How to set up an E-Commerce Portal – A Case Study

2012 was an exciting year for Indian e-commerce, which capped off an incredible 5 years of exponential growth, from approximately $1.75 Billion in 2007, to over $14Bn by 2012. A lot is being written about 2013 as a year of possible consolidation for the industry. But regardless of how things develop in this sphere, 2013 will see more interesting trends and more interesting innovations in the Indian e-commerce, as the market matures.

Following the industry trend, we decided to take up the E-commerce apparel sales. The website is called sastabazaar as the model is based on everyday low pricing. We made use of word press- a user-friendly tool for designing our website and thereby implementing this lucrative business plan. To make the website attractive, we used certain plugins that made it functionally active.

Following is a list of important plugins that we have used:

  • Easy Google analytics dashboard
  • Lazy SEO
  • Login with Ajax
  • Regenerate thumbnails
  • Simple Social Icons
  • Sitemap
  • Woo-commerce – An e-commerce toolkit that helps you sell anything. Beautifully.
  • Two other SEO plugins have been configured on the site

With woocommerce plugin, site can easily publish a new product with different SKU and color combinations. It also takes care of inventory management for listed products.

The main page of our website features men and women Tee shirts. It consists of various tabs like Home, Shop, About Us, Blog, Contact, My Account, Checkout, etc. The site also manages SKUs. There are three types of payment options – netbanking, credit cards and COD (cash on delivery) also, the website can be made compatible with paypal accounts.

Shop will have a drop down for selecting either men/women. The user will then be able to see the relevant products for his/her intended purchase. They will be directed to two other pages.

Similarly a user can select to create an account on our website by using the account drop down. The same dropdown will also facilitate login where the user will be directed to login pages. Other functions of this tab include, password management, order view and edit of address. An option on the top right hand corner allows you to view your order summary. (No of items and total price)

Among the many widgets that we have used, following are a summary of primary widgets:

Now the question was to quantify the performance of our website. We made use of google analytics for the same purpose. We have intended to resolve the following questions:

  • What promotional campaigns do we use?
  • Who is our target audience? How to identify them?
  • Whether our strategy is paying off in wooing our intended audience?
  • What is the usage pattern of our website? Is there any bottleneck in terms of performance when the traffic is at its peak?

All of these quantifiable parameters can be found using Google Analytics. It is a comprehensive platform where we can monitor such things and also, can alter and modify according to our requirements. It gives a lucid visual representation on which management decisions can easily be taken.

Now we have also tried to use Google adverts. Since it is an E-commerce setup, it is imperative for us to advertise. GA allows us to link our dashboard to Google adverts where we can market our website by creating text and visual ads. By analyzing the data from GA, we can place and schedule our ads as per requirements so as to give a s proper traction into the market.