It’s been a long time coming due to the custom nature of our business but I’m happy to announce that we’ve finally launched the CNCROi.com online shopping e-commerce site! I will be adding “standard-custom” projects to the website for the next bit but the massive delay in implementing this was to get enough experience under our belt to figure-out “average costs” on our end regarding materials, shipping and production.
Offering Custom at a Set Price
Our first two products on the site are our ever-popular custom metal business cards, anodized aluminium and 304 stainless steel. We’ve plowed through tons of these for clients far and wide and looking at the numbers overall, I’m now confident that we are able to offer these at competitive prices while still accounting for the wide variance in design possibilities. Some people will be getting a HECK OF A DEAL while for other businesses, we will!
Not new to e-commerce
I’ve been running CNCKing.com since 2008 which sells digital plans and kits (which will be migrating to here) literally around the world, it was the largest site of its kind and still is in some respects. A lot was learned throughout this process and although the market for CNCKing.com is slowly shifting due to factors I won’t go into here, it’s a testament to what ONE PERSON who is self-taught can do to shake-up an entire industry!
The demographic for CNCROi.com is different, unlike my other site, the visitors here don’t have the toys that I do to make this stuff. As a result, it’s a much more hands-on approach where I deal with questions related to “what is an EPS file?” to “what format do you need our SolidWorks files in for a RFQ?”.
What took so long?
I’ve been wanting to add e-commerce functionality to CNCROi.com almost from the beginning but there were real-world issues. Finding suppliers who are worth a damn is a big one, we do a lot of custom work – that’s the nature of the business – but it takes a while to flesh-out the “good guys” from the “bad guys”. There is nothing worse than getting one shipment of great material followed by a shipment of horrible junk. If I was going to offer custom in a more easily understood and straight forward process, I had to get all my ducks in a row, build-up relevant inventory and know my production costs.
Another major issue was technology. I really didn’t want people visiting CNCROi.com and being forward to another site to process the order, there were solutions even way back in 2000 to solve this but nothing fit properly until now. I did forward users from CNCROi.com to CNCKing.com but I just got lots of confused customers, the demographic, message and site structure was just too foreign.
What happens to the custom stuff?
I attend a lot of trade shows as both an exhibitor and guest and most of what I see is standard stuff, at the end of the day, a name badge is a name badge, business card is a business card and so forth. It’s fascinating how regimented these standards really are and how easy it is to produce something “standard” that’s custom enough to be unique.
For the e-commerce end of the site, I’ll stick to the “standard-custom” stuff for now but it by no means indicated the only thing we can do – that’s where the “Custom Ideas” stuff comes into play and to be honest, even the stuff you see there is a few years away from what we actually do for truly custom customers. We really are privileged to do some awesome stuff that will sadly, never see the light of day due to NDA on our site.
So, if your application is different from the “standard-custom” stuff found on CNCROi.com, no problem, contact us! We’ll make something awesome for you too!