Starting your first ecommerce website

Your First Ecommerce Website

There are far more consumers shopping online than those venturing into the brick and mortar storefronts. With that being said, it seems starting your first ecommerce website just makes sense. While there are many options to setup your first ecommerce website, we will discuss one simple way to get started as a means to start selling products and make that cash.

Starting Your First Ecommerce Website

Build Your Idea

Prior to even diving into the web development side of your ecommerce website, you must build your idea. Take time away from the computer to think about the type of products or service you wish to sell using your ecommerce website. There are many ways you can sell products, think about whether you will be selling other people’s products using dropship options or if you wish to sell products you handcrafted on your own. Knowing what your idea for this ecommerce site is will help you to move onto the next step in starting your first ecommerce website.

Domain and Hosting Purchase

If you don’t already have a website created on a hosting plan, then you will have to purchase your domain (website URL) and hosting account. There are many companies that offer these two services, do your homework on each company and ask around in Facebook groups to other entrepreneurs who already sell via ecommerce websites so you know which hosting makes sense for your business. Hosting and domain purchase will more than likely be the largest upfront cost in starting your first ecommerce website, but it will be well worth the investment if done properly.

Setup Payment Method

You will want to have a merchant account that accepts credit card payments or a PayPal business account to use as a means to accept online payments. You must be a registered business to have a merchant account, so keep that in mind. There are many payment method options available online, with this you will also want to ask around in Facebook groups to see what others are using for ecommerce payment methods and evaluate which one will work best for you.

Select your Shopping Cart

Now that you have determined how you will accept online payments, it’s time to build your ecommerce website. Obviously you need to have a shopping cart of sorts enabled on your website to ensure people can add items or services to the cart. With self-hosted WordPress sites there’s a WooCommerce plugin that many will use as its ease of use with self-hosted WordPress is nearly seamless. Again, you can ask around to see what others are using for a shopping cart to determine which one will work best for your first ecommerce website. 

Build your Website

Last, but certainly not least, you must design and build your ecommerce page. This will be what consumers will see upon arrival to your first ecommerce website.  Whether you have chosen to do a subdomain or a new website altogether, make sure the design has been created and works seamlessly. Conduct sample checkouts to purchase your own products, and see if there are any kinks that need to be fixed. You should also have your terms of use and faq page available. Once your first ecommerce website is designed and functioning properly you may work to promote this shop online to consumers.