5 Essential Hosting Features for WordPress e-Commerce Site

Build a Free Ecommerce Website with WordPress - Quick and Easy - Helpie WP

New eCommerce sites are launching all the time. These include online-only retail stores, existing bricks and mortar stores expanding their horizons, membership sites and various other kinds of business. One thing all these companies need is a website and the most popular platform used to create them, indeed it is used by 29% of the world’s websites, is WordPress. To get a WordPress website to perform at its best, however, you also need great hosting and in this post, we’ll explain some of the essential hosting features that WordPress e-commerce site owners need to look for.

1. High availability

High availability of applications - Redundancy & Replication

One of the biggest advantages of launching an eCommerce store is that it is always online. It doesn’t matters what time of day a visitor arrives or which time zone they live in, business can always be done.

Well, that’s the theory.

In practice, it doesn’t always work out like that. Some hosting providers cannot guarantee that your store will always be available and this can impact both your sales and your online reputation.

To ensure that your site stays online, one of your primary tasks is to choose high availability hosting. High availability is a specific term in hosting jargon, it means that your provider will guarantee your site will be available for 99.99% of the time or more. In other words, any essential server maintenance carried out by your host will be kept to a maximum of 52. 56 minutes a year. That’s an average of a minute a week. In comparison, if you opt for a host that offers 99.5% uptime, you can expect your site to be offline for around 1.8 days a year, or 3.6 hours a month.

What’s the impact of downtime? Every minute your site is offline, there is a chance that you are losing custom. It is estimated that if Amazon.com went offline today, it would lose £140,000 ($200,000) in revenue every minute. If it opted for hosting at 99.5%, it could, potentially, lose £30 million per month. That’s a third of a billion pounds a year.

2. High-Performance WordPress hosting

How to Choose the Best WordPress Hosting in 2021 (Compared)

Besides availability, another key factor is the performance of the hardware on which your eCommerce site runs. The speed at which your site loads on users’ browsers affects both your Google ranking and customer engagement. Slow websites show up less well in search results and have lower conversion rates.

Before choosing a web host out the platform on which it runs its WordPress hosting. You want it to be fast, reliable and secure. Look for the state of the art technology, such as the latest-generation Xeon processors, superfast memory and enterprise-class SSDs.

You should also look for a software platform that is optimised especially for WordPress and which provides super-fast loading through the use of the latest caching technology.

3. Tight security

17 Best WordPress Security Plugins to Lock out the Bad Guys

Security is a big issue for online businesses. The risk of hacking, infection and ransomware can have devastating effects on your business. With over 70% of cyber attack victims going out of business within six months and the risk of heavy fines if you don’t comply with stringent regulations, it has never been more important to choose a web hosting that help keep your eCommerce site robustly protected.

Ideally, you need to look for hosting which provides the following services:

Advanced anti-hacking technology: A good web host will provide a solid firewall to protect you around the clock. This will monitor your site for hacking attacks, malware infection and other threats. Ideally, the firewall should be specially configured for WordPress.

Automatic updates: Cyber attackers use specialized tools to scan the internet looking for websites with outdated, vulnerable software. Once they find them, they target them for the attack. For this reason, it is very important that all software is updated automatically as soon as a new version is released so that vulnerabilities are eradicated. Good hosting will provide the means to automatically update WordPress core and your plugins.

Remote backups: Should you accidentally delete your data or have it stolen through hacking, the crucial step to your business’ survival is how quickly you can recover from the disaster. If your host provides you with the means to remotely back up your data, as and when you need, bringing your site back online can be done very quickly. Not having that data can put an end to your venture. Some hosting providers will automatically backup your site for you and even restore the data on your behalf if you need it.

4. Developer Features

As your business grows you will want to make additions and modifications to your site. In the past, this has proven to be problematic for many eCommerce sites as they have not had the capacity to test their updated sites before going live with the changes.

To prevent yourself falling into the same trap, look for WordPress hosting that provides you with developer-friendly tools in your control panel. These will include the ability to clone your site, as well as features like WP-CLI, Git version control and phpMyAdmin.  Having these will provide the resources you need for developing your website.

5. 24/7 technical support

How to Provide 24/7 Customer Service Without Hiring More Reps - Salesforce Canada Blog

There are a lot of things that can go wrong with an eCommerce website. If you know what you are doing, most of these are simple and easy fixes. However, if IT is not your specialism, it can be a daunting and sometimes stressful time – especially if your site is unavailable or critical elements are not working correctly.

It is times like these that you need expert technical support: someone easily accessible that has the skills to solve your WordPress specific problems. For this reason, you should always choose web hosting that comes with 24/7 technical support and which can be reached through a variety of means: live chat, telephone, email and ticket.

Do note that technical support is not the same as customer service. 24/7 customer service might just put you through to call centre where your issue will be logged. You may have to wait until the next working day before an IT expert responds. With technical support, that expert is available there and then.


When it comes to eCommerce, your hosting service is the foundation on which your venture is built. If your hosting is poor, then those weak foundations can cause your business to suffer or even fail. For a secure and profitable future, make sure you choose the right hosting service for your needs. Hopefully, the five points we have discussed above will help you make an informed choice.

Does Your E-Commerce Site Really Need A Mobile Apps?

As the owner of a major ecommerce store, you must try to use your resources to appeal to as many potential customers as possible within a specific amount of time. One of the best ways to achieve this goal would be to have a customized ecommerce business app that can promote your business in the best possible manner. While at one point of time, businesses only focused on establishing a strong market name and for that they invested in having their very own website. However, the needs of an ecommerce business have somewhat changed over the years and currently it is considered a major necessity for any online store business to have a well developed mobile apps.

There are a number of factors for which you should consider having a custom built app for your ecommerce business. Some of them are discussed below in brief.

Apps For Ecommerce Business Can Help To Promote Your Company

Statistics have shown that while using their smartphones, people explore sites in browsers only for about 8% of times. For the rest 92% of cases, they prefer to use mobile apps. Hence unless an enterprise has a well developed app to represent its interests, it is likely to lose out on a major part of its business. Apps not only help to engage new prospective customers but they also help in effectively communicating with the existing customers about the central goals and aims of the business. Moreover, having an app to represent your company actually allows you to promote your brand in the best possible way. However, without the app you are actually losing out on a lot of opportunities to promote your company in a subtle but effective way.

Mobile Apps Can Boost Your Sales

Top 4 Reasons to Boost your Ecommerce Sales through Mobile apps - Smarther

It has been found that mobile apps serve as excellent ways to increase your sales figures within a short span of time. Most ecommerce companies that start using mobile apps for their business observe a sharp rise in their business figures within a short time. In many cases, the rise in sales can go up as high as 20% to 30%. Additionally, customers who shop with the ecommerce store also get back within a period of 30 days to do their next shopping with the ecommerce store. It has been found that about 62% of all online traffic that comes from smartphone usage depends a lot on the response generated from the mobile apps. Due to this reason, it is necessary that companies invest wisely and generously on creating apps for their ecommerce business.

Smartphone Apps Can Help To Enhance Overall User Experience

Best practices to enhance your mobile app user experience

UX or user experience plays a very critical role in making sure that the customers keep on visiting your online portal and using the products and services that your company has to offer. The sphere of digital user experience includes a number of things such as visual appeal, user features and ease of use just to name a few. You should also focus on improving the loading speed of your site as it can play a very important role in determining the success of your site. It has been found that about 40% of users are likely to leave in case the content takes more than three seconds to load. Other factors that deter customers away from using your site include complex user experience problems, limited features as well as complicated checkout process. Negative mobile experience can not only force a customer to leave your site but it can also lead them to buy their goods from a competitor’s site.

Most users prefer to use mobile apps instead of mobile websites since they are more convenient, offer great speed and an easy checkout process. They can also help to personalize the overall experience that they might have while interacting with a mobile app. Since changes and improvements made in the user experience can reduce your bounce rate, ensure optimum customer engagement and increase sales conversions, most companies nowadays choose to invest in creating apps for their online ecommerce businesses.

Ecommerce Is Categorized Into Six Major Types They Are:

1. Business-to-Business
2. Business-to-Consumer
3. Business-to-Administration
4. Consumer-to-Consumer
5. Consumer-to-Business
6. Consumer-to-Administration

eCommerce development and its applications is an unavoidable sector in the present day today life. Given below are the most common eCommerce applications.

Ecommerce Apps Can Convert Simple Customers Into Ardent Fans Of Your Brand


While you need customers to ensure greater financial returns for your company, you need to retain them for the long term if you are to make the most of what they have to offer. In fact, you need to have a proper customer base if you are looking to solidify your position in a highly competitive market for the long haul. With the help of a mobile app that represents your business, you can do just that and focus on increasing the prospects of your company for the long term. You can use your apps to send push notifications to your customers which in turn can propel them to take actions that can benefit your business enterprise.

In the recent times, it has been found that push notifications are highly effective when it comes to boosting customer retention and reducing the chances of cart abandonment rates. They can also provide customers with a potential marketing channel that they can use in a number of different ways. These notifications help to engage the buyers, propel them into buying the products that the ecommerce business has to offer and also retain longstanding interest on the brand for years to come. The ecommerce apps also serve as a great platform for studying customer behavior. The metrics obtained from studying customer behavior through ecommerce apps can help your company to come up with better methods to serve your customers.

Mobile Apps Are Now A Highly Popular Way To Promote A Business

65 Simple Ways To Promote Your Mobile App

With the widespread usage of mobile apps in the modern times, companies that do not have apps of their own seem negligible or unimportant in the eyes of potential customers. Apps can not only turn customers into loyal fans of a brand but they can also generate positive user experience for a brand and encourage more number of sales. It is in keeping with such factors that mobile apps have become so important for eCommerce businesses.

6 Tips for Creating a Highly Successful Ecommerce Business

How to Start an Online Business (Easy Guide For Beginners)

Thinking of setting up an eCommerce business? With software such as WordPress, it’s possible to build an eCommerce site and get it online in no time. However, while getting your website up and running is fairly easy, turning it into a long-term, successful business is much more challenging. In this post, we’ll show you six important tips to help you grow your fledgling store into a thriving eCommerce business.

1. Choose products you know will sell

This sounds like obvious advice, but its aim is to draw a distinction between what you think will sell and what you know does sell. If you want to create a successful business, you should focus on products that have a proven track record and sell them whilst they remain popular.

One way to identify trending products is to see how well they perform on social media. If they are getting lots of likes on Facebook or mentions on Twitter, then it is a clear signal that people are interested in them. Also, check out the reviews on the sites of other retailers. If there are lots of recent, positive reviews, this is another indicator that a product is very popular at the moment. Finally, search for the products on Google Trends, this will show you how many people have searched for them over time and give a forecast for the near future. Do remember that some products have much longer lifecycles than others. Some may be hot property for years, others may last just a few months. You don’t want to invest in a stock just as it goes out of fashion.

At the end of the day, finding the right products is down to researching the market. Understand what sells and you have much more chance of becoming successful.

2. Use established eCommerce techniques and tweak them to your own needs

Everything You Need to Know About Ecommerce Marketing

There’s an established formula for online selling that has been honed and updated by many successful businesses over the years. Companies use it because it has been proven to work. Rather than dive in blindfolded, take the time to discover that formula and find out how you can shape it for your own business. You’ll need to look at a wide range of different variables, such as the products you sell and where you source them, how you advertise, the way you optimise your landing page, and how you can increase your customer lifetime value.

Through experimentation and analyses, you’ll eventually find which techniques bring you the best rewards.

3. Create a site that inspires trust

9 Tips on How to Get Customers to Trust Your Website

With so many dodgy websites around, you need to build a store that your visitors will find trustworthy – this is especially true for fledgling brands that people are discovering for the first time. One thing you’ll definitely need is an SSL certificate which will guarantee that customers payment details are encrypted and earn you the prized ‘green padlock’ secure icon on the Google address bar.

In addition, offering money-back guarantees, free delivery and live chat are other ways to inspire confidence.

A websites design is also important. You want a theme that matches both your brand and the products you are selling. Customers have expectations of what reputable sites look like, so It is worthwhile checking out what your successful competitors do before designing your own site.

4. Test your ad to find the best ROI

Advertiser Attracts Attention Of Business Investors Buyers. Team Of Promoters Greets Customers. Metaphor Of Advertising Promotion. Concept Of Teamwork, Cooperation Marketing. Vector Flat Illustration Royalty Free Cliparts, Vectors, And Stock ...

The best way to make sure that your ads have the biggest impact is to test them. Not only should you test different ads, but you should also test them on different audiences. This will give you a much clearer understanding of where to invest your money and your time in order to get the biggest return.

If one ad becomes especially successful, then you can replicate it and scale it to make even more sales. However, remember to do so in increments so that you use your budget wisely.

Three good tips for internet ads include using creative language that can inspire others to share on social media; employing scarcity techniques, such as ‘whilst stocks last’; and offering quantity incentives, ‘buy one, get a second half price’ etc.

By far the best way to advertise and one that has the biggest ROI is using email marketing. However, to do this successfully, you need to get as many people as possible to subscribe to your emails or your newsletter.

5. Ensure you have great customer support

10 Ways to Deliver Consistently Great Customer Service

To increase sales, improve customer satisfaction and earn great online reviews, it is absolutely vital to offer top-rated customer service. And for online stores where customers can shop at any hour of the day, ideally, this needs to be offered 24/7.

One of the best ways you can do this is through live chat. This can help customers with product buying decisions and assist with issues that arise once the product has left the warehouse. It’s good for the brand’s reputation and inspires return custom, meaning increased customer lifetime value.

6. Reinforce your site with great hosting

Never underestimate the importance of good web hosting when it comes to having a successful eCommerce business. Good hosting can ensure your website is always available, that it loads quickly for your customers and that their data is secure. It protects you from hacking and malware, provides backups for quick disaster recovery, and offers you the computing capacity to cope with spikes in traffic during busy periods.

Your business relies on the effectiveness of your hosting. Without great hosting, you cannot guarantee that your site will perform the way you need it to.


eCommerce sites are not automatic money-making machines. Building them is fairly simple to do, turning them into a successful business takes a lot of research and hard work. Hopefully, the six tips in this post will give you a better understanding of how to make a success out of your own site.

Top 5 eCommerce Predictions For 2018 that you must know

What is E-Commerce? Definition, differences with other terms and first steps to follow if you want to launch your e-commerce

2018 is with us already and it’s important in the current competitive market that eCommerce businesses don’t standstill. In this post, we are going to take a close look at five eCommerce predictions for 2018 and explain why online businesses need to take heed of these shifting trends in order to stay ahead of their competitors.

1. Mobile sales will begin to dominate

Mobile phones to dominate online sales medium in India: report

We’ve been talking a lot about the shift towards mobile shopping over the last few years. In the UK, we already spend twice as much time surfing on a mobile as we do on computers and now we are set to see mobile sales forging ahead too. It is predicted that mobile purchases will massively increase during 2018, accounting for almost 50% of all e-commerce revenue by the end of the year.

There are several reasons which have contributed towards this shift. Mobile technology continues to improve: we have better phones and better networks, both of which make it easier to shop whilst we’re out and about. For many, it’s also more convenient to use a phone at home than it is to use a laptop.

In addition to phone technology, we have also seen an increasing effort by online businesses to give customers a better mobile shopping experience. Businesses are creating websites and apps which make it far easier to search for, find, look at and order products on the small screen. Improved website design and navigation have removed many of the barriers that used to make us switch to a computer when making a purchase.

Improved payment options also make mobile more attractive. Mobile phones are seen as very secure; with apps such as Apple Pay, we can even use them to pay for goods instead of a bankcard. This means customers now trust mobile payments much more than they once did.

To take advantage of the shift towards mobile, try to do the following:

  • Use a website theme that makes it simple and easy for customers to find your products when using a mobile phone.
  • Make sure your site loads quickly. You can do this by optimising your site and ensuring your web host provides the performance you need.
  • Start using accelerated mobile pages so even those with older phones or poor connections can access your shop quickly.
  • Offer a wider range of payment options that make online purchasing simpler for customers.

2. Sites that offer personalised shopping will grow more

7 Ways Brands Delight Customers with Personalized Shopping Experiences (2021)

Online retailers have realised that they make a lot more money when they are able to offer customers a personalised shopping experience. Indeed, sites which use personalisation techniques typically see a 5-10% resulting growth in sales.

These stores use a range of ways to give a customer-centric shopping experience. By employing data analysis and automation, they can provide suggested items based on a shopper’s wish lists, recent searches or purchase histories. These suggestions can be provided on screen during browsing, as upsells during checkout or be remarketed using emails.

The technology needed to provide these services to customers can often be acquired through simple plugins and extensions.

3. Augmented reality shopping is the future

The Future Of Augmented Reality For Retailers And Brands

One of the major problems with online shopping is that customers only get to view a picture of a product before buying. This means a significant proportion of products sold online get sent back because, once opened, the customer doesn’t like them. This is frustrating for the customer and costly for the retailer.

Over the years, online stores have done their utmost to provide the best shopping experience they can: image galleries, large images, videos, customer reviews, etc, have all been helpful. Now, however, retailers are beginning to use augmented reality to give users a much better understanding of how their products will look.

Augmented reality apps can be used to show customers what clothes will look like when worn or how furniture or decorations will appear in their homes. This year will see augmented reality becoming an integral element of many online stores.

4. Packaging to have increased impact on purchasing

Product Packaging: Design Examples + Unboxing Tips (2021)

Packaging has a number of effects on eCommerce customers. Firstly, it needs to protect your product as it is shipped to the customer. This is important as over half of all customers who receive a product damaged because of poor packaging would be reluctant to use that store again.

The way you package your goods also has an effect on your brand. Those selling ‘high-end’ goods need to make sure that the presentation of their packages meets the high standards that customers expect. Even with less valuable products, a well-presented package shows you have a respect for your customers.

The other consideration you need to think about is the eco-friendliness of your packaging. Do you use recycled and recyclable materials? Do you use overlarge containers when smaller ones will do? Do you overfill your packages with protective materials (bubble-wrap, polystyrene, tissue paper, etc)?  Many customers are increasingly concerned with the environmental waste produced in eCommerce shipping and are also annoyed at the amount of recycling it forces them to do.

Getting your packaging right can lead to increased customer satisfaction and this can help with developing long-term relationships with customers.

5. 2018 will see a need to improve shipping

Improve Customer Service with Better Ecommerce Shipping | ShipStation

Shipping is a big deal in eCommerce and can often be the reason why a customer chooses one retailer over another. Thanks to the lead taken by Amazon and eBay, online buyers have much higher expectations about how they want their products delivered and now expect other eCommerce sites to provide similar levels of service.

In general, customers want their products delivered for free, to arrive quickly and at a time and place which is convenient for them. This means companies need to provide a range of different shipping options, for example, you could offer a free delivery within two days or a charged for, next day delivery. For customers who work, you may need to offer convenient delivery times or enable them to collect the package from another location, such as a post office.

Whilst customers like to be able to track delivery of their products, they also hate signing for them. If they are not in when the delivery arrives, they often have to go through the hassle of rearranging the delivery themselves or having to collect it from a depot – all of which can put them off using your services again.

In 2018, delivery options will continue to impact upon your business. The more options you can offer, the better placed you will be to serve the differing needs of your customers.


As you can see, there are some surprising predictions for eCommerce in 2018 and not in the areas that most online retailers would expect. Whilst increased mobile shopping and personalisation have been promising to have an impact for some time, the effects of packaging, the way we ship our products and the rise of augmented reality are, perhaps, less expected.

What Makes An E-Commerce Sites Successful?

What Makes An eCommerce Sites Successful?

When it comes to selling online, the user experience is just as important as the products you stock and the prices you charge. If you want your eCommerce sites to meet user expectations and compete with your rivals, there are certain features which it has to have. Features that make shopping quicker, easier, safer and more convenient are, therefore, essential for today’s eCommerce sites. Here, we’ll look at what they are.

1. Clear menus

What Makes An eCommerce Sites Successful?

People visit eCommerce stores looking for specific items and one of the main ways they do this is through the menu. This is where they’ll expect to see the main product categories and their subcategories. Get the menu right and finding the right link will be quick and easy; get it wrong and the visitor will give up searching, perhaps so irritated by the menu that they never visit the site again.

Making the menu work on an eCommerce site, especially one selling a large variety of products, can be a challenge. You need to put it in the most convenient place, choose the right design and configure it to display in a way that customers can find what they want easily. There will also be a need to consider the titles for each category as this can be useful not just for SEO but for making sure you are using the same terms that a visitor would use.

You may also have to consider how you structure the actual website as a subcategory or individual product may need to be included in more than one main category. A pair of trainers, for example, might need putting in both sports and casual footwear categories.

2. Filtering search

What Makes An eCommerce Sites Successful?

Some users prefer using a search bar to the menu and a good website will make sure this preference is catered for. Indeed, search bars and filters are one of the most useful features on any store, enabling the visitor to type in the kind of product they are looking for and then filter the results to find the best one.

Today, there is a selection of plugins and add-ons that will provide this function, letting customers narrow down the range of products displayed by filtering attributes such as brand, price, colour, size, weight, age, condition, etc.

These features are found on many websites, usually with the search bar at the top and the filters at the left. As this has become the expected norm when visiting an eCommerce store, it’s a good idea to use the same layout on your site so that visitors are instantly familiar with how it works.

3. Product appropriate visuals

What Makes An E-Commerce Sites Successful?

As shoppers cannot see the actual product, the images you display play a vital role in helping them decide. For many types of product, however, a single image won’t cut the mustard. While one photo might be ideal for a tin of beans on a supermarket store, for other products you may need to provide much more.

If you sell clothing, for example, customers will want a 360-degree view and the ability to zoom in and see fabric, stitching and pattern details. If you sell white goods, electrical items and similar, people often want to see videos that show them how the product is used. Other products may require images that give instructions, such as an illustration of how a device you’re selling is easily connected to a home wi-fi network.

4. FAQs

What Makes An E-Commerce Sites Successful?

Customers may love your products and prices but if they can’t get an answer to a question, they’ll shop elsewhere. FAQ sections are essential because they allow you to answer those frequently asked questions that are key to helping customers make a purchasing decision.

For eCommerce sites, there are two types of FAQs you need to display: those for specific products and those relating to the services your business offers. The ones relating to the products need to be on the product page and the ones relating to the business, e.g. questions about delivery and returns, need to go on a dedicated FAQ page that is clearly linked to on all pages, such as in the footer.

Sites like Amazon, which have so many products that it would be impractical to write FAQs for all of them, get around this by enabling previous customers to answer questions posed by others.

5. Product recommendations

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Personalised shopping is one of the most effective ways to improve the user experience and generate more sales. More advanced sites, like Amazon, use artificial intelligence powered product recommendation engines that analyse individual user behaviour to recommend products a customer is more likely to want. This type of technology is becoming increasingly more available and there are even WordPress plugins that provide it.

For visitors who are not logged in, other features, like ‘related products’, can help them find better items or even entice them to buy additional goods.

6. Mobile-first site

Preparing Your WordPress Site for Google's Mobile-First Index

Mobile shopping is the fastest growing area of UK retail and over the next four years will be worth over £30 billion and account for 40% of all UK internet spending. More customers will visit your site from mobiles and will expect your site to be optimised to work on their device. If it does not, they’ll quickly go elsewhere.

Catering for today’s mobile users means going beyond using a responsive theme and making sure that when you develop your site, you use a mobile-first approach: i.e. you prioritise how the design will work for mobile users.

7. Trust, security and reputation

What Makes An eCommerce Sites Successful?

Trust, security and reputation are vital attributes when trying to convince visitors that your website is the best place to make a purchase. Vital features of such websites include making it easy for customers to get in touch by displaying addresses, phone numbers and contact details; installing an SSL certificate which encrypts users’ payment details and provides your site with the secure padlock icon on browsers; and reviews on sites like Trustpilot, which let new customers see independent and verifiable feedback from those who have purchased from your store in the past. Together, these provide customers with the confidence that your store is trustworthy, secure and has a track record for delivering great service.


E-Commerce stores are upping their game to meet the high expectations of the modern consumer and to ensure they provide a great user experience. The seven features mentioned here will help your website achieve these goals and make sure that your business remains competitive in today’s marketplace.

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