The Ultimate Beginners Guide on How to make a Site like eBay
If you have ever thought about making your own auction website but didn’t have the first clue where to start, this guide is for you.
We have set out to create the ultimate beginner’s guide to starting a fully-fledged online auction business. In this step-by-step tutorial, we will show you everything you need to know to build a site like eBay.
The best part is, you will not need to learn a single line of code.
Designed for ‘Dummies’ by the end of this article you will have an auction site up and running, ready for people to post their items for sale, users to bid on them so that you can take that all-important commission.
Ready to start your first online business? Great, then dive in…
This BuildaSiteLike guide will take you through 3 main steps
- Step 1. Which platform to base your website on (introducing the CMS)
- Step 2. Which hosting provider and domain name to use
- Step 3. Everything you need to know to install your CMS and eBay style auction theme
By following the steps in this tutorial you will have your very own auction website live online.
All this can be done in a little over 30 minutes!
Before we jump into creating our website, let’s discuss some of the basics with step number 1.
Step 1: Which platform to base your website on (introducing the CMS)
If you are researching how to make a bidding website like eBay, the best way to start is by using a well-established website platform. This is known as the “Content Management System” (or CMS).
Why do I need a Content Management System (CMS)?
We cover this in every one of our website guide on Buildasitelike.com. When it comes to building a site, we always recommend you use a CMS. There’s a number of reasons for this.
Firstly, a sophisticated Content Management System will allow you to build your website without the need of knowing any code.
Furthermore, a CMS along with a well-designed template will allow you to launch a website with tons of functionality, in no time at all.
Finally, the most widely used CMS online, a system called WordPress, is absolutely free.
Before we take a closer look at WordPress, let’s talk about what the CMS actually does.
So what does a Content Management System (CMS) do?
The CMS allows you to create and manage the design, content, and function of a website user and intuitive point and click admin system.
It is not that dissimilar to updating your Facebook profile. Once logged into Facebook you can very easily upload selected images, create written posts and comments, and share links, all with a few clicks of a button.
A CMS is a system that allows you to do the same with your own website. Images, text, and all other website content and function can be managed using a simple to use interface.
The entire design of the site can also be controlled using the CMS. In the case of WordPress it is just a case of installing an appropriate theme.
In the case of our auction website, we will show you how to install the CMS as well as a relevant theme that will give us all the functions we need for people to sell items and for others to bid on them.
This will include login interfaces for users as well as reliable payment gateways and sufficient security. (And remember, our site will be able to do all of this without you touching a single line of code).
In a nutshell, a good CMS gives the beginner the power to launch a sophisticated website with no prior web design experience whatsoever.
Lifting the lid off WordPress (Why it’s the number one CMS)
WordPress is an extremely popular Content Management System. Here are just a few reasons why:
- The system is FREE to install and use and always will be
- WordPress is designed for beginners to feel comfortable straight away.
- There is almost an endless supply of themes that will control how your site looks (we are talking hundreds of thousands).
- WordPress plugins provide extra functionality to your website as and when you need it.
- WordPress uses themes that are responsive; i.e they will look great on any screen size.
- This is a CMS that is updated regularly. It is also extremely fast and secure.
The rest of this guide will showcase exactly how to create a website like eBay using WordPress.
This is what will be doing:
- Purchasing iPage – in our opinion the best available Web Hosting for beginners
- Register a brandable Domain Name that people won’t forget
- Installing WordPress onto our iPage hosting (with just a few clicks)
- Purchasing and installing the best eBay style auction Theme onto our site
- Getting everything ready for launch
Step 2: Choosing Your Hosting & Domain Name
So we’ve established why we should build our site using WordPress. We will look into installing the CMS shortly; first, however we need to purchase our domain name and hosting service.
Let’s take a look at what that means:
- Domain Name – All websites need a domain name; this is the address that people type into their browser to locate the site. (Ebay.com is an example of a domain name.)
- Hosting – The hosting is where your website data is stored. This enables the site to be online all the time, ready for users to visit.
iPage offers an incredible package for beginners looking to get started online. With feature-rich hosting, excellent live support, and an amazing $1.99 a month price tag, you will not find a more affordable hosting service.
Not only that, following the special link above means iPage will give you your first-year domain registration absolutely FREE.
If you still remain undecided, there’s also $500 worth of extras up for grabs. And remember, when using high quality, low price hosting service such as iPage, the cost to build an auction website is actually very low.
Note: Build a Site Like does earn a small commission if you purchase any hosting using our links. However, this comes at no extra cost to you.
So if you’re ready to start building your eBay-style auction website, let’s head over to iPage to get started.
The first step is to click the Get Started Now Button.
You will now see a page where you can choose your free 1 year, domain registration.
To create this tutorial I have typed in ThisisMyExample.com. I then pressed search to see if it is available.
Nice, your domain is available!
Wonderful, that’s the message you want to see here.
However, don’t worry if your first attempt has been taken. Popular .com names are very often gone already. There are many variations you can try using a different extension, (the results page will show some viable suggestions for you too).
Once you have settled on a domain name that is available, press Next, choose my term.
This page will ask you to select a 1, 2, or 3-year duration for your hosting plan.
The length of term really is down to personal preference. Your budget or how long you wish to own the website may help you decide. The longer-term you choose the better savings you will enjoy on the hosting however
For our example, we have gone for a two-year plan. The total cost of the term will be calculated in the box on the right.
After you have made your choice click Next, customize my plan.
This will take you to a list of optional extras.
The extras are:
- Domain Privacy – yes, definitely. Without this, you’ll get lots of annoying calls and emails from services that have taken your contact details from the register.
- Website Security & Daily Backup – You should go for this. Your site needs to be secure and backed up.
- All in One WordPress Bundle – Nope, not needed.
- SSL Certificate – Yes, please. Browsers may display a security warning to your visitors if you don’t have a security certificate.
After you have chosen all your extras, click Continue to Payment and fill in your payment details.
(Note, ignore the other iPage offers that are displayed. Click through until you reach the payment page.)
Well done, Step 2 is almost complete!
After making payment you will see a purchase confirmation screen.
After this, you will be asked to create your login credentials for your iPage account.
Once you have done this you will be able to login into your new iPage hosting account.
Now it’s time for exciting step number 3.
Step 3: Installing WordPress & Your WordPress Auction Theme
i. Installing WordPress Using the iPage SimpleScripts
After logging into the iPage Control Panel you reach a screen such as the one below.
Head to the Website section, and click My Installs (SimpleScripts).
From the script list, click WordPress.
This will take you to another screen where you should leave the default settings as is.
Click Install and iPage will take care of the install for you.
(During this process you will be asked to create some login details (Username and Password) for your WordPress admin area.
Your WordPress Installation is complete.
You can check out your front page by typing in your domain name, (mydomain.com).
It won’t look too exciting yet. With only the WordPress default theme in place and no content published there will not be much to see.
The next step will change all that.
It’s time to purchase and install your eBay style theme!
ii. Installing a WordPress Auction Theme
We are now at the bit that I like most of all; purchasing and uploading your premium theme so you can launch your own site like eBay.
Before we do this, however, we will log in into the WordPress admin panel.
Your WordPress admin can be found by adding /wp-admin after your domain name. In other words, your WordPress admin URL is: mywebsite.com/wp-admin
After logging in you will see the screen below:
As we established earlier, the WordPress admin area is where you can manage your entire website.
It is also where you will be installing your new theme.
Before we do that, we need to head to one of the many online marketplaces to purchase something that will turn our site into the eBay auction house we are after.
Where can I find the best auction website templates (themes)
[Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, we will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.]
The internet is full of available WordPress themes. Like anything when you have it in abundance, the quality does vary a lot. This means you need to do your research when looking for the best auction website templates.
The number one way of doing this comes from searching for a theme from a reputable location.
And to make that even easier, we have brought together a list of our favorite WordPress market places online.
- Elegant Themes
- Template Monster
- Engine Themes
- Thrive Themes
- Theme Fuse
- Theme Furnace
The team here at BuildaSiteLike.com have used themes from every one of the market places listed above.
And to bring you the best auction wordpress theme, we have cast our net further to research specific auction website software creators.
More on that now…
What’s the Best WordPress Auction Theme?
Because of the advanced functionality of an online auction website, the theme you install is very important. As a beginner, you need something that will do all the heavy lifting for you, so that all the processes run automatically in the background.
This does actually narrow down the available options greatly. From our research, the most newbie-friendly auction theme available today is the PremiumPress, Auction Theme for WordPress.
With a clean design perfect for e-commerce, an abundance of features that make it easier for your users to list items and others to bid for them, in our opinion, this is a clear winner in the world of eBay style WordPress themes.
So if you’re ready, let’s go ahead and purchase the PremiumPress Auction Theme so that we can you can launch your own bidding website.
The above link will take you straight to the PremiumPress auction theme sales page. Click Purchase Now.
Now you will need to enter your billing address and payment details, (Major credit and debit cards are supported, as well as Paypal).
Once that is done click Continue and wait for your Purchase Confirmation Message.
Once you’ve created your login details for the PremiumPress website, you will be able to access the member’s area, (this is accessible from the main menu bar at the top.
Once logged in, locate the Downloads area within the Premium Press dashboard you will see your new WordPress Auction Theme available for download.
Then, you can follow the video below from the theme authors on how to install your PremiumPress theme, and activate it with the license key provided.
Installing PremiumPress themes with licence key
This is where it all begins to finally take shape. If you follow the above video to the end, you will see that PremiumPress has provided a sample data install option.
With one click of a button, you can have your new auction site live, with all the demo content already in place.
Nice and easy!
The next step however is to prepare the site for business. The easy to follow the video below will guide you through this process.
Setting up your Auction Website ready for Business
And once you have finished the above, pour a drink and give yourself a slap on the back, because…
Congratulations you’ve just built your very own wordpress auction site!
- 9 Essential WordPress Plugins for All Beginners
- PremiumPress Youtube Channel – tons of helpful guides on how to get the most out of the WordPress Auction Theme.
- How to create an online marketplace like Etsy
- How to make a site like Amazon.com – simple to follow steps
How was your experience building this site like eBay? Was the guide easy to follow? Do you have any questions? Post your comments as we would love to hear your feedback.
And if you like what you found here please Share it with friends; we want to get the word out so that everyone can understand how to get started online and build a successful website just like… 🙂