Create Online Store – How to Quickly and Easily Create an E-commerce Store

An online store enables you to sell your products 24 hours a day 7 days a week from a single computer. This means you hardly have any overhead fees. The difficulty is to actually create your ecommerce store because it contains many more variables than an informational web site.

There are so many options for building an online store that it is easy to be confused. In this series of articles I will discuss the requirements and options that are available so you can quickly and easily get your store set up.

Requirements

1. Product or service to sell

Select a product or service you are passionate about so you don’t get bored promoting it. Make sure there is a demand for it. Before spending time and money on what you think is a good product, do the necessary research. It will save you a lot of headaches down the road.

2. Merchant Account

This is a “bank account” established with a payment processor for the settlement of credit card transactions. If you are selling products online you will need a “Card Not Present Merchant Account.”

3. Payment Gateway

This is an online system for real-time charging of credit cards when a customer places an order. It normally requires a merchant account.

A common example of a payment gateway is authorize.net where customers are taken to the authorize.net secure server for making payments. After a successful transaction they are returned to your store.

4. SSL Certificate

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. SSL certificate is an electronic key that encrypts transmissions between two computers on a public network, providing privacy and security to the session. An SSL certificate confirms that a message that you receive actually did come from the person identified. SSL certificates are used for secure e-commerce communications, protecting information such as credit card numbers and personal data.

Most payment gateway providers include an SSL certificate however you can easily obtain one from a 3rd party.

Shared SSL certificate

Some web hosting companies use shared SSL certificates. This means that the certificate is shared by all web sites on that server. The benefit is that it’s free (included with your hosting account) and many shopping carts allow you to use it to process secure transactions online.

Shopping cart

This enables you to manage the products of your online store. It allows to create categories, add, edit or delete your products. With a simple shopping cart you copy and paste some html code into your web page and all the processing is done on the 3rd party shopping cart account web site. A more comprehensive cart contains many other features such as creating web pages on the fly without having to learn html, and managing your products from an admin panel from your own web site.

Domain name

If you are serious about creating a real business online you should register your own domain name ie www.domainname.com. It will help brand your business so your clients can easily identify your business.

Web Site

Create a professional web site by getting it custom built by a professional web site designer. It will help your web site stand out from your competitors and allow you to create a design that fits with your product.

Web Hosting

Select a web hosting company that has great customer service, enough space and bandwidth for hosting and marketing your site. It should also include a database, shared SSL certificate and site stats.

Part 2
Part 3

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Herman Drost is the Certified Internet Webmaster (CIW)
owner and author of Web Design, Web Hosting, SEO

Comments

  1. This is an absolute truth that online web stores are going to bring rapid changes in the market, changing the entire opinion of traditional shopping of the past times. More to the point, creating web stores is the matter of minutes today with the advancement of technology. With the unique features like POS integration, SSL encryption and product databank and many more web stores will surely give new definitions to shopping. With the available online customers’ data, retailers can interact with them by sending special offers to increase sales. Targeting a customer and converting him into a promising customer is made simply possible by the online stores.

    Responding to this new market trend, manufacturers, organized retailers and single store owners are so eager to reach their customers by building their own online web stores.

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  2. I love this blog
    Much better than the last blog I read on this subject!

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