16Dec2010

Introduction to eShop 5 – putting your shop live

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If you’ve been following our Introduction to eShop blog series you’ll already have laid the cornerstones for a successful online business, so you’re just a few steps away from activating your shop and opening the door to paying customers.

Creating delivery methods

You will need to define at least one delivery method and its costs so that your customers will receive their orders. To do so, switch to the “Settings / Delivery and payment” menu in your shop’s backoffice. Create a new delivery method and specify a basis of calculation. You have a variety of options such as fixed price, number of products and value of shopping basket. If you want the system to calculate the shipping price based on the weight of products in the shopping basket, you must first ensure that you have set a per-unit weight for every product.

You can access the settings via “Complete”. Enter the costs for shipping here and switch the delivery method to “visible”.

Automated e-mails to customers

In your merchant back office, you can assign one of many status codes to every order placed in your shop. Status codes range from “Order seen” through “Paid” or “Ready to be shipped“ to “Delivered”. You can modify the status of any order by clicking on it and then placing a check mark next to the current status.

These various status codes ensure that you always have an overview of orders which still require processing, and they can also serve as the basis for automatic e-mail notifications which allow you to update your customers on the status of their orders.

If, for example, you specify an order’s status as “Processing”, then an e-mail is sent immediately to your customer—who will then see that their order will be delivered before long. Your customers will know that they are in good hands.

To activate automatic notifications and to tailor the corresponding e-mails to your preferences, click on “E-mail settings” in the “Settings” menu. On the “Events” tab, you can select the phases of an order which trigger automatic e-mails. Many more events—such as password changes or confirmations of dates—can be associated with automatic e-mail notifications. Use the Editor to adapt text for an e-mail.

Going live

You can now go live with your online shop. But first, activate your shop’s page cache to speed up surfing for your customers. To do so, either click on the red banner in the uppermost header of your back office or activate the page cache in the “Settings / General settings” menu. Once you’ve done that, you can throw open the doors to your shop in the “Status” submenu.

But don’t forget, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Check for yourself that your shop is functioning properly. Make a small purchase in your own online shop and complete every step of an order. Do not forget to make an actual payment and to verify that the money does indeed end up in your account.

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