Is your website still working for your business?

System crashes, mounting costs - signs your business needs a new site

24 Aug 2021

As your business grows, you may need to move to a bigger office, hire more staff, buy new equipment and expand your fleet. It makes sense: if you’re doing more, operations need to keep up. Your website is the same. What worked when you were a fledgling business may not be powerful, functional or flexible enough to serve your business as you grow.

There are many ways your site can fall behind. Rapidly rising sales numbers can quickly stretch capacity. Moving into international markets can be difficult if you’re not set up for that. Offering new services or site features can mean using expensive or clunky add-ons.

Is it time for an upgrade, or can you stick with your current site for a few more years?

Here’s how to work it out:

1: Volume outstripping capacity

A growing business means more transactions through your site, whether they’re sales, subscriptions or bookings. It can also mean expanding your product or service line, increasing the data your site must process daily.

If your current site infrastructure is struggling to cope with the volume of sales, it’s likely time for a change. Otherwise, you could face system crashes, slow processing speeds and inconvenience for customers as they use your site. You may need to switch to a new platform or provider to up your capacity in line with your business growth.

2: Managing multiple sites

If your original website was built to serve customers in a single market, expanding into other countries can be a challenge. A local platform may be more affordable when you’re starting, but won’t necessarily serve you well later on.

Some businesses choose to add a separate site for each additional market – but this solution adds complications and costs, and can quickly become unwieldy if you move into many areas. In the long run, it may be more practical – and less expensive – to develop an entirely new site on a new platform, with the flexibility to sell in various markets.

3: Add-ons are adding up  

Many popular eCommerce platforms – like Shopify and Squarespace – offer affordability and speed for newer online businesses. They can also be customised with your branding and optional plug-ins for extra features and functions. For example, you may need to buy add-ons to use payment portals like PayPal and AfterPay.

But as your business grows, your list of add-ons probably will too – with more cost and complexity in the mix. The price of each app or add-on can seem insignificant but put them all together and costs rise quickly. While developing your site with built-in functionality may involve a larger initial cost, it could be cheaper long term.

4: Customisation is complicated

For smaller businesses selling a limited range of products, an out-of-the-box site can be ideal. Costs are minimal, developing your site is relatively simple and you can get up and running quickly.

But as you grow, this type of platform can start to slow you down. Customising your site can be harder and more expensive – without necessarily getting you the result you want. You could be paying for expensive third-party apps or employing outside developers to build complicated workarounds. Neither option is ideal in the long run.  

5: Dealing with dispatch

Every sales website needs an effective dispatch and fulfilment solution – after all, getting your products into customers’ hands is the ultimate goal of eCommerce. An effective dispatch and fulfilment solution can deal with a high volume of orders efficiently, and manage payment options, returns and exchanges with minimal input from your team.

If you’re suddenly fielding frequent complaints about delivery delays, mixed up orders, missing products or complicated returns, it’s a sign that your site isn’t dealing with your new sales volume effectively. You need to take that seriously – if customers have a bad experience with your site, they’re unlikely to return. 

You may need to look at other options – whether that means a whole new website or a functionality upgrade.

 

Time for an upgrade

Missing deliveries, features that don’t quite work for your customers, rising costs, even system crashes – when your business starts outgrowing your website, problems can crop up in several areas.

If you’re seeing one or more signs of trouble in your business, it’s time to take a good look at how your current website is working – and what it’s costing you in time, money and lost customers. From there, you can consider your options and start building a new site that fits you perfectly.

That’s where we come in – get in touch with the team at Solutionists to talk about what your new site will look like.

Talk to the team now

author:

Solutionists

date published:

24 Aug 2021