Posted on 21. Feb, 2012 by in eCommerce Solutions

In the 1st part of this guide, you’ve read basic 2 steps for choosing your domain name and your hosting provider. Now, we’ll drill down into next critical steps of setting up shopping cart website setup, setting up your merchant account and setting up SSL certificate for your website!! here we go…

Step #3: Open Source/ Off-the-Shelf Shopping Cart or your OWN CUSTOM Shopping Cart?

An important thing to consider while building e-commerce portals! This decision directly affects your programming budget, build timelines and the software delivery.

  • If you’ve very few products to be sold online (less than 5 products), consider using plain website with a form based shopping process instead of complete shopping cart integration. These 4-5 products can be hard-coded into your website which after purchase directly takes user to the payment page. The only disadvantage with this kind of solution is your users cannot keep shopping cart history on the website for future references. However, you can integrate simple shopping cart mechanism from PayPal here. PayPal also provides shopping cart system including their payment gateway and it’s pretty easy to integrate.
  • For larger product catalogue or a multi-brand stores, we recommend going for a full featured shopping cart solutions. There are quite many open source e-commerce solutions like Magento Commerce, ZenCart, osCommerce, which offers fully loaded functional packages for each & every process including you Sales, Orders, Product Management, Customer Relationship, Website Management, etc. Their modular structure helps your programmer to build your custom requirement as well. And being open source, community driven packages you get continuous upgrades & improved versions without spending any additional costs.
  • If you feel your business has a unique model and if you don’t want to rely on off-the-shelf products, then you can always have a programming team to build your tailor-made requirement. However, being a custom requirement, you’ll have to be very clear on the requirement from the start of the project to build it the way you need it. The only dis-advantage here is you might be re-inventing the same wheels again and spending a fortune to build a software system which is already developed by someone else in the market.


Step #4: Merchant Account and Payment Gateway

$$$$ are important for success of any business venture. If your website visitors are not getting converted into orders bringing more $$$ to your accounts, then there is no point in just showcasing your product catalogue. Online payment feature is a key for the success of any ecommerce ventures.

You need to tie up with some Merchant Account and Payment Gateway provider company in order to accept credit card, bank transfer payments online in real time.

Be careful while choosing you payment gateway partner:

  • Make sure the company you’re associating with is an authentic and follows all compliances as per the law.
  • See if the company provides virtual terminal feature. This is useful when your customer is not able to process order through the website for some reason but wants you to complete his order by charging his card manually.
  • Compare & consider the initial setup fee and per transaction fee being levied by the gateway company. When you’ve huge transactions/sales on the website, per transaction fee really matters big time.
  • Some of the most popular payment gateway providers available are PayPal,, which you can consider for your website.
  • You can also consider your banking gateway, which could help you with the better per transaction fees. For Indian Market, Banking Payment Gateway providers like ICICI, HDFC, Axis are good and widely used by many companies.


Step #5: Website Secure Certificates (SSL)

Using Secure certificates for ecommerce websites is highly recommended, it adds authenticity to your website and makes the transactions secure. Various Industry surveys shows that the sales conversion rate is higher for the sites, which uses private secure certificates.

Some of the companies who offer SSL certificates which you can consider using are VeriSign, Comodo, GeoTrust, etc.


Follow Next Steps here to know more about integrating website analytics and boosting up your webstore sales with online promotions and conducting post launch reviews…


About the Author:

Santosh Kompalwar is working as Director of Techview Web Solutions Pvt Ltd and the Technology Solutions Experts for the various organizations. Santosh is Co-Founder/CTO of The Real Recruiter, the real estate industry’s complete recruiting technology platform. Santosh is also Co-Founder of CodiScan – A Mobile Marketing & Loyalty Program. He can be reached at +91-9665040106 or e-mail him at Visit his website at and

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