with that, I was half expecting DB to drop kick him out of a second floor window.

Beef Jerky? Regardless what they looked like, the stuff still tastes like old shoe leather so no shockers there…

And Theo, good old TP, back to his slimy, pandering, irritating best as the snail of the den. God I hate the man…

and God I love this show!!!!

Customer service wins the day again…

Spotted a thread on the Shell forums today about my good mate Steve at Uprint. Turns out a customer had sent him a couple of emails that he had not got replies too. Now I see this a lot. People claim not to have received emails but it’s ended up in junk folders, been accidentally deleted etc, hell I’ve even had to trawl through server logs to prove it was sent but I digress…

What was funny was the way the vultures descended on the thread as an opportunity to nick some business and put the bovver boots in for a good kicking. True to form though Steve rescued the day with a genuine reply and offer that not only saved the customer but also guaranteed he came out smelling of roses. The pink type that is as he likes pink…apparently….

Wonder where the customer will be placing his next order from? Answers on a postcard please, or a business card…flyer… stamp…