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GonzoDick

[web] online payment system

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GonzoDick    122
Hi, i'm not sure if this the best forum or even the best website to post this question, but anyways, to go on to the question... I'm looking for an easy way to set up a website with a secure payment system. Specifically, is there easily available free code for such a task? Where can I find such code? Also, by setting up such a website, what are the legal/security implications that I might run into? Do you know any good sites with info on this? Sorry if these are noob questions, but... I am a noob. And that brings me to my last question: Currently I am a junior computer science student, and I have been programming mainly in java, c++ and assembler for about 2 years (mostly coursework). Would it be very difficult to set up a simple commericial website? Anyways, to whoever bothered to read, think, and make a good reply, thanks in advance.

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Dogs    265
Most small businesses use 3rd parties to provide the payment side of the site: companies such as WorldPay and Verisign specialise in this, other household names like Barclaycard also provide a service.

This approach will cost a fee, but you need to offset that against consumer confidence, what profits you expect to make, and the consequences if anything goes wrong. Most people are very selective about where they buy online, and having a well-known brand handling the transaction will almost certainly increase the number of purchases for a small business. It also means that you don't have to go to the trouble of writing encryption algorithms, and protects you from any legal implications if there are any issues.

For the rest of the website, you'll be able to pick up enough HTML in a couple of hours to have a simple site. It depends what you want to do with it to whether you need to use any other technologies. Just remember that it's often a case of 'less is more' for commercial websites: bells and whistles can be great when they're properly used, but can just as easily make a site look amateurish.

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markr    1692
There exist two kinds of PSPs (payment service providers) in the UK:

- Those which take money into a merchant account (Protx, Datacash, Worldpay, etc)
- Those which hold the money themselves (Worldpay, Netbanx, Paypal, Optimal payments)

The former are vastly cheaper (well, except for their extortionate charges) in terms of commission. The latter are more expensive, but need to retain a certain proportion of your money to cover the cost of chargebacks.

Personally, I'd be absolutely sure that your business venture is viable first, as the setup costs will no doubt be high (several hundred quid anyway)

Mark

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Cygnus_X    359
I worked for a startup .com company for a few months (it crashed and burned in the end, but it was because the owner was a dumb ass), and from what I remember, there are 3 main things you need to worry about:

First, the front end. There are all sorts of shopping cart builders on the net for free (in fact, most CPanel servers have several shopping carts.. google agora for an example). But, if you want your site to be any good, you either need to do it yourself or have a professional do it for you. If you want it done cheaply, solid cactus does a fairly good job. They built www.bizchair.com, which was started by a high school sophmore (he paid like 2 grand for the whole site.. I know him through a friend of a friend), and now he makes 3 million a month. Its rediculous.

Second, the back end. Once you build a shopping cart, you need to be able to place the order. Again, several professional web designers have pre-made software packages or companys that will do this for you. You just need to shop around. Or, if you'd like, you can do it yourself (its pretty simple database/automated email stuff).

Third, the payment gateway. This one relates more to your question. Once you have the frontend/backend taken care of, you need someone to actually process credit card transactions. To do this, you need to set up a merchant account at your bank, then pay someone like paypal, verisign, etc. to be your gateway. They'll take a credit card number and a dollar amount, then either successfully charge the card, or they'll deny payment. I can't remember exactly how it works, but I'm sure you could get your hands on a technical manual for free if ask around.

Hope that helps.

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