How to Choose an E-Commerce System
The system must be able to make unique URL’s to all of your products with keywords, descriptions, and unique page titles and should allow Search Engine’s to crawl your pages to find your products online without you having to submit URL’s.
Obviously, you will need to make sure there is a shopping cart system in place but more importantly, you need to make sure this cart offers a stream-lined purchase process. At any time, the user should always be within one click of purchasing what they have in their cart. The check out process should not be more than 2 steps and only the minimal amount of information you have to collect should be asked for. Many studies have found that for each form field you add to a web form, you lose 15% of your conversions.
This one you don’t hear as much about but I am shocked by how many online shopping cart / payment systems are just painful to use. Every time you click to the next screen, you sit staring at a blank page for at least 5 to 10 seconds (over broadband) before it moves to the next step. What’s even worse, many of these systems have a 4 or 5 step process to complete payment. If your system is slow, you will lose a lot of sales.
Multiple forms of Payment
The best case scenario is to provide the customer with as many payment options as possible. Visa and MasterCard are an absolute MUST have. American Express is very popular as well (but their fees are much higher). Discover also has high fees and is less popular but remember, each payment method that you do not include, is potentially limiting a sale opportunity so generally, it is best to bite the bullet and get as many as possible. Paypal has become very popular over the past year with many major sites now taking it. It is easy to set up and younger shoppers especially like this method.
Content Management & Fulfillment
The system should have a robust set of online tools that allow you to easily login at any time to check on orders, fulfill shipments, manage currencies, shipping rates, and add/remove products from your catalog. If any of this involves a web designer having to be involved, you do not want this system!
Don’t even bother with a system that does not offer 128 bit SSL (Secure Socket Layer) security out of the box. No customer data, especially credit cards, should ever be passed over the Internet without being encrypted first. It only takes one security breach of your system to lose all of your customers over night.
Repeatsys offers some of the best eCommerce systems available that do all of the above and more. Contact us and tell us about your needs and we’ll customize an eCommerce system to directly address your business.