View Full Version : First Project: Custom Online Retail Store

01-11-2012, 07:26 AM
Mods, I posted this thread in the wrong category before. I'd like for it to be moved to PHP as it's a PHP project. Please delete my other thread. Thanks!

Greetings my fellow coders,

Starting off 2012, I received my first freelance project for an online retail startup. I'll be independently coding the site with my girlfriend (who's a graphic designer) providing the designs. I'm pretty sure that's why they even considered giving me a shot, she's amazing :o

Anyways... I do have experience coding my own personal sites using PHP, MySQL, Javascript, JQuery and HTML/CSS. But this will be my first site that I'm actually selling items online and also the first one I'll be coding and handing off to someone else to maintain.

Being a business consultant by day, I am very much into designing a strong and flexible solution upfront rather than piecing it together as I go along. I'm stuck in this design phase right now! And am wondering if any of you much more brilliant and experienced minds out there might be able to give me some advice/guidance.

Here are the basic requirements:
-Online retail store
-After I hand the site over, the founders will need to be able to add more products, modify existing products, modify existing information (like descriptions or prices) ...this is the requirement I'm struggling with as I've never "handed a site over" before

My Open Questions:

What is the best way to code the site to allow the founders to add new products or take existing ones away without them delving into code? Perhaps I could create the products page as more of a framework in PHP and pull product images/information from a MySQL table? Is this the best approach and would there be an easy way for them to modify the MySQL table (because even that may be a little too technical for them)?
What shopping cart plugins have served you best before and do you have any recommendations (Magneto, OpenCart, OSCMax, etc.)?
What credit card plugins have served you best before and do you have any recommendations (Merchant Plus, PayPal Website Paytments Pro, etc.)?
Would I need a separate plugin to calculate Salestax?

Those are some of huge questions I have that define the foundation of this project. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated. Thanks so much for your time. Let's make 2012 a big year!! :D

01-12-2012, 01:54 PM
With all due respect there is no reason to try and reinvent the wheel when it comes to e-commerce solutions. There are hundreds of options out there already many of which have been around for a lot of years. Look at what is available, find the feature set your client wants/needs and start from there.