Selling things on the Internet: E-commerce

Things to think about and prepare for a website that is selling stuff.

A clear comprehensive inventory is necessary for any kind of selling. When you are selling online you are preparing a catalog of your inventory so you need prepare information for each item. Use relevant key words while composing all text, titles, descriptions, alternate text…

  • ID #
  • Item Name
  • Item Price
  • Discount or comparison price if these apply.
  • Images
  • At least one image for each item. You will probably need a larger image and a thumbnail.
  •  “Alternate Text”
  • Alternate Text is a phrase that will go behind the picture. If the picture does not load the viewer will see this text in place of the image. Use key words that describe or identify what is in the picture.
  • A short concise description of the item.
  • A full description of the product specifications.

You will need a shopping site. If you are starting out, consider selling through another mega e-commerce company. You can have a low maintenance main website to present your company and link to other services.


  • They have brand recognition that you will be associated with.
  • They have reputations, they are known. It is likeley you have at least heard of ebay and probably purchased through Amazon.
  • If you don’t expect to sell a lot you can start as an individual seller and only pay the fees when things sell.
  • They include services that make selling easy to keep track of.


  • They have brand recognition that you will be associated with.
  • The cost of the service may or may not be worth it.
  • You have less freedom of design for the website.

Before you choose, compare the various fees, the per item fee and the % fee. Also consider potential costs related to postage and tax. Do a little math to figure out which service is best for your product. For  example if you are selling a lot of little things, a higher per item fee might really cut into your profits. On the other hand if you are selling a few expensive items, the per item fee is irrelevant.

Off Site Links

Selling on Amazon
– “Electronic commerce, commonly known as e-commerce or e-comm, refers to the buying and selling of products or services over electronic systems such as the Internet and other computer networks.”
– E-commerce Times

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4 Responses to Selling things on the Internet: E-commerce

  1. Malik says:

    You cant have 30 days listings unlses you have an Ebay store. 10 is the maximum for everyone else.If its a valuable item you are selling you can always use a featured’ listing then it’ll be on the front page however, this is expensive. so I guess you have to decide whether its worth it. Ebay also has other features to make your listings stand out such as highlight or border. Was this answer helpful?

  2. aabiz says:

    H & D, Does this help? What Questions come up?

    • Elia says:

      Hi, in my opinion the amonut of views depends upon and number of things.Some of these are:1. The supply and demand factor of the item(s)2. Cost/starting bid3. Type of auction (Bid/Buy It Now/Best Offer/Reserve)4. Title of item5. Whether or not there is a picture in the gallery6. Amount of days listed (if item is up for 30 days* it should get more views then at 7 days)* Not everything is available to list for 30 days, unless you had a store maybe. You would just have to keep relisting the item over and over. Keep in mind you would have to pay listing fees each time, if there was one.I myself do not believe there is any way to get it listed higher, as the user can sort at least 8 different ways, on how he/she wants to view items. Also, if you are searching for your listing right after you list it, it sometimes takes an amonut of time to show up under new listings.Hope this helps. Was this answer helpful?

      • aabiz says:

        Thank you for the comments Elia. If you use a site like e-bay or amazon it is a good idea to research how they do things. There will be costs, they may or may not be less than using a shopping cart on your own site. This post was about beginning to think about the basics for a person who has the idea they want to sell something online.

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