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Questions like this have been answered a few time so maybe checking those out will help – http://www.flyingsolo.com.au/forums/selling-online/32392-cost-setting-up-online-store.html#post202448.
I am bias as we provide an Australian based solution. The issue with overseas hosting is not really SEO but quality of service, access and maybe cost. Google is favouring local search more and more but you can use the tools in Google to get the right result pretty easily
Over the last 6 months or so the Australian Dollar has gone down so now services like Shopify cost 30% more in Australian dollars. Remember you pay in US $ which is now about 0.77 exchange rate and you also will pay foreign exchange fees. That applies to both the monthly cost and the transaction cost.
You have to pay transaction fees for your payments to PayPal or the payment gateway but those fees are in Australian dollars, paying a US$ transaction fee to the overseas online shop provider is not necessary and creates an uncontrollable expense to your business. Go find an Australian provider who doesn’t change transaction fees or use your WordPress / Woocommerce capabilities. Depending on your requirements it might be easier for you.
Also this thread has some interesting information – http://www.flyingsolo.com.au/forums/selling-online/33334-building-website-whats-cost.html#post206795.
Good luck and come back if you have questions.
Thank you, you are right, those fees will really bite now, due to the exchange rate. If I make $20 on an item, paying 30 US cents + 2% = almost a dollar just to shopify, and another few dollars to Paypal. It could amount to almost 10% of mark-up. That’s just too much to give away, now that online solutions are so numerous!