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    E-Commerce solutions
    It's not an easy task choosing the right E-Commerce development company to build your E-Commerce website solution. Just searching on the keywords "E-Commerce solutions" in Google brings back over 1.8 million web pages: that's a lot of development companies potentially offering to deliver you the best E-Commerce solutions out there. So, the question is how do you protect your investment by choosing the right E-Commerce web development company first time who not only has the technical programming skills to deliver award wining E-Commerce solutions but the business skills that have a sales slant to deliver a successful online business? At K-Soft Information Technologies we have devised a set of E-Commerce guidelines to help you make the right decision when choosing one of the many E-Commerce solutions out there.

    Website Design
    An internet shopper will make a decision in the first 6 seconds on whether they will stay on your E-Commerce website and purchase a product or decide to go to one of your competitor sites. For that reason the web design to be compelling and have the "stickiness" for the shopper to stay. That could be due to the high quality images of the products you are selling to entice the customer with the attention to detail or the easy to use layout. To instill confidence in the internet shopper to part with their money your web design has to look high quality with a professional feel. Don't fall into the trap of buying cheap off the shelf E-Commerce template designs which do the exact opposite. Instead chose an E-Commerce solution company who have a dedicated team of web designers who have experience in creating compelling designs that act as a sales tool to take into account the goals the website needs to achieve in order to be successful and more importantly profitable

    Usability: E-Commerce website You might have the perfect design to keep your customer on your E-Commerce website but if you make it hard for them to buy by poor navigation on the site it doesn't matter how perfect your web design is they will simply move on to another site which does make it easy to purchase. Internet shoppers are lazy so help them as much as possible by having as few clicks as possible. Ask your potential E-Commerce development company about implementing a single check out page which reduces the number of clicks during the shopping basket process which reduces your abandon rate. If you have 1000s of products your E-Commerce web development company should be advising you on the best way to present these products to the customer. Introducing a simple 'filter module' would straight away solve this problem, for example filter, by price, brand, category, age group etc.

    E-Commerce Catalogue
    There are various types of E-Commerce solutions out there on the market. Static off-the shelf E-Commerce stores tend to suit smaller budgets. These types of solutions are limited in terms of their flexibility to be Customized and nine times out of ten need more involvement to keep updated or to make minor changes such as changing a product image. Basically you get what you pay for. If one of your pains is to streamline productivity then you want to consider a content management system that is database driven to enable you to dynamically make changes and keep content fresh with very little technical involvement. Extensibility is also key, not only should your E-Commerce provider be able to provide you a scalable E-Commerce solution but one that has the flexibility to grow as your business requirements change. Ideally you want to look at a modular E-Commerce solution that allows you to plug in additional functionality with minimum of effort, for example customer loyalty schemes, promo codes, gift vouchers, buy one get one free etc. Taking this even further from a long term investment perspective you should consider how your E-Commerce supplier deals with Customization and bespoke development that is specific to your business and your ways of working. In other words, you don't want to invest in an E-Commerce solution where you discover later on down the line that the solution does not have the flexibility to Customize resulting in having to reinvest in a brand new solution.

    E-Commerce Software
    When choosing an E-Commerce supplier it is important to consider their software coding standards. In others words, have they chosen to go down the 'free' open-source software route or have they chosen to follow a comprehensive programming model such as Microsoft.NET. Open-source certainly provides you with code and full-blown software applications that you can use immediately without having to have a substantial budget. Having said that, the biggest negative is that with open-source you are basically on our own when it comes to support and any form of version control. This is a potential risk that you need to consider. On the other hand if your E-Commerce software provider is using Microsoft technologies then you can be rest assured that the Microsoft.NET framework is a well developed and consistent programming model to allow E-Commerce software houses to build applications that are stable, visually stunning from a user perspective and have the ability and robustness to model a wide range of business processes in a controlled manner.

    SEO Friendly
    Search engine optimization is a long term strategy and shouldn't be taken lightly. Stay well clear of E-Commerce website companies who claim they can deliver you an E-Commerce solution that is fully optimized and will achieve rankings on page one of the three major search engines. Google use more than 200 signals (which includes their page rank algorithm) to digest the whole link structure of your website solution and decide which website pages are the most relevant. They also carry out an intensive hypertext-matching analysis to decide which pagers are most relevant to a keyword search that has been made by an internet user. So, to make sure your website conforms to these you need to implement a long term strategic search engine optimization.

    Payment Gateway Solutions
    When building E-Commerce solutions you need to take into consideration the payment gateway that you will choose in order to have the capability to take payments online via your E-Commerce store. There are lots of different types of payment gateways out there with many different offerings which can be confusing so it is imperative that you choose an E-Commerce company who are experts in this field. The types of questions you need to be thinking about is whether you choose a payment gateway where you will need to have a MID (merchant ID) or use a merchant bureau service where you do not need to apply for a MID via a bank. Do you choose a hosted payment gateway solution where the internet shopper leaves your E-Commerce web store to make payment or an inline solution where the internet shopper does not leave your E-Commerce shop; a far slicker solution in our opinion. What about the perils of fraudulent transactions? When choosing a payment gateway you need to consider the fraud screening tools and risk management services they offer in order to protect your online business, for example does the payment gateway support the 3D Secure Scheme (chip and pin for the web) that has been created by Visa and MasterCard.

    Internet Marketing
    It's all well and good having a fabulous looking and rich in functionality e commerce solution if nobody knows that you are there to purchase your products. As soon as you start thinking about building your E-Commerce website you should also be thinking about online marketing at the same time. Devising a web and internet marketing strategy early on is essential. Investigate all of the different types of internet marketing and decide which one/s best fit your online business and set aside a realistic budget. This could be setting up a PPC ad campaign to have an instant presence on the internet or looking at a long term strategy of getting high rankings for certain keywords on the natural listings of the major search engines. Whatever it is don't leave your internet and web marketing strategy to the last minute. Remember the goal of your E-Commerce website solution is to be profitable and in order to be profitable your potential customers need to know you are out there.