I often get the direct question, which ecommerce platform is best for our business?
My answer: I don’t know (yet).
To be able to help in the selection we should take some steps at a minimum, because it’s part of a digital strategy and is a means to achieve certain business goals.
For starters we need a business strategy. Mostly a shortcut is taken and the hunt for the right tool(s) starts.
The goal is not to have a choice or great tool stack
The real question is
What is needed and how should we use the to be selected digital tools to achieve our business goals?
The digital tools are just what they are
They need to have the minimal functionality and the flexibility to keep pace with the business growth and the roadmap for a period of minimal 3 years based on best practices.
ecommerce, no let’s talk about digital sales
We are not talking about just using a shopping cart, it’s about using digital to enable and maximize sales through all channels.
ecommerce, no let’s talk about ecommerce stack
ecommerce needs much more:
– enriched product information
– digital assets
– customer analytics/tracking and behavioral analysis
– customer segmentation
The choice is crucial in bringing the best digital experiences and maximize customer satisfaction.
ecommerce, but let’s talk about ERP integration
That’s a though one you might think. But in the end, all business related data is in and managed by your ERP.
To integrate ERP with a commerce you can choose:
- a cloud platform to connect the two, this is an IPAAS (integration platform as a service) where you need a connector for each application.
- API-based where the ecommerce platform can be the trigger
- or no integration needed, because ecommerce is integral part of ERP
More scenarios are available, but just know integration is yet another tool with it’s complexity and management.
If your current ERP is working (but needs an upgrade) and is not your priority to change, integration is mandatory. If you can start fresh, just consider avoiding extra complexity.
NetSuite and SuiteCommerce Advanced do not need an integration and a self-service customer portal is out-of-the-box i. Just think how this can speedup your time-to-market (and budget).