How to Build an Ecommerce Website Like Amazon
Previously, we wrote how you can develop a social network like Facebook. Today we will see how it is possible to build a large project with Amazon functions. Amazon is one of the largest e-commerce projects in the world. It was founded in 1994, when the Internet only developed. Amazon made a huge success in the early 21st century. Today, it generates sales of $136 billion with a net profit of $2.4 billion. On this platform, you can buy almost any product. This is a big machine for sales. In addition, it gives an opportunity to earn small business and sellers.
If you decide to create such a system, we will give you useful tips. What you need to pay attention to when creating a website like Amazon.
This large platform has 341,400 employees. These guys are working to manage a system that allows you to buy and sell products around the world. According to Similarweb, the monthly attendance of the site is 3 billion visitors. The company sends 3-4 million parcels daily. Servers with Linux were purchased to ensure the smooth operation. Amazon built one of the largest data warehouses in the world based on Oracle 9i. An interesting feature, more than 40% of the whole space is occupied by data about clicks of users.
Like all large companies, Amazon uses an analysis of behavioral factors. They collect all available statistics for each user. This makes it possible to better understand the needs of each buyer. Developing a huge IT infrastructure for its purposes, the company has gradually become an expert in the development of cloud servers. Now Amazon is not only a platform for buying and selling. It enables each person to rent part of his architecture. AWS (Amazon Web Services) are very popular and brought the company $2.6 billion in 2016. This is a promising direction! Jeff Bezos says, the company will earn about $10 billion in 2017. It seems that Amazon has found another source of earnings, which is no less profitable than the e-commerce platform.
Amazon launched its own program Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) in 2006. It allows other sellers to sign up on the website and sell products under their own brand. Amazon only charges a small fee and takes upon itself the decision of all organizational issues. A huge user base attracts the attention of a lot of sellers. For today, they make about 40% of all transactions.
Before you start building an ecommerce website like Amazon, you need to develop the right architecture. It should ensure the stable operation of the website and be flexible. As you saw, Amazon has a huge number of users and it needs to take into account. The website structure should provide:
- high level of security;
- high speed;
A high level of security should enable users to make transactions. All credit card data and personal data of users must be stored in an encrypted form. Scripts should be protected from all types of attacks and hacking. First of all, it is necessary to secure from SQL-injections and XSS attacks.
A high speed of the site directly affects the revenue of the company. Users don't like to wait long and can leave the site at any time. Slow work of scripts will turn the use of the project into a disaster. This must be taken into account before starting Amazon website development.
Scalability. Your project should be flexible. At any time, you may need to add new features, develop a new module. It will not be difficult if you use reliable technology.
Amazon does not differ in excellent design. I would even call him a little old. Nevertheless, it is efficient and convenient. Users can quickly find the right product among millions of items. And this is fully satisfied with the company's management.
As you can see, the design of such projects should be efficient and convenient. It is advisable to use the latest trends in web design and the best practices of UX/UI. By investing money in usability, you will increase the trust of users. Since this affects your income.
Development is one of the most complex and lengthy stages of working in such complex projects as Amazon. Of course, you don't need to spend millions of dollars to create a similar architecture, but you must understand that the choice of technology and server will be reflected in the performance and scalability of your product.
Hosting provider and server
Use only reliable and trusted hosting providers. They will ensure a stable and uninterrupted operation. We prefer AWS or VPS (Godaddy, Bluehost). This is the lease of individual logical machines that support the operation of your site. As an operating system, we prefer Linux. It allows you to use the stack of LAMP technologies (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP / Python / Perl).
An ecommerce website like Amazon should have high performance. In this case, it is necessary to use technologies that will allow maintaining stable operation with high load. In addition, they must provide a high level of security. Your project will make hundreds, thousands of transactions. You must be sure that all data is stored in a safe place. Also, it is desirable to use encryption. If the database is stolen, it will be difficult for hackers to decipher the necessary data.
In our company Merehead, we prefer to use the PHP programming language. It is one of the most popular server languages in the world. To increase the speed of development and the level of security, we use the Laravel framework. It has good flexibility and scalability. In our opinion, it is one of the best PHP-based frameworks. As Google Trend shows, its popularity in the world is growing.
Linux, Laravel, MySQL, PHP provide an opportunity to build an e-commerce website like Amazon with a high load. They will allow you to implement any functions with minimal effort. Also, these technologies are well suited for developing cryptocurrency exchange platforms.
Maybe you have questions about CMS systems, such as Wordpress, Joomla, etc. Can I use other box solutions? We believe that to build large projects, such systems are not suitable. Here are a few reasons:
1. Low security level. CMS allows to connect a lot of plugins and it is not safe. Your project can easily crack through this small add-on.
2. Poor flexibility. Plugins extend the site's capabilities. But sometimes between them, there are conflicts that can stop the work of the whole project. The more plugins you use, the less stable the site.
3. Slow work. CMS is a universal system that aims at being convenient for different types of projects. Thus, CMS have many modules that are not needed for your website. They load the server and slow down the speed. If you have 100 users a day - this is not critical. If you plan to get 10,000 or more users, you need to take care of the performance.
I'm sure that Amazon has an army of QA-engineers. They test the work of the project all day long. Your ecommerce Website should also work stably and generate revenue. It is necessary to take care of testing before launching. Don't shift this work to users. You can get a huge number of complaints. Moreover, if there are problems in the financial module, you may have huge costs. I think this is quite an important stage of development.
After starting the project, you will need its promotion. In the first minutes, no one will know about its existence, you will need finances and efforts to actively make the website like Amazon in the first stage. You should understand that the users of your project is divided into two groups:
1. Sellers (online stores).
You can use online advertising to attract two groups. Let's look at the main sources of traffic.
Sellers (online stores)
As a rule, these are active users who publish their products on different websites. If you show them the benefits of your service, they will be happy to sign up and place their items. You can build an email database using Craigslist or Yelp. Then send an invitation to all. It is enough at the first stage to attract 50-100 online stores. This will provide 1,000 - 10,000 items on the website.
They are difficult to find. First of all, you need to have a budget for advertising companies. Which traffic sources you can use:
1.Organic from search engines. This is one of the cheapest types of traffic. You need to do internal SEO optimization. After that, proceed to website promotion. Typically, the cost of such services starts from $1000 per month. The higher the budget, the faster you will get the result. Using SEO optimization, you can get 100 - 50,000 users a day. It depends on your budget.
2. Use Google Adwords. This is an expensive source of traffic, but if you properly configure the work, you can get potential buyers at an affordable price. Either way, you need a Google Adwords expert. Typically, the cost of a single click can be $0,05-0,50.
3. Use Facebook Ads. This is one of the cheapest sources of traffic. But here, it's very important to use right settings and filters. Otherwise, you can quickly spend a budget with a zero result.
Maybe this part should be placed at the beginning of the article. Although, after reading all the material, you understand that the project has its own peculiarities and complexities. They need to be considered when developing. In fact, it is an investment in your future and your business.
The development time for a website like Amazon can be from 2 to 4 months. It all depends on the complexity and the number of functions. During this time, technical documentation, design, front-end and back-end parts will be developed and, most importantly, complete testing of the project was carried out.
The cost of development will be $10,000 - $50,000. You can find out the more exact price by contacting us via the feedback form. Since we have experience in developing similar projects, we will provide a detailed plan with clear deadlines. You can be sure that your project is handled by a team of professionals. Contact us if you have any questions.
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