How long does it take to build an ecommerce website? Without knowing the exact things you need to do, it can take an eternity. This part of the market is developing at a truly rapid pace, so you can profit well if you join the niche at the peak of its development.
Ecommerce website development requires experience in coding, marketing and analysis, so it cannot be fast, but the speed can be significantly accelerated if you act according to a clear plan.
7 Steps to Building a Successful Ecommerce Site in 12 Months
Before we start, here is a quick list to remind you about the things that are necessary if you want to build your own e-store:
- A domain name that will correctly present your brand;
- A provider for web hosting;
- A payment processor;
- A platform to create your store;
- First capital;
- Everything for shipping.
So, here are the 7 steps:
The first step, of course, is to hatch a business idea and choose the product that you will sell. However, do you need a product that will not attract interest and ultimately will bring only losses? Of course not, so initially you need to thoroughly investigate the trends of the online market, your target audience and its requests. For the most correct and comprehensive analysis of popular market niches, use services such as Google Trends, Trend Hunter and the main influencer of recent years – Instagram. To understand what is being sold to the masses, use the Amazon bestseller list.
Delivery and Product Samples
Make sure that in the future there are no problems with delivery. Choose a reliable postal service and create a stylish and practical packaging for the product. You also need to start testing product samples to eliminate any flaws by the time the store is fully launched.
Nowadays there are a huge number of ecommerce website development services for entrepreneurs with different ambitions, goals and products. The most popular ones are Magento and Woo Commerce. You can look for a less-known ecommerce website development company in order to reduce costs.
Building Your Website
There are a few essential steps to building your new eCommerce website you should keep in mind.
Hire an experienced team
It’s no use cutting expenses by outsourcing your project to incapable Indian freelances or hiring a team solely due to the lowest rates. Working with incompetent “experts”, you risk undermining both your budget and reputation. So hiring a team with extensive experience and vast portfolio is integral to the overall success of what you’re building.
Pick the right technologies
You can take several different routes depending on your budget, project scale, and commercial ambitions:
- Integrate shopping cart software - if you already have a business website, you can simply add a shopping cart solution to it. The above-mentioned Magento and WooCommerce both offer the required plugins, with support of the top payment gateways and other necessary features.
- Use an eCommerce platform - buying a full Magento or WooCommerce plan, you get powerful yet convenient and accessible eCommerce platforms to build a new online store. These are especially efficient if you are looking to create a small- or mid-scale store, or a commercial mobile app. Readymade platforms can be used for more complex projects as well, but the end product may lack corporate authenticity.
- Order custom development - if you want to get something truly authentic and, at the same time, versatile and scalable, custom software is the way to go. You may hire a team that will build an eCommerce solution of any shape and color from scratch. When it comes to the underlying technologies, the combination of PHP and Laravel framework makes wonders because:
- PHP allows for cost savings due to the open-source nature of software; in-depth personalization due to tons of available integrations; firm security with built-in features; etc.
- Laravel provides high performance due to advanced out-of-the-box caching opportunities; accessible third-party integrations; versatile development cycles; thorough testing, etc.
Our own team of developers has been using PHP and Laravel to build high-performance custom solutions. Here’s one case for an example.
No matter which path you choose, make sure to closely manage your hired team and never neglect software testing. Qualified teams usually know all about proper bug-fixing methods and you can assign a project manager of your own to keep everything in check.
Think about the customers’ convenience. The website should not only look good and have the right architecture, but also allow you to conduct a quick and convenient search for products with the help of a search bar with filters and categories. Another good function will be a separate tab with customer feedback and the option to rate the service, delivery and quality of the product.
If you have done everything correctly, you've almost created a great selling website. However, do not rush to launch it – first of all, you should conduct a multi-stage beta test to identify and correct all possible errors.
Even the most perfect store can become unprofitable without proper advertising. When it comes to ecommerce, the important thing is search engine optimization, which ensures the arrival of a pre-interested audience. It would not be superfluous to have a separate tab for a blog, thus giving more space for keywords and useful information related to your store.