While there are many online website templates available to build an ecommerce store they do not always allow you to customize and scale according to your business needs. A custom ecommerce website is ideal for those who want to control every feature and function of their retail presence. For others a combination of a SaaS ecommerce solution integrated with custom-built features may be the perfect balance. Whether you’re building a retail environment from the ground-up or simply adding a few features to a commercial platform, here are 11 ways that customization sets you apart from the competition:
No Lock-In: When you use a commercial ecommerce platform it has the downside of being locked into the platform. While you can switch to another platform, the transition will be difficult. With most of the major ecommerce platforms the best you get a CSV export of your product information should you decide to leave. With a custom-built platform everything built is your intellectual property.
Visual Impact: The images and videos used online play a central role in helping the customer decide whether or not to make a purchase. Customizing the visual components of your online store allows you to control all aspects of how your products are displayed.
Speed: Most custom solutions use content delivery networks to increase speed, allowing images and video content to load faster.
Scalability: Custom ecommerce solutions are typically stored and hosted in the cloud, allowing the business to scale without additional costs.
Reporting: You decide what unique information is captured and tracked in order to gain insights relevant to your business.
Complex Orders and Checkout Processes: Not all retail stores have a simple ‘add to cart, checkout’ process. Some require additional steps, such as explaining their problem and having the business recommend modifications to their order before proceeding to checkout, adding an additional step.
In-House Rewards: Through customization you can add a rewards program to promote customer loyalty, such as collecting points, special offers, and rewards for referring friends to the site.
Custom Tools: Some ecommerce websites offer tools to help visitors make decisions. For example, the website Clearly Contacts allows users to upload a photo of themselves and virtually try glasses on.
Product Recommendation Tools: Built-in questionnaires or live chat areas with personal shoppers can assist visitors with product selection and enhance their customer service experience.
Integration: Custom software can be integrated with your accounting software, inventory, point-of-sales system, suppliers, and many other applications.
B2B Services: For businesses selling to other businesses, custom solutions are particularly relevant. Customizations may include quote estimation/generation tools, automated invoicing, and online payments without a shopping cart ever even entering the picture.
These are just some examples of how customization can enhance your ecommerce site. Almost anything you imagine that would enhance your online retail environment can be built and added. If you find yourself limited by commercial ecommerce software get in touch and exceed your customer’s expectations.