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E‑Commerce Websites

E-commerceE‑commerce web­sites make money online by selling physical or virtual goods. Virtual products include things like event and appointment bookings, down­loadable products, club or site content sub­scrip­tions, crowd­funding, dir­ectory entries and more. Please contact me about your virtual product sales ideas; for sim­plicity, this page mostly deals with online sales of physical products.

The basics of e‑commerce are “Buy now” buttons, payment methods and a shopping cart for volume sales. Beyond those, pro­fes­sional e‑commerce systems help you to manage:

  • Products — usually in several cat­egories, often with vari­ations
  • Taxes and Shipping — at dif­ferent rates, espe­cially when trading inter­na­tionally
  • Cus­tomers and their Orders

These standard fea­tures allow sales; to make sales, your mar­keting must match your market. So, most systems offer lots of optional or plug-in mar­keting tools like dis­count coupons. If you need unique order or quo­tation pro­cessing, please ask me about bespoke web devel­opment.

Simple E‑commerce

Security is vital for online sales. One solution is to build a basic editable site and link that to an external, secure shopping system. This incurs extra third-party service fees, but sim­plifies the initial setup. Such systems can be quite flexible, though less so than fully “self-hosted” systems. I build Simple Web Shops on my Pro Hosting Plus plan.

Pro E‑commerce

More advanced web shops often need to manage stock levels and vari­ations for hun­dreds or thou­sands of products. You may also need a shop that can handle special sales, up-sells, cross-sells, feeds to product com­parison sites and more. Do you need logins for several staff with dif­ferent levels of access to the system, or dif­ferent prices for trade cus­tomers? These situ­ations benefit from the extra flex­ib­ility of self-hosted solu­tions.

Such systems also need “SSL” security. This pro­tects your cus­tomers’ details and shows the “padlock” icons as a “trust mark”, which increases sales. I build Pro E‑Commerce solu­tions on my Business Hosting Plus plan, which includes SSL security and other vital fea­tures.

Advanced Online Marketing

There are many forms of e‑commerce apart from standard web shops. These include review sites reselling affiliate products, drop-shipping and feeds from your main shop to sell through social media channels. I can even build mar­ket­places that let you build a com­munity of sellers by offering a sales channel in return for a fee. Please contact me for indi­vidual quo­ta­tions on such pro­jects.

Got a great idea based on online sales?

Tell me your E‑commerce plans