Are you looking at getting an online store? Well I know the process looks a little bit techy but relax because we have help a lot of users start their online store successfully. With this our guide, we would walk you through a step by step process on how to start a successful online store as a beginner or an intermediate user.
WHAT ARE THE NECESSARY THINGS I NEED TO START AN ONLINE STORE
Starting an online store does not have a start time anytime is a good time to start an onltine sore.
Once you can have access to a computer you can easily get started with your online store and this is because you don’t need special skills to start an online store.
In order to start an online store there are things you will need and below are a list of what you will need to get started.m
- A domain name: (this is the name of your domain nae will be).
- Hosting account: (this is where your website will be hosted).
- Lastly your undivided attention.
The above is all we need to get started. With word press in minutes you will be able to create a complete online store.
Below are things that we would cover in the course of this tutorial.
- Registering your domain name for free.
- Choosing the best hosting for your wordPress website.
- Getting ssl certificate for free and it is needed for processing payment on your online store.
- Installing word press.
- Creating a word press store.
- Uploading products to your online store.
- Selecting a theme for your store and customizing it.
GETTING YOUR ONLINE STORE SETUP
There are certain mistakes new user’s makes and this is the issue of not choosing the right platform for your online store.
That’s why we are happy you are making use of our guide so that you won’t be making a mistake when choosing the best platform for wordpress. We would advise you make use of Shopify or you make use of wordpress +woocommerce.
We would recommend two different platforms when it comes to setting up an online store.
Shopify is fully hosted ecommerce platform and it is stress free. All you have to do is to start selling and you don’t have to do any sought of setup and it starts from $29/month . But Shopify has its flaws and one which is that shopify gets expensive and if you want to add additional payment gateway you will have to pay more.
This is the reason why most users prefers the use of wordpress +woocommerce but it needs some sought of setup but it is very flexible to use. WordPress + woocommerce is widely use for online store you can go through our guide comparing shopify vs wordpress woocommerce.
When setting up an online store you will need a domain name, web hosting and an ssl certificate.
Domain name: Domain name is your website address online. This is the name users can use to find you on the internet by typing your domain name in their browser in order to access your website. Example (www.wetechhub.com).
Web Hosting: this is where your website lives online, it is the house of your website. All websites have a web hosting were their websites lives.
SSL certificates adds an extra layer of security to your websites. It is much needed in other to accept sensitive information on your website such as credit card details and personal information. Ssl is highly required in order to accept payment on your website.
Normally a domain name cost as high as $14/year, $7/month and ssl cost $65/ year. But thanks to bluehost .
Officially bluehost is a recommended wordpress and woocommerce hosting provider. They offer free domain and free ssl certificate and also discount for hosting.
Bluehost is one of the largest hosting companies and it is known for its quality services ever since 1996 even before the initiation of Google.
Note : At wetechhub.com transparency is our watch word . If you purchase your hosting from bluehost through our link, we receive a commission for any commission made but be rest assured it won’t affect the cost of your purchase. But be rest assured that the products we recommend are what add value to our readers and they are of quality.
So let us walk you through on how to get your hosting, domain name and ssl certificate.
When bluehost opens up the first thing you need to do is to click on the green start button.
When the next screens opens up you will have to choose your hosting plan . The basic and plus plan are most popular used.
After which you will be asked to select a domain name .
At this stage you will need to add your account information and finalize the package in order to complete the procedure . You will see additional extras for purchase .
It is up to you if you want to purchase the extras or not but we recommend that you don’t purchase right now because you can always come back to do it, if you end up needing them .
When it is completed you will receive an email containing the login details to your cpanel . This is your website control panel where wordpress will be installed and your support email will be created from your cpanel.
Login to your cpanel with the details and once you are logged in you will receive the popup that wordpress and woocommerce.
All you need is for you to click on the login to wordpress button and it will take you to your wordpress admin dashboard.
Amazing! We have successfully set up your hosting account and domain name.
The next step is for you to setup WordPress and your online shop.
SETTING UP WORDPRESS
Bluehost has installed wordpress and woocommerce automatically on our website.
During your first login you will receive a welcome message asking you what kind of website you want to set up.
Click on the don’t need help link. You do not need to be scared because will walk you through the process.
When you close the wizard you will see the admin dashboard which looks like the image below.
You will first have to visit the settings>> general page in order to to set your website title and description.
SETTING UP SSL FOR YOUR WEBSITE
This wordpress hosting package came with a free ssl . And the free ssl has been pre installed on your website . But you will have to configure wordpress to use https instead of http .
On the Settings>>General page you need to set your wordpress address and your website address to https instead of http.
Do remember to scroll down the page and click on the save button in order to save the changes made .
You have successfully completed your wordpress setup and now you will have to set your wordpress + woocommerce store .
SETUP UP YOUR ECOMMERCE WEBSITE
Before you start selling on your online store there are things that you will need to set up . Things such as the currency, payment and shipping information .
When you login to your dashboard, you will see a welcome to woocommerce notification . Go ahead and click on the run setup wizard button .
It will open up the woocommerce setup wizard you will go ahead to click on the Let’s go button.
There are few essential pages needed by woocommerce pages such as the account, shop, cart and check out page.
Click on the continue button to automatically setup the pages .
Now in the next page you will have to tell woocommerce were your website is located , the currency and the measure unit you need to use on your website .
When you are done clicking inputting your location and currency click the continue button in order to move on to the next page .
In the next page you need to input your shipping and tax information .
Woocommerce can be used to sell both physical and digital goods . if you will be selling physical goods you have to click on the check box below and if not you will have to leave it unchecked .
You will have to input your tax information and woocommerce will automatically calculates it for you .
You can also leave it checked if you are not sure at the moment and come back later to set it up .
The next screen will be displayed were you will have to add your desired payment method .
Woocommerce comes with its own default payments gateway and this is paypal ,paypal standard and stripe payments gateways .
There are different payment gateways that are available for wordpress and you can install them if needed .
It is very easy to set up . To setup your paypal kindly enter your paypal email address and click on continue .
A Lot of us make use of paypal and stripe . If you are making use of stripe you will allow users to enter their credit card details in your checkout page without having to leave your website and redirecting to paypal.
You can go ahead to set up stripe by following the instructions on your woocommerce settings.
When you are done your woocommerce online store is all setup .
Click on the return to wordpress dashboard link in order to return back to wordpress dashboard .
After you are done with the woocommerce setup you are now ready to upload products to your store .
UPLOADING PRODUCTS TO YOUR ONLINE STORE
We would start by adding the first product to your online store .
You will need to click on products >> add new page .
You will have to provide a product title and a little description about your product .
At the right side menu you will see the product category box . You should click on add new category in order to add a new category for the product. THis allows your customers and you to be able to sort out products easily according to their category
Scroll down the page and you will notice the product data box . This is where you will input product information like pricing , shipping and item quantity .
Below the product data box you will see a page to enter the product description and this will be used when you are viewing multiple products on a page.
At the right hand column you will see where you can add the product image or product gallery.
When you are satisfied with all the information you provided, you can click on the publish button to h make the product live on your website.
You will have to repeat the same process in order to add new products.
SELECTING AND CUSTOMIZING THEME FOR YOUR WEBSITE
Themes are the backbone of the looks of your website. It controls the looks of your website when a user visits it. Your themes also determines the way your products are displayed.
There are a lot of free and paid wordpress themes available.
Bluehost automatically install storefront theme on your website all you need is to customize the theme to meet your needs.
Click on the appearance>>customize page.
This will launch the customized page were the theme settings can be customized.
If you don’t need the storefront theme you can change the theme by going to appearance>> theme page to choose another theme.
Need to select a new theme you can refer to our guide of things to consider when selecting and installing new theme.
By now you will understand how to create an online store and customize the store. If you have any questions you can contact us.
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