We in New Zealand are going through a similar debate. We needed a makeover for our existing web site as the current provider had moved away from being savvy in the eCommerce field. The web site that we have still works but fails to do what we know is possible.
We've sought quotations from several local web development companies but only one has provided us with a proposal that utises the strengths of FileMaker's ESS capabilities to update product info and download web orders. Other companies have suggested various alternatives that are less convenient to use and are also more expensive to implement.
In the course of this enquiry process it has become obvious to me that FileMaker has not yet made a convincing marketing approach to the web developer community. Using ESS is clearly the more powerful way of managing product on a web site instead of having to master the clumsy web interface of some CMS system that the web developer has designed for multi-user flexibility.
Based upon our experiences, you have to keep looking for the web developer who recognises what ESS can do and is prepared to write code that can take full advantage of that capability.
I'd suggest you approach Steve Winter at <email@example.com> as he is well versed in the options that exist. You can see his contributions on this forum.
Please don't hesitate to ask via a private message if you'd like more detail back channel.
Thanks John for your insight!
I must confess I am also a little reluctant üto connect such a complex system such as Magento, PrestaShop (or Oxid, or ZenCart... ) with FileMaker. Still, of course, this is the "MercedesBenz" luxury solution, right?
The users will have their own processes, can have their own nice icons in FileMaker and use fat clients with a nice printing integration and the option to export things to excel...
HOWEVER, I think a real Magento system with a few nice features here and there to sell stuff well already costs 20.000 USD to implement, and then I have to start to connect FileMaker.
- I have to make sure the whole system stays on MySQL (or even Oracle) DB, with a specific certified verion.
- I have to not only read but also write to the Web Shop DB (brrr, thrilliometer gets high)
On the other hand, of course, External SQL Sources is a potent solution. (Especially for someone who hates sending XML data or CSV Files around)
I ll contact you and Steve Winter!
+1 on Steve Winter.
+1 more for Steve...
Create your own store at http://www.squarespace.com/pricing/ This isn't spam it is real endorsement from someone who gets nothing out of it except for helping you in your quest to find an answer to your problem. It isn't Filemaker, but once in a great while I myself stray from the best program in the world in order to accomplish something that takes a bit more work to do using Filemaker. Try it.
I had been working with Cs-Cart (php/mysql) recently. So much is done for you and it's relatively easy to make changes to the "layouts" and CSS. Some things are locked into a theme, but there are several themes available. Yes, it's not FM, but if there is permission, I could see FM being able to interact with MySQL for some things.