Thinking of setting up your own ecommerce or on-line store? I set my first site up in July 2002 and this article shares some of my experiences.
Before you start, invest time in researching your market on line.
How many links do they have? Links are very important to success with Google.
A few tools that may help you with your research.
www.alexa.com – This site shows the popularity of websites.
A score below 100,000 means the site is reasonably busy.
A score below 10,000 means the site is extremely popular
A score of 1,000,000 or above means it gets very little traffic.
www.overture.com – This tool shows the number of searches each phrase has generated.
Choosing a domain name is important, you want a name that is easily memorable, short and if possible the name of your site. Don’t overpay.
My first site actually sells domain names and can be found at www.discountdomainsuk.com
Most people over-estimate the amount of traffic and the size of their website, so choose a basic package, you an always upgrade later.
Ask your web designer for example of their work, check to see the rankings these sites get. A nice looking site, that ranks highly is worth paying a bit extra for.
Ask the competition who they use?
Keep the costs down, agree a detailed spec with your designer up-front. Keep to it.
Why re-invent the wheel, most scripts for e-commerce sites can be bought very cheaply and the “look and feel” can also be acquired for very little cost.
Two good companies to use are www.paypal.com and www.worldpay.co.uk Charges are high but there are very few forms to complete and their acceptance rates are greater than 90%.
Make sure you get access to the traffic stats from your web-hosting company, these will allow you to monitor who is visiting your site, which pages they are viewing and how many of them there are.
Promoting your site
A great way to promote a new website is to use Google Adwords, this pay per click service changes you for each visitor it brings to your site, but prices start from only 4c.
Make sure you list your site in the major directories:-
A great place to get help and advice is on internet forums.
2 I can recommend:-
Keep your costs down as low as possible and have fun!
Clare Lawrence is CEO of Discount Domains Ltd – A leading UK provider of Domain name registration and Web Hosting solutions .
Please feel free to re-publish this article provided the above reference box remains together with working hyperlinks to http://www.discountdomainsuk.com from the key-phrases domain name registration and web hosting.