More and more people are thinking about selling their goods or services online. If we had to turn the fact into numbers, we’d say that this virtual shopping ground is captivating the attention of nearly 8 million retailers worldwide. And there are countless perks of contemplating it. So, if you’re interested in this fast-growing field, there are some important things to know about eCommerce web development and other aspects of starting and growing an online business.
Once you learn about the best technologies, most efficient practices and adjusting to customer needs, you’ll be able to make the right decisions and jumpstart a profitable business. Are you ready?
What Is eCommerce Web Development?
Building an eCommerce site is a popular investment resolution among most retailers, business owners, and entrepreneurs to gain the competitive advantages of online shopping and turn them into a steady source of income.
These online stores allow consumers to find, compare and buy wanted products and services more conveniently and in only a few minutes. Moreover, buyers can use their smartphones, tablets, or computers, which makes the decision to spend time and invest energy and cash in the eCommerce website development a wise choice. That way, you can improve your business with more transactions and higher revenues.
Besides a pleasant shopping experience, these are the benefits you’ll get:
- Spreading to both local and international markets
- Drawing more potential clients
- Raising the sales volume with 24/7 availability
- Cutting down operational and marketing expenses needed to run a physical store
- Analyzing customers behavior to create and modify your marketing campaigns
Once you build a professional online store tailored to suit your needs and aims, all of these valuable aspects will be enhanced.
Types of Websites
There are 6 types of eCommerce business models. However, people are usually interested in the big three – B2B, B2C, and C2C.
- B2C websites serve primarily to showcase and promote goods to purchasers. They can be made for selling basically any items, from clothing to phones or laptops.
- B2B is used by companies to sell their services or products to other forms. The end game is to set the bar high and expand the market where they operate. These websites should target an international audience.
- C2C sites refer to third-party websites like eBay, which allow retailers to advertise and sell their goods to final users.
Choosing the right solution should be based on your needs and the type of product or service you plan to sell.
Which Technology Is Best for eCommerce Website Development?
Before you choose an eCommerce web development agency or start to hire in-house developers, focus on the prime question. What is the best programming language to develop an eCommerce website? Know the tech stack before taking any further action.
These are the languages and technologies that can suit you perfectly:
- PHP is the most widely used programming language for these websites, and it is highly functional.
- Python is a great choice because of its readability and because many developers are interested in using it, which will ease the hiring process by far.
Security, readability, scalability, and flexibility are the parameters that you (or, to be more precise – your dev team) must keep in mind. And these languages are a good match for most.
eCommerce Website Development Steps
Getting the best eCommerce web development services would entail hiring individuals or a BPO company to follow these steps:
- Choosing the most appropriate solutions such as a CMS, hosting, and payment processor,
- Coming up with a user-friendly layout and designing the site accordingly,
- Developing a responsive, mobile-friendly website with a simple drop-down menu,
- Minding the copy and describing each product and service briefly and accurately,
- Separating goods into categories,
- Displaying important information like availability, status, and shipping,
- Supporting several languages to ease the entire experience and target a bigger audience,
- Testing the whole experience, security, and integration level.
Although these steps represent the foundation of each successful eCommerce website, there is still more to learn. And not only in the tech domain.
Should You Build Your eCommerce Website In-house or Outsource it?
The dilemma that bothers business owners across the globe is whether to set up an in-house team or to outsource. Outsourcing parts of the work, specifically web development, often comes with multiple advantages. However, you must be objective and thorough when it comes to doing the math and learning about the pros and cons of outsourcing tech roles:
- An in-house team often has more relevant company knowledge,
- Monitoring the team and its performance is much easier when they’re all in one place,
- Security is sometimes an issue when working with a third-party development team.
Still, outsourcing has many good sides:
- The desired results come quicker, and time-to-market is much shorter,
- All costs are reduced, starting from hiring, the cost of an empty seat, and employee training,
- It takes less to onboard people and teach them your ways,
- All internal processes are more streamlined,
- You can scale your team more successfully.
Lastly, outsourcing offers more flexibility and grants you more time and financial resources to invest in other significant segments. You will access specific skill-sets and technical knowledge needed to build an excellent eCommerce website more smoothly.
Additional Tips to Improve an eCommerce Website
If you want to succeed long-term, there will always be new things to know about eCommerce web development and related topics. For that matter, here’s a quick checklist of things you should keep an eye out for (because your customers surely will – even when they don’t know it):
- The speed of your website,
- Simplified processes,
- Clear CTA,
- Live-chat and knowledgeable agents behind it,
- Excellent site navigation that will ensure a positive customer experience,
- Well-optimized written content and high-quality images and videos,
- Reviews, feedback, and additional security confirmations – all displayed transparently so that the purchasers can know that your site is legit,
- Upselling your goods by adding suggestions and offering your buyers similar items they will likely be interested in (like recommending a memory card to someone buying a phone),
- FAQ pages.
Finally, you will need to constantly monitor your progress. Install Google Analytics or an alternative and keep track of everything that’s going on.
Boosting the Business: Excellent Customer Service Is Paramount
If you want to nail your most important KPIs like customer lifetime value and ROI, you have to play your cards right. Excellent customer service is by far the best way to gain a competitive edge and place your business on the map.
When the entire communication and every touchpoint are taken care of, and each potential buyer feels appreciated, well-informed, and pleased by both the quality of goods and services, you can’t go wrong. Invest in your customer service to have the perfect results:
- Larger customer base,
- Better experience,
- More engagement,
- More profits,
- New marketing opportunities,
- Enhanced brand reputation,
- Reduced costs.
Should we go on? Building a team from scratch or outsourcing customer services both have their advantages. However, if you’re eager to see the results really quickly, it is always best to find a reliable BPO provider. Learn about the market, explore it, and read the reviews to hire the right outsourcing company and promote your online firm promptly and successfully.
What Is the Future of eCommerce?
The online market is continuously moving forward. And the future of eCommerce easily seems brighter than ever. If you need some extra reassurance about the profitability of eCommerce, check out what Statista says. By 2022, online sales will reach more than 5.4 trillion US dollars. Here are a few noteworthy trends to keep in mind if you’re getting warmed up to start or promote your e-business:
- Pay close attention to mobile users and adjust your business to their needs,
- Give people multiple choices by including several payment options,
- Work on fresh marketing strategies and aim for the right crowd.
Personalized experience and easy-to-use pages attract more buyers. Plus, some tech improvements could do you good. AI, voice search, and augmented reality can entice some purchasers and bring them closer to your business.
Bonus Tip to Improve Your eCommerce: AI VS. Human Customer Support
As we said – offering the right kind of support to each customer is crucial. And since everything is being digitized, it is expected that all businesses embrace some of the tech tools and shortcuts that help them progress. Still, if you want to rely more on the AI when interacting with customers, it is vital that you know about the pros and cons of this approach:
- Chatbots cost less and cover more ground,
- They respond immediately,
- The level of consistency is higher.
On the other hand, they don’t work equally well for every type of customer. On the contrary, sometimes chatbots annoy potential buyers. And when it comes to their success – it depends solely on the developers’ knowledge and capabilities to build the software rightly. Lastly, and most importantly, there is another reason why a real team takes the prize in the AI vs. human support battle. Even though we’re all quite used to being surrounded by virtual tools, most still prefer an actual person to handle their issues. The lack of personalization and true sympathy can turn down some of the purchasers.
Suppose you want to improve an eCommerce business by using chatbots to obtain 24/7 coverage and attract returning customers this way. In that case, it is best to combine the sources of support and still have an actual human team.
Keep in Mind the Importance of These Things to Know About eCommerce Web Development
Profound knowledge of web development and eCommerce success are inseparable from each other. However, if you want to keep the customers coming back, you will have to hire the right people. And skilled developers must be at the top of your list.
Nevertheless, if you want to grow and scale quickly, looking for a reliable third-party tech team is the best solution. Finding a suitable eCommerce web development company is the simplest and most comfortable way to start building a recognizable brand.
Just do the research and talk to the pros. Then, sit back while your ideas come to life and your profits increase.