The Elements of E-Commerce

Your business may be small—but the Internet lets you think big.Whatever product or service your business offers, the Internet levels the playing field and lets you compete with bigger businesses, reaching customers around the world who can conveniently buy from your online storefront 24 hours a day. In the competitive world of the Web, growing your business and increasing your profits online requires careful planning and important steps. For every successful e-commerce business, there are dozens that fail because they don’t address basic risks and pitfalls along the way. So to take full advantage of the e-commerce opportunity, make sure you base your Web business on a solid foundation that covers every element of e-commerce:

• Establish your identity. The right domain name, or URL, can make the difference
between a memorable e-commerce identity and getting lost in the online crowd.
• Find the right online home. For “brick-and-mortar” stores, location is everything. Your
Web business needs the right home, too. Purchase and set up your own Web server, or
find a home for your site with a reputable Internet Service Provider (ISP) or Web host.
• Build an attractive storefront. With the right tools, creating a Web site is easier than
ever—but following some basic guidelines will help make your site easy and fun for
customers to navigate. And that means more sales for you.
• Let customers know they can trust you. In the anonymous world of the Internet,
customers will provide you with private information, like credit card or phone
numbers, only if they’re sure your site is legitimate and the information they send you
is protected. Make sure your site is secure—and that your customers know it.
• Make it easy for customers to pay you. You can set up your site so customers can pay
by keying in a credit card number. But how will you process that transaction?
Make sure you not only offer customers a variety of convenient payment methods, but
that you can process them all reliably.
• Let the world know about your site. A memorable domain name, a great looking
design, and top-notch products and services can make your site successful only if
customers know about it. Promote your site to drive traffic to it.
Clearly, building the elements of e-commerce into your business is a big job, but it is too
important to ignore if you want your business to grow and thrive. VeriSign can help. As the
leading provider of secure Internet and e-commerce services for businesses of all sizes,
VeriSign offers a complete set of solutions that help you easily handle every step required
for successful e-commerce. This Business Guide outlines crucial steps that can give your ecommerce
business a competitive edge.
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