Many businesses are reviewing their ecommerce strategies due to the dramatic changes we have seen in online buying recently. Some have made rapid adjustments while others are urgently catching up.
Wherever you are in your ecommerce journey, your customers expect easy,
personalised and friction-free purchasing for their personal shopping and business needs. If you’re struggling to respond to their changing behaviour, to deliver improved online experiences, or support your business with technology, then it’s time to look at the business case for ecommerce replatforming.
Ten replatforming indicators
your customers will go elsewhere it they don’t receive fast, responsive and relevant experiences on your ecommerce site. They want to find and browse a wide range of products, receive personalised offers and messages and have a frictionless checkout experience. They will expect the same high quality on your social media channels and in-store too.
With the right ecommerce platform your business can be transformed from its internal processes to supply chain logistics. With improved customer self-service and process automation you can increase your efficiency and profitability.
If your ecommerce site is slow you will lose customers. A quarter of your site’s visitors will abandon your website if it takes more than four seconds to load. If they can’t find the products they want quickly and easily or there are obstacles on their way to checkout they are likely to abandon their purchase and might never return.
Google’s Core Web Vitals look at page speed as an indicator of the quality of your site, so you will also lose out in your search engine result page (SERP) performance. You can look at page coding, hosting and content to optimize your website’s speed but the problem could be that your platform is dated and needs replacing.
In a fast-changing sales environment you need to adapt quickly to changing behaviour or seasonal trends and innovate to get ahead of your competitors.
New campaigns, page changes, product launches and engaging new content must be simple to manage. If these activities rely on an internal development team or an external agency you will be missing opportunities to engage with your audience. This is a clear signal that you need to consider a new user-friendly ecommerce platform.
You will also want to consider the benefits of collaboration across different departments. It’s worth taking a ‘deep dive’ into the bottlenecks and frustrations your teams face to find out how a new ecommerce platform, combined with effective business systems integration, could improve your overall business performance.
A review of your market sector will show you who is innovating or disrupting the way things are done. To maintain sustainable growth, you will need to match if not exceed the expectations they are creating. If your platform hasn’t been reviewed and significantly updated in the last three years you risk falling behind. Rather than spending money on temporary solutions it’s time to consider what you need to do to get ahead of the crowd. Instead of looking at the cost, consider the opportunities you might be missing if your business can’t respond and scale as it needs to
customers expect to place orders anywhere and at any time. If you have to take your website down for routine maintenance or troubleshooting regularly you will be giving your customers a poor impression. As older platforms come to the end of their life you are likely to need more patches, fixes and security upgrades and eventually support from the provider will be unavailable, as with Magento 1, for example. If your internal teams find the platform hard to manage and update you will also risk losing productivity. This is a clear indicator that there could be financial benefits if you invest in a new platform.
If you experience peaks in traffic that you’re finding hard to manage you will be missing sales opportunities. For retailers Black Friday and Cyber Monday might represent peak traffic volume. There might be increased demand for barbecues and garden furniture in the summer, snow shovels and sledges in winter or seasonal bulbs and gardening tools in spring. If you’re planning to grow your business, responding to increased demand will be essential, whether it’s temporary or permanent.
Online crime is increasing and customers are understandably concerned about security and privacy. If your existing platform has known vulnerabilities, you will need to consider the implications of a data breach or a deliberate deprivation of service (DDOS) attack. Your website could crash and you also run the risk of long-term damage to your company’s reputation and significant fines.
You will be planning for the future, so you will want to be sure that your ecommerce platform is fit for purpose. You won’t want to wait until your plans are in jeopardy before you implement a replatforming project. You might be entering new international markets, for example, so you will need to take account of local currencies, taxes, shipping requirements and different customer preferences.
Every interaction you have with your customers provides valuable information that you can convert in to actionable insights with the latest data analytic techniques. You can use artificial intelligence to discover how your customers behave online to help you predict future trends. With their permission, you can deliver high quality personalized content and promotions that could make them into loyal ambassadors for your brand.
With you at every step
Choosing the right ecommerce platform for your business will have an impact on your ongoing costs, customer engagement, growth and profitability. Choosing a platform that is aligned to your commercial and operational objectives will allow you to streamline manual processes and improve efficiency and customer service.
At Williams Commerce we ask all the right questions so we understand your online business and your goals. We will guide you to the platform that has the features and functionality you need to meet your requirements now and in the future.