In part 1 of this two-part series from our August issue, we classified e-commerce systems into four essential groups: bundled suites, enterprise leaders, niche players and experienced multichannel partners.
Ensuring great experiences for today’s rich and complex web applications requires a new approach to performance testing. Application owners, e-business and marketing managers, QA & IT operations all need to ensure mission & business critical transactions perform flawlessly.
Until recently, selecting the optimum e-commerce platform for a multichannel business was a race to keep up with evolving technologies. The applications morphed at such blinding speed that the needs and requirements you defined when selecting your system easily could be obsolete by the time that system was up and running. Today's technology isn't evolving any slower — if anything, the pace of e-commerce change continues to accelerate. But the main differentiators among systems these days are less in the features and functions they support than the services they offer, flexibility, scalability, technical support, and the vendors' approach to charging for licenses or services. In short, your biggest challenge in selecting a platform may be determining which provider will be your best business partner going forward.
I had breakfast with a couple at a conference recently. The woman was the founder of a business that sells beads to home hobbyists for bracelets and necklaces. Her partner runs the back-office operations for the business. I asked how they started their business.
The nature of the internet business model allows more centralized inventory control and more efficient order and fulfillment management than a retail store network. And of course with centralized fulfillment, online merchants don’t incur the cost of distributing inventory around the country, or even throughout a region. In addition, they can extend or cancel promotions depending upon demand and inventory levels.
Coolibar, an e-retailer that sells items such as sunscreen and sun-protective swimwear, used a service to help it see how customers were navigating and experiencing its retail site. It quickly realized it needed to speed up its site response time. Read More...
Traditional load-testing methodologies can measure the strength of an enterprise's internal infrastructure. However, if external, third-party components aren't delivering snappy Web application performance, customers likely won't care whose fault it is - they'll just go away. Load testing 2.0 is a way to assess your Web app's performance from the customer's point of view.
Savvy shoppers don’t waste time clicking through multilevel navigational menus. Studies show they head right to the internal site search box and type item numbers, brand names or keywords to find specific items. If they don’t know what they want, then they may browse your navigation. But when they know exactly what to look for (or at least think they know), that box is your salesman.
As e-commerce sales continue to climb, many catalog/multichannel marketers find themselves evaluating their current platforms to determine if it’s time to consider upgrading their Web sites. No doubt, it’s a large task. So proper planning is a crucial first step toward handling the project the right way.
eBags has been using Gomez Inc.’s Reality View XF since August to test more than 50 browser and operating system combinations. Mike Frazzini, VP of technology,estimates that the outsourced , automated tool is saving it more than 50% in staff and fees versus reproducing the combinations manually.