What is the easiest way to set up an online store? I was going to build the site in WordPress so that the owner can update the content easily. What are some go-to plugins? Track where customers are coming from, the more popular products, etc

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The easiest way to set up an online store, as you already know, is WordPress. Basically, what you need is the WooCommerce plugin + different extensions to it.

The steps are:

Step 1. Get an affordable & reliable hosting. DreamHost is a great option to get you started and it starts at $5/month.

Step 2. Install WordPress. Most popular hosting companies let you install WordPress just by clicking a button. Choose a username that is not “admin” and a decent 7+ character password and you’re good to go.

Install WooCommerce plugin. That would be your eCommerce shop platform.

Step 3. Buy a premium WordPress theme from Themeforest (go to the category that suits you and sort them by sales). Here’s a fun fact: you’ve probably just saved yourself a few hundred bucks. Here’s why: if you have a small budget (for web development, a small budget means <$1000), no one will make you a decent website from scratch.

So they’ll just buy a theme (like you just did) and customize it for you (like you just did). And even if you do spend >$1000 for a custom developed website, the ones available on Themeforest are much better.

Why? Because the best themes are made by companies with best-in-class developers who work on a single theme for 6 months and then generate cumulative sales in the tens of thousands of dollars. You can’t beat that.

Step 4. Get your first page online. Go to site’s dashboard => pages => add new. Start writing you first introduction post. Click post. That’s all what it takes. Easy huh?

Step 5. Sign up to Google Adwords and collect the free sign up voucher. Depending on your location, it’s anything from $50 to $100 and it might ask you to deposit and spend $10 first. But you’re getting a great ROI anyway.

Total cost: less than 100$

Time: 1 day (I’m assuming you’ve never done it before)

That’s it. Now you have your own business website and you’re ready to start making money within a day. Good luck.

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