Wondering how to successfully introduce your products to the world on an eCommerce site? Perfect. Because that’s the game plan for today. Below are 10 things to think about before you launch your eCommerce store.
1: Optimize for Mobile
Mobile is king. So treat those phone and tablet users with the royalty they’ve come to expect. In other words, optimize for usability. While you’re at it, make sure you test multiple devices with different screen ratios. Remember: emulators are nice, but nothing beats testing an actual phone and using your fingers for navigation.
2: Plan for Out of Stock
Don’t underestimate the importance of inventory availability information. What happens when a product is out of stock? Will your items still be available for purchase on your website? Will they be de-listed? Will they be visible but not available for purchase? Make sure you have an inventory game plan.
3: Test Live Payments
An abandoned shopping cart is a terrible thing. The usual cause? A bad user experience. Ensure your customers can shop easily by processing a few live payments and refunds. Test each form of payment before you launch.
4: Ship a Live Order
Take the time to ship a product with your shipping system. Make sure you can monitor and track your shipments. If you’ve implemented any automated notifications as part of your shipping process, check that you are getting the reports or notifications you expect. This will ensure seamless customer service once you are live.
5: Check for Broken Hyperlinks
Run a scan of your production website for broken hyperlinks. Differences between staging and production environments can be difficult to spot. Automation will help. You don’t want customers clicking on a product link that leads them to a 404 error.
6: Setup Website Analytics
Double check your Google Console and web analytics setup. Set up conversion tracking and make sure you exclude non-relevant IP addresses, including your own. You don’t want all those page refreshes from your office to look like interested customers, do you?
7: Test Your Customer Service Process
Identify which channels you expect to be using when you receive support or customer service inquires. Consider testing your customer service process from those channels. You may need to check email, chat, social media, and phone.
8: Verify Sales & Use Tax Calculations
Double check your sales & use tax setup in any eCommerce system you are using. Verify its calculations. The last thing you want to do is correct a customer payment.
9: Test Backups
Test and validate your website and database backups. Don’t leave this to chance. Even if your backup tool confirms success, it will be work trying to restore your system from the backups. Testing will give you 100% confidence. You’ll also want to write a restore process document. This will be invaluable in a crisis.
10: Test Your Return Process
Test your return process. Make sure returns are easy. For the best test, ask an outsider to go through the return process to ensure a seamless experience.
Congratulations. Now that you’ve checked, tested, and verified everything your eCommerce store needs to ensure success, you’re ready to launch.