There's no doubt Magento is one of the leading eCommerce platforms on the market today. It is suitable for eCommerce startups, mid-sized businesses, and enterprises, and even integrates with other software, including eCommerce fulfillment technology. In fact, more than 180,000 online stores today use it to display and sell their products.
Given its popularity among businesses of all sizes, the ultimate goal of this article is to give you some tips to set up your eCommerce store on the Magento platform and to help you streamline your eCommerce business and order fulfillment. Let's get right to it!
Review Magento Server Requirements
In terms of hosting, you will need to meet Magento's server requirements. Make sure to take note of them before choosing your hosting provider. Below is the list of Magento server requirements that you need to keep in mind when shopping for a hosting provider:
- Operating system: Linux x86-64, RedHat, Ubuntu, and other few Linux distributions. You can also develop them locally on Windows or macOS with MAMP applications or virtualizations.
- Web Server: Both Apache or Nginx will work fine
- Memory: At least 2 GB RAM
- Database: MySQL version 5.6 and 5.7
- PHP: PHP 7.3 is recommended
- Security: SSL certificates are recommended to transfer data and integration with payment gateways securely
Pick Your Web Host and Domain Name
With the above requirements at your fingertips, it is time to head out to look for a hosting provider. Consider providers that offer domain name registration as part of the hosting package as that will eliminate the need for looking elsewhere.
In addition, it is crucial to consider a provider with packages that include SSL certificates as that will make it easier to integrate your e-store with popular payment gateways. It is also wise to play safe by choosing a provider that includes support for the platform you will be using. Here are some of the trusted hosting providers to consider:
Download and Install the Magento Open Source
After you have purchased a hosting plan and set up your account, it is time to install Magento software. Go to Magento's product page and click the Get Started Button. You will be able to review a list of built-in features for both Magento Commerce versions and Open Source.
Once you're done reviewing the features, click Download Open Source at the bottom. You will be taken to the Tech Resources Page, where you will see a list of options for download. While you can opt to pick any option, Composer is the recommended format for developers.
If you are not comfortable doing this manually, you can take advantage of the one-click installation process if your host offers it. Thankfully, most hosting providers offer this process, which is ideal for newbies.
Before the installation process starts, you will be prompted to customize your admin username and password. You will also have to specify where your Magento installation should go live and your admin login page URL.
Once you're done with the customization, hit Install to finish the installation process. You will receive a confirmation message once the process is complete. Click the admin URL and use your username and password to log in and to access the Magento dashboard, which you can use to build your online store.
Pick and Install Your Theme
This is very crucial as it helps you determine the look of your eCommerce. You can even modify the one you pick to match your branding. But to download any theme from Magento's Marketplace, you will need first to retrieve your access keys, which you can find by navigating to Marketplace > My Products > Access Keys.
After creating your keys, go back to the dashboard, hit Setting > Web Setup Wizard > Extension Manage, and enter the keys. Once you do all that, head back to your admin panel and hit Settings > Web Setup Wizard > Extension Manager > Review and Install. Follow the instructions that pop up to finish the installation.
Customize Your Theme and Add Functionality
After you are done with installing the theme, you can access it by going to Content > Configuration. Here you can make any customization you wish, including changing the logo and editing pages.
Extensions will help stretch the functionalities of your store. If you wish to add any for security, marketing, payment, or shipping, you will have to follow the same process we outlined for adding a new theme.
Store Modification and Setting Up Your Product Pages
Before you start adding products to your store, it is recommended to start by modifying the settings. You can do that by navigating to Stores > Settings > Configuration. Some of the things you can modify include:
- Shipping and payment methods
- Time zones
Customer Account Setup
Setting up the product page is very easy, and you just need to navigate to Catalog > Products, where you will see existing merchandise and the Add Product button. Use this button to add new products (including their names, prices, images, videos, and other info) to your store.
Preview and Launch Your Store
Before publishing your store, make sure everything appears as you wish. If you have been designing your site locally, you will need to transfer all your Magento files to the webserver. The File Transfer Protocol (FTP) can help you achieve this. That is all you need to do to set up your Magento shop.
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