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If you have an idea to create a digital business and want to set up a new website around it, then you have come to the right article. We at HowToHosting will show you the process of necessary steps required to create an online business site to sell your merchandise.
What Is Online Store?
If you are reading this guide, you should be well aware by now regarding what exactly is an online store and how it functions. But we are obliged to still explain in case you have no idea – an online retailer or online store (like eBay or Amazon) is a virtual place (a webpage), where you can purchase merchandise of all types and have it delivered to you. If this is the type of business you are looking for, keep reading this article, as we guide you deeper in the process of what you will need to set up your first store.
What Do You Need to Create an Online Store
- #1 Domain Name
- #2 CMS Platform
- #3 Choosing an E-commerce Theme
- #4 Website Hosting
First and foremost, to create a store, you will need to set up and come up with a good domain name.
But what is a good domain name? The domain name is what defines your brand name and it will be how people remember you.
So if you make it short and snappy, it is much much easier for others to remember it. Furthermore, be advised that a short and catchy domain name is the first thing that users will see and they are also very good for Google. The main idea is to rank your site higher in terms of SEO and make it be there, on top.
Another interesting fact is that the domain name of your site should not be a domain name with a bad reputation.
If people search for your site and see a name and site that will leave a bad impression on your site, you can just forget about creating a site in the first place.
Starting with your shop you need to choose weather WordPress, Magento, or Wix you are going to use. These are the best platforms for creating online stores. If you are focusing big site with a lot of traffic and sells better choose Magento. But if you are focusing on fast site creation the Wix is the best solution for you.
Here you will find out how to create your webpages with WIX. In both cases you can use WordPress and WooCommrece for creating your store.
A very important detail that we would like to accent on and probably the most important for your store to actually make you money is setting up WooCommerce. Don’t worry, it is not that difficult, since most WordPress hosting companies offer it bundled with the install (see the instructions at the bottom).
To best explain it, WooCommerce is the type of plugin that contains the needed tools to set up the whole customer-store relationship and purchase process. It comes pre-embedded with most WordPress installations and it is a plugin that is very user-friendly and allows you to track and set-up each sale link on your shop.
Another very important step in creating an e-commerce site is to choose a good and decent hosting service. Whatever CMS you are using there are hosting services with optimized plans.
The main idea here is to choose a good hosting company that offers WordPress or Magento. Here are the main qualities to look for in a good hosting company:
- Free SSL
- 24/7 support
- They have good support and are open minded when it comes to solving problems
- They offer free CDN to maintain speed of your site across the planet
- They offer backups that are free
- They often offer daily backups
- They have decent prices
- They offer e-mail services
- Their bandwidth is a lot or even unlimited
- They have more than 99% UpTime
- One-click easy install and setup of your site
Choose E-commerce Theme
Your site is now thought out, but it still needs something – a theme. The best way to build up your online store is to choose a e-commerce theme. If you are using Magento choose Magento e-commerce theme
This can happen quite easily as you can choose a theme when you install your site, as most web hosting providers offer.
Be advised that themes are readily available at your WordPress or Magento (as shown below in the steps). And if you want an even bigger choice, feel free to browse in Theme Forest for more themes.
Use a Website Builder to Create Your Online Store
Starting a site is not that easy for everyone, because not everybody has coding knowledge. For this purpose, there are drag & drop page builders that you can help create your shop at ease. Without using any coding. But before start with the drag and drop builders here we have some questions to answer.
Which Is the Best Site Builder?
Depending on what you are going to use, a building software, or a WordPress plugin you can choose the best one for you. The building software is a platform that has the functions to help you build your site by dragging and dropping elements. The best drag and drop building software on the market is WIX
But if you want to use WordPress instead of a building software you will need drag and drop plugin, which pretty much do the same work. The best drag and drop plugin is Elementor.
If you want to find more info about the drag and drop site builders get in here and find the best ones in the market.
How to Optimize and Advertise Your Online Store
Creating an webpage is one, but optimizing its a whole different ball game.
To optimize your site and fit your needs, you will need to think about its future and how you see it. You will need to make sure that the site is fast and very reliable so that your visitors do not feel like “meh, I’m going to Google to find another site, this one is crap”. Optimizing your site not only makes sure that your pages load fast, but it also makes sure the experience is more pleasant for the visitors and they are more likely to remain on your site.
Here are 3 main tips to optimize your site:
Tip #1: Try to make your pages simple and not long and boring. Make them with snappy eye-catching content and split long texts.
Tip #2: Try not to use external links or images unless absolutely necessary. Original content is the most sought after content.
Tip #3: Use some sort of caching plugin. This will help keep your cache at a minimum level. One way to do it is via WP-Rocket cache plugin. It helps manage your cache adequately.
Now, lets talk “marketing”. Marketing is a very important detail when setting up your first e-commerce site. The main reason for that is because to keep your customers flowing and to establish a good reputation for your site, you need to have a good way to reach your customers out there.
How is this achieved? Here are the main points you should follow for a successful marketing:
- Set up promotions and discounts
- Make sure to set up a first-buy promotion of some sorts
- Drop hidden discount codes across your online sales site pages
- Follow the latest trends to choose the best products to market and sell
- Add deals for the number of items to sell more (ex.: pay for 2, get 3)
- Follow the seasonal promotions (Black Friday, Summer sale…)
Instructions to Create Online Store
Now that we have shown you the steps that you need to perform so that you can create and optimize your online store along with some tips to keep it flowing, it is time to start it. To create a site for an online store, you should follow the steps below. They have the mandatory actions needed for creating your site as we explained them above. We wish you to be successful with your online store.
How to Create a Website Using SiteGround:
What do you need before starting a website.
Before starting site setup process, we strongly advise that you complete the following preparation steps:
- Have a clear idea for the site's domain name. For example, good tip is to make it short and with focused keywords.
- Make sure to have an active credit or debit card so that you can make online purchases with it.
- Make sure you prepare a computer that has stable internet connection.
Step 1: Purchase a domain name and web hosting type.
Step 2: Install WordPress and an appropriate visual theme for your website.
How to Add Content to Your Website?
With WordPress, you generally have the ability to add the following types of content to your newly created website:
Below you can see instructions on how you can create a post or page and add media.
How to Create a New Post in WordPress?
Creating a WordPress post is easy - just follow the steps below.
1. Click on the "+ New" icon on top and select "Post".
2. Fill your post with a short and SEO title, based on the topic your website is for and add content to the post. The more elements the content has, like links and pictures, the better. When done, click on "Publish" when you want your post to be public and seen by everybody. You can also click on "Preview" to check how your post looks visually before publishing it.
How to Create a New Page in WordPress?
Creating a page is almost the same as creating a post, but with few important differences. Below you can find the steps on how to do it.
1. Click on the "+ New" icon on top and select "Page".
2. Fill your page with beautiful content plus a good title and click "Publish". You can also preview it, just like with the posts.
Since this is a page, make sure to create content that is more general. You can also create different types of pages, like a file download page, a report page, etc. To best explain pages, let's say you have a website for food reviews and a page would be describing general information about different categories of foods (fruits, vegetables, meat and so-on).
How to Add New Media in WordPress?
You can add media via two main ways - from the Wordpress menu or from the "Add Media" button within Posts and Pages. The later option is more commonly used, due to the fact that it is significantly more convenient. Below are the steps for it.
1. While in a post or page, click the "Add Media" button.
2. From the menu that appears, click "Upload Files" and then click "Select Files":
3. Select the file you want uploaded and click "Open":
4. Modify the file alignment (left, right, center), size, what should happen if someone clicks it and other preferences and when ready click on the "Insert into page" button. For posts, it is "Insert into post":
When done, the media should appear in the body of your post or page. WordPress also allows you to add audio and other file types, but be careful with the server space and use small size files due to the risk of filling up your server drive.
In case you want to Add New Media from the WordPress menu, you have to go the "Media" panel and repeat the beforementioned steps to do so:
FAQ’s How to Create a Website
What is a Website?
A website is mainly made from web pages that contain related content all classified by a unique domain name (A domain name is your website name. It is the address where Internet users can access your website). On a website, you can post contrasting content connected with the sphere of your website.
There are different types of websites, which you can find on the networking space like:
Interesting Fact: The first website uploaded on the internet went live on August 6, 1991.
How Much Does It Cost to Create a Website?
To find out how much it will cost to create a website, firstly you need to have a clear idea about the type of your website. What it is going to be: e-commerce, blog, educational, etc.
After choosing the best hosting provider, it's time for the right theme for your site, and the plugins, then you can estimate how much it will cost to start your website.
Have in mind that if there are also free web hosting services and free WordPress themes available out there.
Do I Need Any Programing Knowledge for Creating a Website?
Probably yes. Creating a website is not an easy task, and it is good to have some programming knowledge if you are considering creating one, But there are also alternatives that you can use for creating your website without having any programming knowledge.
One very popular alternative that you can use is to install a responsive multi-purpose WordPress theme like Avada and set drag & drop page buider, which will help you to customize your website at ease.
Can I Create a Website for FREE?
Once upon a time, it was said that everything is possible, so creating a website for free is possible, although it's hard to achieve without any expense.
To start your free website creation you need to find a free WordPress and to install it on a free hosting service. After you have already published your website on the internet, you need to install free plugins, which is the most difficult part. It is problematic to find reliable free plugins. There are some freeware ones available, such as Yoast SEO that can do pretty nice work, but most reliable plugins which are required for quality improvement of your website and are massively adopted are not free.
How Long Does It Take to Create a Website?
This is a question that concerns everyone who is considering making a website. The truth is that there is no specific answer to this question and everything depends on the height of your goal. If you are thinking of creating a small blog, you can make your website in a day. But if you are considering making a big online shop or something similar you will need to spend a lot more time.
Which Are the Best Platforms for Creating a Website?
The easiest way to create a website is to use a CMS(Content Management System) website builder platforms like WordPress or Joomla. The CMS platforms can help you create and customize your website without having much coding knowledge.
The Most Popular CMS Platforms:
What Is HTML? - Quick Tutorial.
HTML is the standard markup language used in the web pages, with which you can create your own website. Using the base of the HTML and CSS(Cascading Style Sheets - another web language with which you can put style over the HTML fundamental) languages can be very helpful for making little customization changes to your website.
HTML Code Examle
HTML Element Example
What Is Web Hosting
A web hosting service is a type of Internet hosting service that allows individuals and organizations to upload their websites on the internet. There are different types of hosting services like:
- Shared Hosting (Server shared between many users)
- Dedicated Hosting (A dedicated server only for you)
- VPS Hosting (Virtual Private Server)
- Cloud Hosting (Hosting services that are provided to customers via multiple connected servers that comprise a cloud)