Getting Started Guide


Now that you've got the shopping cart software, you're probably anxious to get started and set it up. Please follow the instructions below to configure your shopping cart and start doing business online.

After downloading the shopping cart software on your computer, install the shopping cart according to the Avactis Shopping Cart Installation guide. Then, set up your shopping cart by following the steps described here. The recommended sequence is outlined below, although you can customize it by configuring certain settings at a later time.

1. Go to Store Settings > Location/Taxes/Localization > Countries and States and select the countries and states (provinces) to which your store will ship. If your store will not ship to some countries/states, exclude them from the list. Visitors from these locations will be able to browse your online store and products, but will not be able to place orders.

2. Go to Store Settings > Location/Taxes/Localization > Taxes and define tax settings according to the "How to Set up Taxes?" section. If your state tax rates are based on the shipping address within the state, make sure to first upload the appropriate ZIP-based tax rates by going to Store Settings > Location/Taxes/Localization > ZIP Code Based Tax Rates.

3. Go to Store Settings > Location/Taxes/Localization > Date/Time Format, Number Format, Weight Unit and use these settings to customize date, time, number and weight formats according to your local standards.

4. Go to Store Settings > Currency Settings > Currency Format and Store Currencies and define the main store currency, as well as additional currencies used to display product prices. To define the exchange rates, go to Store Settings > Currency Settings > Store Currencies.

5. Go to Store Settings > Store Configuration > General Settings and set your store time using the Adjust store time setting. All other General Settings may be customized later.

6. Go to Store Settings > Store Configuration > Store Owner's Profile and define your store name and contact information. These settings should be configured at the very beginning, because they will be used in receiving e-mail notifications of purchases, order status changes and so on.

7. Go to Store Settings > Store Configuration > Payment Methods and define the payment methods you plan to accept in your online store. Payment methods may be changed or added at any time. To pre-test your store, you can temporarily use the Cash on Delivery payment method. After your store set-up is finished, you can deactivate this method and activate one or more other payment methods.

8. Go to Store Settings > Store Configuration > Shipping Settings/Methods and set up the shipping methods you plan to offer. For some shipping methods (UPS, USPS, FedEx and others), you will need to open an account with that delivery service provider in order to enable online shipping cost calculation. To pre-test your store, you can temporarily use the Custom Shipping Rates or the Standard Shipping Rates shipping method. After your store configuration is complete, can you deactivate these shipping methods and activate other ones instead.

9. Go to Store Settings > Store Configuration> E-mail Notifications and configure the list of events that trigger e-mail notifications sent out to you and your customers, including changes in order status, payment status, etc. The system offers you a lot of flexibility in this regard, including creating your own rules for e-mail notifications.

10. If you plan to sell computer software, music or other downloadable products in your store, configure the download settings by going to Store Settings > Store Configuration > Digital Products/E-Goods.

11. Additional settings can be configured in the Admin section if necessary.

12. Create or import a product catalog. Refer to the Product Import section for help.

13. Make some test payments and verify that tax amounts and shipping costs are calculated correctly.

14. To customize the design of your storefront, refer to the Storefront Creation and Integration section.
- To manage the way your product URLs look, go to Store Settings > Store Configuration > Search Engine Optimized URLs.
- To change the product image settings, go to Store Settings > Store Configuration > Product & Category Images.

15. The Shopping cart system has options for placing orders without opening an account (Quick Checkout), after opening an account, or both. These options can be customized by going to Store Settings > Checkout and Customer Account Settings > Customer Account Settings.

16. After you've set up your online store, you should delete any test products and reset your reports. Reports can be reset by going to Admin > Administration > Reset Reports.

17. If you plan to accept offline credit card payments, then, to activate the payment module Manual/Offline Credit Card Processing, you need to enable https support for the following sections at Admin > Tools > HTTPS Settings:

Payment & Shipping Modules Settings
Orders & Customers

18. You should configure the automatic data backup settings for keeping your data safe. This is done at Admin > Tools > Backup & Restore.

It is critical to set up your online store to be automatically backed up at least once a day. We also recommend downloading backup files to your PC at regular time intervals to prevent loss of data in the event of server failure. If a server failure occurs, you will be able to restore the online store from the backup files saved to your PC.

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