by Demi Donohoe

There are many options to consider when it comes to selecting an eCommerce platform and you’ll likely have many questions. If you're struggling with where to start, this guide covers what you need to know to select the right platform for your eCommerce business.

When choosing a new eCommerce platform for your business, there are ten key factors that are critical to a successful replatforming and launch.

Selecting a platform shouldn't be taken lightly with it being the heart of online businesses. The decision can be overwhelming, and you may not know where to start or have various questions before beginning your eCommerce journey.

To assist those looking to take their first steps into eCommerce, our Shopify experts have produced a guide and sharable infographic explaining the key considerations when picking your eCommerce platform, making your choice easier.

infographic showing 10 key factors to consider when choosing an ecommerce platform

1. your objectives and goals.

Your objectives and your audience are the two factors that should sit at the core of your decision. We also always advise merchants to consider the functionalities they need both now and in the longer-term, too. Taking a short-sighted approach will soon see you outgrow your solution.

Drawing upon our retail background, we can help you to get to the bottom of exactly what you need, and what your customers want as part of our ‘discover process’ service.

2. pros and cons.

If you have a list of potential platforms and you know what your objectives are, then the next step is to weigh up the pros and cons of each one against your list of ‘must haves’.

3. your budget and how you want to pay.

You need to know how much you can afford to spend while remembering that this is an investment. Most eCommerce platforms will offer a different pricing structure depending on the features and support you require, and you need to decide if you're willing to spend more on the extras that your store could benefit from.

4. platform support.

Your eCommerce platform is the foundation of your online business and having someone who can assist you should play an essential role in your decision. Do your research and compare each platform’s customer service options.

We also offer a support service to help you get the most from your Shopify site.

5. scalability.

Can your platform grow with your business? Will it be able to handle higher traffic demands in the future, and even different currency or language options? Your chosen solution should be flexible and capable of supporting your future ambitions.

6. security.

Security is a big concern, and a good eCommerce platform will not only protect your brand but your customers, too. Although most solutions offer robust security standards, it’s important to understand whether you’re responsible for maintaining this or not.

7. integrations.

Consider what tools you’ll require for your store to operate the way you want it to. Apps and integrations can extend functionality and performance to create a better shopping experience for your customers, but they may come at an extra cost.

8. payment options.

If you don’t make it easy for your customers to pay, how can you expect to make sales? Today it’s common for brands to offer a number of different payment options on site such as Klarna, PayPal and Apple Pay but not all eCommerce platforms can support these choices.

9. timescales.

If you’re working to a tight deadline, this needs to be considered in your platform choice. Different platforms take different amounts of time to get up and running and this timescale will heavily depend on your requirements.

10. seo friendliness.

While you might have a brilliant looking website, if Google struggles to crawl or index it, your customers are going to struggle to find it. Look for a platform that’s SEO friendly - you want to be able to use your own domain name, gather customer reviews and add articles and blogs.

For more information on the replatforming process, designing your store, Shopify apps, integrations and migrating your data please visit our replatform advice page.

To read more about choosing the right eCommerce platform for your business, you can download our detailed guide.

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