New Store Setup, Testing and Go Live Checklist



Before you are ready to start making live orders, it is important to check and make sure you have all of the following ready before you submit a request to go live. We can provide assistance and support but to have a store's request escalated to high priority is a large task depending upon the season as throughout the week we have several people who are ready to make their online ecommerce dreams come true. It is most important that before you or your client set a specific deadline as to when the store needs to be ready that you are 100% sure that everything runs smoothly to ensure that your store is live and on time.




  1. Run the store setup wizard:

    Your welcome email has the login credentials for your admin console. Please run the setup wizard the first time you log in. This is important for the initial store setup and for your site to function correctly.


  1. Setup Secure File Transfer:

    Spark Pay online stores come with a File Browser in the Admin Console however there are times when you need to upload/manage files when working with development environments such as Adobe Dreamweaver or Microsoft Expression/Front Page. Please submit a request for SFTP access.

How To Upload Images via an FTP Client
FTP File Types and Management Tools

  1. Create your product catalog:

    • Enter or import all your products. Edit your product details and set up categories for your items.
    • If you have an existing site, map your old product URLs: Export your old urls, give each a new custom URL and import these URL mappings into the redirect module for an easy way to map old to new product links. This avoids having to map old product ID's to their Spark Pay online stores equivalent ID saving time.
    • Be sure to add as much descriptive text about your products as possible for good SEO
    • Upload any product images in mass via FTP or individually via the file explorer, or autoassociate them based on their name.
  1. Create and Tweak the Theme of your site:

    • If you purchased an implementation,  quickstart, theme rollover or design package, Spark Pay online store personnel will log into your site and setup the required portions. Tech support can help with any issues, but not with any regarding changing default code, and theme modification. There are many exclusions to what we will not do. Please click here to review the exclusions. If you are not savvy with HTML or CSS we can provide paid custom implementation.
    • It's a good idea to have some products and categories on your site before the design process starts so the entire site can be tested and seen in it's entirety.
    • Test your site in multiple internet browsers, not just one.

Catalog & Products Help Articles

  1. Enter Content Pages or other static information about your site:

    • Theme rollovers and design packages typically do not incorporate this content or creative writing. Spark Pay online stores provide some generic content pages that you can add to your store as a jumpstart.
    • Examples are shipping and company policies, pricing information, articles about your store or product, etc.


Directed Search: What is it and why should I use it?
Editing an image using the Image Editor
How to Design Your Blog (and related FAQ's)
How To Syndicate (push) Your Blog Posts to Facebook and Twitter.
Blogging Platform Overview
How to add a Wufoo form to your Spark Pay online store
How To Change Top Navigation Links
Allow Customer to Upload Files
How to Manage Content
Setting Up A New Menu Or Link Group
Adding Custom Store Text and Labels
Creating and Modifying Content Pages
HOW TO: Allow Customer to Upload Files
How can I include a link to an external custom HTML file?



  1. Setup Payment Methods:

    • If you will be processing credit cards, ensure that the payment gateway information is entered and working correctly.
    • You can go live without actually processing the credit cards and process them manually if you have a terminal.
    • Some gatgeways require keys, tokens and other authorization, all entered on the payment method setup page in Spark Pay online stores.


Troubleshooting Payment Gateways/Processors
Automatic Credit Card Processing and Auto Authorization
Re-Processing Credit Card Transaction
Enabling and Using Split Payments

How do I setup Customer Specific Payment Methods?
How To Grant Third Party Permissions For PayPal Express Checkout
How to Setup Merchant e-Solutions
Using PayPal's Sandbox Mode For Testing
How to setup Intuit Quickbooks Payment Gateway
Payments Setup FAQs
Paypal Payment Standard / Express Checkout
What Google Checkout API Version Do I Choose?
How To Set Your PayPal IPN

How to: Disable Payment Methods for Certain Products
How-To: Process Payments in Spark Pay online stores.
Set Up A Payment Gateway To Only Authorize
Payment Methods Overview
How do I issue a refund or void a transaction?
Setting Up PayFlow Pro
What are CVV Authentication Codes and why are they not stored?
Creating a Custom Payment Method
How to Accept Credit Cards
How do I setup Spark Pay online stores to use a payment gateway such as
Supported Payment Gateways / Payment Methods and their specific setup information

More Payment Articles


  1. Setup Shipping Providers and Rates:

    • Each provider such as UPS, USPS, FedEx, must be setup to pull rates from their shipping interfaces.
    • Setup any flat fee or rate table shipping rates.

UPS Freight Ground Integration
Providing Tracking Numbers In Notifications
Understanding Drop Shipping Email Notifications
Creating multiple shipments from a single order
How to Create FPO/APO Shipping Method
FedEx Account Setup Getting a new meter number
How To Set Up Live Shipping Rates
Shipping Setup FAQs
How to remove all instances of shipping cost and cost calculators
Outdated USPS Domestic Rate Calculator API (RateV4)
How to Enable Call for Shipping Outside of Regions.
How do I get UPS Negotiated Rates?
How To Make A Free Shipping Option
Please Select Shipping Method... But no options appear in the dropdown box... What do I do?
Breakout Shipping
How do I Ship a Product for Free?
Defining Warehouses
Shipping Overview
Displaying Additional Shipping Information
Product Specific Shipping Settings
Custom Shipping Methods
How do we allow the ability to specify that a customer wants to pick up an order?
How does a customer enter their third party UPS account into an order?


  1. Setup Taxes or Tax Providers

    • Set your state tax rate(s) or hook up a tax provider like TaxCloud or Avalara for automated calculations

What Is TaxCloud?
How do I setup Tax Cloud?
What are the tax options that Spark Pay online stores provide?
What are Global Regions and How are They Setup?
How to setup tax rates and how do they work?

  1. Setup any Coupons, Discounts, Sales or Special offers:

  •       Create coupon codes, adcodes, gift certificates and more! Find out how to create Discounts here.


  1. Enter test orders to make sure your site is working as expected:

    • Visit the front end of your site and add items to the cart, calculate totals and check out.
    • Use our standard test credit card number to force the order into the system and past gateway checks, 4111-1111-1111-1111
    • Test with your gateway to ensure proper authorization and captures of orders

Credit Card Numbers To Use For Testing


  1. Plan your SEO:

    For existing sites, please ensure your old url's are redirected using a combination of our Global Redirect module and our Custom Urls module. This is very important for SEO.

Helpful Search Engine Optimization(SEO) Tools & Suggestions
Optimizing Pages With SEO Settings

      1. Domains / Domain Email / SSL Security / Go Live:


        When your Spark pay online store is first delivered to you the store domain is set to the Spark Pay online store domain You can run your store on this domain or another domain or sub-domain (i.e. We call the process of directing traffic from a domain or sub-domain to your site the 'go live' process, it is the last step after you have completed all other preparations. If you don't already have a domain name reserved you can submit a request to Spark Pay online stores to check name availability and pay to reserve an available domain name or use a domain registrar to reserve a domain name. Let us know in your Go Live support request if you already have a domain/sub-domain that you want to use as the store domain.

        Domain Email:

        Spark Pay online stores have several email fields in the admin console where you specify your email address for order confirmations and warehouse notifications etc. We do not host domain email services but most domain registrars offer an option to add email service to your domain.

        Store Email:

        The Spark Pay online stores application uses to send emails to your customer from the store email address you specify at Settings > Store Information > Store Email. Be sure to add the following SPF record to your domain DNS that matches this email address so that emails originating from your store to your customers are treated as if they came from your email domain. Add a TXT record with the following value: v=spf1 ~all If you already have an SPF record just add the following in the existing TXT record:

      1. SSL Security:

        SSL Certificates serve three primary functions:

        1. Secure private information between the web servers and the customers as they browse the site by using encryption.

        2. Secure the administration console so sensitive passwords, credit card numbers, and customer data cannot be intercepted.

        3. Provide a logo on the site that shows your customers that you protect their data. Some certificate logos go as far as to display that you are a legitimate company.

        What are my SSL options?

        How do SSL Certificates work and what are my options?

        Free Shared SSL

        When your Spark Pay online store is first delivered to you the store's secure domain is set to the Spark Pay online store domain and uses the Spark Pay online stores shared SSL certificate. This is a free service we offer to make sure your site is secure from the beginning. When a customer visits a secure link during checkout, they will be transferred seamlessly to "", and back again once they leave the secured area.  There is no SSL logo with this method. There is nothing additional that you need to do to configure this option, we maintain the SSL.

        Purchase a dedicated SSL certificate

        If you have your own SSL certificate, customers stay on your domain name the entire time they visit the site, and you can display a SSL logo. Some SSL certificates come with a static logo, others display your company name, and others are interactive, when clicked display information directly from the certificate authority. Most certificates also come with fraud insurance. Choose a certificate and place your order. A support ticket is created at time of purchase and this task ticket also serves as your Go Live request. In the ticket we will guide you thru the Go Live process as well as install the certificate on your site.

        Provide your own dedicated SSL certificate

        Have your own SSL Certificate and want to have it applied to your Spark Pay online store? Choose the 3rd party SSL Certificate Installation service. A support ticket is created at time of purchase and this task ticket also serves as your Go Live request. In the ticket we will guide you thru the Go Live process as well as install the certificate on your site.

        Go Live:

        When you are ready to begin directing traffic to your site and drop and become for example submit a support ticket with your request. Please do not modify your DNS until our team has instructed you to, doing so will only delay your Go Live as certain domain DNS settings such as 301 redirects cause issue. Please do not 301 redirect traffic from your domain to your trial site and if you're reading this and have done just that it needs to be removed prior to the Go Live task. If you already have a live site, traffic will be redirected away from the current web host to Spark Pay online stores unless you plan on setting the Spark Pay online store as a sub-domain value on your existing domain retaining your existing web hosting environment but adding the ecommerce component. The domain DNS task is preferred to be done over the phone along with a member of our IT team so the changes made to your site are quickly followed by your change to the domain DNS, otherwise our team will provide you with instruction on how to direct only web traffic from your domain to your Spark Pay online store in the Go Live support request.

Submit your Go Live Request:

Having read the previous section 'Domains/Domain Email/SSL Security/Go Live' you may still have some questions or concerns, you may be ready, either way we are here to help you! Submit your Go Live Request or call to speak with our Systems Operations Team at 800-936-9006 option 3.

Depending on if you have a multistore, what kind of SSL you are using, if you need any other provisions accomplished, etc.. can determine how long it will take for your Go Live process to be complete. 


  1. You are now ready to conduct business on the internet!

    Welcome to the world of eCommerce! Successful stores require near constant changes and updates, be sure to checkout these comprehensive services:

    SEO Consultation
    Site Implementation
    Site Design Upkeep
    Comparison Shopping Engine Submission
    Comparison Shopping Engine Feed Optimization
    PPC Management
    Email Campaigns

    You can review these services on our website at under the Services tab or call Sales at 1.800.936.9006 and press 1 for details on our marketing and storefront management programs.

Have more questions? Submit a request