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E-Commerce Help
E-Commerce is the buying and selling of goods and services across the Internet. An e-commerce site can be as simple as a catalog page with a phone number, or it can range all the way to a real-time credit card processing site where customers can purchase downloadable goods and receive them on the spot. E-Commerce merchants can range from the small business with a few items for sale all the way to a large online retailer such as Amazon.com.

Miva Merchant Server
Running your business is stressful enough without having to worry about your online storefront. Let us bring you peace of mind as you focus on running your business instead of running your server. Our Miva Merchant Server tightly integrates a reliable and fast Virtual Server with the powerful Miva Merchant e-commerce platform. An SSL-powered web server is included as well, to protect credit card transactions and the transfer of other sensitive information.

Create Your Own E-Commerce Site
Here are the steps you will need to follow as you create your own e-commerce enabled Virtual Server.

E-Commerce Chart

Secure Environment
SSL encryption provides a level of security and privacy for those wishing to conduct secure transactions over the Internet. The SSL protocol protects HTTP transmissions by adding a layer of encryption. This ensures that transactions are not subject to "sniffing" by a third party. For companies wishing to conduct e-commerce, SSL is a must.

Storefront Management
Many software packages are available that will help you manage your Internet storefront. For Virtual Server help relating to specific packages, see the following.

Open Market ShopSite is a premier online business creation solution. Small to medium sized businesses that use ShopSite enjoy a product that lets them easily set up an online store in just 15 minutes. With its powerful and flexible feature set, ShopSite provides businesses the tools they need to grow to any size and be successful.

Online Payment Processing
When a customer purchases an item with a credit card, a two step process begins.

  1. The merchant or the Web site requests an authorization from the customer's credit card account to ensure that the card is valid and the customer has enough available balance for the purchase. The customer's bank sends an authorization number back to the merchant or the Web site and the order is "captured".

  2. The merchandise is sent, and the merchant informs the bank where they have a merchant account. The bank deposits funds to the merchant's account while the customer's account is debited for the amount of the purchase. At that time, the customers' bank takes out the required fees and the transaction is complete.

Credit cards are an important part of enabling Internet commerce. The easiest process to integrate into an existing business is an off-line authorization and settlement process. For more advanced Web merchants who are processing more than 100 transactions per month, real time credit card authorization becomes economical. With a link to a processing service provider such as CyberCash or AuthorizeNet, the Web site generates an authorization request when the customer places the order.

If the merchant is selling hard goods which have to be shipped to the customer, then order is saved securely for later settlement. Once the goods are shipped, the merchant can settle the order, and the transaction is completed. If the merchant is selling downloadable media, software, or site memberships for example, then the order can be authorized and settled in real time, without any intervention by the merchant.

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