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Starting my very first website?

Discussion in 'E-Commerce and Online Selling' started by UKbuyer1, Sep 7, 2010.

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  1. dropship_voyeur

    dropship_voyeur

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2009
    Messages:
    302
  2. HomeBargains

    HomeBargains

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Messages:
    170
    Ive just had a look at youre website and its looking great. Good work!! :)
    How hard was it creating the website? I'm thinking of starting my own website but i don't know where to start :(,
    Thanks.
  3. John

    John

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Messages:
    2,545

    Send us a message. I will advise/answer any questions you have if you like!
  4. UKbuyer1

    UKbuyer1

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
    Messages:
    8,313
    Hi

    Thanks for the feedback.

    In hindsight, it was quite easy to create it - most carts are now easy to use, even for a beginner. Really, all I've done is added products and pages, and changed a little CSS/HTML with the help of online walkthroughs. However, the hard part is driving visitors and getting them to part. Make no mistake about that.

    Good luck with it, John will help with any questions you may have as he has lots more knowledge and experience than I.
  5. klbj23

    klbj23 Banned Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    It's very hard to get traffic.
  6. greenclothes

    greenclothes Banned Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2010
    Messages:
    70
    Most of you here are overcomplicating things. I am a web designer and it is going over my head. To try it you can use mr site and a few days work and for 20 quid do it your self. for 700 pounds easy do it your self with actinic. look these up. It does not matter how good your site is or you have a compo to win take that tickets like on one of my sites. The main thing is traffic. You need a whole weeks work just going to everywhere from forums, ad trader basically anywhere in the uk that allows you to leave ideally a write up and a link to your site. My site gets over 700 visitors a day. I am not touting for any services just to help I always offer free advice.
  7. MyGiftsGal

    MyGiftsGal

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2010
    Messages:
    136
    Can anyone recommend any books or literature that is in depth, and explains the inner workings of an online ecommerce store? Or indeed, any links that would help me? (No links to this forum please, i will be reading everything I can find on here in the coming weeks)

    I actually bought a billiant book from tesco 2 days ago called how to set up a e-commerce business and it gives you loads of sites to help you for example sites like www.99designs.co.uk for logos and a site for your accounting and some sites for web hosting. Highly recommend it if its in your tesco store its only about £7.


    Is my budget sufficient to buy and have someone build a website from scratch, including a domain, and hosting?

    Your budget is more than enough you can get a brilliant website for less i recomment Pete from this forum look him up :)

    What knowledge of coding do i need if any? For instance, how easy is it to upload new products to your site? This is what worries me the most.

    It all depends how complicated or simple it is in the admin bit of your site for example i currently use estorebuilder and they are very simple in the admin section as im not very computer literate myself.

    I will be primarily looking at using Paypal as the only payment option, but what are the most cost effective, efficient and safe modes of taking card payments online, and their costs? Again links appreciated.

    currently on my site i only accept paypal until my site is up and running then i will be looking into accepting more but due to costs i didnt see the point when im going to take a couple of months finishing my site. Barclays are the best at the moment for card payments at £15 a month for this service. Google checkout i have not really looked into but i have heard that it is a very safe way of money & bank transfers you can do but me personally it puts me off if thats the only method as you are not safe guarded to getting your money back once you've payed thats it.

    What are the running costs of a website per month.

    This question i do not know the answer to as with estore builder i payed nothing for 2/3 months and then £55 for the year including domain name and hosting and personal e-mail addresses.



    I Hope This Helps You :)
  8. junipaire2009

    junipaire2009

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    Messages:
    181
    Nice store UKbuyer1, Its very fresh and looks very pro looking which will encourage trust from the buyer. I really like it and wish you well with it, now the hard part I guess, getting the people finding your site and getting yourself to the top of the search engines.

    Good advice from greenclothes and MyGiftsGal. I'm going to start my site in Jan/Feb time and found the advice useful too.

    MyGiftsGal, don't suppose you could tell me the title of the book you bought from Tesco's, it sounds interesting. I've not read it yet but was recommended by a friend and has good review and all wrapped up for Christmas. 'Internet Marketing - How to get a website that works for your business' by Nigel T Packer. But I like the sound of your recommended book too.
  9. UKbuyer1

    UKbuyer1

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
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    8,313
    Just a quick update, I've had some seo work done by Ash (zee rock) and woodyB from here, as well as doing a few little things myself.

    Although my conversion rates are not great at the minute, I have today reached quite a milestone - now over 1000 unique visitors from the rolling month from November.

    Conversion isn't great, I've done bits and bobs of sales which are quite scattered but I'm generally pleased with the way things have gone.

    I didn't really expect this number of visitors for a store that has only been live for just over a couple of months, and I certainly didn't expect to have the sort of sales figures I have now. But I'm realistic and always have been - you don't get any success over night, it's more of a long term project that can only be judged in a years, or even two years time I believe.

    eBay has definitely helped drive visitors, with a good campaign where I have been putting discount codes in with eBay purchases for targeted items with the highest margin, but with the downside being a few cheeky scamps stating they want refunds on some items they have purchased through eBay, and they want to go through my store - as a few items are cheaper on my website than on eBay.

    But hey, I've had fun and learnt a lot in a short space of time, I plan to continue and expand some product lines, while giving up on other products in 2011.

    For the people wanting their own site, I would say go for it. If I can do it so can you (I knew nothing about websites before, and some may even say I still don't!) just ensure you plan and prepare, and create a realistic budget that won't stretch you too much, and of course have a long term set of goals and a plan so you know the direction you want to be heading.

    Rick
  10. habeeb24

    habeeb24 Banned Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2010
    Messages:
    58
    Thanks for your valuable informations ..Hope it would be work..Thanks in advance..
  11. Anna_Wholesaler

    Anna_Wholesaler

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Messages:
    59

    Good points, I have bad experience to use so called 'free cart', troublesome! Go for good web designers and they will provide good service also. It will takes time do research.:)


    Anna
  12. GameAssassin

    GameAssassin

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2009
    Messages:
    332
    Well done on this Rick, the site looks great mate
    You have a number of empty categories in the video games section, are you going to fill these up soon as it might be causing customers to lose interest?
  13. Mike

    Mike

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,878
    Site looks great aesthetically, but I believe by law you need a telephone number on there (correct me if im wrong) and I cannot see one. Might be me unable to see for looking though! (not in contact us section)

    Mike
  14. yus786

    yus786

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    269
    Rick

    Amazing website (and this thread). Thanks for updating on a regular basis.

    Could i please ask what was the final cost of setting up? And you're monthly costs too?

    Thanks and all the best

    Yousuf
  15. UKbuyer1

    UKbuyer1

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
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    Thanks for the comments.

    The cost has been £312, that has included the initial set up of the Big Commerce store, the logo design, the header images and banners, SEO work, printing advertising materials, domain registration - the whole lot.

    The monthly cost is about £22, and although peopl will say you get a free cart setup and hosting should be a few quid a month, i am very satisfied with Big Commerce.

    December I ended up with 1800 or so unique visitors - which is astonishing considering the amount of time it has been up.

    As for sales, all i will say is that Im more than happy.

    I dont see it as a finished article yet, still more to add such as additional checkout options for buyers without Paypal, introducing international postage options, and trying to source more good quality stock.
  16. yus786

    yus786

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
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    Could i ask who did your logo design, seo work etc?

    Did Big Commerce do everything?

    Thanks
  17. UKbuyer1

    UKbuyer1

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2009
    Messages:
    8,313
    Yes it was a combination - all from this forum.

    Zeerock did me the banners and seo work, 2xm did the logo.

    Big commerce - there is a 15 day no fuss free trial - why dont you use it and see what you think.

    If your looking to set up, dont forget to research cubecart, Zen Cart etc.
  18. Ownthrone

    Ownthrone

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2010
    Messages:
    20
    I have to say this thread has been absolutely brilliant. Reading from start to finish I have learnt a lot. I'm in the same boat as you were a few months ago and I really feel like I've got a good place to start and things to look into. One quick question though. Can you use wordpress themes on BigCommerce?

    I've found a template I want to use which is wordpress, just wondering if I can use BigCommerce for my shopping cart?
  19. John

    John

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
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    No.. There is a wordpress addon called Shopperpress, this is used as an Ecommerce store for Wordpress.:welldone:
  20. Ownthrone

    Ownthrone

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2010
    Messages:
    20
    I've heard that shopperpress is no where near as good as Bigcommerce though?
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