Ways to Know if you Have Outgrown Your eCommerce Platform
1. Importance of having a solid eCommerce platform:
Considering your eCommerce platform is the primary connection between you and your customers, relying on the right eCommerce platform is critical. Many digitally reliant businesses find that as they grow, their eCommerce platform struggles to keep up. If you are finding yourself held up by platform restrictions, ongoing maintenance or issues integrating with third-party software, you might have outgrown your eCommerce platform.
2. Signs that you might need a change:
• Your current solution doesn’t have the features you need.
The two most important elements of your eCommerce platform will be the customer-facing, and the admin-facing functions and controls. If customers or staff are struggling with basic elements like scalability and customization, you might need a new eCommerce platform in the near future.
• You’re facing limitations in content and customizations.
The fewer options you have for customizing your content and site, the less control you will have over branding. It’s critical that you create a loyal customer base of people who know your product and your brand. Less functional eCommerce platforms will lock you into a clunky and standardized format, color scheme or structure, where you simply can’t build brand recognizability.
• Manual processes that deplete time and resources.
You might think that a small business or start-up would be able to use manual operations to input, record or update your site. But considering small businesses need each employee to wear several hats, it's critical to use an eCommerce platform that frees employees up for more productive and useful tasks. As your business grows, you will find your new eCommerce platform has been working behind the scenes to help you develop, not slow you down.
• Your agency is struggling to develop.
The less features your eCommerce platform has, the less access you will have to the core platform code or APIs. This means you are incredibly limited in the look, color, feel and structure of your eCommerce site. You are at the mercy of the developers, who may or may not be updating your site for increased usability. If you are doing everything right, and still not growing, take a very close look at your eCommerce platform today.
• It limits your third-party integration
Online businesses depend on their third party partnerships to grow, whether its marketing partnerships with social media influencers, or adding a new feature to your product or website. For example, some platforms would be unable to integrate with nearshore call centers software, leaving you unable to provide local-language customer service and support. A lagging eCommerce platform will stop your growth cold, if it’s unable to integrate with third-party software or features that customers want, or staff need.
3. Tips to upgrade your ecommerce platform:
• Mobile friendly
Mobile responsiveness is simply not enough. Customers should be able to browse and purchase as easily on your PC-optimized website as they can on their mobile devices. With mobile usage overtaking PC usage in the eCommerce industry, it’s critical that your new eCommerce platform is mobile friendly and easy to access and use.
• Easy checkout process
You may choose to update your checkout or payment process to make it easier for customers. Many businesses choose to make use of an acquisitions consultant at this stage, to help plan, integrate and launch new banking and payment processes.
• Customization and design
Tell a clear and compelling story of your business, through careful customization and design of your brand images. Use the same colors, logos and designs on all company pages and products, in an effort to boost your recognizability. The more you can visually differentiate yourself from your competition, the larger the market share you will capture.
• Customer service options
Ensure customers have the best experience, by testing and optimizing all customer service platforms and options. Ensure customers don’t need to hunt for help, by making all customer-facing buttons clear and visible. Some enterprises are making use of AI and chatbots to answer basic questions and respond to all customers quickly and accurately.
If you’ve outgrown your eCommerce platform, it’s an exciting time for your business. Take some time today to ensure that this growth you’ve been building toward continues, by upgrading your eCommerce platform.