How to Design an E-Commerce Website – Guide

The Internet affects all areas of our lives. We use it for socializing, entertainment, work and research. We also use it for shopping. There is now a generation of adults who only know a world where the internet exists, and as they and future generations spend more, e-commerce will continue to grow. Currently, 43% of shoppers are using the internet and social media to research products before making a purchase, and by 2024, US e-commerce revenue will be worth $476 billion. Retailers cannot afford to go offline when trying to reach customers. E-commerce sites allow businesses to enter new markets and gain resilience through sales when their physical stores need to close. If you’re just starting a business, an e-commerce website can give you worldwide market and brand recognition before you even open a store. By launching a dedicated e-commerce site, you have the power to control every aspect of the customer experience, from branding to shipping and customer service. You can choose to build it yourself or hire a developer, but either way, knowing the process can help you make informed decisions, offering a website optimized for selling your products.

Best way to build an ecommerce website

Choose a name and get your domain

If you’re new to building an e-commerce website, your domain – also called a URL – is your web address. This is the “home” from your e-commerce website and is what shoppers type into their browser bar to visit your website. Choosing a good domain name is important for both your brand and overall success. If possible, choose a business name and domain that is closely related to what you are selling. By using descriptive keywords or key phrases in your business and domain name, your customers will know in advance what you are selling and this will help you rank well in search engines, which is vital for your marketing strategy. SEO of your business. For example, if you specialize in organic honey, you can search for names that include “organic honey” like Or, if you sell custom pet collars, you can try If you have a niche business, finding a keyword-based name for your ecommerce site is very easy. If you have some ideas for a name, you can buy your domain through a domain registrar like GoDaddy, Bluehost, or Google Domains. Just visit one of these sites and enter your company name. It will let you know if this domain is available. If your name is already in use, these sites will show options like .net or .co or an alternate name. It’s a good idea to stick with a .com if possible, as it’s the most common and trusted use. However, if you are set to a specific name and the .com address is used, the .net and .co options are generally accepted as well. Your domain name will typically cost between $12 and $25 per year, depending on the service and add-ons you choose, eg B. Domain Privacy. You may also find that whichever e-commerce platform you choose to build your e-commerce website will also include a free domain with your purchase, which brings us to the next point.

Choose your e-commerce platform

Your e-commerce platform is where your website “lives” online and you have many options to choose from. There are free e-commerce platforms with features and near-free ecommerce stores built on WordPress. You can add e-commerce features for popular website builders or opt for a dedicated ecommerce platform that can support unlimited growth.

To define up payment, tax, shipping and marketing tools

How you handle these tasks when creating your e-commerce website will depend on your e-commerce platform. Complete solutions like BigCommerce and Shopify come complete with integrated payment processing, tax calculations, shipping label printing, and marketing tools. Most others require the integration of some external services to handle these tasks.

Payment processing and tax table setup

All of the ecommerce website platforms covered above offer plug-and-play integration with major payment services such as Square, PayPal, and Stripe. Shopify even has its own payment solution, Shopify Payments. To enable payment processing using these solutions, just click on some buttons to set up your account and you are logged in. Most e-commerce platforms also allow you to connect your own payment gateway and merchant account. However, integrated and plug-and-play payment services are the simplest and often most cost-effective options for startups. after configuring up your payment processor, you will set up the sales tax rates to be collected from buyers. All e-commerce website platforms support charging sales tax and allow you to apply tax to select or all items and orders. The sales tax rates you charge depend on your state and, in most cases, your overall sales volume.

shipping configuration

You can – and should – integrate shipping software into your e-commerce platform to streamline the order fulfillment process. Integrated shipping seamlessly connects orders to the shipping software so you can select carriers and shipping methods, print labels, and automatically notify customers when their orders ship. BigCommerce, Shopify, and WooCommerce all offer integrated shipping, so the integration is already done for you and setup takes just a few minutes. Most other e-commerce platforms require you to connect a third-party solution such as ShipStation or ShippingEasy to print labels and trigger customer notifications. These integrations work well with most platforms, but can add monthly costs. Once your shipping solution is set up, you can create shipping rates to collect shipping rates from your customers. Most e-commerce sites allow you to add real-time fees, which is the actual cost of shipping each order. Or you can set up flat rates based on order totals or offer free shipping on all or some orders.

Email marketing and social media setup

As well as payments and shipping, some ecommerce website platforms offer robust built-in marketing tools. Complete solutions BigCommerce and Shopify lead the pack with complete marketing toolkits. You can easily create and use email lists to connect with customers, as well as sell products and send promotions on your social media accounts with just a few clicks. Other e-commerce platforms require a little more work to define up marketing features. For example, you can connect WooCommerce to top email marketing services like MailChimp using free plugins. However, you need paid plugins to connect your products directly to social media accounts for social commerce. Clearly, the time spent on this step depends on the ecommerce platform you choose. Building an ecommerce website with all the marketing bells and whistles is easy with dedicated ecommerce platforms. You’ll spend more time, effort – and maybe money – if you use other platforms.

Test and launch your e-commerce site

THE final step in building your ecommerce website starts with processing some test orders. Each e-commerce platform handles testing differently; However, they all allow you to run some pre-launch test orders through the system. These orders will connect to your payment processor but will not charge your card. Once you’ve successfully submitted a few test orders or fixed any errors found while browsing your e-commerce site, you’re ready to launch your store. Of course, launching your e-commerce site doesn’t mean instant sales. Search engines need time to find and index your new online store. can you speed it up up checking your new ecommerce store in Google Search Console and uploading an XML sitemap that ecommerce platforms provide for this purpose. In the meantime, you can also use social media and Google Adwords advertising to spread the word once your online store is live.

Final note

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