FAQ

THE BC PLATFORM

What is Business Catalyst?

Business Catalyst is the all-in-one product that makes life easier and business more profitable. We're replacing 10+ tools that are essential for internet businesses with one - that's why life is easier. No more moving data between a handful of separate solutions. No more remembering 10 log ins for different products. No more wrestling with code and techie stuff. At a basic level Business Catalyst is web hosting for your business website. But to go with that you get website management tools, email marketing, eCommerce and an integrated customer database.

How is Business Catalyst like web hosting?

It's very similar actually - some people call Business Catalyst a "next generation" hosting solution because of all the built in goodies that it comes with. You'll have an FTP account to upload web pages, CSS, flash, JavaScript and images. It's also true to say that any non-programming related thing that you can do with a regular web hosting company, you can do with us.

You call Business Catalyst an all-in-one online business platform. How is it "all-in-one"?

When your clients logs in, they'll be able to immediately access their contact database, their orders, web form submissions, products and catalogues, web pages and email marketing campaigns from one central location. Furthermore, all of those functions are built to work together from the ground up!

Do I need to know programming or HTML to add content to my web pages?

Business Catalyst enables web designers to build powerful Online Businesses for their clients. While we provide fool-proof editing options for your clients, these are intended for on-the-fly content editing (eg. editing a web page). In order to customize the overall design, layout and "look" of sites, you will require a basic understanding of HTML and CSS.

I use Dreamweaver to build my web pages, how will that work with Business Catalyst?

We love Dreamweaver too! In fact we love it so much that we built a dedicated extension that allows you to manage your Business Catalyst website directly inside Dreamweaver. The BC Extension works on Mac and PC (MX, 8, CS3 and CS4). Download the extension here.

Is my creative freedom limited when designing on Business Catalyst?

Absolutely not! Business Catalyst does not limit your creative freedom whatsoever. You have complete control over the HTML / CSS that you put into the system.

Is there a limit on the number of catalogues or products in my client's online shop?

Not at all. You can have as many catalogues and products as you like.

Is your system XHTML friendly?

Yes indeed it is. Is your website? Because Business Catalyst will respect your HTML code and won't change it, your website's XHTML compliance will depend on the HTML code that you or your designer has created. However if you do insert any system modules onto your web pages, the code generated by the system will be XHTML friendly.

Can I use my own web address? Or do I need to use wxyz.businesscatalyst.com?

You can use your own web address, also called a URL or domain name. You can either redelegate your domain and use our DNS servers or you can create an A-Record in your existing DNS service to point your domain to your new site at Business Catalyst - it's up to you. For instructions on this, see our knowledge base article. Please note that f you are a Premium Partner and wish to use our rebranding features you will need to redelegate the domain to us.

Can I run Javascript, CSS Stylesheets and Flash on Business Catalyst?

Of course! Anything you can run on another HTML page or on your blog will work just fine. Remember that at a base-level Business Catalyst is like any other web hosting platform.

How can I collect payments on my shop?

There are a number of ways you can collect payments on your online shop. You can use any of the existing payment gateways already supported, e.g. Authorize.net, Google Checkout, PayPal and many more. Or you can opt to use the "Process Offline" method that captures payment details from customers and you can then process these manually using your existing point-of-sale (POS) system. You can also enable customers to choose to pay by Check and COD.

Can I use FTP to manage my website?

Yes you get access to FTP to speed up managing your Business Catalyst website. You can even access system templates and layouts via FTP.

How do I enable SMS notifications for my inquiry forms?

You can use the inbuilt Workflow framework to choose who you want notified each time a customer enquires and how you want them to be notified, e.g. via email, SMS or both. If you want SMS notifications you simply buy a suitable SMS pack.

Can I customize the look and feel of my inquiry forms?

Sure you can. When you paste the HTML code for any of your web forms into your web pages, you can completely change the layout and use your own CSS to customize it to look however you like.

Do you take a cut of my client's online sales?

Nope! Business Catalyst doesn't take any cut from your client's online sales. However, their payment gateway or bank may charge a fee to process payments.

How many email newsletter campaigns can I send out each month?

As many as you want! However any plan with email marketing allows you to send 10,000 email newsletters per month at no cost. If you want to send out more then you'll need to buy additional email newsletter packs.

Is there a limit on the size of my customer database?

No, there isn't :)

I've already got a CRM solution that works for me. Can I still use Business Catalyst?

Yes, but you won't get the full benefit of having everything "all-in-one". You'll need to import and export contact information back and forth between the systems in order to use the email marketing solution. If you've got some programming skills and some spare time, there is an API built to help you sync your customer databases that you can leverage.

I've got some PHP code on my website that my nephew programmed for me. Can I use that?

Our goal was to create a platform that fulfilled the needs of 90% of all business people, so they didn't need to get their nephews and granddaughters to program for them. So the answer is no, you can't run PHP, ASP or other server-side code. But you can probably replicate the functionality, and then maintain it yourself without a problem.

I've heard solutions like this aren't Search Engine Friendly. Is this solution Search Engine friendly?

Of course! We use friendly URLs throughout and utilize search engine friendly techniques such as 301 Permanent Redirects. We even integrate with Google, Yahoo!, and Live sitemaps feature, so the system regularly and automatically generates a "sitemap" which the search engines use to ensure your website gets maximum visibility in the search results.

What are the system requirements to use Business Catalyst?

There are a number of ways you can use the Business Catalyst product.

  • Use any popular web browser. On the Mac we support Safari 3+ and Firefox 2+. On Windows we support Internet Explorer 6+ and Firefox 2+ (Note: Internet Explorer 7+ / Firefox 3+ / Safari 4+ are recommended)
  • Use FTP
  • Use our Adobe Dreamweaver Extension - it allows you to manage your Business Catalyst website directly inside Dreamweaver (MX, 8 and CS3) on both Mac and PC

How reliable is BC?

System Reliability is non-issue because all of our Data Centers are located in Tier 4 Data Centre facilities. This means that all of the facilities that house our servers have:

  • multiple cooling and power distribution paths for stable systems
  • multiple active power distribution paths to prevent down time from blackouts
  • redundant components for fault tolerance
  • 99.995% Uptime for connectivity and power into our machines

All of our Data Center facilities are connected to the net via Tier 1 networks, or have peering arrangements with Tier 1 networks. This means that our servers are essentially hooked in to the "backbone" of the internet, which generally results in higher network speeds and lower latency from your customer's browser to our servers.


PLANS

What is an admin user?

This is a user added to a site & they would have access to the administration area of a site.

What is an email user?

This is an email account setup in a site. This is email only & does not give the user administration access to the site.

Is there a setup charge for your plans?

There is no setup charge for any of Business Catalyst plans. Your client simply chooses the plan that best suits their business and then pays for it on a monthly basis. Note: If you are a Premium Partner using our Consolidated Billing feature, you are able to charge clients a set up fee on top of their on-going monthly bill.

What is the difference between the All-in-One vs the Lead-in Plans?

All-in-One plans are inclusive of all the Business Catalyst functionality. This includes web hosting and content management, eCommerce, email marketing, integrated customer database, reporting and analystics and more. The Lead-in plans are subsets of the overall platform. For those business owners just starting up their online businesses, the lead-in plans provide a fantastic point of entry with the comfort of being able to upgrade to the full solution at any time in the future.

Can I combine two lead-in products together?

No you cannot combine two lead-in products together. You will need to upgrade to one of the All-in-One plans.

Can my customer change plans at anytime?

Yes they can easily change between plans. Any fees paid in advance will be applied to the new pricing on a pro-rata basis.

Where can I review the terms that govern my use for Business Catalyst?

Your use of Business Catalyst's products is governed by our End-User Agreement.


PRICING & BILLING

Is there a cost if we setup a customer Trial site?

There is no cost for trial sites. As a Free, Standard or Premium Partner, you may create as many trial sites as you need. It can often be effective to create trial sites when presenting the Adobe Business Catalyst solution to new prospects. You only pay when you decide to upgrade to a Live Site.

What forms of payments do you accept?

We accept payment by credit card only (Visa, Mastercard & American Express).

How does billing work for customer sites & who is responsible?

It's entirely up to you how billing should work. Some partners do not want the hassle of billing. In those cases, when you upgrade the site you can choose for Adobe Business Catalyst to have the billing relationship with your customer. In this scenario your customer will be aware of us since they will receive invoices with our branding on it, charged at the scheduled rate. You will need to secure the customer’s credit card details prior to upgrading their site from a trial site to a paid site.

Alternatively, you can have the billing relationship with your customer. When you choose this option we will bill you at the scheduled rate for each site and you are solely responsible for any billing and collection of payments between you and your customer.

In either scenario, commission (if applicable to you), calculated on the scheduled rate, will accrue in your Partner Portal.

How do I redeem my commissions?

  • 20% commission accrues to Standard / Premium Partners on hosting sales, based on the above prices
  • 10% override commission accrues to Standard / Premium Partners on hosting sales of referred Standard / Premium Partners
  • Commissions may be redeemed and paid into your PayPal account once the balance of a given currency reaches the value of $500 USD.

Can I cancel a paid site at any time?

Yes, as long as all invoices are up-to-date with payments, you have full control of cancelling a site & no further billing will occur.

Is a payment refunded if we cancel a site?

No, we do not refund payments for sites which are cancelled, regardless of billing being set to monthly or yearly.

Can I mark-up the Business Catalyst prices?

If you bill the customer direct, yes you can. It's highly recommended that if you markup our pricing, you provide value added services on top of our platform hosting.

What extras can I add to a site?

You can add additional users & email accounts, disk space, SMS & excess newsletters. All are required to be paid upfront monthly on recurring credit card billing, except disk space which is billed annually, and excess newsletters and bandwidth, which are billed at the beginning of every month for the excess used the previous month.

  • Additional 1 User $5/month (10 additional email addresses)
  • Additional 5 Users $20/month (20 additional email addresses)
  • Extra Disk Space $10/1GB per annum (charged annually)
  • Extra Newsletters $0.01/email (first 10,000 free on applicable plans)
  • Extra SMS $10/month per additional 50 SMS (charged monthly)
  • Excess traffic charged at $1/1GB (first 100GB free)

THE PARTNER PROGRAM

Do you offer any payment plan options on the Partner signup fee?

No, we do not have a payment plan option available for this.

Once I have signed up as a Partner & paid my fee, can I cancel my Partner signup & get a refund at any time?

No, we are not able to refund a Partner signup fee once it has been processed & your free Partner site & Partner Portal has been implemented.


SUPPORT

What Support options do you provide to Standard & Premium Partners?

Standard & Premium Partners have access to the BC Knowledge base, Community Forums and helpful Training Videos

They can submit support tickets via the Support tab of their Partner Portal, while their clients can submit requests through the Support Central area of their Admin Console.

What Support options do you provide to Free Partners

Free Partners have access to the BC Knowledge base, Community Forums and helpful Training Videos.

Free Partners and their clients are unable to submit Support tickets. Please upgrade to a paid Partner account in order to receive direct Support.

Do you offer over-the-phone Support?

We do not provide telephone support, however in lieu of this we provide live training (with the ability to see the trainer's screen) during our regular Q&A Sessions.

You can bring your queries to these sessions, and we can work with you live in the Webinar to resolve the issue for you. Make sure you book in quickly though, as there is a limit of 6 attendees per session.

Do you Support HTML / CSS queries?

HTML and CSS issues are outside the scope of our Support, and unfortunately we will not be able to help you with this issue, however you may like to post these on our community forums, where a member of our helpful community may be able to assist!