Winery e-Commerce: Order Processing Service

Compliance

Compliance rules are built into our service, including deliverability (dry/moist areas and P.O. Boxes), state volume limits and sales tax rates.


 



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More Details

OK, you've read the Order Processing Service Features page. Now you want the details. Well, you won't be disappointed.

If you haven't yet read our white paper on the Hosted Services Model, you may want to do that to understand why we're different from a run-of-the-mill web development company. If you need convincing that you need a professional to develop your website, please read our Brother-in-Law Syndrome white paper. We have also published a white paper on choices for e-commerce hosting

The following sections contain details of our services. It is a long document as our services are comprehensive and robust -- as we like to say "small winery value with a large winery feature set." For those of you who are detail-oriented, this document can be printed and reviewed. We've attempted to reduce the technical jargon in this document, but this sometimes could not be avoided. If you have any questions after reading this, please contact us.


Contents: click the link to skip to that section, or just continue reading


Order Form / Shopping Cart

Our secure order form and shopping cart allows visitors to order your wines online. This robust system has been designed to support the needs of the wine industry and includes the following features:

  • Products
    • You can sell wine, merchandise items and also future wine releases.
    • You can also sell event reservations and provide tickets for the customer to print.
    • You can specify wine, merchandise items, and events available only to wine club members.
    • You can specify allocated wines with varying quantities available to the general public, each of your wine clubs and up to five customer levels.
    • You have full control over the cost & availability information for all wines/vintages you wish to sell. These changes are reflected immediately on your order form.
    • Support for multiple vintages and multiple bottle sizes.
    • Support for multiple winery warehouses and fulfillment centers.
    • One page update of inventory levels or dynamic integration with other systems.
    • You can define product groups for your wines and merchandise items and control the order they display.
    • Support for varying product weights across a product size (sparkling wines) and for other bottle sizes shipped in a standard package (375ml).
  • Gift Certificates
    • Allow customers to purchase online gift certificates for your wines and merchandise.
    • One or more gift certificates can be applied to an order - we manage the issuance and redemption functions.
    • Fraud and security controls to protect the issuance and redemption of gift certificates.
    • Certificate management tools allow redemption of gift certificates in your tasting room.
  • The order form can be plugged into your existing Web site or integrated into your WineWeb hosted website.
  • Security and Controls
    • The order pages are encrypted for consumer's security of their credit card information.
    • Third-party security seals provide customers more comfort that their data is protected. We subscribe to the McAfee service, which scans our site daily looking for vulnerabilities, even though the PCI standard is every 90 days.
    • We use an Extended Validation SSL certificate to increase customer comfort with the security. The EV certificate causes the address bar to turn green as a visual indication of the increased security.
    • You can choose to leverage our substantial cost in the Extended Validation SSL Certificate, or you can choose to provide your own and display the order pages under your domain.
    • The order pages are validated to ensure all information is present.
    • The customer's credit card number is encrypted for storage and transmission.
    • The system is compliant with the Data Security Standards published by the PCI Security Standards Council for storage and transmission of credit card information.
  • Checkout process
    • Efficiently guides the customer through shipping, billing and credit card processing steps.
    • Allows customer to revise their information on a declined credit card transaction.
    • Shows estimated shipping cost before checkout, then calculates actual shipping cost based on address and zip code.
    • Pre-fills information for wine club members or returning customers.
    • Customer can opt to store their information at the end of the checkout process. We do not require a customer account to be created prior to checkout.
  • Shipping information:
    • Restricts shipping to only the destinations you allow.
    • Multi-level checks for deliverability, including ZIP Code match, P.O. Boxes and undeliverable areas.
    • Customer can select business or residential address.
    • Customer can select an alternate shipping service level, with shipping cost immediately recalculated.
    • Allow customer pickup at winery.
    • Allow customer to specify preferred delivery date.
  • Billing information:
    • Pre-populates data from shipping page.
    • Destination-specific data capture and appropriate calculation of sales tax, in sync with state compliance reporting laws.
    • Displays your phone number to give customer an option of phoning in their credit card information.
  • A confirmation email is sent to the customer and your winery.
  • Specify the calculation of discounts:
    • Case discounts specific to each wine
    • Mixed case discount
    • Customer-entered discount codes, which can be setup with effective dates, minimum purchase requirements, and specific item requirements
    • Enable no-cost or discounted ground shipping based on order quantity or total sales amount.
    • Discount tiers based on order volume and customer type

Credit Card Processing

We can capture the customer's credit card information and process the payment online to your merchant account or we can pass the credit card information to you for processing at the winery.

  • Specify the credit card types you accept.
  • Specify the credit card processor that you want to use. We currently support about 20 online payment gateways. We prefer the PayPros gateway as it supports advanced features, like restaurant-style tips processing and automatic updating of card numbers stored in their payment vault.
  • Require CVV code on credit card
  • Customer is given a chance to revise and resubmit a failed credit card transaction
  • Transaction number, address verification response, CVV response are stored for reference and any manual validation (depending on payment processor options).
  • We provide an easy method to process an additional charge or credit to the customer's credit card.

Shipping Details

You specify where and how you ship. Customers will know immediately if you can ship to them. They will know the shipping costs early into the ordering process.

  • Specify the states and countries where you ship.
  • Specify how and where sales tax is to be collected. We provide the standard rates for each state as guidance. We subscribe to a third-party service that maintains tax rates by municipality for those states where the rate varies, and you can choose to retrieve the rate based on the customer's address.
  • The tax calculation includes logic for the taxability of freight, handling, merchandise, and food items, by destination.
  • Specify your shipping carrier account information and we'll calculate shipping costs on each order, based on your carrier rate schedule.
  • Where rates are automatically calculated, you can specify estimated shipping costs by destination so the customer can see these costs prior to checkout.
  • Provide alternate shipping service levels (2nd Day, Next Day, 3 Day) that your customers can choose to use. The shipping costs are automatically recalculated.
  • A materials surcharge can be specified on the packaging for each package configuration (number of bottles) and multiple bottle size packages.
  • An additional handling surcharge can be specified for each shipping destination. This can be used to recover permit fees and fulfillment center fees.
  • Specify the destinations where you use a wine fulfillment center. For orders received to those destinations, we'll route the order direct to that fulfillment center. We have integrated our service with about a dozen major fulfillment centers, and can integrate to others as needed.
  • Imagine specifying any combination of shipping destination, shipping carrier, shipping service level, bottle size, shipment package size, handling surcharge type, and shipping rate calculation. We've provided this level of customization within an easy-to-use interface. We've also provided the ability to view/print all the shipping parameters for easy review.

Customization

The e-commerce pages can be customized to match the design of your existing website, if you want to just integrate our e-commerce into your existing website.

The ordering pages are encrypted using Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology, which requires a security certificate specific to that domain name. Wineries typically share WineWeb.com’s security and trust certificates, so these pages will appear under the wineweb.com domain. If the ordering pages are integrated into the website, the look & feel is identical, and a visitor will not likely notice the domain name change in the browser’s address bar.

If a winery wants the ordering pages hosted within their own domain name, they need to purchase the SSL certificate and any other trust or security certificates. We then display the ordering pages under the winery’s domain name and display their certificates. The choice of whether to host the order pages under your domain name or wineweb.com domain is yours -- we've published a white paper on this subject to help you decide. Additional fees may apply to provide this functionality in our high-availability web server environment.


Wine Shipping Compliance

The WineWeb's e-Commerce service provides tools to allow a winery to be as compliant with state regulations as their business practices dictate.

  • You select the states (and other countries) where you can ship. We only allow a customer to have wine shipped to these destinations. Merchandise items can be shipped to additional destinations.
  • We provide guidance on the states requiring sales tax and present the current sales tax rate for these states. You can then choose the sales tax rate you wish to collect in these states.
  • In states where the sales tax varies by region, you can choose to collect a fixed rate across the entire state (typically the lowest state rate), or you can choose to have the system retrieve the appropriate tax rate based on the customer’s shipping address and taxing jurisdiction. We subscribe to an external service to retrieve sales tax rates to the street level, and this is included at no additional cost.
  • We do not allow an order to be shipped to a dry area or any areas designated by a carrier as "non-shippable".
  • We collect the bill-to date-of-birth as a best practice identified by Wine Institute. We also collect the ship-to date-of-birth when required by some state reporting requirements.
  • We integrate with online age verification services and allow you to specify the states where you want this check to occur. This requires a separate account with IDology or Veratad.
  • When a customer confirms an order, they agree that title passes to them in the winery’s state.
  • We check the order quantity against any state quantity limits and, if necessary allow the customer to reduce the size of their order. The winery can choose to force the customer to create a compliant order, or the winery can choose to schedule multiple shipments to comply with the state laws.
  • We include the adult signature option on carrier shipping labels produced for wine orders.
  • We allow you to specify wine type and alcohol level for each wine, for compliance reporting purposes.
  • You can easily export the order data to send to your wine compliance system or service. We provide integration with the WineCompliancePro and ShipCompliant services.
  • Within our e-commerce service and our wine club service, we look back at the order history for this individual (or household, depending on the state regulations) to determine if this order exceeds the quantity limits for the state-specified period. We then provide helpful instructions back to the customer to allow them to revise their order to be compliant. We have developed a matching algorithm that improves the accuracy of the verification.
  • We look back at the order history for this destination state to determine if this order exceeds any annual winery-level quantity limits.
  • Depending on the state regulations, we convert between bottles, liters and gallons to determine the maximum compliant order size.
  • We include wine club shipments into the customer order history (if you are using our wine club membership add-on component).
  • We allow you to import additional customer history data into our customer repository for other sources of orders (phone, tasting room, etc.). You can then see a consolidated view of your customers, for compliance checking and for customer relationship management.
  • We provide for additional compliance checks prior to shipping that can access external data sources for wine club, tasting room and phone orders.
  • We provide an online compliance checking tool to allow you to inquire into the customer order history to verify compliance on new phone, mail, and tasting room orders. This tool provides information on the state shipping regulations and computes the maximum order size for a specific customer.
  • We monitor the regulatory changes and update the system as necessary, as a no-charge part of the service. Our compliance rules are reviewed by a wine compliance company.
  • You can choose to force each customer's order into compliance, or you can choose to present the customer with appropriate "over limit" messages and then you will create multiple shipments that are compliant.

Direct-to-Trade Orders

You can allow wine retailers and restaurants to order your wines direct (where allowed by law). Wine trade companies can register on your website or on our trade portal (www.wineweb.com/trade) to use this service. We verify they have provided a copy of their license before they can access the e-Marketplace. We've published a position paper on our direct-to-trade approach.

  • The winery-to-trade service leverages the shopping cart and order fulfillment tools, as described above.
  • The trade account registration and account management functions can be branded under your website design, so that your trade accounts can stay within your website.
  • Trade orders can be initiated from the trade account or can be initiated by you or your sales reps.
  • Multiple price lists can be defined and inventory allocated to each price list. Each trade account is assigned to a price list.
  • Before a trade account can see your pricing and order your wines, an online trade relationship must be created:
    • A trade user interested in your wines electronically invites to you enter into a trade relationship. You can view these invitations and decide which to accept.
    • You can invite trade users into a trade relationship as well. They can then accept or decline your invitation.
    • You can setup trade accounts and enter orders on behalf of your restaurants/retailers. These accounts are automatically approved in a trade relationship with you.

Order Fulfillment Tools

You don't want to be in the shipping business, so we provide tools to make the order fulfillment process easy.

  • You can review orders online.
  • Once you receive an order, you can print an invoice and packing list.
  • You can print FedEx, UPS and GSO shipping labels directly from our system, avoiding any re-typing of customer data. We calculate the number of packages and package sizes based on the number of bottles and the bottle sizes ordered.
  • The carrier and fulfillment center interfaces automatically update the order status and tracking number. You can also manually update the order status, including the ship date and tracking number online.
  • The customer receives emails of updates, reducing the number of phone calls to you.
  • We monitor the fulfillment center status and carrier delivery status and update the orders automatically each night.

Discounts and Promotions

You can provide incentives for potential customers to buy your products.

  • You can specify a discounted case price for each wine.
  • You can specify a mixed case discount, and exclude wines that are not eligible.
  • You can specify free or discounted shipping cost for orders that meet a minimum quantity or dollar volume.
  • Each wine club can have a separate discount that is applied to online orders from its members.
  • You can define promotion codes that can be entered at checkout to effect a discount. These can be for wine or merchandise items, and can be cumulative or in place of other discounts. Both a start and end date can be specified for promotions. Promotions can also be linked to specific items and a minimum purchase requirement.
  • You can define parameters where a customer is eligible to receive a one-time use coupon to encourage viral marketing.

Inventory Control

You can choose to track inventory levels for all or some products. When an item's inventory is depleted, the status is automatically marked as "sold out" to avoid customer disappointment. We provide support for multiple warehouses; you specify the destinations (states) that are served by each warehouse.

Inventory levels can be updated on a single page, or inventory levels can be modified by calling our web services program from another winery application for program-to-program integration. We can track inventory adjustments, for items consumed in the tasting room and for movement in and out of your finished goods warehouse(s).


Allocated Items

You can setup wines that are allocated to your customers. For a specific vintage and bottle size, you can specify the quantity available to the general public, members in each of your wine clubs and up to five levels of your customers. We track the order history for that wine and not allow the customer to purchase more than their allocation. For less restrictive allocations, a maximum order quantity can be specified for any wine / vintage / bottle size. You can override the allocation schedule on a customer basis.


Consolidated Customer Repository

Your winery’s customers interact with you through a number of mediums including face-to-face, phone, mail, and online. During the life of a customer, they may use multiple methods of purchasing your wines, whether it is at your tasting room, through your wine club, or over the Internet. You need to be able to understand who your best customers are, so you can market effectively to them. You also need to ensure that customer shipments are in compliance with the customer’s state regulations.

Imagine one place where all this data exists and imagine a set of tools to use in analyzing your customers and ensuring compliance.

The WineWeb provides a consolidated customer repository that can be used for customer relationship management and compliance verification. In addition to providing a consolidated view of your online customers, you can import customer transactions from other winery systems (point-of-sale, wine club processing systems) to fully consolidate customer history from your tasting room, phone/mail orders, wine club and online sales.

These features are available for wineries subscribing to our Order Processing (e-Commerce) or Point-of-Sale service.

  • You winery’s consolidated customer repository is a separate data entity from our transactional systems. Throughout each day, we feed data to it for new online orders and new wine club shipments. (The wine club data feed is available if you subscribe to our Wine Club Membership Management add-on component.)
  • We allow you to import additional customer history data into our customer repository for other sources of orders (phone, tasting room, etc.). You can then see a consolidated view of your customers, for compliance checking and for customer relationship management.
  • We provide online tools for you to view, edit and report on your customers.
  • Your customer data is safeguarded from unauthorized access by others. WineWeb never uses this data for any purpose other than high-level statistical reporting.
  • We use a matching algorithm based on a combination of name and address data to identify a customer, even if their information is not identical from order to order.
  • We compute the Lifetime Customer Value (LCV) for each customer and allow you to sort and select on this value to identify your best customers.

For clients subscribed to our Enhanced Website Hosting plan, we provide additional features:

  • Your customers can be identified with a RFM (Recency, Frequency, Monetary) ranking. You can automatically assign the RFM based on the customers' history.
  • You can automatically rank your customers into five Customer Levels, and target mailings and discounts based on their level.


Integration with Other Systems

It can be said that we play well with others. We have created, and continue to create, interfaces to other technology systems in use by wineries. We do this in three ways:

  • We create interfaces to other vendor's applications, according to their specifications, to pass data to/from their systems
  • We have published a set of web service specifications, which allows other applications to access WineWeb's application to retrieve or update data.
  • We provide the ability for you to create export data files to use in other applications. You choose the file format and the data elements to include in the export file, or select from previously-saved formats.

Integration to Shipping Carriers

  • We can automatically calculate shipping cost on a customer order using your rate schedule with your shipping carrier(s). You can specify surcharges to cover materials and handling costs based on the package size, and you can specify additional surcharges based on the destination to cover permit fees and fulfillment costs.
  • You can specify a default shipping service level (i.e., Ground) and alternate service levels that the customer can choose (i.e., 2nd Day Air, Next Day Air).
  • The revised shipping costs are immediately shown in the customer’s shopping cart.
  • When an order is received, you can print a carrier shipping label directly from within our application. This feature is available for FedEx, UPS and GSO. We calculate the packages needed based on the number of bottles and bottle sizes. We store the tracking number for each package, and display the label image for you to print on a regular or thermal printer.

Integration to Fulfillment Centers

  • You can choose to use a fulfillment center for some or all of your shipping destinations. When an order is received for such a destination, we will route the orders directly into the fulfillment center's system. Depending on the abilities of the fulfillment center’s systems, we can cancel an order and check the status of an order directly within our application.

Integration to QuickBooks

  • We have developed a web services integration to the QuickBooks accounting application that uses their WebConnect feature, similar to how you might retrieve banking transactions. As often as needed, from within QuickBooks, you can retrieve new Customers, Sales Receipts, Invoices, Credit Memo and Inventory Adjustment transactions from WineWeb.
  • We transfer the product level information on each order, using the Alternate SKU field to link to your product account name in QuickBooks.
  • You can choose which types of transactions to transfer at a detail level and which to transfer as a daily summary.
  • You can choose to also transfer various types of inventory adjustment transactions.
  • Sales tax data is transferred at a state level to allow you to setup the sales tax accounts tied to each state's collection agency.
  • All QuickBooks versions 2009 or higher are supported. Support is also provided to QuickBooks Online Edition and QuickBooks POS. Intuit does not yet support the Mac versions using WebConnect.

Integration to Wine Compliance Reporting Services

  • You can export your order and product data to a wine compliance reporting service or system. You can provide your compliance service with a data file or a report.
  • If you use the WineCompliancePro or ShipCompliant software, we provide an automatic data feed into their repository.

Integration to Point-of-Sale Systems

  • If you don't use our POS service, we can integrate with any other system that allows communication over the Internet. For other POS systems, you can use our export and import functions to move data between the systems.
  • The transfer of data can be initiated by the POS system, using our web services (see below), or we can create interfaces to access the POS system from within our system.
  • You will need to determine whether you want your primary repository of customer data and inventory levels to reside in the POS system or in your e-commerce system. Our web services support either.

Web Services Integration

  • A web service is a program that can talk to another program over the Internet. We have created a set of web services that allow other applications to inquire and update customer and inventory data on our e-commerce system. This allows other applications and systems to communicate with the e-commerce system to keep data in sync.

Reporting

Our Reporting Module allows your winery to create custom, professional-looking reports on Orders, Customers, Sales Tax, Wine Club Members and Wine Club Sales. You can display and print the reports in PDF or FlashPaper format. Numerous sort and selection options are available for all reports.

Sales Dashboard

Our Winery Executive Sales Dashboard allows you to view website traffic and sales data with various sort and selection options. You can then "drill down" into the details for analysis.

Abandoned Cart Monitoring

We provide a tool for you to view all abandoned shopping carts and to analyze the stage of the checkout process where carts are abandoned.

You can choose to send an automatic email to a potential customer when they abandon their cart, to try to get them to return to the order.


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Customer Quotes

"You reinforce our decision each and every day with your support and enhancements. After 30 plus years in hi-tech, this is the best software decision I have ever made."

- Jacque Wilson
Pilot Peak Winery


"Before we launched on WineWeb, our site had no online order system and to make changes we had to rely on the sole family member who knows Web programming. Now any of us can update the site at any time from anywhere, and we are fully e-commerce capable, giving our customers a simple and efficient means to place orders. In the first 12 months we've seen a return on investment of more than 500%."

- Chris Thorpe and Edwin Richards
Adastra Wines
Carneros, Napa Valley, CA