ECommerce FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions About ECommerce

What is E-Commerce?
What are the components that build an E-Commerce web site?
What is SSL or Secure Sockets Layer? How does it work?
Can I use your secure certificate and SSL connection?
How can I use SSL for secure transmission?
What is shopping cart software?
What is a payment gateway?
Must I have a merchant account and payment gateway to do E-Commerce?

 

What is E-Commerce?

E-Commerce (a.k.a. electronic commerce, EC, Ebusiness, Etailing) is the buying and selling of goods and services on the Internet or more specifically the World Wide Web.

What are the components that build an E-Commerce Web site?

a) A product to sell
b) A Web presence to sell it from
c) Shopping cart software, and if you want to process credit cards online
d) Secure Sockets layer enabled, 
e) A payment gateway
f) A merchant account

What is SSL or Secure Sockets Layer? How does it work?
"SSL" stands for Secure Sockets Layer. It is a security protocol that encrypts all of your connections with a web server. SSL thwarts eavesdroppers who could "sniff" your internet packets for sensitive information such as passwords and credit card numbers. Thus, SSL has made on-line commerce viable for all Web users.

Can I use your secure certificate and SSL connection?
For all Miva hosting plans the certificate is included in the cost of your monthly hosting.

How can I use SSL for secure transmission?
If you are on any of our E-Commerce hosting plans, you will have SSL encryption included for free with your shopping cart. If you use the Mals free shopping cart, the SSL is free there too.

What is shopping cart software?
Shopping cart software acts as an online store's catalog and ordering process. Typically, it allows a consumer to browse the Web site, select items for purchase as they browse, review what they have selected; make necessary modifications or additions; and purchase the merchandise.

What is a payment gateway?
A payment gateway is simply software that is hosted on a server that links an online store to a process that verifies that a customer who is placing a credit card order has the credit available and that the order should be accepted. Later, when the merchant is ready to submit the charges for processing, the payment gateway accepts them and submits the charges to a payment processor who facilitates the transfer of funds to the merchant.

Must I have a merchant account and payment gateway to do E-Commerce?
Yes you will need a merchant account to accept credit cards. However you can do without a payment gateway.

If you would like us to completely get your store up and running - post product pictures, product information (cost and shipping weight), customize your look, etc... we will charge you a per hour consulting fee.