How To Set Up An Ecommerce Website
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How To Set Up An Ecommerce Website


Hey everybody, Mike Linville
here from Black Dog Education with this week’s installment of Office Hours where we answer
your questions about web design web development and online marketing this week’s question
comes from Todd. Todd writes I have a consulting business and I want to be able to accept payments
online what are my options so anytime we talk about e-commerce or accepting payments online
it really boils down to two main questions we really need to focus on. The first question
is do you need a shopping cart because adding a shopping cart and be able to accept payments
online, those are like two separate things you can absolutely accept payments without
a shopping cart. Let me give you an example if you’ve ever made a payment online for a
utility bill or a phone bill or something like that, they don’t ask you a bunch of questions
after the fact. They don’t ask you if you want to add additional stuff to your cart.
You’re in, you’re out, you’re good to go, that’s an example of a cart-less payment.
Now on the other end of the spectrum with shopping carts, if you’ve ever gone to something
like this zappos.com or Amazon.com you know as soon as you click on something and you
say add this to my cart the next thing that happens is they ask you like six different
questions they ask you do you want to know what other people have bought this, or do
you want to continue browsing? Or here are somethings else you might be interested and
they’re like complimentary pieces whatever the case may be. That’s an example of a full-blown
shopping cart. Why do we want to know this? Here’s the thing, as small-business owners
smart development isn’t overdevelopment smart development is actually just giving you the
right tool for the right job so in this case shopping carts add another layer of complexity
to your website they take longer time to develop they take additional graphical design time
and ongoing maintenance. So if you don’t need a shopping cart don’t do it. It’s just going
to end up costing you more money. Question number two is one of budget right like most
things in life we always have options so let’s say for example you do not need a shopping
cart, no shopping cart needed you really have a couple options. One is to go with just an
online service like PayPal, that’s the one most people are comfortable with now with
PayPal you’ve got no setup fees, you’ve got no or very limited monthly fees depending
upon which service you choose the big problem with PayPal is that you have to take people
away from your website in order to transact the business right. There’s no branding and
is kind of a little bit of a hiccup in the process you want to be nice and smooth when
you’re asking people for money the second option is a little more expensive it’s what
I consider a professional payment processor. Things like Authorize.Net where you can completely
automate the payment process into your website completely branded people don’t have to leave
your website in order to transact the problem with that is there are set-up fees and there’s
monthly fees and you’re going to have those fees until you stop using the service anymore
so you know there is that fee, the cost of doing business with something like that now
let’s take a look at if you want to have a shopping cart would you offer more to products
and you want to try and get people to buy multiple things at one time you again have
two options here. The first option is with what we would consider a self hosted shopping
a card things like magento, or X-Cart. It’s a software application kind of WordPress where
you just load it on to your web server and you can go ahead and customize it. Now the
cool thing is you can completely brand it, you can do the design work, but you’ve got
to be able to be able to maintain it. You’ve got a one-time fee to purchase the software,
but you’re going to have to get it integrated and configured, you’ve got to pay to have
the design work done, so it integrates well with your cart, and then you’ve got to do
the ongoing maintenance to make sure you’re PCI compliant and all that other stuff. The
second option if you’re looking for a shopping cart system is you can go with a third party
shopping cart. These would be things like oneshoppingcart.com infusion soft something
like that now with these guys they’re going to be a little less branded right. And linking
somebody over to another website to take care of your business but what’s really good about
these things is there’s developers that are working on it since all the time you don’t
have to worry about the maintenance they usually have a more functionality they’ve got like
mailing and that kind of stuff kind of integrated. It’s really more of a rounded solution. So
let’s get back to Todd’s questions. So Todd is a consultant so my guess is Todd probably
doesn’t need a shopping cart so without a shopping cart that gives us two options you
can either go something like PayPal’s relatively inexpensive easy to get started or you go
something like Authorize.Net. Personally I tell my clients if you can afford it, go with
Authorize.Net because it’s just a more branded solution it makes comes customers feel more
comfortable you can take care of them on your website it just looks more professional if
you can’t afford it use PayPal, at least you’re getting a payment but for me I like to go
with Authorize.Net. I personally use Authorize.Net myself. So that’s my two cents worth on the
topic. I hope this video serves you if you like this video make sure that you like it,
pass it around to your friends, tell me what you think by adding a comment below, and if
you have any questions that you’d like answered in this type of a format just go to our Facebook
wall at Facebook.com/BlackDogEducation write your question and and we’ll go ahead and answer
it in this type of a format. Again, this is Mike Linville of Black Dog Education thanks
for stopping by, we’ll see you next time.

11 Comments

  • The Pom Pommery

    Thanks for a great video! I was hoping you might be able to help. I just started a self-hosted website via hostgator. I bought a domain name and paid for redirection so that it takes people to my wordpress account when they visit my blog. I wanted to open a store and installed magento but it keeps saying that the page cannot be found when the link is clicked. I must be doing something wrong but i have no idea what! Hoping you might be able to enlighten me!

  • joseph treasurecharms

    can you do a vid on the other side,  multi items with a shopping cart,  and do you recommend doing it with plugins with a wordpress base, do you even recomend word press for a ecomerce site  and ps, hair looks way better cut short

  • Alex Razvan Cirstea

    Hi there ! Thanks for the useful tutorials. I am working on my website now, and for the moment I want to have a cart that has only the cash on delivery option.  What cart should I use too keep it simple with just one option, for cash on delivery? Thanks a lot

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