If you are looking to create an online store, there are a lot of things to consider. What kind of hosting should you use? What should your domain name be and who should you buy it from? What are you selling and how will you get your products and services to the right customers? Should you hire a developer or do it all yourself? These are just some of the questions you will constantly be asking yourself as you embark on starting a new or revamping your business.
One of the biggest questions you will have to ask yourself, whether you are starting a big brand or just selling a few things is: what is the best system to handle an e-commerce platform? Not sure what the answer to that question is? Let’s explore why WordPress is guaranteed to be the most effective medium to start your online business.
An e-commerce platform is a software technology that enables you to build a storefront for your website. In the past, integrating an e-commerce storefront onto your website was difficult, expensive and time-consuming. Often businesses would have to use different kinds of software for their website store to function properly. Usually, software for the front end and back end were separate.
Front and Back End Tasks
The front end of the store displays the look, feel and functionality of the website. The back end has to be maintained by the business owners. Backend tasks include inventory and accounting. And don’t forget about customer service; which would require even more input.
Recently, a new business model has come to the forefront and has become essential in managing an online business. This new technology is known as the Software as a Service model or (SaaS).
This application brings together all aspects that a business would need to have a solid running and fully functional e-commerce website. Not only that, but the SaaS model allows businesses to personalize their stores and give them their unique brand expression.
It would truly be surprising if you didn’t know what WordPress was? If you don’t know, WordPress is the most powerful website content management system on the internet. It’s a huge, free, open source platform that allows you to transform your website into anything that you want.
You can customize your site’s look by purchasing themes. You can edit and create WordPress themes yourself. Or you can have a designer and developer make you your custom theme that is your soul mate.
WordPress comes with thousands and thousands of plugins and apps made by developers and companies. Plugins are software developed to had a certain function to your website. Everything from analyzing the statistics of your website to adding a mailing list and more have been turned into a WordPress plugin. These incredible features were created to improve the quality of your website and to add different tools to assist your online presence. WordPress is search engine friendly because of all the features that can be included. There are no two WordPress sites that are alike.
With all these different customizations tools that you are given, a WordPress site can be turned into a commerce site easily and would be unique and individual to you. You would create a special shopping experience for your customers just by the sheer volume of options available to you and through you. All of these reasons are why one out of every four websites on the entire internet is powered by WordPress. There are just too many resources to ignore when it comes to this great medium.
So now that we understand what an E-commerce platform is, and we understand what a powerful juggernaut WordPress is; let’s discover why WordPress would be ideal for an E-commerce website or platform.
Choose from a Variety of Plugins
There are plenty of plugins on the WordPress system that already cater to building online stores. Depending on the nature of what you’re selling, different plugins are designed to assist whatever your needs are. Whether you’re selling digital items, services or physical objects that require inventory, there are different SaaS-based plugins that will suit your specific need.
These SaaS programs are also very customizable themselves. They come with add-on’s and updates and sometimes you can purchase extras just to get that higher level of service and uniqueness. If you were to use another E-commerce platform, like Etsy or Shopify, you would have many more limitations to what your online store could be.
Especially if you are not tech savvy. You might be new to WordPress. Or you might have a giant store that you’re trying to put up. Even a small store might be a huge task for some people. Either way, all the plugins, features, themes and software might be intimidating, or they might even be impossible to do on your own.
Be Ready for Anything
It’s great that so many things designed to serve you are available, but with all the plugins, add-ons and updates, it can become a challenge not get overwhelmed with the creation of your website. Sometimes things on your website can be overwritten or undone without your knowledge during a WordPress or plugin update. And because the platform is so big, updates are happening all the time. These are some things to keep in mind.
When you do start your WordPress website because the site creation is so involved, changes can come quickly, and they can be overwhelming. There can also be security issues when dealing with WordPress. Because it is the largest content management system on the internet, there are constantly people attempting to break through WordPress security, so you will notice efforts from the platform to fend off hackers, and plugins to boost your site’s safety.
If all these factors seem like an insurmountable challenge, then you should consider hiring a developer to help you create a seamless WordPress website.
So now you know that WordPress should be seriously considered for an online store. But, it can also be intimidating and time-consuming, even with all of its great features. It might be wise to hire a web developer to manage and install all the applications that you’ll need for your website.
Do Your Research
Depending on the nature of your store, you need to do some research on what kind of E-commerce software you will need. You should be able to communicate this clearly with your developer so that they can deliver you the perfect website that they can maintain or that you can manage.
Your developers should be easy to get into contact with, and they should also be able to communicate well with you and take constructive criticism. You’ll want a developer who has your best interest at heart. They should be someone who truly wants to see you succeed. Too many developers see website building as just a job to complete. You should be interested in having a good ongoing relationship with someone who is keeping an eye on your progress.
Get to Know SEO and More
Make sure you express to your developer that you want your website to be search engine friendly, responsive and mobile accessible. Your website needs to be easy to find through search engines. And should easily to communicate with cell phones or tablets. 50 percent of all web searches are done on mobile devices, so a good, strong, responsively designed website that functions beautifully is imperative for your business. And a developer who delivers that is imperative for your success.
Your web developer will be able to create a child theme for your WordPress site. It is standard when it comes to maintaining a professional website. There, they can make essential changes and updates, and they can anticipate the updates that are external from the open source platform.
Keep it simple. Your developer should have an understanding of what consumers are looking for on your E-commerce website. You want an easy to navigate, clean looking, simple and effective website that doesn’t bombard the customer with too much. A good developer will be able to organize and construct your professional presence on the web that is appealing for multiple visits.
Now that you are armed with this information, you can start to envision having your e-commerce website on WordPress. What will you do, what will you add, and who you work with to make your ideas into a reality?
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