E-Commerce Hosting and Your Online Business

It’s pretty exciting when you decide to open your own online business. It certainly has its benefits: You can open a storefront that behaves almost the same as a brick and mortar type of store, but you don’t have to buy the brick and mortar. An online store can conceivably bring you many more customers than a physical storefront ever could. Your online business could bring thousands of visitors (and potentially just as many buyers) every day of the week, 24 hours a day.

But while the bricks and mortar of a traditional store are the frame of a physical storefront, an e-commerce hosting platform is the equivalent for your online store. Your e-commerce host will be the determining factor in your store selling $10 worth of goods a month or $10,000 a month. In short, your e-commerce hosting provider is the one determining factor outside of your business and marking plan that will determine whether your business succeeds or fails.

What is E-Commerce Hosting?
E-Commerce hosting is a web hosting service provided by an outside company that gives you the online tools needed to sell your services or products online. These include (but may not be limited to):
• A web server to host or store your company’s web pages;
• Shopping cart tools that give your site the ability to accept and store your visitor’s shopping choices while they browse the store (just like a physical shopping cart would);
• A merchant account and payment gateway which act as a virtual cashier when your customer is ready to check out and pay for their items;
• An SSL certificate to help ensure that financial transactions can’t be tampered with in cyberspace,
• A good web analytics package so you can follow who’s buying on your site, where they’re from around the world, and how much time they’re spending in your store’s site.

A question that gets asked a lot is: “What’s SSL? Is it a real certificate? Is it something I have to hang it on my wall?” SSL is an abbreviation for Secure Sockets Layer. It’s a digital encryption technology that was created years ago by Netscape. In its simplest definition, SSL creates an encrypted connection between your site and your visitor’s web browser. It sort of acts like a scrambler would for high security text or phone calls.

When your c-commerce site has SSL protection visitors will either see a small padlock icon in the address bar of their browser, or they may see the URL change from http to https. That extra “S” indicates SSL security is in place. You need SSL protection because in today’s internet world, it’s possible for every single piece of data being transmitted on the internet to be seen or captured by someone else if it’s not secured. Financial transactions without SSL can be stolen which results in theft of credit card numbers and hacking into e-commerce websites.

Savvy online shoppers know about SSL and its importance. When you have an e-commerce host that provides SSL protection, you’ll have an image or a seal on your storefront that shows customers that their transactions are protected. An e-commerce host that does not provide SSL protection will likely cost you a lot of potential sales.

Do thorough research and settle for nothing less than the best e-commerce host possible. It will mean the difference between succeeding and suffering in the world of online business!

For more information about web hosting and available web hosting packages, please visit http://www.purelyhosting.com.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Carter_Olsen/1283468