The eCommerce industry is growing at a prolific rate thanks to the change in people’s shopping methods and, most importantly, the worldwide pandemic that has forced people to remain indoors most of the time. If you want to be a part of this happening industry, 2020 is a wonderful time to build your eCommerce website. According to statistics, there are 24million eCommerce sites worldwide, and the number is increasing every day. There is a lot of room for growth because most sites sell less than around $1000 annually.
Start with selecting the product.
Before building your very own eCommerce website, it is essential to select a product that has a stable demand in the market. The website’s complexity or simplicity will be decided by the products you will be selling online. Ensure that the product has a local, nationwide, and international market if you want to truly expand your business. Also, you need to sell at competitive prices, or else local sellers will beat you to it.
You can either sell the product from your website or add them to other shopping portals like Amazon or Flipkart. This decision comes in handy during inventory management when you start the actual selling.
What about domain and hosting?
The business name is crucial to the website’s success because it would be uttered by everybody who has anything to do with your business. Hence, the name must be catchy and soothing to the ear and have relevance to the products you will be selling. If you are selling a sole product, then the business name becomes even more significant.
Purchasing the domain for your website comes next! The business and domain name must be the same since it is more convenient for buyers to remember the website and brand together. You can use descriptive keywords in it so that customers understand straightaway what you sell. For instance, the name www.magicbricks.com tells you very clearly that it has something to do with houses and buildings.
Sharing the domain is another option, but it is profitable if you share it with a well-known one. Most people share domains if their financial resources are limited. Possessing a customized domain name has a massive significance for search engine optimization (SEO) because it will help in the branding part and rank better on the search engines. There are several domains registering services like Bluehost, GoDaddy, or Google Domains.
Along with the domain, you also must take care of the hosting. Some of the hosting requirements that need to be kept in mind are database scalability, support of the software, performance management, administrative complexity, security, and accessibility to error log files. Packages of various price ranges are available, so you must pick carefully. Also, you need PCI or Payment Card Industry compliant hosting since you will be into eCommerce. Some of the well-known hosting service providers include GoDaddy, Wirehive, and Rackspace.
Get an eCommerce platform.
The eCommerce platform is where your site will come to life, and you can have your online store. There are a host of options to choose from, depending on the features you need. If you avail of free eCommerce platforms, then the number of features will be limited. Usually, WordPress is one of the contenders, although it is not a full-blow eCommerce system. Several other platforms like Shopify, BigCommerce, 3dcart, and more exist that are focused on eCommerce.
However, most websites are built using WordPress. 14.7% of the top websites worldwide are made using WordPress. That is why many leading web development agencies consider WordPress even when it comes to eCommerce. WooCommerce, which is an eCommerce plugin on WordPress, helps implement this.
Capabilities of WooCommerce
If you build the website using WordPress, then there are a host of eCommerce plugins available which can totally make your site functional at a low cost.
WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that offers complete eCommerce functionality and helps the website scale any limits. It is engineered to enhance performance and comes equipped with various shipping methods, 100+ gateways, an excellent backend for managing orders, refunds, email management, powerful analytics, and more. Other useful plugins for eCommerce include OptinMonster, WPeCommerce, and more.
We had discussed the capabilities of WooCommerce in details in this article.
Downside of WordPress
Using WordPress allows web development agencies to leverage their existing knowledge. Since WooCommerce has a thriving and capable eco-system, it is possible to have a full eCommerce website for your business. However, since WordPress has many other functionalities, you might have to put in more effort to manage the infrastructure as your business scales.
Other platforms that web development agencies like
Dedicated platforms are easier to handle because of the built-in systems like shipping labels, secure payment gateways, multichannel sales support, and email marketing. The eCommerce portals come with their own set of page templates, making it easy to create the web pages and get started with uploading the products.
Shopify is the best-suited for beginners. It is the best there is for on-demand printing, drop shipping, etc. If you require more than one payment gateways, then this is the right place. Its cost also includes hosting.
BigCommerce, on the other hand, is the best for multichannel sellers. If you are in an expansion mode, then you should go for BigCommerce. It has the maximum number of built-in features than any eCommerce platform, along with the best SEO tools.
Most of the eCommerce platforms and hosting services are equipped with SSL certificates. It is essential for preventing the interception of information shared by the customer. It is designed to offer protection to all subdomains and domains. Sites that enjoy SSL certificates have a padlock sign on their address bar.
Ensure that you have an Internet Merchant Account or IMA since you will be collecting money from people over the internet. These accounts are different from regular merchant accounts. You can get an IMA account by contacting large retail banks.
Once you have access to the IMA, you will need a PSP or payment, service provider. eCommerce sites like Shopify have their own payment solutions, and you can take their help. But if you are using a platform like Magneto, you will have to get your own payment gateway. Some of the best payment service providers include Stripe, PayPal, NetPay, etc.
Setting up an eCommerce portal is amazingly easy nowadays, thanks to the various platforms available. With your decision-making skills in the right direction, it can be done successfully in a brief period.