Start a Business: Choosing the Right eCommerce Software
Starting a business online can be a long and overwhelming process. If you plan to start a business in the near future by selling products through a website, choosing quality ecommerce software will be essential to your success. While sifting through the many ecommerce platforms available online, keep in mind some tips that will help you make the right decision when you decide to purchase the software.
Tips #1: Set a Budget
Just like any new business venture, setting a strict budget is important when choosing ecommerce software. A monthly payment to use the software will most likely be required, so plan ahead accordingly and determine how much you can afford on a monthly basis.
Tips #2: Consider all of the Features and Benefits
Even though price is important, you need to take into consideration all of the features and benefits that the platform offers.
The features and benefits that you need will be different from other online businesses. If you have a lot of products that you are planning to rotate in and out of your website on a consistent basis, the software you need must allow you to do this easily. Also, while your store expands with time the ecommerce platform should expand and grow with it. Flexibility is important when looking into the features of the software.
You should also consider your target customers before you purchase the software. If your clients span multiple nations, a shopping cart feature that offers multiple currencies and multiple payment platforms is definitely a must.
Before you purchase the software, ask about technical support. Many small ecommerce platform providers may not provide 24/7 technical support. If your shopping cart is down, potential customers may find it extremely annoying that they are unable to purchase any items and will navigate elsewhere. Being able to contact someone at any time of the day or night will help ensure that you keep your downtime to a minimum.
Tips #3: Security is Important
Shoppers must feel that their private information is secure when making a purchase on your website. It is imperative that the software you choose includes an SSL certificate to encrypt all transactions. If there are no security features offered with the software, cross it off your list.
Tips #4: Ease of Use and Integration
The ecommerce software that you choose should be easy to use for your customers and easy to manage for you or your website administrator.
Since order management and inventory editing can consume so much of your time, look for ecommerce solutions that make this process easy. Database integration can become extremely useful for product management and inventory rotation.
From a customer’s point-of-view, a cluttered website is a huge turn-off. If your potential shopping cart distracts from the main content of your site, you will lose money. Make sure that the platform is fully customizable to fit your specific needs, both visually and functionally. Remember, when researching different platforms to use, simplicity and functionality are your top priorities.
When planning to start a business online, choosing the right ecommerce solution is the most important decision you will make. Consider all your options and ask as many questions as possible before you make your purchase. Once you have narrowed it down to your top few choices, consider whether or not other clients have used the software, and read their reviews.