E-Commerce 101: How to Start Selling Online

E-Commerce 101: How to Start Selling Online
Date: Sunday, January 23 2005

If you have decided to take your business online, there are a few things you will need to take into consideration before you launch your new site.

First, you will need to write a privacy policy that will protect your company and provide your customers with trust in your site. Online buying is based on trust, and customers deserve to know what you plan to do with the data you collect. See What Should My Business Web Site's Privacy Policy Cover for more information.

Second, you'll need to make sure that your online transactions are secure. SSL (secure socket layer) encryption protects your customers' sensitive information, including credit card and personal information, during online transactions. Many web hosting companies will let you share their SSL certificate. If you'd rather have your own, you can expect to pay $100 to $350 a year.

A shopping cart is a necessity for any online business. There are lots of cart applications to choose from, so make sure the one you choose is easy to install and use. Try a few trial sales with your cart to ensure that it's user-friendly and easy to understand. Check out Shopping Cart Options for Small Business Web Sites for additional advice.

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