Factors to Consider when E-commerce Replatforming?
Online retail is rapidly evolving, and with it comes new technologies that can be incorporated into e-commerce websites to enhance the platform and boost the functionality of existing systems. Changing an e-commerce platform is a cost-effective way to achieve this while getting a headstart on future innovations that are yet to be introduced to the e-commerce world. The process of re-platforming can be a difficult task for an online retailer, but in the long run, it can provide a business with the ability to offer new and improved functionality.
But as with any successful e-commerce strategy, you must be well-informed before making any major changes to your existing business. Before re-platforming, it's important to understand e-commerce replatforming, the benefits replatforming will have on your business, and what you need to consider. Nevertheless, e-commerce replatforming is by far one of the best decisions you could make for your business, as it can breathe new life into your brand and business model.
What is E-commerce Replatforming?
E-commerce replatforming refers to the process of choosing and migrating to a new e-commerce platform. Online retailers switch to new platforms to improve:
- Customer experience
Replatforming can mean building an in-house e-commerce solution or moving to a third-party platform. It could mean moving data from one online store to another at a basic level. For some businesses, this process includes:
- Comparing platforms
- Installing a new system
- Transferring data
- Setting up a new e-commerce site
Online retail will continue to evolve whether you choose to change with it or not. These advancements in technology provide online retailers with new features, design capabilities, improved performance, and functionality. You will need to replatform to keep up with customer demands, industry/market changes, etc.
What is the Importance of E-commerce Replatforming?
The first e-commerce site you operate usually offers basic performance that might seem slow, poorly designed, and incapable of meeting customer needs as your e-commerce site grows. Contrariwise, you can find that you're paying for features you don't use, or your costs are too high - in this case, you should downsize to save money. Maintenance and upkeep could potentially burden your team, whether the tool is provided through a built in-house or third-party solution.
When to Consider E-commerce Replatforming
Replatforming is a substantial task that will take effort and time but will improve design, functionality, admin navigation, performance, and more. However, replatforming should be done for the right reasons:
- Poor User Experience: Customer experience is a priority for every kind of retail. When your user experience is compromised, you should consider replatforming
- Admin Functions Poorly: A cumbersome admin panel results in poor navigation, resulting in less output. The solution would be switching to an intuitive and simple admin
- Inadequate Performance: Intermittent and consistent performance issues translate to poor customer experience, which will affect your entire business.
- Gaps in Your Existing System: When there are gaps in your existing system, migrating to an e-commerce platform with better features can lead to immediate improvements where you need them most
- Repetitive Tasks: Replatforming can help you cut out repetitive, duplicate, manually performed tasks by improving interfacing and functionality. Read more about the topic with Automate Your Busywork.
- Site Speed and Responsiveness: A fast, responsive site is key to retaining customers. Replatforming enhances your website hosting service and limits your plugins keeping your site efficient and streamlined
- Multiple, Easy-to-Use Integrations: Outdated systems don't integrate with new plugins; replatforming offers you a platform that easily integrates with multiple plugins
- Time-Consuming, Costly Maintenance: If your current site mandates time-consuming, costly, or regular maintenance, replatforming could offer you better performance
- Streamlined, Accessible Analytics: Proper analytics allow you to make significant improvements and draw meaningful insights. Replatforming allows you to collect, measure and display accurate data
What You Need to Consider When E-commerce Replatforming
1. Impact on Your Business
When preparing for replatforming, you should consider its impact on your business in terms of efficiency, performance, and design. Replatforming is only valuable when it provides significant improvements to your e-commerce platform's output, functionality, and performance. Before switching platforms, ensure that it'll be worth the effort and additional costs.
2. Future Improvements and Needs
It's important to look beyond the initial capabilities and features you can get from replatforming since it's a long-term investment. Although you might want to settle for an immediate solution to your existing e-commerce tool problems, you need to ensure the tool you purchase will adapt to market changes and meet your needs even when a new, disruptive technology is introduced.
3. Total Costs
Costs aren't limited to the cost of purchasing a new platform; there are also migration, down-time, and maintenance costs. You will also have to train your staff on operating the new platform, which means there'll be a brief period of poor performance as they adjust. Assess the total costs to be incurred before proceeding.
4. Customer Service and Support
Despite how capable your team is, choosing a solution with adequate customer service and support is crucial. The right solution should help you solve errors properly and quickly when they arise. Building your own solution leaves your team accountable while purchasing a full-serviced platform offers you the support and assistance you need to operate your e-commerce store.
5. Skills and Ability of Your Team
Your team's technical skills are key to determining whether you can re-platform and how fast you can adapt. This includes content creators using a new CMS for the first time and those migrating data and setting up the new platform. You need to choose a tool that saves you time and effort when setting up and adjusting.
6. Integrations With Future and Legacy Systems
Your legacy system probably uses plugins, extensions, and other integrations that improve your sales, marketing, project management efforts, and communication. Before replatforming, ensure the new platform will support the integration you use without reducing performance. It's vital to do a complete technology audit of every extension and tool you are using to determine whether you're compatible with the new platform.
7. Features and Capabilities
The main purpose of replatforming is to get enhanced functionality. Compare the features of your existing e-commerce platform with those of the new platform and choose a solution that offers the most important features for your business to improve, develop, and grow.
Make Sure You Are Ready for E-Commerce Replatforming
If you're not satisfied with your existing platform, replatforming could help you realize your brand's potential. Replatforming might seem like a daunting task, but it can prove extremely beneficial for your business. Still, e-commerce replatforming isn't a decision to take lightly; you should do extensive research and prepare your team before going through with the migration.