When starting an eCommerce business, the software and tools you choose will have a major impact on your ability to grow.
Unfortunately, the eCommerce software market is more congested than ever. So, picking the right ones can be daunting.
We've put together an eCommerce business guide to help you better understand the software available, the tools you can use, and how to choose what's best for your business.
What is eCommerce without eCommerce software? It is the foundation upon which all eCommerce business is done. These platforms and programs simplify and automate various aspects of an eCommerce business. They let you easily handle inventory management, eCommerce accounting, eCommerce sales, and more.
There are two types of eCommerce software you need to know:
- On-Site. This software is installed and managed by developers employed by your business. When issues arise, they are the ones that fix the problem. This model is the traditional one, but is becoming less popular with eCommerce businesses. You are more likely to see these in a large company or B2B business.
- Software as a Service (SaaS). These are the "hands-off" software solutions. They are hosted in the cloud by a third-party provider and all updates and features are applied automatically. They also allow new businesses to open in 1/3rd of the time. Usually, if you use a headless eCommerce platform or eCommerce marketplace, you will use SaaS solutions.
Best eCommerce Software
The best software for an eCommerce website is the software that handles the hard stuff for you. It should make less work for you and let you focus on making money.
Here's what you should look for:
- Software integration. Since you'll be using many types of software in your business, you'll want to make sure they can all communicate with each other. Luckily for food suppliers, BlueCart eCommerce can easily be integrated with most fulfillment services, eCommerce payment gateways, and more. This lets businesses focus on selling their products and growing their profits.
- Benefits to customer experience. The right software serves to make your customers' transactions seamless. An eCommerce customer’s website experience is just as important as customer satisfaction in restaurant industry. It goes a long way to growing your brand and attracting new customers. If your software hampers their experience in any way, it can lose you money and a lasting relationship.
- Product management. Managing your eCommerce fulfillment operations takes a lot of work. You can have hundreds of SKUs that all need to be picked and put into eCommerce packaging. Make sure to get an inventory management software that makes inventory control easier for your staff.
- Marketing capabilities. Software that lets you market your products are vital in increasing your sales. This may be stand-alone software or integrated into your choice of web platform. Whether you need DTC marketing or B2B marketing, you'll want to easily communicate with your customers. BlueCart eCommerce lets you send emails from the platform. It even has a built-in promotional function, so you can set up a deal and send out an email blast all in one place.
- Reporting functionality. As a business owner, you need to know what is happening in your business. Pick software with robust reporting options that can give you the info you need. You'll want to know sales data, manage inventory allocation, and track your eCommerce shipping. Otherwise, you're just guessing as to what will work and what won't.
There are many eCommerce tools on the market that may meet your individual business's needs. However, there are also a few that we think all businesses would benefit from using.
Here are the five best eCommerce tools:
- BlueCart eCommerce. For food suppliers, our cutting-edge, all-in-one eCommerce platform is a must. We take care of your store design and structure, menus, payment processing, and more. It's even optimized for on page SEO for eCommerce. This means you have more time to spend on what you do best, selling.
- Google Analytics. Tracking and acting on eCommerce analytics are key to achieving lasting success in the industry. Google Analytics is the best tool for this and can let you track many different metrics. You can see how a customer got to your site, how many pages they viewed, what they clicked on, and more. You won't find a more useful tool for understanding your customers than Google Analytics.
- SEMrush. If you want to have a successful eCommerce business, you need to pay attention to eCommerce SEO. SEMrush lets you do just that. You can research SEO terms you want to rank for, track your progress, and even compare yourself with competitors. This research can be used to increase visits to your site and you might even get new eCommerce business ideas.
- Mail Chimp. For sending dedicated email marketing, Mail Chimp is a great choice. It's aimed at small business owners and very user-friendly. So, you don't need to be a designer to send great emails. It's also very affordable with pricing plans that can match your business. Email is much more important than most eCommerce trends. It consistently has the best conversion rate in eCommerce and shows no signs of slowing down.
- Google Adwords. If you're looking to participate in any kind of paid advertising, Adwords is where to start. It's a valuable tool to grow off page SEO for eCommerce and will allow you to show up in search results above your competitors. You can target audiences by their location, demographic, business needs, and more. Even better, you only pay when they click through to your site. No being charged for ineffective campaigns here.
It's Never Tool Late to Learn
Picking the right eCommerce software in tools can help you grow your business quickly and sustainably. Stick with the ones that most match your business needs and won't break the bank. You'll also want to make sure they can grow with your business. You don't want to be shopping for new software every few years.
For even more information on eCommerce businesses, we recommend checking out some of our favorite and best Commerce books and eCommerce blogs. Knowledge is the most valuable resource at your disposal.