Do you want to build an internet business but need help in building the online storefront? Then you’ll need to know how to pick an ecommerce platform. An ecommerce platform is the actual store builder and shopping cart software that a business uses to present products, receive orders and process payments online.
In a way, it is “the” store itself. Local businesses that are bringing their products online for the first time may become confused during the selection process because the offers of many ecommerce platforms tend to sound alike. And with so many available at in today’s market, how do you make the best choice?
Today, instead of just listing down what you should be looking for in an ecommerce platform, like the PinnacleCart eCommerce software solution, let us also tell you what to avoid. These are the top 3 mistakes that business owners commit when selecting an ecommerce platform:
Mistake # 1: Not knowing the advanced features of the platform.
All shopping cart software allows its users to perform the following basic tasks: uploading product images, setting product prices, receiving orders and processing payments. However, the first big mistake that you can commit when selecting a platform is being content with “just” the minimum features. Running a successful online store requires more than just being able to receive orders and process payments. You need to look into the future a bit and plan what your store may need. Trying to upgrade to a better ecommerce platform at a future date is not easy.
Additional features such as SEO-friendly store customization, mobile app integration, mobile Web capabilities, etc., all play a hand in improving the value of your online store. With today’s ultra-competitive market, not having access to advanced features that will help you stay in front of your paying customers can be considered tantamount to “throwing in the towel.”
Mistake # 2: Basing your decision solely on price.
There will always be ecommerce platforms that offer “dirt cheap” monthly subscriptions but they will likely come with certain limitations or upsells to stick you with later. It’s very easy to be tempted by these offers initially, especially if your business is already spending so much on other expenses (your new Web staff being one of them).
The issue that we have with this approach to selecting shopping cart software is that it’s based on price instead of on a thorough examination of the actual features of the platform. Like we’ve said before, every online business has specific needs and it’s imperative that you first start with these needs instead of just looking at the software price tags.
Price and value aren’t mutually exclusive, in most cases. If you want to be competitive and want to provide value, you have to find an ecommerce platform that provides more than the basic features so you start with features that help you reach and sell to your market, and so you can scale up your operations easily when the time comes.
Mistake # 3: Being content with only a handful of shipping options and payment gateways.
Shipping options and payment gateways are the lifeblood of online retailing. People want more value for their money nowadays and discounted/free shipping should be just one of the options you provide your customers to encourage them to complete the sale.
Your ecommerce platform should have functionality that will allow you to easily offer additional shipping and payment options, so you can cater to a much larger segment of the market. Otherwise, people who can’t get good deals from your online store will simply head over to the next one.
Not understanding the features of your software, making decisions based on price and not offering enough option with shipping and payment are the top three mistakes business owners make when they select an ecommerce platform. Avoid these mistakes and you’ll be well on your way to setting up a successful online company!
If you have more questions about how to select ecommerce software, check out the expert eCom team at PinnacleCart. They’re always happy to help.