A majority of ecommerce website development efforts turn into a costly affair and a terrible waste of time. It fails to bring any business benefit to the business owner. In this report, we are going to look at three BIG mistakes made by business owners in starting ecommerce website and how to avoid them.
Mistake #1. Choosing Wrong Technology
There are lots of FREE ecommerce shopping cart software available in the market. Most ecommerce providers use these freely available open sources shopping cart software. These ecommerce vendors generally pick up Magento, find a hosting service and deliver an ecommerce solution at throw away prices. This has several risks involved for the business owner who doesn’t know any thing about technology. Lets go through them.
- High dependency on development team:
Most of the time, developers charge hourly rates to provide customization or maintenance services. A good developer may charge between Rs. 600 to Rs. 1500 per hour. As a result your maintenance cost will rise exponentially. Numbers will require their involvement and the “scope of work” will keep on increasing. Average monthly cost in Magento could go up to Rs. 15,000/- per month or higher.
- Invisible / unforeseen expenses:
You will have to buy additional plugins and extensions which are unreliable and you don’t know if they will work or not. Even after buying those plugins, there is a question mark on reliability, compatibility and ongoing maintenance. This could again mean unpredictable rise in cost.
- Data loss and downtime:
You will be at the risk of data theft, data loss or downtime because you don’t know how reliable the hosting provider is. In many cases we have heard horrific stories of prolonged downtime for 2-3 days. Your ecommerce store is left at the mercy of developer or hosting agency and things come to a standstill. For one business owner, this happened during peak Diwali season. Can you imagine the financial loss and the mental stress that comes with it?
- Inexpensive advantage turns into Expensive Affair:
Freely available, open source software is hard to change and cause unexpected increase in development costs. An average developer has to spend many hours and often days to customize features. All these customizations cost you money based on “man hours” used by developer to make changes. These changes are not just expensive money wise. The time and the endless feedback loop it takes in working with developers are nothing but a sort of a nightmare. The unforeseen delays and endless wait time often takes the attention out of business. Valuable time of the business owner wasted in these activities turn out to be non-profitable.
What can you do about it?
Choose an ecommerce platform instead of ecommerce software. The biggest advantage of ecommerce platform is that it includes hosting, maintenance, upgrades and new features. You do not have to pay development fee each time there is an update or a new feature added.
Mistake #2. Design Using Free Templates
When you are going to a website, your brain will start the judge whether you want to buy from it or not in a fraction of second.
A vast majority of ecommerce providers use free templates because they know that you are unaware of it. As a result, you get a mediocre ecommerce website that sits idle and customers don’t buy. The behind the curtain story nobody tells you is - they don’t buy because at a subconscious level, visitors don’t trust your site. The design cannot build trust because it is made from a free template that 50 other companies are using.
That’s the secret why most ecommerce providers offer store design service at low cost. Eventually, the money spent in poorly designed website goes to waste. A number of business owners come to us with a badly designed website because their previous provider did a mediocre job. They felt disappointed and got their entire website designed fresh.
If your website looks and feels great, it pays for itself. Your customers are smart enough to sense it. They start shopping from you and come back again, if they find their first experience easy and addictive.
What can you do about it?
Get your website professionally designed from a qualified team with proven track record. Your website will automatically build trust and visitors will be more likely to buy from it. The design cost will pay for itself.
Mistake #3. Absence of a Marketing Plan
Many business owners focus too much on low level tactics such as SEO, social media or PPC. They often miss out to see the big picture. Ecommerce website or marketplaces are tools to generate sales. What you really need is the big picture, a broader growth strategy.
- How can you mix and match these sales channels to increase revenues and profitability?
- Where are the most eager and receptive buyers for your products online?
- How can you reach out to them cheaply and effectively?
These are the questions you need to answer. Absence of a big picture and right marketing guidance can be reasons of ecommerce breakdown or slow growth.
What can you do about it?
Marketing plays a vital role in ecommerce success and excellent marketing strategy will open the new doors to get more traffic and huge hike in conversations. You need to discuss your ecommerce strategy with our certified ecommerce expert. You will get a clear roadmap on how to start and grow your ecommerce business without trial, error or failures.