Many retailers jump into the World of e-commerce without considering potential pitfalls. Naively they believe that if they build an online store that their business will take an exponential upward curve. However, this is unlikely to be the case.
Retailers need to stop, sit back and consider their move into ecommerce. They need to see the opening of an online store as they would plan for the opening of another branch of their bricks and mortar estate.
Self Build or Contract
Do you go the self build route such as Shopify or contract a builder to create you an ecommerce site using a shopping cart tool such as Magento? The self build route is faster but will not scale as well as the contractor option. You must also consider if you want to own the content of your ecommerce site. In the case of Shopify you are renting the premises on a month to month basis.
Integrate or Hope
A retailer has to consider their current support and customer service chain and if the introduction of an online store will complement or disrupt these chains. As a simple example, a retailer has to seriously consider integrating their stock levels with their online store. Small to medium retailers will not have the resources to dedicate or allocate stock to their online store so they have to take stock level updates
The Payment Trap
Retailers in the offline high street World would never consider giving away 2%+ of margin to a payment processor but, for some unknown reason, they are content to pay all comers to process their online payments. There are excellent multi-channel ready payment processor that will off retailers the same rates for in-store and on-line card sales ; retailers just need to search these out and not be lead by the nose to fill the pockets of these online processors. Finally, do you want to be reconciling multiple providers of payment services? Wouldn’t it make more sense to have you offline and online payment processed by a single provider!
The moment retailers open their online store they are inviting all comers to compare their pricing to the big players in their vertical. There is little chance of competing on price with the likes of Amazon and others so retailers have to consider how they will add real value to their offering. Retailers need to find real ways of differentiating their online store experience and service so that buyers will purchase online., remember the experience and come back for more!
At eirpointô we are experienced in delivered integrated multi-channel retail solutions. We can integration with Shopify, Magento and other shopping carts. Out multi-channel solutions link your high street and online stores in a way that ensure you do not suffer from stock outs and stock control mayhem. We have partnered with experienced multi-channel payment providers to ensure that you are not giving margin away online. Let us help you reduce of the stress and risks of opening an online store.