September 11, 2014
By customizing their online stores, merchants are getting much more extensive business opportunities. Of course, it’s quite difficult and sometimes rather expensive to customize your own Web store but, looking at possible gains, we can definitely say that it’s worth doing. It doesn’t matter whether you will adjust a site on your own or hire a professional developer for this purpose, remember that customization gives you the opportunity to take a competitive edge on the tough eCommerce market.
Currently, there are plenty of well-known Web stores that impress people with their style, design, functionality, speed and advanced technologies. So what should a new vendor to begin with? It isn’t necessary to order full-fledged customization at the very start (though highly desirable) — you can just go with a single or couple of specific options that will allow you to stand out. Below I will try to outline all the advantages of professional eCommerce customization.
Design and Layout
To tell the truth, it is no longer enough to launch a Web store with the standard template design, so you’ll definitely need to create your own unique style. With some advanced theme editors, merchants can get the opportunity to create unique (to some extent) layouts even without professional assistance. But, to look stylish, creative Web design is a must.
Remember that customization of your online store can improve its basic functionality substantially. First of all, don’t forget to ensure that your Web store is properly accessible in all major Web browsers.
With the help of software add-ons you can expand essential features of your online store. These applications are used for special purposes like searching or on-site chat support integration, for example.
You can also ask to integrate video or audio assistants or comprehensive knowledgebase. Different payment gateways, affiliate add-ons and gift registries are also good samples of eCommerce functionality improvements.
Speed and Convenience
When you, as a store owner, realize that a current Web store doesn’t meet the growing market trends, then it’s high time to scale it up to a larger size while improving its overall speed and performance. Proper loading speed optimization will allow you to work with much more extensive data volumes, without sacrificing response time. With professional Web developer assistance, you can integrate video and audio data and make your product showcases much more convenient and attractive.
You can hardly expect your prospect to wait for a while before your Web pages are loaded. This is where the risk of switching to more convenient and fast competitor projects arise. Speed and convenience of usage are crucial aspects for any online venture and you should pay a special attention to these points.
Cloud computing is the next level in eCommerce business development. With the help of cloud technologies, you can make your project accessible almost 100 percent of the time from any location around the globe and ensure its really hassle-free performance.
You shouldn’t be afraid of losing mission-critical data and information because the integration of cloud-based technologies provides required redundancy. It’s also possible to implement server resource allocation on-the-fly – just whenever you need them most.
Among these types of technologies, I refer primarily to cloud-powered search and CDN (Content-Delivery Network) support.
Mobile and Social Media Integration
Today, if you wish to get your prospect’s attention as well as additional exposure, try to reach them with social media integration. This will fuel constant customer communication and interaction. Also, each of your customers can be informed about special deals and new product offers. This information can be easily shared with their friends, serving as an additional advertising stream.
Mobile integration is really important in this age of Smartphones and tablets. Every day, people use mobile devices to shop — that’s why one of the main targets is to meet customers with the mobile optimized version of their favorite Web store. Another option is to create a specific mobile application for mobile shopping. With the help of professional Web developers, it’s possible to take advantage of even more advanced mCommerce opportunities.
Do you know some additional benefits of online store customization? Don’t hesitate to share your thoughts in the comments below.
Post by James Woodgate - a community and PR manager at an established custom ecommerce development company Simtech Development with the experienced team of ecommerce developers working with CS-Cart platform.