How To Get Started Selling Hypnosis Products On The Internet

Most Burning Question: I am ready to put a store on my web site, but not sure which shopping carts are the easiest to work with, most reliable and safe,etc.  Any recommendations?

I will take a look at Paypal, but I thought they took a big percentage so I was looking elsewhere.

Getting set up to sell products online is not as easy as the ‘get-rich-quick’ gurus would like you to believe.  But it’s far easier than setting up a retail store and definitely a much lower barrier to entry when it comes to cost.  It’s worth doing, but you do need to know some basics before you jump in with both feet.

First point:  There is a difference between a ‘shopping cart’ and ‘payment system’.

Most shopping carts do not have payment mechanisms built in because it would limit the number of people who could use it.

Instead, the really good ones allow you to use any number of merchant accounts as well as online payment systems like Paypal and 2Checkout.com.

Systems Used To Process Payments Online

Systems like Paypal and 2checkout.com have limited functionality as a shopping cart, but for a small number of transactions or small number of products they are acceptable.  What they do is allow you to take payments online including credit cards and electronic checks.

As an example, you can just put a Paypal button on the web page with the item you have for sale, and when people click on it they are transferred to the Paypal site to finish the transaction.

Paypal takes about 2.9% of each transaction if I remember correctly.

2checkout.com takes a $0.45 charge per sale plus a 5.5% commission.

Merchant Accounts

If you want to offer payment plans or any sort of recurring charge program you’ll need a regular merchant account system.  Paypal and 2Checkout.com are not designed to do what is known as ‘recurring billing’. 

If you get a merchant account, you’ll have to pay a monthly minimum in addition to transaction fees.

Basically, you will have to pay a transaction fee for any system which allows you to accept credit cards, including any merchant account you might decide on. It’s a cost of doing business.  In the case of 2Checkout.com, they charge higher commissions instead of a monthly minimum fee.

Also if you decide to go with a merchant account, and you want to take online orders, you’ll also need what is called a ‘payment gateway’ which allows the online order to be hooked into your merchant account. This is because up until the late 1990’s people only took credit cards off-line and many businesses like restaurants still only take credit cards off-line.

The Best Place To Start

If you are just starting out selling products online, Paypal is the fastest easiest way to go. Then if you start moving a lot of product, you’ll want to get a full merchant account – payment gateway – shopping cart system set up.

Click the link below to find out about the Paypal Business Account.

You can be up and selling products in a few hours with it, and they have the Paypal buttons ready to go to make it easy to put on your website.

Where To Get A Merchant Account

Paypal is now offering merchant accounts in addition to regular paypal business accounts. I can’t say if they are any better or worse than other merchant accounts since no one I know has used them, but my guess is they will be as good as most.

Your bank can tell you about merchant accounts for your business, but beware of two things… One, banks will require a lot of documentation on you, your business, and your financial history. It can be as much as if you were getting a home loan.

Two, they are very conservative and wary of online business. Especially if you only do business online. If you apply through your bank, tell them you will be accepting credit cards from your clients and also selling products online.

You can also apply for a merchant account with online vendors.  There are two listed on my Recommend  Resources page.  I know people who have used both of these services and are happy with them.

The Best Full Service Shopping Cart System

If you are ready to get a full service shopping cart, the number one service I recommend (and use myself) is the all-in-one system from Website Pros Inc. It’s called 1ShoppingCart. It has a fully integrated system that includes

  • shopping cart system
  • email newsletters
  • email autoresponders
  • customer database (CRM)
  • affiliate management system
  • product database and inventory system
  • ad tracking system
  • shipping calculation system
  • sales tax calculation system
  • coupon discounts
  • fully customizable to match your website
  • hacker safe certified

You can use it with paypal and hundreds of well known merchant accounts. In other words almost any payment system.

It’s a hosted system, which means they do all the system administration work so you don’t have to worry about it.

They have been around since 1997 and I personally know hundreds of people who use it. Including people who do over a million a year in online sales.

It’s not as simple as paypal, but it’s not difficult to use and is very robust and flexible. They have video tutorials to help you learn quickly.

You can try it for 30 days for $3.95. After that you have a choice of 3 different options that range from $34 a month to $99 a month depending on which services you want to use.

To sign up for the $3.95 trial, use this link:

One more thing, I would advise against using the software shopping carts that you put on your own website. Unless you want to hire a computer geek to constantly fix and tweak your system, stay away from buying software programs to put on your website. Go with a system that is hosted by the company offering it so they can handle all the technical issues.

There is a list of business and marketing resources for hypnotists on this website. Look for the link that says "Recommended Resources" in the top menu.

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