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Starting An Online Business


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#1 aaron_ginn

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Posted 25 August 2004 - 04:52 PM

Hi, I'm planning on starting an online business within the year, and I have a few questions about how to get started.

First, I already have my personal site hosted by TCH and I've been completely satisfied with the service, so I'm planning on having TCH host my business domain as well. Do I need to sign up for a business type plan, or can I use a plan like the Silver Plan that my other site currently uses? What do other business owners here use? Any recommendations?

Second, I'm planning on using osCommerce for my store. I understand I need a merchant account to accept credit card transactions. Are there only certain banks that I can use with osCommerce? Is there a useful FAQ on setting up a merchant account, preferably related to osCommerce?

Finally, I need an SSL certificate. How do I go about obtaining one? Are there any FAQs on this that are particularly helpful? This is a completely new experience for me. Any help is greatly appreciated!

Thanks a lot,
Aaron
Aaron Ginn

Visit my Richard Wagner page at: http://www.theginnfa....net/wagner.htm

#2 TCH-Rob

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Posted 25 August 2004 - 06:52 PM

Aaron,

You dont need a special plan to start with. You can start at the bottom and then upgrade if you need to. Tiat way you arent spending more off the bat.

OSC is fine, you might want to go to the OSC site and look at the contributions that others have made so you can start looking into who you want as your merchant. They have modules for most of the larger and a few smaller merchant companies.

Your own SSL can be purchased here for $85 plus a one time install fee of $30, off the top of my head.

#3 aaron_ginn

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Posted 26 August 2004 - 12:05 PM

Thanks Rob. I'm totally new to this so I've obviously got a lot of questions. It looks like I should spend some time at the osCommerce sire reading the documentation and the forums.

I know everyone here says this, but this place is terrific and the service is top-notch!
Aaron Ginn

Visit my Richard Wagner page at: http://www.theginnfa....net/wagner.htm

#4 murasaki

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Posted 26 August 2004 - 05:50 PM

I use the absolutely basic plan. TCH is great, everyone have the same cool features. No one is left out. You'll just have to work on the OsCommerce.

Be good at HTML so your items in OsCommerce aren't plain. Learn some PHP may help you navigate the OsCommerce source code.

Read up on http://www.oscommerce.info and http://wiki.oscommerce.com/docs

#5 TCH-Rob

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Posted 27 August 2004 - 01:51 AM

I will second wiki.oscommerce.com. I picked up a lot of information there. I wasnt aware of the .info site, I will have to browse it. Thanks murasaki.

#6 djgizmo

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Posted 02 October 2004 - 05:09 PM

aaron_ginn,

I'd like to make some suggestions / statements.
#1, TCH has been my best investment for my business. I currently use the Silver Plan myself. Also, if you're going to offer downloads or streaming of any type you might want to look into the gold plan or above since downloads use bandwidth.
#2, I'm using oscommerce (www.dancefloordj.com) and its been great, but it took me a LONG time to get it where I wanted it.
#3, Write down on paper, what you want your site to look like and do. This pre-planning makes customization OSC a TON easier.
#4, Do some research on Chain Reaction OsCommerce and OsCommerce Max. They already include many useful contributions.

Yes, you do need SOME kind of merchant account. BUT WAIT... there is a FREE OPTION (well free startup anyways)

PayPal Now accepts credit cards even if the customer doesnt have a paypal account. OSC can combine Paypal via the OSC PayPal IPN Contribution Search their site about it.

I also Process Credit Cards offline with ProPay.com Only $35 a year and I think it's only a 3%+$0.35 per transaction charge.

Currently, OSC has SEVERAL contributions / modules for several merchant gateways. Do some research which will be best for you.

Purchasing an registered SSL Cert from TCH is MUCH easier in OSC than the free one.

I've been using OSC for over a year now and have 2 sites using it. It's great if you want to spend the time to personalize it to your need, sucks if you're time constrained. Feel free to contact any questions and I'll try to help out.

Also, OSC has a helpful msg board. forums.oscommerce.com

Peace

#7 john2004

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 09:29 PM

Hello, Aaron!

>
Second, I'm planning on using osCommerce for my store. I understand I need a merchant account to accept credit card transactions. Are there only certain banks that I can use with osCommerce? Is there a useful FAQ on setting up a merchant account, preferably related to osCommerce?
>

You can just open merchant accounts and they will collect the money. When some money is collected you will transfer money from merchant accout to your bank. Some merchant accounts are 2checkout.com (receive worldwide payments), for UK payments you can use ePDQ service http://www.barclayca...epdq/index.html. So, once you have merchant account you can transfer money to different banks.

Thanks,
John




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