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Issue 7.5


Yuma e-Commerce

Issue: 7.5 (July/August 2009)
Author: Brad Weber
Author Bio: Brad Weber is a co-founder of Inspiring Applications, Inc. and has enjoyed 13 years of building custom software applications for Macintosh, Windows, the web, and now iPhone.
Article Description: No description available.
Article Length (in bytes): 11,612
Starting Page Number: 52
Article Number: 7517
Resource File(s):

Download Icon 7517 project.zip Updated: 2009-07-01 13:06:09

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Excerpt of article text...

According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, total e-commerce sales in 2008 were $133.6 billion, an increase of 4.6% over 2007. During the same year, total retail sales decreased 0.6%. E-commerce sales in 2008 accounted for 3.3% of total sales. E-commerce sales have steadily increased every year, in total and as a percentage of total sales, since at least 2000.

In this article, I will show you how you can use Yuma to throw your hat into that e-commerce ring. I am not going to cover shopping cart implementations. You will find a simple shopping cart example in the "examples" directory of your Yuma download in a pair of files named WidgetCart.yuma and WidgetShop.yuma. The focus will instead be on the safe, secure processing of credit card payments through Yuma.

There's more to the process of accepting credit cards than writing code. You will need a merchant account with your bank, an account with a payment gateway service, and an SSL certificate.

Your bank can set up a merchant account for you, allowing you to accept your preferred credit cards and have net proceeds deposited into your account by a payment gateway. When you set up a merchant account, assuming you don't have a physical storefront, be sure to let your bank know that you will be processing only online transactions. That will save you the hassle, and additional expense, of having physical card-swiping terminals.

The payment gateway service is the middle-man between the banks. They are responsible for verifying funds availability, verifying cardholder address information, and depositing funds into your bank account in daily batches. Most payment gateway services offer some kind of "virtual terminal" so that you can process individual credit card transactions manually through a web form on their site if necessary. (There is typically another entity that sits between the payment gateway and your bank. That is the payment processor. But it is unlikely that you will ever deal with them directly and may never even know they are there. So for the sake of this article, I've rolled their responsibilities into those of the payment gateway since that is what it will look like to you.)

The SSL certificate is necessary to ensure that sensitive customer credit card information can be collected securely from their browser. I should clarify that commercial SSL certificates actually do nothing to secure a transaction. Certificates are part of the equation only to verify the identity of the entity on the server side. When you post data to an https address, your data will be passed to the server securely. If there isn't a certificate in place, signed by a well-known certificate authority, you may see a warning message in your browser, asking whether or not you want to trust the server, But the connection should still be secure.

...End of Excerpt. Please purchase the magazine to read the full article.