Before we begin the installation and configuration of the WP e-Commerce Plugin, let’s make one thing clear: I strongly recommend setting up a test platform. You’re going to get your hands dirty during this process, and the last thing you want to do is break anything on your production server.
Setting up an e-Commerce site is much different from a personal web site or blog. Having a testing platform is especially important once we deploy the initial site. Without a testing ground, one little accident or mistake can make your site non-functional, and a broken e-Commerce site is of little use to anyone. I implore you not to ignore this warning – yes, it can happen to you, even through no fault of your own. Perhaps a newly installed Plugin disagreed explosively with an existing Plugin. Perhaps a WordPress update went awry. No matter the issue, test all changes and updates before rolling them out to the production server.
Appendix B covers the setup of a WAMP test server. You can set up WordPress and the e-Commerce Plugin on the test server and try all instructions covered in this book before making a single change to your production server.
Now we come to the exciting part: let’s get the WP e-Commerce Plugin running. At this point you should already have WordPress installed. If you do not, please visit http://WordPress.org/download/ to grab the latest version. Some web hosts also offer a one-click install of WordPress via cPanel or another control panel.
Installing the WP e-Commerce shopping cart Plugin is no different from installing other WordPress Plugins. First, download the latest version from: http://www.instinct.co.nz/e-commerce/
Alternate download site: http://WordPress.org/extend/Plugins/wp-e-commerce/
Next, decompress the downloaded ZIP archive with your tool of choice. We should now have a folder called wp-e-commerce. Using your preferred FTP/sFTP program, we need to upload that entire folder to the wp-content/Plugins directory on your server. See the Figure below to see the wp-e-commerce folder properly uploaded next to a few other Plugins. The full path to the wp-e-commerce directory should be: /wp-content/Plugins/wp-e-commerce/.
Now that we have successfully uploaded the Plugin, let’s activate it. Open your web browser and log into the administrative back end of your WordPress installation. Under the Plugins section you should now see an inactive Plugin called WP-e-Commerce. Insert Image Click the Activate button to enable the Plugin. On the left side of the WordPress Dashboard we now have a new section called e-Commerce. Congratulations! You have now taken the first crucial step in building an e-Commerce site.