The e-Commerce platform market has grown manifolds now which make choosing the best e-Commerce platform for your business a tedious task. There are practically more than hundred options which are available to choose from where each platform has its own features. Making a choice based on some of the features like the simplicity of the platform, popularity, cheaper prices and rates etc. won’t be enough for making the right decision. There are a number of factors that you must consider before jumping into the pool of platforms. However, the final short listing of any platform must be done based on the best interests of your online business.
Below are some of the questions which you must keep in mind as they will guide you better in choosing an e-commerce platform for your business.
What type of products or goods are you selling?
The type of products that you are selling will play a significant role in making a choice. Some platforms support only digital products while some would only support physical products. While some platforms would support both types of products. Some platforms will give you an access to list unlimited products whereas some will charge you based on the quantity. There are some platforms that handle inventory tracking and include multiple product options.
Self Hosting or allowing the platform to host?
There are both merits and demerits of hosting your own site or asking the e-commerce platform to do so. There are some e-commerce hosting tools like Magento which will allow you the most control. But on the other side, all the other important aspects like the site’s maintenance, providing security to the customer’s data, fixing any technical problem, updating software etc. have to be done by you or get it done by someone else.
Whereas, if you allow your platform to host for you there is no need to worry about updates, technical support, site maintenance etc. All these will be taken care of by your platform. Websites like Shopify, and marketplaces like Amazon and eBay providing hosting. However, there are some downsides also of these hosting websites. These websites allow limited customization, can be expensive and can modify the rules at any time.
We all are aware that PayPal is the easiest and popular payment processor among most of the e-Commerce platforms. So, if you have got some issues with Paypal, then you will have to search some other payment processor which is supported by the e-Commerce platform.
Will it grow your business?
By choosing an e-Commerce platform you would want that the platform would grow your business. Selecting a platform which is not so expensive right now and full fills your needs would not be a good choice as you must consider your future needs as well. A platform which may sound sufficient for your business right now may not be the same in the future. You must look for a platform that is able to support your business and also grow with it.
Does it work well with other services?
There would be some tools that you are already using for supporting your e-Commerce business. Many e-Commerce platforms provide options for managing of your accounting, customer service, marketing, social media, inventory and reporting. You must check that the e-Commerce platform that you are considering offers integration with your currently used services.
Will it provide Support?
You will require some kind of assistance from your e-Commerce platform at some point or the other. Make sure that the platform you choose provides support through multiple channels like support forums, live chat, online help options and support tickets. There is no point in choosing a platform that doesn’t provide assistance when it is much needed. The support system that a platform provides will allow you to judge that whether it is trustworthy in the future or not.
Is it affordable?
When there are a lot of platforms available and each of provides almost similar features then cost will turn out to be the deciding factor. Like all other business decisions, you would not want to spend more cost while choosing an e-Commerce platform. There are a lot of platforms providing all the amazing features. But you should choose a platform only on the basis of your requirements. There is no point in choosing a platform which provides features which are not required by you. You will end up paying more for such platforms.
From the above article, it is clear that the best approach for choosing any e-Commerce platform should be based on your own requirements and needs. Keeping the above questions in mind while choosing a platform will prove as a guide to you. Do let me know about your views regarding the article in the comments section below.
Sarah Clarke is working as a professionally qualified WordPress Developer at WordSuccor Ltd., a renowned firm where you can find WordPress Developer For Hire at very reasonable cost with a global reach. She loves to share her thoughts on WordPress and always looking for learning something new about it.