E-Commerce is a term covering any financial transaction on the web from online banking to shopping to managing utility bills. The potential for abuse of any system involving personal data has led to the development of PayPal, which acts as a 3rd party payment gateway. PayPal allows transactions between buyer and vendor to take place whilst reducing the risk of exposing personal data such as your date of birth, maiden name and bank details (all of which are used in identity theft and fraud). The vendor site does not have to store or manage any client data and there is the added benefit of additional payment security should either side of the transaction not be satisfactorily fulfilled. Google Checkout works in a similar way with participating online stores, whilst also offering fraud protection and order tracking.

Many websites have made use of affiliate sites in order to raise their web profile. A potential buyer can either go directly to a specific website (assuming they know exactly what they want and where to get it) or, browsing more generally, can link to a site via a 3rd party. The link usually takes the form of a banner or pop-up and forwards the buyer to the affiliated site. The affiliate site is paid by the merchant site.

eCommerce Catalog & Products Features

• Unlimited number of categories, sub-categories, products and options.

• Optimized brand landing pages

• Item discounts based on quantity ordered.

• Order discounts and promotional codes with single or multi use discount codes.

• Products can be linked to multiple categories and have multiple options.

• Set the order in which products display.

• Options can be individually set to Optional or Required.

• Options can be given a weight which will be factored into the shipping cost calculations along    with the Product weight.

• Support for "text" options which allows a customer to enter text when they order a product.

• Digital Downloads are fully supported. All downloads are done through a script that checks the    order status before allowing the download.

• Store can be run in "Catalog Only" mode. This way, the store acts just like an online catalog,    without any links to a shopping cart.

• Ability to choose the "Featured Products" on your homepage.

• Cross-Selling is supported via a related keys mechanism. This method is much less work than    physically linking dozens of Products manually.

• Tax-free products and options.

• Support for product Ratings & Reviews per product

• Support for product suppliers

• Support for product manufacturers

• Support for product brands

• Tax-free products and options.

• Maintain inventory levels by product and product options

• Multiple product images

• Zoom product images (multiple zoom options)

• Integration with social media website