Shopping around for an enterprise ecommerce platform is time consuming and can be expensive. However, with a little planning, you can save yourself time, money, and potential heartache. Here are some questions to consider before you buy an enterprise ecommerce software solution:
- Why are you shopping for an ecommerce platform? Your answer might be as simple as, “Our current ecommerce platform doesn’t have the functionality we need,” or “We don’t presently have ecommerce capability and want to add it,” but in order to choose the right solution, you have to know WHY you are looking for one in the first place.
- What features and functionality should your ideal ecommerce platform offer? Chances are good that you are looking at a new enterprise ecommerce platform because your current system doesn’t have the features and functionality you need to keep up with your day-to-day business or you don’t have ecommerce at all. Make a list of all the functionality you expect your ecommerce site to offer. Ask everyone who works with your current system or will work with the new system for input. This will allow you to choose the solution that will make EVERYONE successful.
- What is your goal for the new software implementation? Is it to increase efficiency? Attract new customers? Increase sales? Cut costs? All of the above? Write down your goals down BEFORE you start looking at solutions. That way you have a clear set of guidelines (when combined with the list of necessary functionality you created above) to use when comparing your options.
- What’s your budget? Working from a clear budget number makes sure that you only consider ecommerce platforms that are within your price range.
- How will you measure the success of your project? Predetermined success benchmarks ensure that you know when you achieve success, or, if your effort isn’t performing as expected, those benchmarks will let you know and allow you to adjust accordingly. So, what does success look like? A 50% increase in orders from new customers? Reducing the number of human “touches” on an order to one–the person who picks, packs and ships the order? Knowing what success looks like ahead of time will help you recognize when you get there!
Thoughtful consideration of the above questions at the start of your enterprise ecommerce platform search will save you time, energy and frustration when choosing a solution. Ultimately, completing this exercise will make all the difference in the project’s success.
Ready to take your B2B business to the next level? View the on-demand webinar, Ecommerce Best Practices for B2B and B2C.