Get Your Online Store Up and Running in One Hour at Low Cost
The internet generates more money and business every year, it is now a big part of the global economy. From the multi-billion dollar corporation to the store next door everyone is getting a piece of the world wild pie. The following text has one goal and it is to demystify everything involving the creation of an online store and perhaps give you the motivation to set up your own.
The first thing you need to know about setting up a E-Commerce is that it’s very cheap, in fact its free if you already have a web hosting account that support MySQL database and plan on using PayPal as payment method. If you don’t have a domain name you can get one for 7$ a year and a web hosting account for less than 10$ a month. I strongly suggest you to get a hosting service that come with fantastico, the installation process will be much more faster and easier. If you plan on getting direct credit cards payment you need to buy a SSL certificate, if your server doesn’t have one, this is usually around 50$ a year. Note that you can take credit card payments with PayPal without having to buy a SSL certificate.
OK now you have your web hosting account and a domain name next step is the installation. If you have fantastico, on your hosting panel (cPanel) you just need to select one of the three supported store (cubecart, Os Commerce and Zen Cart). Each store have there advantages. I personally use Zen cart because of the payments method options. Next you need to choose the domain name and directory where you want the store to be installed. You will be asked to choose a username and password and then you click install, that’s it. If you don’t have fantastico, first check if your hosting company has E-Commerce support, if not you just need to go directly to one of the store website and download the files for free and follow there installation tutorial. If you experience any problems during or after the installation you can always get help in there community forum.
Finally you need to setup your store, to do so you will have to login into your E-Commerce as an administrator. The first thing to do is to choose how you gonna receive payments from your customers. There are many options, for example in Zen Cart 1.3.8 just to name a few, you have PayPal Website Payments (With credit card support), e-check, (SIM), Check/Money order, you can add as many you want. If you gonna ship items you also have many options such as flat fee, per items, zone rates etc. At last you need to add your products in the catalog with the description, price and picture Et Voilà your store is up and running. There are many other settings however those are the main one to get use to in the beginning.