Choosing the right e-commerce platform and succeeding with your digital sales can be difficult. Especially if you haven't operated an online store before and are not sure how many products you will sell, how much traffic you will have and what functions you may need.
One of the most important questions you need to ask yourself, prior to proceeding with your online business, is the Total Cost of Ownership, otherwise known as TCO. Knowing the answer to this will help you choose the best e-commerce platform and grow your business.
We have summarized three helpful tips on what you need to think about before starting your online business.
The key to profitability is scalability
To have a profitable online store, you need to watch out for unnecessary costs that can arise along the way. It may take a while before customers pour into your new online store, which can be an issue if the website-maintenance is too expensive.
Instead, choose a platform that grows with you and allows you to scale when needed. As your business gains customers, you will want to add more functions, products and even enter new markets. All of this needs to happen as seamlessly as possible to avoid hefty costs. Choosing an e-commerce platform that is both modular and flexible means that you have the possibility to grow without limitations.
Account for the total cost
It is quite common to only look at the start-up price when researching online services, not factoring in the cost of scaling up. If the service is advertised as “free”, it is often too good to be true. Make sure to find out the operation and maintenance costs before committing. These can be very expensive, unless they are included as a package deal.
It is important to always consider the total cost of your online business, otherwise known as the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). When calculating your TCO, make sure to add in the cost of support, hosting, maintenance, updates and adjustments.
To adjust and develop your online business is something that everyone wants to do during the course of one's journey. Some services that have a low entry cost (i.e free) can be very expensive when you wish to change design, add functions or make other adjustments. Consider these costs when calculating your TCO.
Make a plan that you can stick to
In order for your online store to be successful from the start, you need to have a plan. To just dive straight in and “see what happens” is never a successful strategy. Instead, it is better to reach out to experts who already possess the knowledge and experience needed to succeed. This includes both launching the new platform and scaling your online business. By doing so, you will avoid the common pitfalls that often occur.
At Litium, we want nothing else but to see you succeed with your online business. That is why we are happy to share our knowledge, insight and experience. We have helped many companies grow online and want to do the same for you. To do this, we have developed a guide that helps you find out more regarding TCO.
Download our guide
In our guide, you will gain a better understanding on why focusing on the total cost is important when starting an online business. Make sure to read it here before making your choice!