How to choose your e-commerce platform

You've decided to launch your own online store? There are several essential steps to launching your online store, but choosing your e-commerce platform is probably the most important.

The platform you choose will have an impact on the way you present your products, how easy it is to find your site, customer experience in general and more. To help you with your search and decision-making process, here are six factors to consider.

1. Integration

Do you want your e-commerce platform to communicate with your other management tools, such as your inventory management or invoicing software? An integrated solution saves you a lot of time and is highly recommended, since it allows you to avoid dual data entry and it reduces the risk of error.

2. Design

It is during the design phase that you can decide on the appearance of your online store and make sure it is user-friendly for your visitors. Your e-commerce platform must allow you to properly present your brand image by letting you choose your own colours, logo placement and more.

You should also make sure that your site will respond to the various screen formats that your customers use (computer, tablet, cellphone). Responsiveness is mandatory today for the indexing of your site, since Google penalizes sites which are not configured for navigating on mobile devices.

3. Navigation

Another item to consider in your search for an e-commerce platform is ease of navigation. Will you be able to structure your site so that it is easy to find your products or any other important information? Your platform must allow you to create several menus and include various filters in order to simplify navigation for your potential customers.

4. Product catalog

Make sure you choose a platform that will allow you to highlight your products. Your online store must offer detailed descriptions and all specifications that customers could need during their shopping session on your website (this information helps the search engines to rank your pages). Therefore, your product catalog must be informative and attractive.

The product file creation process is one of the longest parts of creating your online store, but it is crucial in order to inspire confidence and convince your customers.

5. Referencing

Opting for an e-commerce platform which contains integrated tools for referencing and optimizing your web pages is ideal, indeed essential. Pondering over and building your online store is a major challenge, but in order for your efforts to pay off, it is important to establish a referencing strategy that will optimize visits to your site, thereby increasing your sales.

6. Customer experience

Providing and maintaining an excellent customer experience helps generate long-term customer loyalty, making it easier to reach your sales goals. Therefore, it is important that your online store provide the same customer experience that makes you the gold standard when it comes to your bricks-and-mortar store.

All aspects of your site must be carefully considered, with the priority placed on your potential customers’ needs. We recommend that you check if your e-commerce platform has the tools you need to fulfil these needs.

To learn more

This information is drawn from the A complete guide to starting an e-commerce business. Download the entire guide to learn more about the process of starting up your e-commerce.

Download the complete guide

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