Wine Merchant e-Commerce Service

Compliance

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


 

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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 company value with a large company 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.


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 and merchandise items.
    • You can specify wine and merchandise items available only to wine club members
    • You have full control over the cost & availability information for all wines/vintages you wish to sell. These changes are reflected immediately on your website.
    • Support for multiple vintages and multiple bottle sizes
    • Support for multiple warehouses and fulfillment centers
  • 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 certificate at your store.
  • Security and Controls
    • The order pages are encrypted for consumer's security of their credit card information.
    • Third-party security seals provide customers additional comfort that their data is protected. We subscribe to the Hacker Free service, which scans our site daily looking for vulnerabilities.
    • We use an Extended Validation SSL certificate to increase customer comfort with the security. The EV certificate causes the address bar to turn green in Internet Explorer version 7.
    • You can choose to leverage our substantial cost in the Extended Validation SSL Certificate and Hacker Free seal, 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 zip code.
    • Pre-fills information for wine club members or returning customers.
    • Customers 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.
    • Customers can select a business or residential address.
    • Customers can select an alternate shipping service level, with shipping cost immediately recalculated.
    • Allow customer pickup at the store.
  • Billing information:
    • Pre-populates the data from the 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 customers an option of phoning in their credit card information.
  • A confirmation email is sent to the customer and to you.
  • 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
    • Enable free or discounted ground shipping based on order quantity or total sales amount.

Credit Card Processing

We can take 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 store.

  • Specify the credit card types you accept.
  • Specify the credit card processor that you want to use. We currently support the following, and others can be quickly added:
    • Authorize.net
    • PayPal Basic, Website Payments Pro, Payflow Link and Payflow Pro
    • QuickBooks Merchant Services
    • CDG Commerce
    • SecureNet
    • Trans Central X-Charge
    • ViaKlix (CostCo)
    • Plug n Pay
  • 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, and 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 maintain tax rates by municipality for those states where the rate varies, and you can choose to retrieve the rate based on the ZIP Code/municipality.
  • 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, Express Saver) 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, either $ per order, $ per bottle, or percent of sales. 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 several popular fulfillment centers, and can integrate to others as needed. You can specify additional handling charges to cover these costs.
  • 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 ordering pages are encrypted using Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology, which requires a security certificate specific to that domain name. Merchants typically share wineweb.com’s security and trust certificates, so these pages will appear under the wineweb.com domain. The look & feel of the secure pages are identical, and a visitor likely will not notice the domain name change in the browser’s address bar.

If you want the ordering pages hosted within your own domain name, you need to purchase the SSL certificate and any other trust or security certificates. We then display the ordering pages under your domain name and display your 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.


Wine Shipping Compliance

The WineWeb’s e-Commerce service provides tools to allow a wine merchant 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 zip code and taxing jurisdiction.
  • We do not allow an order to be shipped to a dry area or any areas designated by a carrier as “non-shippableâ€�.
  • 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 as 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 merchant’s state.
  • We only allow shipment to a business address in Kansas and also collect the license number of the retailer the order is being shipped to, in compliance with their law.
  • We check the order quantity against any state quantity limits and, if necessary allow the customer to reduce the size of their order.
  • 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 have integrated our service with the WineCompliancePro system, and other services can also be used.
  • 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.
  • 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, onsite, 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, store 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 store 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.

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 DHL 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.
  • 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.

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.

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 up to four warehouses; you specify the destinations that are served by each warehouse.

Inventory levels can also be updated by calling our web services program from another computer application.


Consolidated Customer Repository

Your company’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 store, through your wine club, or over the Internet. You need to be able to understand who your best customer 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 systems (point-of-sale, wine club processing systems) to fully consolidate customer history from your store, phone/mail orders, wine club and online sales.


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 DHL, FedEx and UPS. 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 Active Club Management Wine Club Service

  • Our Wine Club Member Management add-on component allows you to manage your wine club members, allows the members to login and maintain their information, and provides for shipment and payment processing. While this service can satisfy the needs of many wine clubs, we understand that some merchants may require a more robust solution. We have integrated our website and e-commerce services with the Active Club Management (ACM) service to provide a full-featured, cost-effective service.
  • When an ACM wine club member logs in to order wine online, we retrieve the customer information from the ACM database and apply the wine club member discount to the order.
  • We can export the wine club member orders back to the ACM system, so these orders are reflected in the customer’s history.
  • We can check the ACM customer history file for any wine club shipments that would affect the compliance of the online order.

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 software, we provide an automatic data feed into their repository.

Integration to Point-of-Sale Systems

  • We can integrate with any Point-of-Sale (POS) 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.

Sales Dashboard

Our 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 complete the order.


Reporting

Our Reporting Module allows your company 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.


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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