An SME planning to launch in the e-commerce sector must design its website carefully. Should it opt for a cheap off-the-shelf solution or develop a bespoke platform? Here is some advice...
An e-commerce website can be created based on a ready-made solution or a solution customized by professionals.
Opting for a ready-made e-commerce website
The simplest, quickest and cheapest way to create an e-commerce website is to buy a ready-made solution. Many website template providers can be found on the internet. These templates can then be adapted by the trader according to their requirements. They come with web applications designed to manage every aspect of online selling, from updating the catalog to handling orders, including marketing and site visibility on search engines.
Ready-made solutions are suitable for websites operating according to a traditional sale principle. However, they offer little flexibility in terms of implementation and specific adjustments.
Selling your products on other e-commerce websites
An SME can choose to sell products on pre-existing e-commerce websites. Some Consumer to Consumer exchange portals, such as the large auction websites, offer the option of opening a business account. A business can then take advantage of the popularity of these platforms to find new customers.
Developing a customized e-commerce website
The only way to control all the parameters of an e-commerce website is to commission experts to design it. Development of a professional website requires two additional skills:
- Design, handled by a graphic designer
- Programming of the site, handled by a developer
Agencies specializing in website design usually have both these skills. Often underestimated, design and organization of information play a key role in the success of an e-commerce website.
The customized solution takes longer to implement and can prove costly for an SME.