How do you help an online retailer build new revenue streams? You’ve got to focus.
If you sell things online, then you know it is a constant battle to stay one step ahead of the competition. Forecasting sales and meeting goals is a roller coaster for any business, but if online sales are key to your strategy, your life can be pure chaos. Just a few short years ago, you could build a store, offer some products, and with a little energy, build a decent business selling wares online. The internet has been evolving so quickly, fire and forget strategies simply do not deliver anymore.
Building a modern eCommerce store
WordPress is great for promotion. We’ve been building on the amazing platform since 2004. But when you need a store, it’s not fire and forget. Just a few short years ago, an online retailer could make a single investment, build a store, and then will just a little TLC, keep it running, generating sales. Today, that’s just not true anymore.
When you run a store you have two options. Pay into a monthly system, like Zen Cart, or go Open Source. From the gate, open source looks like a perfect solution. No cost with lot’s of people using them. All the hard work is done, right? Nothing is ever simple. 😉
For Custom Engraving Company, we built their new store using OpenCart. While it is a great, clean platform, using it does not mean everything is free and easy. From purchasing critical mods to continual updates, when you go the open source path, you have got to keep it current. Maintenance is not an option–you have to budget in and plan for crisis management. Just because a module exists, does not mean it works. It’s one thing to develop trust in a platform. We love WordPress and we love OpenCart. But we’ve run into many modules that just don’t cut the mustard or fill our current need. And the more we add, the more we have to keep updated and working.
Debugging a platform to work seamlessly for your needs is like tailoring a decent suit. And that is only for the build. Once your site is up and running, it’s a continual process of customization, corrections, fixes and debugging. Keeping your store up to date is absolutely essential.
New hacks and exploits to eCommerce sites and platforms are discovered every day. Plugins and modules that once worked perfectly get updated, often for security. And when you’re an online retailer, you can never afford to break trust with your customers. As important as customer service is, and delivering an excellent product–secure transactions are a critical third leg of your platform.
From backing up your products to updating modules and plug-ins, from constant scanning for malware and attacks to safeguarding customer info, running an eStore requires a watchful eye. The good ol’ days are gone, and competition from the big guys–and the little guys, happens at warp speed. Custom Engraving knows that to remain a leader in the space, they had to step up their internet game. Make sure the people who help you manage your business-critical assets, are there for the long term.
Developing eCommerce solutions on OpenCart and other platforms since 2008, what can we do for your business? From managing your cart, products and promotions to SEO, newsletters and outreach, we’d love to be a resource to your team.