|If you're going to pursue an e-commerce site, hosting is going
to be an issue. Here's a primer on web hosting for your site.
E-commerce web hosting is the technology of storing, servicing
and maintaining files for one or more web sites selling products
or services online. Web site owners who pay for a web host
(generally on a monthly basis) upload their web pages to a
shared or dedicated web server through an ISP (internet service
provider). The web host should ensure a fast and consistent
connection. Experienced web entrepreneurs desire flexibility,
security and high performance from an e-commerce host. An
e-commerce web server also stores information, images, videos
and just about any other content that can be retrieved from a
web site. Security is a priority for e-commerce web servers.
E-commerce web hosting can be divided into two major components,
the site and the host (where the site is stored for access on
the web). Web hosts are computers that offer storage space and
Internet connectivity. Web hosts make your web site work with
and connect to the Internet. E-commerce, or web commerce, allows
people to buy goods and services online. On the Internet, one
can buy almost anything, at any time.
E-commerce web hosting must support e-commerce software. Often a
web host will provide the tools that handle online transactions
and sales. In other cases, the web business owner is on their
own to ascertain e-commerce software. Common tools that are
provided with e-commerce web hosting are shopping carts,
business account services, SSLs (secure socket layers), secure
transactions, web promotion applications and advertisement
While choosing a web hosting company for your E-commerce
business, it is helpful to decide how much data storage is
required and the data transfer rates you require for your site.
A web host is the physical location of a web site, so you must
be confident in the connection and security of the hosting
company. Doing some research to make sure that data reaches the
end-user quickly and efficiently can payoff in a big way. Backup
systems should be in place so that data is routed even if there
is a router failure. Web hosts should be able to accommodate a
client's web traffic (measured in volume of data transfer) in
peak hours as well.
Security is a major issue for E-commerce transactions. Private
information needs to be kept safe from unauthorized parties.
SSL, from Netscape, helps a lot with secure transactions. SSL is
an encryption technology that encodes a message that a receiver
decrypts by using RSA security. For integrity and authentication
of messages, digital signatures, or certificates, are required.
Digital signatures ensure that sensitive information is not
picked up by any other party, by posing as a legitimate
e-business or in any other way. A digital certificate is a
document, issued by a certificate authority, which recognizes a
legitimate online business. To ensure security, many web
companies store confidential information on offline disks or on
a separate PC. E-commerce web hosts should also maintain
multiple backups of vital information. SSL uses PKI (public key
infrastructure) and digital certificates to ensue privacy and
authentication. Bear in mind that security can be an expensive
and complex business.
In short, when selecting an e-commerce web host it is often best
to look for a pre-packaged solution that allows you to create a
shopping cart, an online catalog and a secure credit card
transaction and storage system. Selecting an e-commerce web host
with a broad range of tools and a solid reputation is an
important step for just about any e-business.
About the author:
Halstatt Pires is with the Internet marketing firm -
http://www.marketingtitan.com - a San Diego Internet marketing
and advertising company offering automated web site systems -
http://www.businesscreatorpro.com - create web databases,
e-commerce sites, business lead management systems and more.
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