14 Sep 2015
What it Takes to Get an e-Commerce Site Online

What it Takes to Get an e-Commerce Site Online

Getting an e-Commerce website online might sound like a huge undertaking, but it’s not as hard as you may think. In this article I’ll shine some light on 5 main steps necessary to launch your website into World Wide Web orbit.

Step 1 – Domain and Web hosting
Each website needs a hosting platform and a domain name. The unique identifier for your website in the Internet is a domain name. The main cause for registering a domain name is to protect copyrights and trademarks.
Hosting is an internet service that makes your site available from the Internet. Your website files are placed here. Selecting a web hosting plan depends on your e-Commerce application. Thus, the minimum hosting requirements are:

  • Web server: Apache 2.x or Nginx 1.7.x
  • Database: MySQL 5.6
  • PHP 5.5
  • SSL support
  • 1Gb of disk space

Step 2 – SSL Certificate
The main cause for using of SSL certificate is to have storage of private data transferred over the Internet in encrypted form, so that only the recipient can read these data. The data you transfer on the Internet is transmitted from computer to computer, before it gets to the destination server. So, any computer can see the private data that you transfer to the server (passwords, credit card data, etc.). To avoid this, use SSL which encrypts data. This is sure to defend your data from thieves.

Step 3 - e-Commerce Platform
E-Commerce platform helps to control all products, categories, shipping and payment methods, checkout and other functions for your e-Commerce site. There are lots of e-Commerce platforms available, most of which have rich functionality and many features. It’s recommended to use one from these most popular e-Commerce platforms:

  • Magento
  • osCommerce
  • WooCommerce
  • Opencart

All of these applications process common tasks to manage any e-Commerce site.

Step 4 – Merchant Account and Payment Gateway
To have a possibility to process credit cards online you need a merchant account. A payment gateway is an e-Commerce application of service provider that authorizes credit card payments for e-businesses, online retailers, bricks and clicks, or traditional brick and mortar.
A payment gateway facilitates the transfer of information between a payment portal (such as a website, mobile phone or interactive voice response service) and the Front End Processor or an acquiring bank.

Step 5 – Digital Marketing
Digital marketing is a kind of marketing for promotion of products and services using electronic devices. The main purpose is to promote brands and increase sales. The main digital marketing activities are:

  • social media marketing: This process is aimed at attracting interest and traffic from social media websites; 
  • display advertising: It's a type of advertising displayed on websites;
  • search engine optimization and search engine marketing: Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of impact on the visibility of pages in the free search results. Search engine marketing (SEM) is a type of marketing that involves promoting websites by increasing their visibility in search pages through paid advertising;
  • influencer marketing: This kind of marketing is focused on the individual customer (or group of individual customers) instead of the target market

and many others kinds of digital media.

So, setting up an e-Commerce website these days takes no more than a few hours. But building a successful website takes time and planning.
Good luck!

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