Article

John Stoddart
John Stoddart 1 April 2015

3 Critical Factors To Look For In An SME E-Commerce Solution

If easy ecommerce is so simple and easy, then why doesn't everyone get it right?

If easy ecommerce is so simple and easy, then why doesn’t everyone get it right?



Eccommerce is complicated because it is dependant on so many factors, the majority of which we cannot control but only influence.  Many sites are highly dependant on pay per click campaigns to drive traffic but purchasing is done by auction and there is no real long term stablilty on prices.  Plus your competitors could start tracking and bidding on your terms (or even start clicking but never purchasing to undermine your marketing budget).  It is a minefield... 

Focusing on the key objective: sales

But, typically, we only have one simple objective: to sell our products online, hitting our targets and achieving our turnover and margins.  This leaves us with a profitable business in the long-run.  A profitable long-term business has the important choice of which ecommerce platform to use: it is the solution host, provides us with sales and operational functionality and delivers our propositions to our customers.

Getting this right has some fantastic benefits:

  • It saves us time (which allows us to focus on other pressing issues)
  • It keeps everything simple (giving us higher efficiency)
  • It has high availability (24/7 shopping is an achievable target)
  • It seamlessly transfers information to other systems (again delivering operational efficiency to finance, customer service, sales and marketing)
  • It is fast (more sales from sites that load in under 1.5 seconds)
  • It delivers a great user experience (a good platform is easy to use for the customer)

The three important web-store solution factors

Getting your e-commerce strategy right is critical and central to this is selecting and deploying the best e-commerce platform.  It will be the difference between merely being able to sell products online and having a fully functional ecommerce solution that provides a high volume channel.

The three most important factors are: 

  1. Integration with other systems.  If you want volume and efficiency then your platform has to integrate seamlessly with other systems, espeically finance and marketing.  You are simply not going to drive volume without this
  2. Usability.  Customers must get a great user experience or they will leave.  They will leave if the payment process is too slow.  They will leave if the site doesn’t give them the same sort of experience as a very large scale store from a multinational.  They will leave if the store doesn’t work on multiple form factors (especially mobile)
  3. Speed.  If your site loads slowly then you will not convert visitors into customers.  Sorry if this sounds brutal but it is an unfortunate fact of life that if your pages take more than 1.5 seconds to load then customers will leave.  Additionally, your Google page ranking will suffer if you have a slow loading page as it is one of the factors they assess.

With this in mind, you really do need to pay careful attention to the platform you choose to host your e-commerce site.  And as the importance of e-commerce continues to grow, then it is best to get something which can expand with you and with the expectations of your customers and prospects. 

Original Post

Read More on Digital Doughnut

Please login or register to add a comment.

Contribute Now!

Loving our articles? Do you have an insightful post that you want to shout about? Well, you've come to the right place! We are always looking for fresh Doughnuts to be a part of our community.

Popular Articles

See all
Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

What's the difference between digital marketing and traditional marketing, and why does it matter? The answers may surprise you.

Julie Cave
Julie Cave 14 July 2016
Read more
4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

It goes without saying that a company can't do without digital marketing in today's world.

Digital Doughnut Contributor
Digital Doughnut Contributor 5 November 2014
Read more
How digital and direct mail became best friends

How digital and direct mail became best friends

The propaganda from digital marketeers said direct mail was dead. Now they’re retreating with their tails between their legs begging to be let back in. After all, the already powerful direct mail can have even more impact when paired with digital. But how are the digital natives returning to direct mail and why?

David Amor
David Amor 26 April 2017
Read more
5 essentials of an agile content contingency plan

5 essentials of an agile content contingency plan

Theresa May’s decision to call a snap election should be a wake up call to any organisation that isn’t able to respond to unpredictable events

Miles Kendall
Miles Kendall 24 April 2017
Read more
9 Free Timesheet Tools to Help Tracking and Billing Your Clients

9 Free Timesheet Tools to Help Tracking and Billing Your Clients

Looking for free timesheet software for keeping track of your time and billing your clients? Check out our collection of absolutely free tools for small companies, startups and freelancers.

Arina Katrycheva
Arina Katrycheva 24 April 2017
Read more