Who should be your ideal shopping cart solution provider?


-------------------------------------
The market is up for a definite revival. The eerie silence that prevailed 
earlier is now transforming to a crescendo of positive business-talks all
across 
the marketplace. None other than Standard and Poors research analysts
predicted 
that business, specifically online retailing, will come up with
significant 
growth in 2010 boosting up sale-volumes across various market domains. So,
if 
you are a retailer, it is the time to think beyond your brick-and-mortar
store 
and for that, you need to acquire online retailing capabilities. 

A simple Google-search will reveal a host of shopping carts with enormous
lists 
of features and options.  There are known, not-so-known and
totally-unheard-of 
ecommerce solution providers who are ready to offer the �best shopping
cart 
solution� instantly. Believe it or not, online retailers seldom make the
mistake 
when they blindly go for the �best shopping cart� merely on the basis of a
huge 
list features and add-ons! 

The performance of your online store depends not on the shopping cart
itself; 
but, it is almost entirely affected by the type, nature and the present
state of 
business of the actual solution provider.  The definition of good
ecommerce 
application is no longer synonymous to the size or reach of the ecommerce 
solution provider; but, it is the quality and the commitment towards
better 
deliverance that matter more. With a change in the business landscape, the
big 
fishes are facing tough times to keep the stronghold in the ever changing 
ecommerce solutions market because of their mounting running cost and
naturally, 
the allocated budget for actual feature enrichment in the shopping cart is
far 
less. Also, the observers, who analyze market vulnerabilities, suggest
going for 
proprietary-based technology-platform (such as Microsoft .NET) while
choosing an 
online store solution.
So, rather than going for any leading ecommerce service provider, it is
now the 
time to choose your online shopping cart vendor on the following
parameters:

Is the solution provider certified or with proven creditability?
The online shopping cart vendor that you chose should be with
authenticated 
expertise such as a Microsoft Certified Partner.

Will the shopping cart vendor provide references? 
Don�t get lured my simple one-liner comments in the vendor�s website; look
for 
specific testimonials with existing customers� identities. If needed, ask
your 
vendor to give you contact details.
Is the solution provider�s business stable?

Find out for how long the shopping cart provider is in business.  A one or
two 
years� old ecommerce company may not have the required IT infrastructure
to 
support your online store. Check out whether they have separate resources
in 
case you want them to manage your store in future. 

Is the vendor charging hefty fees to cover the running cost?
Why would you pay for the vendor�s promotional campaigns? Some of the big
names 
providing online stores cannot afford to lower the price simply because
they 
have a big marketing budget to cover and they do it through hidden costs.
Ask 
the vendor to provide you with detailed quotation.

Does the ecommerce service provider understand your industry?
The sales and marketing team of the vendor should clearly know your market
and 
suggest strategies for a rapid growth of your business. Talk to them and
ask 
specific questions to find out.

Can the shopping cart vendor provide customization?
What you need to excel in the market is not an off-the-shelf packaged
software, 
but, a completely customized solution aptly equipped with specific
features to 
serve your business needs. Never get constrained with a free-for-all and
least 
customized shopping cart.

Doing business online will surely be the next big thing around the world. 
However, the real benefit will come when you will do it smartly and with
the 
help of someone you can always trust.


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