The Costs of Setting up a E – Commerce Website ???
I’ve been selling Ethnic items on ebay for the last 2 years and in the last few weeks have been seriously considering having my own e-commerce website.
Can anyone please tell me What are the costs of setting up a profesional looking e-commerce web page ???
and how much should i expect to pay to the web designers etc ?
Below is the example – a type of web page i would like to set up ( ethnic shop )
any help and advice would be great
thanks very much
I’m not a web designer but I know from experience that the more you can do yourself the cheaper.
It’s cheaper to buy a "shell" and populate it yourself than have someone upload all your products etc for you.
A lot also depsnds on how sophisticated you want your site. The TULUMBA site you list has a "whats on" section and a community section etc etc. All add cost BUT all really help with that vital customer loyalty and dialogue. Kepp giving them a reason to come back to your site.
My site is built off a basic OSCommerce platform but has been heavily modified to give it some soul. We get quite a few nice comments back from our customers that it always looks fresh and always something new to look at etc etc.
There are a bunch of web deisgn types on here that will be able to give you an idea of the price range from a basic shopping cart system to an all singing, all dancing set up.
Also helps if you have an idea on what sort of payment solutions you are going to opt for – paypal? PROTX? Worldpay? Each one has different implications on cost of set up etc.
I fully agree with Jonny that if you can get someone to set up the store for you and then do the rest yourself (which is very, very easy to do) that you’ll drastically reduce your costs.
Costwise, it does vary greatly from one developer to another. It’s important that whoever you use that you get to see some projects similar to your own that they’ve already completed. We charge £299+VAT for most stores but you’ll come across people who charge a lot more than that and others who charge a lot less – hopefully that gives you a figure to look at as a starting point.
thanks very much for your help and advice
it looks like getting someone to set up your internet shop starts from £299.
but what other costs there are to set up an internet shop ?
can i add and upload as much product as i want ?
also how does the different types of payment options has different implications on cost ?
£299 is about right for an internet shop setup if you are adding all the products yourself. The web design company will create the website and install the back end database which is what holds your your item information you can then add products by logging into the admin area.
Different payment options have different implications on cost as the payment system needs to be built into the shop and some are harder to do than others, and some work with some back end databases and some work with different back ends.
As a result your payment method is a factor in deciding what backend is going to be used which has a reflection on price.
I know with the system we use it is possible to upload as much as I want. There is an argument NOT to swamp your site though – a big difference between offering a wide choice / good range and just whacking every product you can get your hands on up on your website. Think how you customers will shop and make it easy for them.
There are quite a few other costs to consider:
– monthly hosting fees / bandwidth
– business banking fees
– credit card processing fees
– updates to your site (if you are anythign like me you;ll be on the phone to your web monkey every week for tweaks and updates!)
then don’t forget your obvious ones that apply to most businesses
– marketing & promotion
– etc etc
You know you can set up a shop on eBay for free? Not as glamorous or as professional as a bespoke e-commerce solution but it is a cheap, quick and easy way to test the market. Free to set up, you can upload all your own products and descriptions and it take scare of the online card processing too.
I’d suggest dipping your toe for a month or two to test the market.
Friend of mine runs a very succesfull little ebay store – http://www.dealsdeals.co.uk
Shes been doing it for about a yeat now and turning over quite a bit, been trying to convience her to develop her own site as well – but she will have none of swears by ebay and its 25 million users
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you can also use turnkey website whereby there’s minimal work for you to do and you’re set up within minutes, although you depend on the provider more than you’d sometime want!
just add your products, choose your delivery charge, etc.
there’s loads of them these days.
oscommerce is very popular because it’s free but it’s more involved in the development of the website, and I think you need a host.
Ziggy what market are you selling 2?
In answer to your questions …
"but what other costs there are to set up an internet shop ?"
The only other initial cost is for hosting (the "rent" of space on a server). Hosting costs and quality cary greatly, but as an example, we charge £9.99 per month for the hosting of the stores that we design.
You do need to take into account though the cost of marketing the site.
"can i add and upload as much product as i want ?"
Absolutely. Theoretically, our stores can handle an unlimited number of products. I think our largest client (in terms of product range) has around 6000 items listed.
"also how does the different types of payment options has different implications on cost ?"
From a store design point of view, it makes no difference whatsoever.
From a hosting point of view, you may need to purchase a secure SSL certificate – only if you will be accepting card details directly within your site though. If you use a third party processor such as Paypal, Worldpay etc then all transactions are handled by their secure server so no SSL cert is required, unless you wanted customer address details etc to be entered within a secure area as well.
All payment processors charge different fees – some charge a setup fee and per transaction fees, others such as Paypal are free to setup and charge you a percentage of each payment.
Hope that helps
It may be worth clarifying your requirements before making a decision. For instance you said you would like a site similar to http://www.tulumba.com site, this site features an automated sales affiliate commission system (see Sales Associates link at bottom of home page). If this feature is important to you then you should explicitly state this as one of your requirements, and you will probably find that this requirement rules out a number of possible solutions (although I think OSCommerce can support this).
Another idea would be to find a site which supports all of your requirements, and find out either who set up the site or what ecommerce system was used. For instance, you said you liked the http://www.polandbymail.com shop, at the bottom of its home page is a link stating powered By GlobalWebCart.com Shopping Cart Software (unfortunately in this case, this US service looks like it charges $99 per month including webhosting, which is more expensive than some of the other solutions posted here, and there is no affiliate scheme feature). Perhaps one of the solution providers already posted here, has a client site in its portfolio which matches your requirements.
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If you are able to theme and add your own products you can get hosting (from my site below) with our linux packages and take the applications pack add-on ,then you literally press install a cart (oscommerce / mambo (has virtuemart) / ) and then you just log in add products and theme the site to suit all for around £65 a year hosted with domain name and application pack ! If you google oscommerce templates you will find loads some for free some to buy .
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i am too thinking of setting my own web E commerce website and have been quoted by easyspace a web design fee of £600 – £1100 depending upon how expansive i want my site to be, is this a really expensive quote then??
i am still brewing over ideas and haven’t looked for other quotes yet. Jonny your site looked fantastic, who designed yours?
The web monkey in question in Jonathan from AGOG Graphic – http://agog.atlastsolutions.biz/index.php
Personally i have found most internet shop owners do not initially look beyond setting up the shop and little thought to marketing it afterwards. Most state they require their products to be found on internet searches so this must be factored into the build from the start. If the online shop is to support and existing successful offline venture this is less of a concern as there is a ready stream of traffic.
A good design with logical navigation and easy processes will convert more sales, well-coded and optimised templates will help your pages’ visibility to search engine spiders. My recommendation for an inexpensive cart would be http://www.cubecart.com as it is semantically coded and standards compliant – a more expensive option for a bespoke solution would be http://www.featurecreep.com‘s ecommerce solution.
A good example of a well-coded ecommerce website can be found at http://www.naughtybitsandbobs.com/ – it sells *** toys so prudes beware! Take a look at the source code: semantic, compliant (click links bottom right of screen to validate), very clean, very little code compared to actual text copy, good use of H1, H2 tags, etc.
If you can’t rank well naturally then you will be reliant on paying the search engines to be a sponsored link – for competitive areas every click can cost a fair bit ("data recovery" i believe is nearly £4 for every click!) – expect to pay between 10p-35p per click and expect to only convert 5-8% of those clicks. It can get very expensive – I know of ecomm businesses who pay Google 40% of their turnover for the traffic.
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