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Why Technology is One of the Big Keys to Picking the Right Commerce Platform – Here’s Why #270

Technology is One of the Big Keys to Picking the Right Commerce Platform

Your e-commerce platform sets the foundation for the future success of your business, so it’s crucial that you choose one that fits your current needs and allows room to grow.

In this episode, Justin Racine, Senior Commerce Consultant at Perficient, joins Eric Enge to highlight the key technology considerations you need to examine before deciding on an e-commerce platform.

This video is the first in a two-part series on choosing a commerce platform.

Don’t miss a single episode of Here’s Why. Click the subscribe button below to be notified via email each time a new video is published.

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Eric: Hey, everybody. Eric Enge here. I’m the Principal for the Digital Marketing Solutions business unit here at Perficient, and welcome to another episode of “Here’s Why.” Today, please help me welcome Justin Racine. Justin is the Senior Commerce Consultant here at Perficient. He works with clients to help leverage their technologies to deliver digital commerce experiences that exceed customer expectations. And so, just to unravel that a little bit, he’s an awesome wealth of information and knowledge about everything you ever wanted to know about commerce platforms. And we’re going to be discussing the considerations in picking the right commerce platform for you. And this is the first in a two-part series. In this one, we’re going to focus on technology considerations.

So, I’m looking forward to having this conversation with you today, Justin. Say, hello.

Justin: Hey, Eric. Thanks for having me on. Definitely looking forward to discussing a little bit further around commerce platforms and why picking the right one is so important to the success of your business. So, very interested to have this conversation with you, and to kick things off here.

Eric: Well, so let’s just start right there since you said it’s important. Why is picking the right platform important to your overall success?

Justin: It’s extremely important. It’s almost like picking the right car for you, right, to drive every day. So, you have to have certain things within the car that you might want to purchase that are important to what your lifestyle is. And the same thing kind of goes here with an e-commerce platform. There’s different elements that are going to make sense for your business that won’t necessarily make sense for your competitor, even though you might be in the same space. So, you have to look at things like technology stacks, and what’s important for your business and your employees and your customers. What some of the key performance indicators are that you might have within your business today that you’re trying to exceed, or maybe you’ve plateaued with them and you need to get to that next level up. So, having the right commerce platform will not only allow you to achieve all of those pieces, but it really sets the foundation for the future of success of your business. And looking at some of these different elements will be critical to making sure that you can actually actualize and achieve that success.

Eric: Well, cool. So, you mentioned several interesting things there, but let’s start digging a little deeper. Let’s start with the technology topic.

Justin: Yeah. So, I mean, one big thing that we always work with our clients on, and what you should always look at, is what technology stack that you currently have today. So, if you’re a Microsoft shop versus some other technology, are there certain platforms from a commerce standpoint that align to what your information technology department is used to working with internally? There might be an internal team of developers or support staff that can actually work on the platform, and having something that aligns to what their skill set is is definitely important in making sure that the platform is going to work well for you.

Another piece of that as well, that I’d actually add, is that you probably, in your business, have other integrations, whether it’s an ERP system or a CRM or an email service provider, a third party that you’re leveraging to do dynamic email remarketing. All of those pieces are going to play into how a platform will work into that technology stack, and make sure that the integration and build is as seamless as possible, while also being able to allow you to maximize and extend those third parties, like your ERP and CRM and email service providers, even further for success for your business. So, starting with technology is always the first area that we tell people to look at, to make sure that the IT folks have buy-in to the specific platform or platforms that you might be looking at.

Eric: Right. If the new platform you’re picking is going to completely disrupt your existing technology stack, I mean, you might want to think twice before going down that path. Right? And understanding the total scope of that impact is really a cornerstone piece of the cost-benefits analysis. But, after considering that, what’s next?

Justin: Well, if the technology makes sense and it’s going to work within your current infrastructure today, or maybe even what the future state of your infrastructure is, too. I mean, we work with folks who have a certain infrastructure setup today, but they’re saying, “Hey, Justin, this is how, this is what it looks like today, but we’re throwing out our current CRM and putting a new one in in the future. And we’re removing our ERP system and putting in a new ERP six months from now. So, we need to connect to all of that.” Which really translates into the next piece that you should look at is, if the technology is going to work, how is it going to also fit into what your business is, and what business alignment that you’re looking to have within your organization?

So, if you’re changing things like your ERP or CRM, or even if you’re not, you have employees who are used to working with different systems internally, and have skill sets aligned to that. So, how is the technology going to fit and integrate within your CSRs, or how is it going to fit within your sales team? How is it going to help them do a better job and potentially remove some of the manual tasks that they’re doing today, and have them be more focused in on the customer and the customer’s experience, and not having them in the weeds on the day-to-day?

So, the employees are one area to start with, to make sure that there’s alignment. But, there’s also the piece around how this platform, this e-commerce platform, will help take your business from where it’s at today to the next phase. So, how can you grow your revenues? How can you increase your customer lifetime value? How can you make that customer experience exceed the expectations that have been set today, but also the fact that the customer experience is ever-changing? So, does the platform allow you to have the flexibility to continue to iterate on it as time goes by? So, those are key things within the business you have to think about, if there’s alignment from technology, and then there’s also alignment from the business. Those are the two foundational pieces to start with.

Eric: Right. Agreed. I think you also need to think about some of the other factors that go into selecting a platform too. But, we’re going to cover that in the second episode in this series. And hopefully you’ve enjoyed watching this one, and if you have, please consider clicking the subscribe button below so you don’t have to miss any future episodes of “Here’s Why.”

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Eric Enge

Eric Enge is part of the Digital Marketing practice at Perficient. He designs studies and produces industry-related research to help prove, debunk, or evolve assumptions about digital marketing practices and their value. Eric is a writer, blogger, researcher, teacher, and keynote speaker and panelist at major industry conferences. Partnering with several other experts, Eric served as the lead author of The Art of SEO.

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