Almost all web hosting plans these days offer some basic features that support ecommerce. To run an effective web store, however, you will need more than just basic features. It’s best to select a host that has ecommerce hosting plans specifically tailored for online store operation.

The first thing you will definitely need to have in order to run an ecommerce site is a shopping cart system. Major shopping cart systems you may have heard of include Agora as well as osCommerce. When possible, select a host that offers a number of different shopping carts. That way, you can experiment and use the one you like most.

When evaluating a shopping cart system, it’s important to look not only at the front end, but the back end features as well. At a minimum, a decent quality shopping cart system should offer plenty of order management as well as inventory management tools. You also want a system that is flexible enough to allow you to customize your store and give it the looks you want.

The other feature you must have for ecommerce is secure shopping, or SSL technology. This is nothing more than the ability to transmit information securely over a server so that sensitive information such as credit card numbers cannot be stolen. A smaller store can get by using a shared SSL provided by the host, which generally costs very little. On the other hand, if you want to start a big ecommerce site, you will most likely need to get something called a dedicated SSL.

It goes without saying that good customer support should be a major criterion you use when selecting an ecommerce hosting service. Support should be through telephone, not just email, And 24 hour tech support is important since things can go wrong at the most unexpected times.

If you are not sure where to start in your search for a host, consult some ecommerce hosting review web sites run by independent parties. Choosing a web host that offers a 30 day moneyback guarantee is also a good idea, since it’s possible you won’t be satisfied with the first host you try and will want to make a switch.

Go to the following page to see a list of top ecommerce hosting services.

Related Articles