Beware of site bearing gift vouchers

Beware of site bearing gift vouchers ~ site profile

What it is: A Web site specialising in retail gift vouchers and gift services with delivery to the receiver through e-mail or post. The site offers shoppers the chance to personalise their gift vouchers with messages - once delivered the receiver redeems the voucher at participating retail outlets. Currently the site has 16 Australian retailers selling vouchers, two in New Zealand with more than 800 shops listed in total.

Special Features: When the site goes global shortly, shoppers will be able to buy vouchers across different countries and pay for their purchase in one transaction in one currency. The site automatically updates the shopping basket after every purchase so the shopper knows instantly what the total cost of their order is. Online shoppers can search the site by city as well as by category and product.

Who developed the site: Site designer Gerome Yip, E Com co-CEO Michelle Deaker and one member from Internet service provider Activ Australia. Activ Australia provided and implemented the payment gateway Cybersource and the fraud detection module. Activ hosts and monitors the site. The payment gateway transacts through IBM Net trade finance out of Norway.

Tools used in site development: Sequel Server, Activ server pages and Microsoft Internet Information services.

Time it took to develop: Development took 11 months; however, a brochure-type site was operating in December 1998 which E Com used to test the market.

Traffic: Around 80,000 hits a month. E Com is aiming for 5 million hits a year.

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