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E-Commerce Confusion. HELP ME PLEASE!

by darling24 / March 5, 2009 8:42 AM PST

Hi there,

So far, almost everything I've read both here and elsewhere on the net has confused me beyond belief. I am a young woman whom is attempting to start her own e-commerce business. I think that I may have found the designer.... but if you have any suggestions, they would be much appreciated.

My main issues are with finding the best and most reliable e-commerce software and a hosting server. At first I was going to go with Storefront.net, but after reading the reviews on here, it seems like too much of a gamble.

For e-commerce software, I need:

- easy to use background software. Where I can change the products myself, view sales, etc. And be able to automatically send emails to my drop-shipper
- able to add a blog and video content
- able to have at least 250 products
- customer reviews for the products
- easily designed software (for my designer)
- add-on merchandise for product selection
- sale and discount codes
- a view all products button (in each category)
- etc.

For hosting, I don't even know what I really need. Essentially something that is reliable, will not go out of service, can grow as my business does, super duper fast (who doesn't hate shopping at a slow site), etc.

Of course, price is a issue as well, as I am doing this all by myself.

If you can be honest and truly help me, I would be forever grateful. Thank you so much!

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Things you might look into....
by brydave01 / March 9, 2009 12:53 AM PDT

I have recently been implementing a e-commerce site for a business, and have come across a few e-commerce platforms that might be what you are looking for. I am really new to e-commerce as well, so maybe just take this as a place to start...

1. Magento is an OS e-commerce website that I have themed but have not actually implemented - yet. It has really easy back-end functionality and is really nice looking (although it's not the easiest to design the frontend) It also has a lot of features like cross-selling, and newsletters, etc... you can check that out at www.magentocommerce.com

2. Since it sounds like you have some extra needs like a blog and video, you may also want to check out "drupal" at drupal.org. This is a CMS system that is fairly easy to use, and you can add in e-commerce functionality like zen-cart or ubercart. Although, I can't say I have actually used drupal for e-commerce, designing the site isn't terribly difficult.

Both of these systems are free, however, they also do not have support. You have to go through their online documentation which is sufficient in drupal and lacking in magento. Although Magento doesn't have the documentation they do offer support - at a cost. At the very least it won't cost you anything to check them out!

Hope that helped a little...

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by ilovefcp / March 31, 2009 6:31 AM PDT

I am falling in Love with Magento....Guys its really awesome !

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heard about this?
by iselin89 / March 10, 2009 6:14 AM PDT

Ever heard about niche blueprint? It is some really great stuff if you are new to this:)

Here is an example of how a site can look by following niche blueprint:

<a target="_new" href="http://www.online-familytents.com">family tents</a>


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by avjam / April 10, 2009 1:28 PM PDT

Hi, i also run an e-commerce site, through trial & error, i'm giving you the following advice, DIY is better in the long run, e-commerce software, OS Commerce is free, unlimited products can be added etc., in terms of design, you'll have to purchase a template which can run from $140 up depending where you buy it from but you can make due with the design it comes with, pretty simple, if your familiar with HTML, am sure you can add & modify the e-commerce pages without difficulty such as adding video etc., e-commerce doesnt have the option to add discounts, however OSMAX2 & Zencart (other FREE e-commerce software) has these options, I have used all three, i prefer OS Commerce, Zen cart would be my second choice.
In terms of hosting, i have to recommend VPS (virtual private server) which is fairly inexpensive (could run from $30 a month up), as i said do it yourself will help you in the long run.

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web design and hosting
by jwescat / May 11, 2009 8:00 AM PDT
In reply to: E-Commerce

Hi -- did you use one program to design your site and another to add the commerce component, like a shoppign cart?

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ECommerce Solutions
by jwescat / May 11, 2009 7:58 AM PDT

Hi -- I am in a similar position as you. I want to start an on-line business and I feel like I do not have a good handle on the difference between Joomla and Dreamweaver, etc. I would love to know what you decided to do and how it is going so far.


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by carolinnah / December 2, 2015 5:52 AM PST

You can prefer a hosting which is a dedicated server. And you can pick multivendor ecommerce script

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