Everyone and their brother is trying to sell stuff online, and there are a ton of great options for online stores. However, if you want a custom site, or you started with a site and are now trying to add an integrated store and cart, your options are very limited, especially if you have a product that has any variables that fall outside the typical "size" and "color" choices.

Since Convergence integrates with a flexible shopping cart system called FoxyCart, you can do almost anything with e-commerce seamlessly. We have used Convergence and FoxyCart to sell products with up to 15 customization variables, and we've even used the system for orphan sponsorship and monthly recurring donations. Convergence runs the category and product pages, and FoxyCart manages the cart and checkout areas, all of which can be customized.

Today I'll be writing primarily about our default product pages, which are the product detail pages in Convergence. Think of this page as your personal conversation with your customer.

The typical Convergence Product Page, in all its detailed glory.

THE BLUE DOTS (3) **Must have

Starting from the left (Convergence DOES allow for layouts to be edited and custom), we find product photos.  It's true, they are worth a 1,000 words.  You have to have a photo or an image of what is being sold.  While we recommend professional photos, it's clear with sites like eBAY, it is not imperative.  Just know, the quality of the photos will speak volumes of your brand.  We are highlighting three photos: the large product photo, thumbnails that allow other angles or colors to be displayed, and a variant photo (in Convergence, your photos can be any size or shape)!  While we'll discuss variants in another article, think of them as variations of your product. Convergence allows for you to sell infinite variations of your product, be it a different color, pattern, shape, or something as simple as size.

THE TEAL DOTS (4) **Must have

What is the name of the product and what does it cost?  It is HARD to sell something without a title and price.  In our example, we're showing both the TITLE and the PRICE in a couple of places, the very top and next to the variant titles below.  Both represent what is being sold and for how much.  Convergence allows you to change the price of a variant, making the site more dynamic and responsive for the customer.

THE RED DOTS (3) **Can't sell without them

'Add to Cart', the three words we associate with shopping, but never said aloud before the internet.  Without a chance to 'add to cart,' your site is just a catalog of products.  If you are looking to sell items and increase revenue, you need an 'add to cart' button (if you don't like that language, Convergence allows for you to put anything you want, such as "buy now").  In our example, we place a "choose items" button where a typical 'add to cart' would go.  This would send the user down the page, allowing them to choose an item to purchase.  In the variants, the "add to cart" button, along with the optional "quantity" box is easy to find and click.  We recommend "quantity" boxes, standard on Convergence, as you give yourself a chance to sell more than 1 of an item to a buyer.

THE ORANGE DOTS (4) Set your product apart

While not imperative, the orange dots represent the descriptions that give more detailed information regarding the product.  It can help explain a certain fabric's softness, your method of manufacturing, shipping options, or the way something fits.  In our example, we use tabs to make the separate the info digestible in smaller, relevant bites.  The 4th dot is on top of the variant description, as these are important in explaining the differences between variants. Convergence allows for HTML here, giving you the option to say almost anything.

THE PINK DOTS (3) Let them share the news

Depending on your social strategy, you may want to include an easy way to let customers share the product with their friends.  Below, Convergence defaults to 4 icons, twitter, Facebook, Email, and an 'Add This' icon, which is a small widget that gives users to share the page on almost any platform (see for yourself at the top of this post).  If you have an active Facebook page for your company, you can also add a "like" button, which allows Facebook users to automatically post a message in their feed.

THE PURPLE DOT (1) Make it easy to gift

If you think your product is a good gift idea, it can be nice to include a gift message option for customers.  Keep in mind, you will have to have a way to include the message when shipping the product.  While this is not completely necessary, it can be a nice addition and ease the ability for your product to be gifted.

So that’s a primer on the product page, one of the things Convergence makes so easy. And of course, there are things you can add that are not in this example (video, animation, etc), but we'll save those for another time.