Choosing the Best Ecommerce Website Builder
Many choices in eCommerce Software
We're going to look at in choosing the best eCommerce software solutions and website builders. There are many choices available, and it can quickly become overwhelming, especially for those who are just starting out. There are three things to consider:
- Complete Package
- Major Components
- Important Components
Everyone has a different level of knowledge and experience when it comes to building an eCommerce website. Therefore, not everyone needs the same components. Being aware of what is necessary, and what is not can save time, money, and headaches.
eCommerce Web Design
Those who are new to eCommerce may opt to choose the complete eCommerce software solution. This package would contain the shopping cart software, hosting for the website, SSL certificate, and the website builder to build and manage everything. This would be the easiest and most effective for those who do not understand the complexities of building a website and managing a shopping cart. This is important because the same company can handle all of the aspects of the website. Often, when using more than one, when a problem arises, they tend to finger-point instead of solve the problem.
Those who do have some experience may opt for other solutions, listed below, depending on their needs.
Major Components of eCommerce Software
Any package you consider in eCommerce website building or eCommerce software should have these components. If it does not, move on to the next company. Not having these components in the beginning will cause major problems later.
- Payment Integration: Any package should include, at the very least, these payment gateways: Paypal basic, Paypal Pro, Google Checkout, Authorize.net, First Data (Link Point)
- SSL: A method of ensuring that private information sent through your website via the payment gateway to the bank cannot be accessed by unauthorized people online
- PCI Compliance:
- Order Management
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Important eCommerce Components
There is a very long list of components which you may, or may not choose for your eCommerce Website Builder, depending on your familiarity with building an eCommerce site. We are providing the entire list that you can check off as you decide it is something you need or not.
- Number of products (think of future growth of the company)
- Product options (size, color, etc.)
- Gift Certificates
- Downloadable products
- Sales Tax added
- Shipping Calculator
- Shipping Estimator
- Shopping Rewards
- Inventory Control
Yes, the list IS long, but try to consider the possible growth of your company. The options above and below can be added at any time, but it makes things run much more smoothly to have them ready to go right at the start.
- Product Reviews
- Mailing Lists
- International settings (VAT)
- Payment Methods
- Recurring Billing
- Up-sell Items
- Customized Cart
- Currency (Euro, Dollar, etc.)
- Quickbooks Integration
- Social Networking Integration
We are in the process of completing a comprehensive comparison of eCommerce Shopping Cart solutions. This will be completed by the end of Q1. Until that time, here are some we would recommend.
eDirectHost Their eCommerce Software solution is user friendly and offers a 10 Day free trial. It offers shopping cart, SSL, hosting, and more
Makeaneasywebsite is geared toward home-based businesses, but is otherwise similar to eDirectHost.
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