Building a Directory of eCommerce Stores

In this post and the next few posts I will be talking about how I build a Directory of eCommerce Stores

I’ve been running various business directories for nearly 20 years now.

Most of my business directories are really intended for small businesses with physical locations and when registering I list them in their Town Directory, County Directory and Business Category Directory.

As I was getting more requests from Online businesses wanting to register I thought it would be a better idea to create a separate directory for them – Hence my new directory 😉

Where to Start When Building a New Directory

After having the idea for a new directory system the next thing I had to do was sort out a domain for it.

As luck would have it, I had registered the domain a few weeks previously primarily to use for test projects and already had it set up in my GURU Reseller Hosting

The beauty of GURU Hosting is you gat unlimited databases so I created one for WordPress and one for my bespoke directory system.

I quickly installed WordPress using my own bespoke WordPress theme and then sat down and planned out how the new directory would function.

Based on my Business Directory layout of Town, County, Business Category I had to decide what to use instead and came up with the idea of providing information on the eCommerce platform the store was using and the sector of the store

eCommerce Platforms and eCommerce Sectors

I then created a table in the database for stores with columns for Platform and Sector.

In the Platform column I had options for Shopify, OpenCart, Magento, WooCommerce, etc. others can be seen here – eCommerce Platforms

For sectors I included Arts and Crafts, Beauty and Personal Care, Fashion and Apparel, etc. others can be seen here – eCommerce Sectors

eCommerce Sectors in eCommerce Platforms

With the eCommerce Sectors pages and the eCommerce Platforms pages created I then created a system that lists the store in an eCommerce Sector in eCommerce Platform page.

This effectively means each store registered appears on 3 pages all linking back to their own individual page

The best way of explain this is with this demonstration

The store Thriftify has it’s own unique page Thriftify which is then listed in the; Fashion and Apparel Stores Directory, Magento Stores Directory and the Fashion and Apparel Stores using Magento Directory

With the main pages created the next task was building a nice navigation system so each unique listing can be easily found, this was initially done by creating a latest listing page (more routes will be included soon)

Adding Stores to the Directory of eCommerce Stores

With the directory and pages set up the next task was creating a registration system.

1st I replicated the database so as to create an approval database which only went live after I approved listings.

I then created an approval system that moved approved listings from the approval database to the main database.

With this created I added a test listing then tweaked a few things to ensure everything was working how I intended it to.

Knowing I needed more listings to test things better I included a link to the registration page from the Free Business Advertising page on UK Small Business Directory and was amazed that 6 listings were added on the 1st day

More coming soon…

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