5 Ways to Make the Right E-Commerce Investment Decisions
3. Prioritize as if you could conquer only one thing at a time. Rarely do we have the time or resources to conquer all that we need to. To avoid spending a lot of effort while achieving little, examine all your options and prioritize them into “must-haves,” “should-haves” and “nice-to-haves.” Prioritize your opportunities with short- and long-term objectives in mind. Go a step further and stack-rank them.
Making these hard decisions will bring clarity to your priorities and help set realistic expectations. Make the quick-hit, low-hanging-fruit changes that'll show immediate benefit, be they technology, marketing or process changes.
For Spencer's specialty Halloween Web store, Greenberg said the company focused as much on site management improvements — e.g., auto merchandising — as it did on the customer experience — e.g., social navigation, personalized recommendations and express shopping.
4. Do your e-commerce diligence to find the "best-fit" solution. Whether your new needs are large (e.g., platform, content management system) or small (e.g., e-mail point solution, search engine optimization consultant), spend the necessary time and effort to select the right solution. Replatforming, for example, is a big investment of time, money and, if you don’t do it right, opportunity cost. Use your detailed requirements to create a request for proposal that’s clear to bidders on what they're bidding for. Kick the tires on the potential solutions until you're absolutely sure of what you're buying and, more importantly, what you're not getting.
5. Position yourself for a successful implementation. Pull together the right team. Determine who the key stakeholders are, and make sure they're active participants in this process. Don’t ignore merchandising and marketing strategies. Ensure consistent branding across all channels. And stay on top of the project plan!
Bernadine Wu is CEO of FitForCommerce, an e-commerce consulting firm. She can be reached at email@example.com. If you'd like a copy of the workshop materials, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.