Taking off the ground as a secure shopping channel only in 1994, online shopping has come a long way. It has evolved in the ways and manner that have determined its present stance. Popularly known as ‘E-Commerce’ websites now, the online shopping websites are business boosters as well as a means of comfort for vendors and shoppers respectively. However, they have their own setbacks; security being the most major one.
With an average of $488 being spent annually on online shopping marketplaces, the stake is high on E-Commerce websites. Huge cybersecurity meltdowns in 2017 such as the cloud data breach, Ransomware attacks, plastic currency theft, etc. demand a wakeup call for all digital commerce website owners.
So, if you have an E-Commerce website, how do you plan to make it more reliable for your customers? In this blog post, we will be talking about definitive tips and tricks that you can use to secure your E-Commerce website.
1. Choose a Reliable Web Host Provider
It is extremely important to choose a web host provider that is reliable as well as capable of delivering its functions. The right web host provider will ensure that your website stays up all the time and does not cause any loss to probable revenue because of any downtime. This is so because a website with maximum uptime leaves a better impression upon the site requesting visitors.
A great web hosting provider will also ensure better search engine friendliness, hence spiking your search engine rankings. A secure web host is more likely to protect your data from by recording comprehensive logs, monitoring crucial activity and maintaining regular backups.
2. The Right E-Commerce Website Builder
There are just too many website builders to choose from. A lot of website building platforms establish their products as ‘easy to use’. However, the element of security should be your priority. Here are the top 5 secure and reliable E-Commerce platforms to choose from:
3. PCI Compliant Certificate
Being a PCI compliant online business is a must. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) certificate for your website tells your customers that you do not intend to steal their card data and hence builds up trust which results in better conversions.
4. Use Certified Payment Gateways
With the advent of so many payment processors, it is totally justified if you are confused. These payment processing services are sometimes geographically bound by legal terms and hence, create doubts. Always make sure that you are completely aware of the payment formalities and legal terms existing in your country and then choose accordingly. Some of the best online shopping website payment gateways are PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.net, 2Checkout, Amazon Payments etc.
5. Encrypt the Communication for Data Exchange: Get SSL
When people are shopping online on your website with their browsers, sensitive data is being exchanged. Without any encryptions, this data can easily fall in the hands of preying hackers and would cost you your reputation. It is better to a get an SSL certificate and serve all of your pages via https protocol. Do not forget to update these security certificates with every new release. When your website is SSL secured, visitors will feel safer and more confident on your website.
6. Request Strong Login Credentials
Not a lot of E-Commerce websites do this, but you should periodically prompt your registered users to update their passwords.
7. Try Hacking Your Own Website
What would cost you more; an unfortunate hack of your website or the fee for a professional assistance to hack into your website to surface its vulnerabilities?
A smart E-Commerce website owner would never mind shelling some extra dollars to hire an ethical expert hacker to penetrate and check the vulnerability aspect of their online business. Doing so will help you identify weaker elements or loopholes that exist on your site and hence, take preemptive corrective measures.
8. Update Your Website
Regardless of the chosen website builder, each of them demands regular updates to the existing software version. Updating your website’s theme, plugins, add-ons, features etc. is crucial so that the new version release can remove the previous shortcomings or other security loopholes.
9. Listen to Your Customers
Make sure that you mark the presence of your online shopping website on all major social media networks so that you can receive feedback/complains/suggestions from all your customers without the fear of missing out any crucial ones. Their feedback will help you analyze situations existing at hand and take corrective measures. Setting up an online reputation management team can also help you interact with your customers in a proactive way.
- Get your online business insured so that you can reduce the impact of any unfortunate hacking event.
- Try to clear all sensitive user-data from your website database so that hackers are not drawn towards them.
- Most importantly, hire reliable professional website designers and keep strict work contracts into place so that you do not have to worry about insider-theft.
- Invest in 24*7 website monitoring services so that you can receive instant notification alerts for any unexpected events.
Catherrine Garcia is a web developer and blogger. She enjoys reading books and watching fun movies.