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How to choose an enterprise e-commerce platform

Increasingly people are shopping and carrying out many other tasks online. For businesses, therefore, it’s vital to have an internet presence, and if you’re selling goods and services you need an e-commerce platform.

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For retailers in particular there is pressure to combine digital and physical channels. But whatever your reason for needing an e-commerce solution, there are a number of different options on the market, and they represent a major investment. You therefore need to choose wisely and make sure that the package you get is suited to your needs. You are going to be using it for a long time, and mistakes could prove costly.

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What do you need?

Choosing an e-commerce platform is not just a decision for the IT department; it’s something that needs to involve many other parts of the business. You need to understand what all departments need from the solution. Obviously sales and marketing will carry more weight here, but other teams, like accounts, need to have input too.

You need to look at your business objectives and the features you need to support these. If you have an existing e-commerce solution you need to look at which parts of it are not meeting your needs or are creating bottlenecks. You also need to identify any integrations that are required to work with your other systems.

Cloud or onsite?

Increasingly many systems for e-commerce are available in the cloud as well as in traditional form installed on your own servers. The cloud offers advantages in terms of reducing overheads and allowing the system to be scaled more easily to cope with demand. However, you also need to consider security and other aspects. You will undoubtedly also want to maintain your company image with a customised front end for the web, and a Drupal design agency such as can help you to achieve this.

You also need to consider your customers’ needs here. More than ever, people are accessing the web using mobile devices rather than PCs, so you must ensure that your choice of e-commerce solution is mobile friendly. You also need to look at how they want their orders fulfilled. For retailers click and collect is ever more popular and in some instances has overtaken home delivery as the preferred option. Check if the solution has modules available to make this work.


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