ecommerce Website

What is ecommerce?
Boy do we have the answer for you.

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It's all about the dollar bills.

Do any kind of digging online and you'll bump into the term "ecommerce", with various forms of punctuation: eCommerce, E-commerce, Ecommerce, for example. It seems like somthing that we should all know about, and yet it's an idea that almost defies definition. So what is ecommerce and how can it work for you? It turns out there is an answer, and we've got it.

What is ecommerce?

Well like we said before, it's kind of a complicated answer, but at the core of it all is a combination of two words: electronic and commerce. Basically, ecommerce is about buying and selling things online.

Let's say you want to buy a new pair of shoes with fancy lights on the back (we don't judge). You could get in your car, fight traffic for what seems like forever, find a parking space, walk into the mall and start shopping, or you could hop online and click "Buy it Now". If you do the latter, then you're participating in ecommerce (and saving a ton of time).

But things get more complex when you start talking about the different forms that ecommerce takes.

Let's break it down into three categories:

Online Retail

You probably know about this one already, because we've all been to an ecommerce website before. Heck, you're on one now. These are websites that facilitate transactions. You want shoes and that website sells them. You guys make a deal, they take your money and then ship you your new kicks. Easy.

Online Auctions

You've heard of online auction sites before. In these cases, the site itself isn't selling you a product, it's another user. The ecommerce website facilitates the sale, but you're doing it with another consumer just like you (or a representative of a corporation that's acting like a consumer, but let's not overthink things here). Point is, although they're handling the paperwork and processing payments, they're not selling their own goods — you're selling yours.

Electric Markets

Grab your phone real quick — unless you're already holding it, in which case just go to your home screen. See all those apps on there? We're willing to bet that inside of some of them you can make a purchase. Maybe it's the music store for your phone, or the application market itself — or that annoying game that's always asking for another $0.99 to play the next level. Those are electric markets. They use the internet to make the transaction electronically, but they're not dependent on a website to make the deal happen.

Marketplace

There's another option, too. Have you ever been to a marketplace site? People put their own products up onto the site for sale, and the website processes the payments while taking a cut of the order. These types of sites can be quite popular, because a person doesn't have to go through the work of building their own website on the ecommerce platform of their choice. Instead, they can just put their products onto a site someone else built and maintains. Plus, it brings them a ton of traffic and potential buyers. Not a bad proposition.
It's the way money is handled online.

See? Ecommerce isn't that complicated. Except that it is. It used to be that setting up your own shopping cart and ecommerce platform was a nightmare of coding, lost sleep and energy drinks. It was definitely not for novices.

Fortunately, that's all changed. People have spent decades fine tuning the ecommerce world into one where the average consumer that wants to start their next big thing can pick one and be off to the races. No longer do you have to know how to code or sign crazy contracts with banks to get selling online. In fact, you can even be up and running in under an hour.

Well, you can with at least one ecommerce platform. More on that later.

What is an ecommerce platform?

Now we're getting into the weeds. If you want to sell online, you need some kind of method for processing payments, managing inventory and everything else. Just think about the last time you bought something online. There were a lot of things that happened behind the scenes that you might have never realized.

This is where an ecommerce platform comes into play. These are systems that you run on your website that allow you to sell goods, both physical and digital. Some you can install onto your existing website and go from there, while others are entire kits that you build from scratch.

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Then there's GoCentral Online Store, the ecommerce platform that will help you start selling stuff in under an hour (See? We're bringing it all back around). GoCentral Online Store combines a full-featured professional website builder with an ecommerce platform that gives you a ton of abilities. For example:

  • Sell and manage up to 5,000 with 10 images each
  • Process payments from all major credit cards plus PayPal and Apple Pay with Square and Stripe handling the backend
  • Give your customers tons of shipping options
  • Let your customers book and schedule appointments online, plus accept their payments

And that's just the start.

But the thing about ecommerce platforms is that they need to be flexible. Having a page that only looks good on a desktop doesn't do anyone any good, particularly when so many people shop on their tablets and smartphones. GoCentral Online Store has that covered with professional templates that look good on any device. You can even manage your ecommerce website anywhere you have an internet connection. Now that's handy.

How does it all start?

Pretty easily, frankly. Just click the "Start for Free" button and you're whisked away to your new site. All you have to do is pick a basic concept for your site, and GoCentral pulls up one of our many professional templates to give you a starting point for your new ecommerce website. Then you're free to tweak, tune and finesse your site however you like, and put up all those products you want to sell. It couldn't be much easier.

Is GoCentral Online Store the best ecommerce platform for you? Maybe. Obviously we think so, but we're pretty biased.

Ecommerce platforms in a nutshell.

That's ecommerce and ecommerce platforms in a nutshell. Complicated — kinda. But once you figure it out, it makes a lot of sense, and it's absolutely the way you'll make money on your next online business venture.

So what is ecommerce? The future. Now it's time for you to hop on.

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Website hosting
Online Appointment Scheduling
Configure shipping and tax rates
Text notification when orders are placed
Security (SSL)
24/7 support

Get paid.
Accept all major credit cards, plus PayPal and Apple Pay.
Make the sale with a SALE!
Offer discounts and promotions to your customers to help bring them in and seal the deal.
Handle your business.
Manage products, inventory and orders through a convenient dashboard.
No more abandoned carts.
Thanks to abandoned cart recovery, your customers will never leave empty handed.