Change is constant in Singapore’s eCommerce. Failure to follow emerging business trends can put you at a big disadvantage in the ever-evolving online shopping industry. In a time when customers are always on the lookout for discounts, credit card deals, online stores, and other convenient ways of shopping, retailers should take advantage of new opportunities to outpace their competitors.
When the COVID-19 pandemic happened, business transactions have to take place online because of social distancing restrictions. To stay afloat, many retailers migrated their physical establishments into the digital landscape to continue operations and allow customers to transact with them in the comfort of their homes.
As more retailers embraced the digital revolution, one new practice is taking the lead in e-commerce. Replatforming is a new e-commerce trend that offers greater features, performance, and functionality. To know more about this emerging trend, we’ll provide a brief discussion about replatforming.
What is replatforming?
Replatforming is the process of migrating a digital store from one e-commerce platform to another. Online merchants do this to enhance performance, functionality, security, and customer experience.
While the idea sounds simple, replatforming an online shop requires serious commitment. You have to transfer everything from the product data, attributes, payment settings, and other features you’ve compiled since the beginning.
With so many e-commerce platforms out there, it’s tough to determine which one suits your business’s objective. You have to consider migrating to a new third-party service (e.g., Shopify or Magento) or developing a custom solution. All these require significant changes that can affect the entire operation.
There are plenty of reasons why you should consider migrating your e-commerce platform. The simplest answers would be to make more money and provide a better customer experience.
For most businesses, the first e-commerce platform they use offers basic performance and features. As the business grows, retailers will find their current platform becomes insufficient to meet customers’ needs and the daily demands of the operations. Meanwhile, others have to pay for a platform with features they seldom use. In this case, replatforming will help them downsize and find a platform that best suits the needs of their business.
Retailers who plan to replatform should do it for the right reasons and timing. These should be counter-intuitive signs telling you to move on and move out of your outdated platform.
Poor user experience is a common reason why merchants change platforms. Slow site speed and intermittent or consistent performance translate to poor customer experience, which drives customers to switch merchants.
Gaps in the existing system and lack of custom design options are other reasons to migrate e-commerce platforms. These problems can force you to spend more time and money to keep the site in great shape. An ideal e-commerce platform should come with basic features and design customization to help make significant improvements to your site.
The lack of payment options can also affect an online business. E-commerce platforms have certain limitations on payment methods, depending on the type of products you sell or the country you’re selling to. In this case, you need to move out from a platform with no built-in payment gateway or provide the payment option your customers need.
How to replatform successfully
In today’s age, a variety of e-commerce platforms are available for retailers to browse. To narrow down your search, start by knowing your frustrations on your current platform. Knowing the weak points will help you find the best one that works for your business. A great tip is to pick a platform that offers a secure, efficient, and fast checkout experience. It should also detect, protect, and prevent fraudulent behaviors.
After finding a suitable platform, you must identify the data you need to migrate to the new site. This includes the data you and the customers need to access from the new website. It will also help you find which store data you need to backup to prevent unforeseen circumstances.
Having a data migration plan is the most critical part of replatforming. Many businesses encounter issues in this part so it’s important to do this from the very beginning. You may consider hiring a data migration service to handle the migration securely, completely, and accurately.
Once you have successfully replatformed, make sure to run multiple tests to detect potential issues and ensure the new platform meets your standards.
Regardless of your chosen e-commerce platform, retailers should provide their customers with a convenient shopping experience, whether offline or online. Replatforming is a huge undertaking that can cause significant damage if not managed properly. Considering our discussion above can help retailers devise a plan to migrate successfully.