Last Updated 09 Oct 2020

Definitions to Know for Launching an eCommerce Website

Category Database, Internet
Words 1293 (5 pages)
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Web Server: A webserver is a Hardware device used to host an eCommerce website. The server supports the entire content of the website such as HTML files, Data bases and Image Files. Web Servers will run on operating systems such as Windows or Linux and will use web server software to manage access requests to the website. Webservers are similar to PC’s however they have faster processors and more memory making it much more powerful.

Firewall: A firewall is a software or hardware-based network security system that controls the incoming and outgoing network traffic by analysing the data packets and determining whether they should be allowed through or not, based on a rule set. A firewall establishes a barrier between a trusted, secure internal network and another network (e. g. , the Internet) that is not assumed to be secure and trusted. Software Browsers: When you design an eCommerce solution it is important to consider how the site is seen on the web.

When customers access an online shop they will need to use a web browser to load the website. A browser is a software application on a machine that allows someone to access the internet. When a website is loaded in a browser the html code, css, image and information that is stored in a database connected to the website are rendered together to make the site appear in the browser window. When developing an eCommerce site it is important to test that the site appears correctly in all of the main browsers that people use to access the internet such as, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari.

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Operating Systems: An operating system (OS) is a collection of software that manages computer hardware resources and provides common services for computer programs. The operating system is an essential component of the system software in a computer system. Application programs usually require an operating system to function. Web Authoring Tools: web authoring tools are used to develop the front end of an eCommerce website. A range of software packages can be used .HTML (Hypertext Mark-up Language) files can be created in a web authoring package such as Dreamweaver.

The html files created by this software will include CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) files that are used to enhance the visual appearance of the site. Other web authoring tools are graphic design packages such as Adobe Photoshop that can be used to design a skin for the user interface design. This skin can then be exported into a html and css combination that is used as the basis for the developing site. Server Software: Web servers need to run software that manages access attempts to a website.

When a user tries to access a website the web server software processes the access request and serves up the correct files that have been requested from the client’s machine. Examples include Windows IIS (internet information services) which runs on windows based web servers and Apache which runs on Linux based web servers. Server Software runs in the background and works over a network to allow a browser stored on a client machine to access the files that make up an eCommerce site. Database System: A database system is an important part of an eCommerce website.

The database is used to store information about the products for sale on the site. The database will hold information such as store pricing, descriptions, images and other details. In addition to this the customers details are also stored such as what they ordered, payment details, shipping details, phone numbers, emails and lots more. Staff who are responsible for the delivery of items will use the database that is connected to the eCommerce site to ensure all the correct products are sent to the correct customer.

It is important to connect securely to the database to ensure that all orders are processed correctly and the business runs smoothly. Technologies such as a PHP (A programming script) and MySQL are used to communicate between the website and the database management system (DBMS). Network TCP/IP: TCP/IP is a protocol used to transfer data and information over a network such as the internet. TCP (Transfer Control Protocol) is a wired connection between different machines on the internet. A protocol is a rule of how connections are set up between two devices. Anyone using the internet to access an eCommerce website will use TCP/IP.

IP stands for Internet Protocol and each device on a network has a fully unique IP address. When a shopper tries to access an eCommerce store they do not need to know the IP address of the web server that the store is hosted on but can type a URL such as www. shop. com into a browser window instead. TCP/IP is a complex technology and normally and eCommerce site developer does not have to have in depth knowledge of the protocols but should understand that they exist. Ports: Ports on different devices allow them to connect to other devices stored on the internet.

Ports allow a device with one IP address to access another device with a different unique IP address. A device will normally have more than one port, for example when one user wants to send an email to another they will allow access through port 25 as this is normally reserved for email. When a shopper on a client machine wants to access an eCommerce website they will connect IP addresses from their machine to the web server that stores the eCommerce site over port 80. Other Protocols: FTP (File Transfer Protocol) is the set of rules used to communicate information between two devices running on a TCP/IP based network.

If the customer online was to request a receipt this would be sent to them using FTP. Domain Names: When starting an eCommerce site it is important to register a recognisable domain name that links to your company and brand. Successful eCommerce companies on the web have recognisable names such as Amazon, eBay, Nike and Argos that make them stand out from the crowd. These are short one word names that are easy to remember and suit the company brand. Programming Requirements: When designing an eCommerce site it is important that everything is programmed correctly.

Examples of programming that you might need would be embedding JavaScript in your website to increase functionality. PHP might be used to connect the website to the back end database. Complex search queries to find information about your products would need to run on the back end database based on what the shopper is looking for on your site. Security: There are other programming requirements to consider such as embedding security in your site so that customers' credit and debit card information is secure when they purchase from your store.

Download speeds: when running an online business it is important to constantly monitor download speeds of your customers using analytic tools such as Google Analytics. You also need to tailor your website so images are as compressed as possible without compromising the quality of the site. All coding and mark-up must run as efficiently as possible so that the site loads as quickly as possible. Internet connection: Internet access connects individual computer terminals, computers, mobile devices, and computer networks to the Internet, enabling users to access Internet services (for example, email and the World Wide Web).

Internet service providers (ISP's) offer Internet access to the public through various technologies that offer a wide range of data signalling rates (speeds). Web Hosting Service: A web hosting service is a type of internet hosting service that allows individuals and organizations such as eCommerce companies to make their website accessible via the World Wide Web. Web hosts are companies that provide space on a server owned or leased for use by clients as well as providing Internet connectivity.

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