How to Create an E-commerce Online Store with Ecwid

Ecwid empowers you and your business with a powerful and revolutionary e-commerce online store that can be added to your website in a matter of minutes. While you may have heard of the exciting business potential of launching an online store, you may be daunted by the prospect of setting up and operating one yourself. You’ve got an amazing product; you just need to make it available to the world to buy. This guide will walk you through the simple steps needed to set up and easily manage your online store and show you how to make the most of e-commerce.

With an online store from Ecwid you’ll be able to make shopping for your customers incredibly easy, secure and fast, increasing the likelihood that more people will make purchases more often. Our free and full-featured online shopping cart is lightning fast, functions internationally, is designed to display optimally on mobile devices, and integrates seamlessly with any website. Ecwid also offers a wealth of social tools to encourage your customers to share products and purchases, and enables you to create lasting relationships with your customers. Not only is an online store incredibly easy to create with Ecwid, we also make managing your store refreshingly simple and tremendously rewarding.

Add an Online Store with Ecwid

Ecwid’s online store can be installed on any new or existing website and is designed to integrate seamlessly into your web design. Within a few minutes, you can have a free shopping cart added to all major Content Management Systems (CMS), such as WordPress, Joomla or Drupal, as well as any custom built website. You can even add a store to your business’ Facebook page. You can add your Ecwid store on most major CMS platforms by adding a plugin, extension, widget or by using our short integration code. You can also add your store as an embeddable widget to almost any platform.

Steps to Add the Code:

  1. Create a free Ecwid account, either by entering a new username and password or logging in through an existing PayPal, Google or Facebook account.
  2. Log in to your new Ecwid dashboard to find the integration code and store ID for your online store and copy the code by using “Ctrl-C” or by right-clicking and selecting “Copy”.
  3. Paste the integration code into the source code on the backend of your website, save the changes, and your store will appear immediately on the frontend of your site.

You can also set up your online store on multiple websites by using the same steps and the same store ID, and all of your products and store activity will be automatically mirrored across all of your sites.

Customize the Look of Your Online Store

There are a variety of ways that you can customize the appearance of your online store with Ecwid. Depending on what functions you want your store to perform and how you would like your customers to browse and shop for your products, you can install a variety of predesigned widgets to your website, using the same steps you used above to initially set up your store. Ecwid currently offers the following widgets:

  1. Product Browser — This is the main widget and likely the one you initially set up, as it enables product displays and descriptions, prices, checkout and more.
  2. Minicart / Bag — Displays the quantity of products selected.
  3. Horizontal Categories — Displays product categories in a horizontal list with tabs
  4. Vertical Categories — Displays product categories vertically
  5. Search Box — Allows customers to search for your products
  6. Add to Cart — Button for adding a single product to the shopping cart

Ecwid is designed to blend seamlessly with your website’s design and display optimally on both browsers and websites. However, should you wish to customize the look of your online store, Ecwid offers a wide variety of options to tweak and tailor your store using predesigned or custom CSS themes.

Setting Up Your Online Store for Sales

Once you’ve set up your online store and are satisfied with the appearance, upload your product images and descriptions. You’ll also want to set up your shipping rates, payment options and tax settings. All of these options will be found in your Ecwid control panel and in the simple setup wizard.

Uploading Product Images and Descriptions

  1. Log in to your Ecwid account and click on the Catalog page on your Control Panel.
  2. Upload the images of your products and create categories for your products.
  3. Customize your product names, descriptions and other product options. You can adjust many aspects of your product descriptions and galleries, including fonts, colors, as well as place a single product widget anywhere on your site.

Set up Shipping Rates and Taxes

  1. Establish your destination zone where your products can be shipped.
  2. Select the shipping methods you would prefer to use.
  3. Set up the rates (flat rate, carrier calculated, custom).
  4. Set up tax rates based upon the destination zones where you ship.

Set Up Payment Options

Ecwid supports a variety of payment solutions enabling you to accept credit cards as well as offer alternative payment options to you customers.

  1. Decide the types of payment you prefer to accept.
  2. Choose the method of payment (PayPal, payment gateways, etc.).
  3. Customize your secure checkout process for customers.

Utilizing the Revolutionary Features of Your Online Store

Ecwid offers you an enormous array of advanced features to improve the shopping experience of your customers and the management of your store.

  • Social Sharing — In addition to our free Facebook integration, you can also encourage customers to share their purchases, and even products they are considering, with their friends on various social networks. You can add “like” and “share” buttons to your products for Facebook, enable Facebook comments and the “Ask Friends” feature, as well as sharing buttons for Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, Google+, VK.com and more.
  • Customer Service — Ecwid offers a variety of features to keep track of customer information, including customizable e-mail notifications, order history, tracking payment and shipping, invoice printing, and more.
  • Mobile Responsive Design — Ecwid offers advanced mobile responsive design, so that your store will automatically adjust to different screen sizes and look beautiful on any mobile phone or tablet.
  • Translations — Ecwid can be translated into many different languages on both the front-end and the back-end of your store, and can automatically detect the location and language preference of your international customers.
  • AJAX Interface — Ecwid offers you and your customers a lightning fast shopping experience with our AJAX interface.
  • Drag and Drop — Your customers can easily drag the images of your products to place them in the shopping cart.

In addition to our vast array of powerful features available on the free version of our online store, there are also many more features offered with our tiered paid plans:

  • Coupons/Discounts — Entice your customers for repeat visits by offering them special discounts and coupons.
  • Content Delivery Network — CDN maximizes bandwidth so that your products load even faster.
  • Advanced APIs — Expand the capability and reach of your online store using our advanced APIs, which gives you access to our iPhone management app, the PayPal Here mobile point-of-sale solution, and many more features.
  • Remarketing with Google Analytics — Gain a better understanding of how your customers interact with your online store and deliver ads to them that are specifically targeted to their interests.
  • Product Feeds — Ecwid allows you to export your products to other online marketplaces, such as Google Shopping, Amazon Product Ads and more, using our product feeds.
  • Support — Should any questions or issues arise, paid Ecwid customers have access to live chat and email support, in addition to the discussion forums available to all customers.

Ecwid’s online store offers your business powerful features and customizable options so that you can create an online store that works for you — on any website. Maximize your e-commerce potential and expand your business by getting started with Ecwid today.