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What Technologies Are Needed To Build An E-Commerce Website?

Aiesha Hasan Jan 06, 2017
what-technologies-are-needed-to-build-an-e-commerce-website

E-commerce has become one of the most popular business trends. It may seem like a herculean task to set-up an online business (not underestimating it either) or the actual e-commerce website development, but in real it isn’t that big of a hurdle as you’ve probably been hearing from most of the folks out there.

Doing online business means trades of goods from your Webstore to the customer, and trade means transactions. The idea of creating an online store raises few questions in everyone’s mind like ‘how’ and ‘who’ can build my e-commerce store? On what platforms can my ecommerce store be built? How can I find products to sell on my online store and how the transactions will be handled?

Like all business requires proper planning, discussion, backup plans, contingency plan, similarly before building any e-commerce store, you need proper planning about everything. Before starting, you need to think and list down all the possible aspects repercussions regarding online business.

Write your e-business plans. The e-commerce plans start with website goals. Who will be your targeted audience? What kind of products and services you want to offer. How much time and money you need to make your online presence. How will you handle shipping and payments?

It all seems difficult at first, but with every step, you will grasp things easily. A lot of the things which didn’t make sense at first would probably start resonating with time. Here’s a rundown of everything which requires opening an e-commerce store. Let’s get down to business:

The Process of E-commerce Website Development- Let’s Get Started!

There are many technologies required to build an e-commerce store and operate a successful online business. Both software and hardware technologies must be included in your e-business plan.

  • Web Server

A web server is used to host an e-commerce website. All the Html, JavaScript, PHP files, databases, media files that make up the entire website are stored on this server. The web server runs on Windows or Linux operating system. Managing a web server is a very specific job. The website development companies host the site on their own web server or pay a hosting company to provide space on a secure web server.

  • Server Software

When a user visits any website on a web browser, the web server knows the client is requesting some specific information. So it processes that request and serves the correct files to the client. The web browser then displays these files to the user.

There are many types of server software available including application software, database server, file server software and cloud computing software. The popular web server software includes Apache and Windows IIS. Server software can either use on a physical server or on a virtual / cloud server.

  • Web Tools

A web authoring tool is used to create the front end of an e-commerce website. They range from basic HTML text editors (like Notepad++) to more complex graphic authoring tools and CMS (content management system) with built-in frameworks and debugging tools.

Html files are created by Dreamweaver along with the CSS (cascading style sheet) which enhance the visual appearance of the site. Another web authoring tool would be Visual Studio .net that can be used to make the sites which have integrated databases in it. Graphic design packages are also web authoring tools which design the skin for a user interface.

  • Database System

A database is an integral part of an e-commerce website. The database is used to store the information about the products and services of the website such as pricing, description, image, details, and sales. In addition to this, the customer details are also stored in the database like what they ordered, their payment details, shipping details, and contact information.

It is necessary to program the website to connect securely to the database so that all the orders are processed correctly and your business runs smoothly. Technologies like PHP and MySQL are the communication route between the website and the DBMS (database management system).

  • Networking

TCP (transfer control protocol) and IP (internet protocol) define as how computers should connect with each other through the internet and how they share information. Common TCP/IP protocols are HTTPS, HTTP and FTP. We use these protocols to access the website without even realizing it. FTP (file transfer protocol) used to download files from a browser.

HTTPS (where the “S” stands for security) responsible for the secure communication between a server and a browser like an account information or personal information.

For an e-commerce website or online store, it is considered essential to provide a secure connection. SSL (secure sockets layer) and TLS (transport layer security) are the protocols associated with trust and security of any e-commerce website.

  • Browser Compatibility

A web browser is a software application that is used to locate, receive and display content received from the web servers. Popular web browsers include Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Safari. Web developers and Web development agencies test the website see how it displays on multiple browsers across multiple devices and screen sizes before launching the website.

The Tip: To analyze website traffics, use tools like Google Analytics to get an idea as what browsers people are using and which one is the most popular.

  • Ports

Ports allow one device to connect with the other through a different and unique IP address. A device can have more than one port.

Port 25 (SMTP) is usually reserved for email. It is used to transmit data from remote email servers. If that port is blocked no emails can be sent. Some other common port numbers are 80(HTTP), 443 (HTTPS), 21 (FTP), 22 (SSH). Firewalls can often block a port to tighten the security.

  • Domain Names

Domain names link to a company or a brand. Successful e-commerce companies have recognizable domain names. If you have any smaller business then it is best to select the domain name as per your business name. This would help to rank highly in search engines.

If a business becomes successful online, it is important to protect the brand by doing multiple registrations of domain names such as .com, .net, .uk, .org, .co

Doing this ensures that no one can steal your business by copying your business model.

Here is a quick recap that will help you put everything into place.

1: Front End: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Ajax, JQuery
2: Server Side Scripting: PHP, ASP
3: CMS: WordPress + Woo commerce, Magento, OpenCart, PrestaShop
4: Database: MySQL, MSSQL 

Conclusion

It always good to know what resources are actually required to build an ecommerce store from start-to-finish. But once you have gone through the complete guide to the technologies and things required for building your e-commerce store, things will become easier and systematic and will make your development process smooth and fluid.

Aiesha Hasan

Aiesha Hasan

Digital Content Producer at Arpatech
Aiesha Hasan is a Web Developer and a Digital Content Creator. She likes to keep in touch with the latest technology in the world and educate people about it.
Aiesha Hasan