Website Building Guides

Website Building Guides & Tutorials

Everything you wanted to know about building an eCommerce website and a lot you didn't! Here you'll find an expert analysis for why you should choose Shopify over Magento or why Lemonstand makes a better platform for new startups that are going places.

Bandwidth overage charges are a bad thing, and I advise you to steer clear of any platform that imposes limits on the amount of traffic you can receive to your website or the number of images you can store. Hosting is such a cheap commodity these days that there is absolutely no reason for it apart from nickel and diming you.

Also, you'll find some great tools and resources like my guide to finding royalty free images for your eCommerce store and a comprehensive guide to merchant accounts, payment gateways and eCommerce transaction charges.

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How To Build A Weebly Website Step By Step
Tony Cooper   January 02, 2018  

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January 06, 2018
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Don't let anyone fool you into believing you can build a website in ten minutes. Even drag and drop website builders like Weebly need time to set up correctly and be made to look good. In this guide I'm going to show you how to set up a Weebly website and get the job done right first time, avoiding all those annoying rookie mistakes that usually have to be redone later on. If you have the funds it is always preferable to get a website designer to build a website for you. It's what they...
How To Build An eCommerce Website – Project Management Guide
Tony Cooper   October 09, 2017  

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October 09, 2017
Building an eCommerce website gets more difficult as more people become involved in the project. Once you begin managing multiple stakeholders and their expectations, managing the project becomes essential. (Stakeholders vary from those with a management interest in adding to the bottom line or data entry clerks in human resources with interest in how job application forms will display on their section of the website) Everyone wants their say and managing stakeholder expectations is a critical part of the process. Whether building an eCommerce website in the hope of generating a second income,...
Choosing Your Images, Image Aspect Ratio And Image Scaling
Tony Cooper   September 07, 2017  

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September 07, 2017
What's the difference between a cook and a chef? The cook does it for the love of cooking or out of necessity, whereas a chef does it for the money. I can always tell when an eCommerce website has been homespun by an amateur or made professionally by a digital agency. The difference is night and day to the trained eye. Using an eCommerce website template is a great start, but it's when you have to start replacing the original images that most people come unstuck. Here's my guide to choosing images for your eCommerce site...
Find Your First Product To Sell Online
Tony Cooper   August 25, 2017  

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August 25, 2017
At some point in time, whether idly sitting down the pub or watching the world go by while you suffer a daily commute on the train, you'll come up with an idea or product for an eCommerce store. You may come up with lots of them; I do - all the time. Ideas light the touchpaper and fire the rocket into the sky. They are the waves on which you surf if you choose to ride them. If unused, ideas slowly wither and die like cheap sparklers on Guy Fawkes night. Most of the time, that's...
The cost of building a new website
Tony Cooper   July 05, 2017  

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July 05, 2017
Before you start commissioning a new website design you want to know how much it is going to cost. But before I give you the in depth answer let me ask you a different rhetorical question – how much is a new car? Your answer is going to be “well it depends". I haven't given you enough information with which to work. You need to know if the car is going to carry a single occupant or an entire family with a boot full of luggage. If the latter then you'd probably point me in the...
Wix v Weebly, Drag and drop website builders compared
Tony Cooper   January 03, 2017  

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June 29, 2017
Life is too short for endless comparisons. You want to build a website, and you want it made today. Forget about using one of the free website building tools that came bundled with your hosting plan. They are exactly what they suggest they are; cheap, tacky and classless. Rather, use one of these two expert website builders and reap the time saved and cost benefits. In my website builder quick start guide, I go over the basics of each popular website builder. Read that first if you don't have a clue. You might...
Small Business Website Design Budget Tips
Tony Cooper   November 19, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 29, 2017
Getting your small business website launched and ready to start taking orders has come to the top of your priority list. But what's the cost? How much time do you need to invest each month to keep it working? How do you know what needs doing anyway? What's this all about! Choosing an eCommerce website builder is just the start of your journey. Continual development and evolution are what's needed to make it a success. Approaching a website design company with a “fixed cost” mentality is the wrong way to go about everything. ...
Small Business Website Building Ideas
Tony Cooper   November 14, 2016  

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June 29, 2017
The biggest asset you have as a small business owner is time. You may have plenty of meetings to go to or clients to see, but you'll always be short of time. Even if you have time on your hands, it shouldn't be spent building a website. There are much more important tasks to get done like building out your Customer Relations Database (CRM) and reaching out to potential new clients. (If you're stuck with that then stick around because my next blog post will blow your socks off with a CRM Masterclass...
Shopify v Lemonstand
Tony Cooper   July 25, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2017
Here are two eCommerce solutions that will cover 98% of your shopping cart solution requirements. What differentiates them and why choose one over another? Whichever you choose you'll be in good hands because both are excellent online website builder solutions that are well priced and offer first class support. Product Overview Both Shopify and Lemonstand are cloud based eCommerce website builders, so you won't need to download any software to your PC or laptop to start building your site. You will, of course, need an internet connection to be able...
Shopify v BigCommerce Key Differences Explained
Tony Cooper   July 13, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2017
Shopify and BigCommerce are the two most well-developed cloud-based eCommerce website builder solutions. How do you decide which one to choose and what makes one better than the other? In this guide, I point out the key differences between both platforms so that you can choose the best fit for your business. Once again I'll reiterate that there is no “best eCommerce solution” there is only what will work best for your business type. First of all, if you haven't already, read my Shopify v Magento website builder guide to understand why building...
Magento V Shopify
Tony Cooper   July 03, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2017
Why You Should Choose Shopify Over Open Source eCommerce Solutions If you are an SME (Small, Medium Enterprises), then you should be looking at a cloud-based solution for your eCommerce project. Why? Because you can get started quickly, with the minimum of fuss and keep the costs of development to a minimum. Any one of Shopify, BigCommerce or Lemonstand will do the job of setting up an eCommerce website for you admirably. I've used Shopify as my headline maker because it is the most popular and widely used eCommerce cloud-based...
Integrating 3d Secure Payments
Tony Cooper   June 05, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2017
To protect yourself from taking fake payments credit card providers and banks have developed 3D secure to try and combat internet fraud. But surprisingly, few payment gateways support it, and I've researched and compiled a list which I'll update as each payment provider makes it available. I've also added 3D secure support to the payment gateway provider comparison chart.
How to select the right colour scheme for your website
Tony Cooper   May 24, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2017
When I was 18, I applied to join the army and found out I was colour blind. Nothing dramatic. I found it difficult to distinguish between darker shades of colour. For example dark grey can often appear to be black and deep blues can appear purple. Web safe colours are a bonus for me because I know I'm not looking at a made up shade and all the colours are the same whichever device I'm viewing the page on.
Where to find professional images for your eCommerce website
Tony Cooper   May 17, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2017
Having a professional graphic designer go to work on your logo and website design is the best way to end up with a great looking site, but it also costs money, and the best graphic designers are not cheap. When you start blogging to build traffic to your eCommerce store, then you'll want to add plenty of imagery to your posts to break up the text and make it more comfortable for web viewing. But if you've ever tried searching for “free stock photography” then you'll know that separating the wheat from the...
eCommerce transaction charges explained
Tony Cooper   May 16, 2016  

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Last Updated
June 30, 2016
You've made the decision to build an eCommerce site but how do you know that transaction charges are not going to eat up a major share of your profits? Finding the best payment gateways for your eCommerce solution can save you a stack of cash. To show you what you are likely to be paying in transaction fees I've put together several different scenarios to give you a ballpark approximation of running costs. If you haven't considered the impact of eCommerce transaction charges then this could be a real eye...
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