Electronic commerce, or e-commerce, refers to the process of marketing and selling products or services online through a website that is hosted on server. An e-commerce website is able to receive payments through a merchant gateway, such as PayPal for instance, or through other types, such as e-checks and credit cards.
The process of opening an e-commerce is slightly more complicated than having a personal website. Here are some important tips you should know before establishing an online store:
- Decide how you want to receive payments from your online customers. If you have a merchant account, the process of setting up your online payment account is easy. Another option is to get a third party online merchant account such as PayPal, Authorize.net, Verisign Pro, or other to handle payments for you;
- Consider hiring a web designer who is an expert in constructing e-commerce websites. Otherwise, you will have to rely on e-commerce templates;
- Obtain the right web host provider who offers an e-commerce package.
Speaking of web hosting providers, finding the right one requires you to do your research with due diligence. There are many web host providers offering e-commerce solutions, you just need to find the one that fits your budget and is able to meet your business’ needs and anticipated growth.
Here are some tips to find the best web hosting for your online store:
- Determine how many products you are planning to sell as the price for your e-commerce package is proportional to volume. The best web host provider offers several options;
- Consider an e-commerce host who offers a free trial period. This is important to find out if their e-commerce control panel or dashboard is easy to navigate;
- If you do not want to hire a web designer for your online store, consider a web hosting provider that offers ready made templates;
- If you have a large inventory, consider a web host provider that offers not only e-commerce solution but a dedicated server. This will give you greater bandwidth than being on a shared server with other online merchants;
- Seek a web hosting provider with an e-commerce solution that includes a free integrated online payment gateway;
- Consider a web host with customizable e-commerce template(s). This is important if you are selling personalized products;
- Consider a web hosting service that offers a SSL certificate to safeguard the online transaction;
- Choose a web host provider that is reliable, has an excellent customer service reputation amongst the online community, and will help you grow your business to success.
Finding the right web hosting service for your e-commerce will be faster with these tips. It will be useful to consult our list of web hosts and compare them closely in order to choose the best solution for your e-commerce’s needs. HostGator.com and iWeb.com are two of the best web hosting providers to consider for your e-commerce website.