Nowadays creating an online store is the easiest job with evolving of a number of open-source eCommerce platforms. Multiple eCommerce solutions have enabled businesses to create their very own online shops like Amazon and eBay, in just fraction of a time.
However, amidst of a range of eCommerce software solutions, OpenCart is trending high in the market because of its out-of-the-box features. To add more, it has efficient order management, built-in multiple gateway payments and provides free support and software updates for lifetime.
Here are the necessary steps that you should follow to build your own online store at a minimum cost.
- Install OpenCart
For installing OpenCart, download its latest version from the authorized store of OpenCart. It comes as a ZIP File, and hence you need to extract the contents of the Zip file into a separate folder. After extracting, a folder named Upload comes up along with three text files, namely install.txt, license.txt and upgrade.txt. The upload directory includes the files that you need for uploading to your web host. Thereafter, copy all the files and folders of upload folder to the public directory of your web host. Then create your MySQL database with a new user attached it.
After you have done with these steps, open storefront of your site in a browser to start with the installation wizard. However, the exact URL depends on where and how you have created the site.
On visiting the URL where you have uploaded our OpenCart files, a pop-up of ‘Step-1: License' appears. You need to accept the License by ticking the 'I agree' statement. The consecutive step, 'Step 2: Pre-Installation' appears displaying the installation requirements, settings, and extensions. The next step is 'Step 3: Configuration', where you need to enter the database host,database name, username, and password created earlier for MySQL user. At this step, you further need to put the username, password, and email for login into admin backend. Click on Continue and your will reach the final step or 'Step 4: Finished', which implies you have successfully installed Opencart.
2. Configure Your Online Store
You need to login to the administrative backend and set up categories to keep things on your store organized. Administrative dashboard appears which will provide all essential information. Visit the Catalog and delete all the existing categories to create your own.
3. Add Categories and Subcategories
You can have unlimited categories and subcategories to organize your product offerings on the site. For creating your own categories, click on Categories in the Catalog and fill Category Name, Meta tag descriptions, and keywords. Under Data tab you can add other information like parent category, SEO keyword, sorting order, category images etc. Whereas under Design tab, you can choose your design layout.
4. Add Manufacturers
You can add manufacturers by simply clicking on Catalog and then selecting Manufacturers. The manufacturer form comes up where you need to enter the name of the manufacturer, stores applicable, SEO keywords, sorting order and logo.