By Ruth Richter • July 14, 2016
Starting an e-commerce site or revamping an existing site will help you reach new customers and sell more. But before you race to your favorite web hosting service to set up your new store, let’s take a look at a few things you should consider when starting a web store. Integration between your new e-commerce site and existing software such as Sage 100 is an important part of successful e-commerce.
6 Points to Consider When Choosing Your e-Commerce Host
Although it’s tempting to go with the lowest-priced host first, it’s important to take into consideration several factors when choosing your e-commerce host. Price is only one of several things to think about as you weigh the pros and cons of each potential company.
Consider the following as you review your options:
- Hosting company features: Some companies provide you with space on a cloud-based server and not much else. You’re responsible for building your own website, ensuring it’s responsive to mobile users, testing it, hooking up a shopping cart and payment gateway—the list goes on. Other sites provide you with great templates, including responsive designs which are important to today’s increasingly mobile-using customers. Think about all the features that you want and absolutely need in an e-commerce hosting provider, then prioritize according to needs first, wants second. Use this list to narrow down a list of possible vendors.
- Uptime: Anytime your site is down, it means lost sales. Ask potential companies for the statistics on their “uptime” or the percent of time the site is available on the internet. Look for the company with the best uptime.
- Space: Retailers usually upload a lot of product images to their websites to showcase all the goods they offer. Multiple product angles also help sell more, so having different pictures showing various angles, profiles, and uses of products can help you sell more. Pictures do take up a lot of space, however. Make sure that the hosting company offers you plenty of space for the price quoted.
- Payment gateways: Payment gateways are the processors used to transact business online. Some e-commerce platforms offer a limited selection of payment gateways. Others charge you to sync up your current payment processor with your website. Be sure that you understand what’s offered in terms of payment processing and that it matches what you are using now. If it does not match your existing POS system, you may need to look into tools to help synchronize your e-commerce site.
- Support: Support is another area where some companies shine and others stumble. Most e-commerce hosting sites offer at least email support. Some offer instant chat, where you can access a customer service representative through a chat window. Others offer phone-based support, or a combination of services. If you’ve got a great tech person or department, then you may be able to skimp on support services. But if you’re a DIY kind of business owner and you’re handling all of your own tech support, then having access to someone in the ways that you need it—by phone, email, or chat—is an important consideration.
- Integration capability: Some shopping carts and merchant channels do not offer the ability to take advantage of the feature of Sage 100, especially in the area of integrated pricing. So be sure to double check the integration capabilities before selecting the platform.
Sage 100 e-Commerce Integration
Some shopping platforms are easier to integrate with Sage 100 than others, so if you are using a Sage 100 system, it helps to know which offers the integration features you require. It helps to know what you’re getting into before investing in an e-commerce site. Knowing what you need and how to synchronize it with existing Sage 100 systems is important. ROI Consulting can help.
ROI Consulting offers Sage 100 e-commerce integration through IN-SYNCH to make sure your new or relaunched e-commerce site works great with your existing systems. We can help you with all of your Sage 100 e-commerce integration needs. Contact us today or call 402-932-2223 x1.