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The rapidly emerging technology of Web services paves a new cost-effective way of engineering software to quickly develop and deploy Web applications by dynamically integrating other independently developed Web-service components to conduct new business transactions. This paper reports our efforts on designing and developing a Web service of pass-through authentication (PTA) for 12 online electronic-payment Web applications. In accordance with how a PTA service is developed and integrated with a corresponding back-end e-payment system, our strategies can be categorized in three stages: end-to-end integration stage, Web-services-enabled stage, and Web-services-oriented stage. Derived from real-world industrial experience, this three-stage pathway can be applied to a broad range of Web-application development projects to guide smooth transformation from a specific application-oriented design and development model toward a reusable Web-services-oriented model. Furthermore, this paper contributes to an engineering process that leads to practical Web-services-oriented software development. New research issues revealed by this project are also reported.