I am a newbie in web-commerce, so words of one syllable would be good <g>
I have a "web service" that basically consists of asking people a whole bunch of questions, doing some back end processing, and delivering a report.
By way of example, suppose you wanted an on-line estimate of the current market value of your house.. you would get asked various questions about location, type, number of bedrooms etc
All this is to be done in one session (ideally). The user gets some introductory material, then asked if they want to buy, if so enters payment details, waits for approval, then goes ahead with the Q&A and through to the report.
So, how do I do the payment processing? .. I need to grasp what I have to do in HTML to interface with some backend credit card or ?paypal or ?shareit processor .. is this as simple as a form submit ? .. does the backend processor know what the next page to be called is ?
Who would be good ecommerce suppliers to talk to about this, given
- it is a service not a downloadable product
- there is only one service, so a "shopping cart" metaphor is not appropriate
- the site is to be windows hosted
Looks to me all you need is a [Buy Now] button from PayPal or another merchant. Click the demo button on the top right. There is a description of the code given on that page. Other processors work similar.
You could use PayPal, or you could also use a payment gateway and merchant account.
Depending on what your target audience is, they may feel more comfortable purchasing from you without going through PayPal. Or you may want to offer a choice of your own processing in addition to PayPal.
With respect to the integration, either method should allow you to first collect the information and perhaps start a session which you track... then allow the customer to make the purchase and upon verifying the transaction's success... you can then go ahead and fulfill the information to them.
What language are you developing your site in (beyond HTML)? I.e. do you have any programming skills in something like ASP or PHP or Perl? Part of the solution would likely require a little bit of custom coding for what you are describing but nothing too overly difficult.
CDGcommerce.com - Trusted Merchant Account Solutions since 1998
Many thousands of successful, growing businesses benefit from our expertise every day. You can, too!
We help merchants to eliminate gateway costs, reduce & mitigate fraud and achieve streamlined PCI compliance. Learn more today at http://www.cdgcommerce.com - we look forward to helping your business grow!
I think PayPal has gotten away from requiring and account to pay. This is good as I have never taken them seriously for business sites because too many buyers may not want to join just to make a simple purchase.