Register

If this is your first visit, please click the Sign Up now button to begin the process of creating your account so you can begin posting on our forums! The Sign Up process will only take up about a minute of two of your time.

Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2
    Member #
    33264
    Hello everyone,

    I hope I'm posing this in the right place? If not, my apologies.

    I'm looking to start an e-commerce business and need to know exactly what I'm looking for to get this thing up and running in terms of web design. I'll need membership sign up, video uploading (a database for all the videos? I'm not sure.) image uploading, forums, classifieds, and an eBay-style market. (Users purchasing goods from other users, where we take a percentage as a company to avoid up front charges.) Our business is something like Netflix, if that helps?

    What would I need, and what would I use to get those features? While I'd love to be able to learn to do this all myself, time is an important constraint and I'd like to know, at the very least, what exactly should I be asking a professional web designer to build me? Hypothetically, money isn't an issue.

    If what I'm asking for doesn't sound right or doesn't make sense to anyone other than me, then I'd be more than willing to clarify for you. ^^

    Thanks again!

  2.  

  3. #2
    Senior Member Webzarus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    South Carolina Coast
    Posts
    3,322
    Member #
    27709
    Liked
    770 times
    The answer to this question ( or should I say the direction of the answer ), will depend on two things.

    1. How much experience do you have in web design / web development ( yes there is a difference between the two ).

    2. What is your background and experience in business in general.

    Setting up a website like this is a massive project, even for a person with a lot of experience in both.

    You say time is a consideration ? What kind of timeframe ? I've done projects of less involvement ( you're asking for something that will involve EVERY technology used today ), some of these projects took 6 months from concept to go live.

    Assuming you have little to no experience in both web and business, your best bet is going to be to hire a professional or two that has verifiable experience in running a project like this. You say money is not an object ? Well, I've heard that before because the person saying it really didn't have any idea how much something like this would cost. Just to plan out a project like this could easily reach the 5 figure mark, and that is just getting a viable plan in place. If time is a consideration, then you'll be looking for someone that has a team they dedicate to this project. Sure, a single developer could do this, but your best chance at success with something like this is going to be the team approach.

  4. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2
    Member #
    33264
    Thank you for replying, Webzarus.

    Web design isn't such a huge issue as web development is. I know how to make it pretty (although it wouldn't hurt to get help on that.) I just don't know how to make it actually do something. So web development is definitely my problem. I really don't get any of the technical stuff. Of all the languages and web programs you can use, I really have no idea what I should be using for what job, and I'm getting a lot of mixed signals from what I'm reading online.

    I'm better with people and money than I am with computers, thankfully. My mother went through university for business a few years ago and I'm running a store with her now. I've helped her build this business from the ground up, and now that she has a location of her own and she's making enough money to hire new staff, I can now take a break to do what I want now. She's willing to help me get mine started.

    You're right in assuming I have no idea what this might cost, because all the extra features I'm asking for are not something I've bothered with before. I don't know how to put a price on a website like this, nor how to shrink it down to meet my budget. However, I'm aware of how large the project is and someone told me upwards of 50 grand already for a fully customized, working site - but it was a vague estimate at best. Either way, my family is well off and I'd like to think I have the savings to cover this.

    Ideally, I would have liked to have this up and running in a matter of months - by March, with steady growth throughout the rest of the year where we can slowly add onto the site. Obviously I'm thinking this won't happen now, which is fine because I'm really quite adamant about learning how to do some of this myself. Honestly, I'm not so afraid my niche is going to get swept up by someone else, so I've got time to learn and make the mistakes myself. I'm a student right now as well, so it's not like I'm depending on this to feed me or my family.

    So I suppose what I'd really like to know is what I'd need - outside of more money and a working team - to get this thing up and running. What would make this site actually work, that I can learn to do? Understandably, there's only so much I can do and I'll need help eventually, but even you had to start somewhere, right?

  5. #4
    Senior Member RDesignista's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Coconut Tree City
    Posts
    822
    Member #
    30921
    Liked
    123 times
    Yes, this sounds like a monster project. If you have a short time frame and you have a big bankroll, you should just pay someone to build the thing from scratch. You should not be doing this yourself if you do not have experience in the development field, as there will be many bugs, compatibility issues, and security issues that you will not be aware of during the making. If anything, you should hire a consultant (a Webzarus-like expert) who could steer you in the right direction, give you an idea of costs, and give you suggestions on how to balance cost and benefit for development. Just googling this stuff will take you forever otherwise. Your involvement should come in the form of direction, maintenance/support, admin/accounting after the whole thing is done.

    Alternatively, you can make the basic site yourself and then add 3rd party tools to give you functionality. For example, for forums, you could just use PHPBB, instead of hiring someone to make a custom forum for you. I'm sure there's also plenty of pre-made codes for classifieds, member registrations, and more.

    -R

  6. #5
    Senior Member Webzarus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    South Carolina Coast
    Posts
    3,322
    Member #
    27709
    Liked
    770 times
    Excellent suggestion R, that would definately be a doable solution to keep cost down, but you would definately need someone knowledgeable enough about CSS and styling to be able to customize them all to look at least similar. Many big sites did start that way, but synchronizing the logins across the different systems is always a big pain.

    As for the rest, again I can only suggest that you get a knowledgeable person onboard with you as CC transactions, merchant accounts and all that are extremely painful to implement without knowledge, and doing it incorrectly could actually end up costing you more than you'll ever make. How you handle CC transactions is ( depending on your locale ), a major part of the process. If you and the site are US based, their are laws and regulations that need to be followed.

    Then before you even spend a penny, you should know and understand how you are going to market this site to get visitors ( unlike a field of dreams, just building it doesn't guarantee they will come ), you must at least build a model of your target consumer, then find out what marketing methods work best to build your base... And in saying that, you should be able to determine what your return needs to be for every visitor that visits and interacts with your site so you can determine our price breaks to pay for marketing.

    Then there's the advertisement angle, with many advertisers, they won't even look at you until your site is getting 10000 page views a day, so finding quality advertisers when you first get started may be tough. Sure there's google Adsense, but again, its volume and impressions vs. clicks that determine your payouts.

    So roughly saying 50 grand to build the site is feasible , but to that add, another 25 for marketing and advertising for the first couple of months with no expectation of any return because until you have build a siZeabke base of visitors, your ad revenue is going to be minimal.

    Depending on your service, your pricing is going to be alley based on what similar services are charging and what "enhancements" you might offer as a benefit for your service. Typically most service based sites don't make any money to speak of for the first couple of years, so realisticly, you could be looking at several hundred thousand to keep the site afloat and marketing it before it ever turns a profit.

    Any money you might make in the intern is going to be needed to keep the hardware running and or upgrading base on the user base and growth projections.

    I have taken on clients with projects of this size before, but they had previous business experience and marketing experience. As well as 2 years worth or cash on hand to keep the business afloat.

    So basically you're gonna need 3 things before you get started.

    A real business plan
    A real marketing plan and strategy
    And a project plan that lays out basically the strategy of the site, what all functionality is needed, hardware requirement taking in growth factors, upgrade strategy ( I've yet to see a project built out that actually became successful and was able to stay where they started hardware and infrastructure wise ).


Remove Ads

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:41 AM.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.2.3
Copyright © 2019 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.
vBulletin Skin By: PurevB.com