The road to eCommerce success varies from business owner to business owner, but if you really want to take things up a notch, you probably want to bring in a professional developer.
What should you be looking for? Let’s break it down.
Choosing An ECommerce Platform
The first thing you need to decide is which eCommerce platform to use. Integrating with a platform allows your front-end and back-end to work efficiently together. Platforms provide structure for your eCommerce website to work within, and depending on the platform the structure will be more rigid or flexible.
Shopify is one such popular platform that has a more rigid structure. Its ease of setup makes it a popular choice for many eCommerce entrepreneurs wanting to minimize development hassle. That is the common trend amongst eCommerce platforms: more rigidity comes less development effort and customization options; less rigidity means more development effort but more customization options.
At this point you may be thinking that the simplicity of Shopify sounds more for you, but you should consider other options. Magento is another option, and it is very flexible. It is more versatile and powerful, and featuring a vast array of features, extensions and third-party integrations to increase its functionality. If you envision your store becoming an enterprise level of success, then Magento might be the better option for you. It’s important to note that you can migrate to Magento later if your business takes off—it’s a little heavy-duty for some stores, but you don’t need to worry about being locked out if you don’t start there.
Another flexible option would be WordPress. As you may have expected, WordPress eCommerce is best suited for those who have a strong interest in content creation and content marketing. Many content creators will gain a following using WordPress.com and then switch to WordPress.org to convert their blog into an eStore.Compared to a heavier platform like Magento, WordPress development maintenance is still reasonably flexible and cost-effective.
Whatever eCommerce platform you choose, at some point you will need to hire a developer upon reaching a certain level of business growth. If using Shopify, you may be able to go longer without needing a developer to optimize your business, while with Magento you may need a developer earlier to take care of maintenance. An eCommerce developer can be a catalyst for business growth and give you a competitive edge in the market.
What Exactly Is An ECommerce Developer?
ECommerce developers are experts that have a specialized set of skills that help them to better develop eCommerce sites. These developers will keep up with the latest updates, trends and extensions for that eCommerce platform. An eCommerce developer can do website design, testing, integration, product lists, API integration and optimization of all features, extensions, third-party plugins.
Expertise with database systems is also essential. This concerns databases such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, MS SQL server, Mongo DB, and Oracle to name a few. Furthermore, experience with API and payment gateway integration is imperative for creating satisfying websites within the competitive eCommerce market.
How to Hire the Right ECommerce Developer
Above we’ve established that there are a lot of skills needed to be an eCommerce developer, but the demand for such skills is high! Therefore, there are plenty of eCommerce development companies to choose from. But, how do you find the right one for you? Below we’ll go over some factors that make an eCommerce development a good hiring pick.
Years of Experience
Pretty straightforward: the more years of experience they have, the better their technical and soft skills are. A good starting parameter would be to only hire from development companies with at least 5 years of industry experience and has developers with at least 2 years of experience with your platform of choice.
Active Work Portfolio: Design, Content and Graphics
A development company’s work portfolio says a lot about them. The best work portfolios are filled with previous eCommerce work, and recent work too—standards and styles are constantly changing, and it’s no use hiring somebody who hasn’t made a site in the last five years. The very best companies show an appreciation for the critical role of design and UX in customer decision making, and will make sites that optimize your conversion rate while looking good.
You can usually trust a development company to have excellent technical skills, but communication skills are just as important. Are they able to understand the smallest details of your eCommerce ambitions, do they provide and listen to feedback? Communication has a huge influence on project accuracy and meeting deadlines. Quality development companies will be able to use a range of communication channels to give regular updates and discuss your project.
The most successful development companies feature cost-efficient hiring plans that allow their clients to gain success without breaking the bank. This is part of the reason why they’re so popular! The best development companies will offer what’s known as developer packages, which are monthly plans that allows you to increase or decrease the amount of support you’re hiring to meet current project requirements.
Recommended eCommerce Development Teams
Some development companies have gained global success and thoroughly proven themselves as a quality and trustworthy pick for businesses of any size. The following companies also live upto all of the hiring factors discussed above.
Dit Interactive offer eCommerce development services using Magento, BigCommerce and Shopify. They will take care of your custom theme design, eStore setup and maintenance. They are a small but quality development team who have served over 50+ clients and 100+ BigCommerce custom store designs.
CodeClouds are a large development company that offer eCommerce services in a variety of different platforms including Magento, WordPress, Drupal and Shopify. With a decade’s worth of industry experience and 250+ team members they have become a global success with offices in India, the US, Australia and New Zealand. Their eCommerce development services are highly-regarded.
And if you’re looking to do it yourself, one popular solution for creating fully functional eCommerce websites is El Minara. El Minara is an efficient page and sales funnel builder, that doesn’t require CRM integration.