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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 “trust marks” (e.g. “pad­lock” icons) to con­firm this, which increase sales. I build Pro E-Com­merce solu­tions on my Busi­ness Host­ing Plus plan, which includes SSL secur­ity and oth­er vital fea­tures.

Got a great idea based on online sales?

Tell me your E-com­merce plans

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.