8 Crucial Questions to Ask an Ecommerce Development Agency
Are you planning to step into the world of eCommerce?
And for the same, you are looking forward to hiring an eCommerce development agency?
But let us guess, you are totally new to this and are super nervous about your first agency meeting because you really don’t know what exactly you should seek!
Worry not. Because, before you actually head out to meet your agency, we are going to get you all prepared with a long questionnaire so that you don’t sit there blank and unaware but actually be playing a hot rapid-fire round with em’.
Come, let’s ask.
8 Areas you should cover with relevant questions
In today's fast-paced digital age, eCommerce has emerged as one of the most promising and lucrative business models, especially with the forecasted growth of 56% in the coming few years, it has to turn out to be an emerging ocean of opportunities.
Midst of this, a skilled and experienced digital eCommerce agency can help businesses build a powerful online presence, drive sales, and achieve their business goals.
So, let’s explore the key questions that business owners should ask when selecting an eCommerce development agency. By asking the right questions, you can ensure that you find an agency that can deliver the results you need, at a cost that fits your budget.
1. E-commerce website development costs
Developing an eCommerce website can be a significant investment, and it's crucial to understand the costs involved before starting the project. Here are some questions to ask regarding eCommerce website development costs:
What is your pricing model for eCommerce website development?
Do you offer fixed pricing or hourly rates?
What is included in the eCommerce website development cost?
Are there any additional costs for maintenance, updates, or hosting?
2. Experience in creating eCommerce websites
Experience in creating eCommerce websites is critical when selecting an agency. You want to work with an agency that has a proven track record of building successful eCommerce websites. Here are some questions to ask regarding an agency's experience in creating eCommerce websites:
Can you provide examples of eCommerce websites you have developed?
What eCommerce platforms are you experienced in working with?
How do you approach the design and development of an eCommerce website?
What do you consider to be the most important features of an eCommerce website, and how do you ensure they are included in the development process?
3. Steps & Time-frame for eCommerce development
Having a clear understanding of the development process and time frame is essential for effective project management. Here are some questions to ask regarding the steps and time frame for eCommerce development:
What is your development process for eCommerce websites?
How long does it typically take to develop an eCommerce website?
What milestones should we expect during the development process?
How do you ensure that the project stays on track and within the agreed-upon time frame?
4. Post-production support from an eCommerce development agency
Post-production support is critical for maintaining and updating your eCommerce website to ensure continued growth and success. Here are some questions to ask regarding post-production support from an eCommerce development agency:
What post-production support do you offer after the eCommerce website is launched?
How do you handle updates and maintenance for eCommerce websites?
What is your response time for support requests?
Do you offer any ongoing support or maintenance packages?
5. Available employees
Understanding the team and resources available to you is essential when selecting an eCommerce development agency. Here are some questions to ask regarding the available employees:
Who will be working on our eCommerce website?
What is the experience and expertise of the team members working on our eCommerce website?
How many team members will be dedicated to our eCommerce website?
What is the availability of the team members, and who will be our point of contact?
6. Managing your eCommerce project
Effective project management is critical for ensuring that your eCommerce website is completed on time and within budget. Here are some questions to ask regarding managing your eCommerce project:
How do you handle project management for eCommerce website development?
Who will be responsible for managing our eCommerce project?
How do you ensure that our project stays on track and within budget?
How often do you provide updates on the progress of our eCommerce project?
7. Knowledge & eCommerce certifications
Staying up-to-date with the latest eCommerce trends and technologies is essential for success. Here are some questions to ask regarding knowledge and eCommerce certifications:
What eCommerce certifications do your team members hold?
How do you stay up-to-date with the latest eCommerce trends and technologies?
What eCommerce-related blogs, podcasts, or conferences do you follow or attend?
How do you ensure that your team is knowledgeable about our industry and target audience?
8. Communication Effective
Communication is crucial for successful eCommerce website development. Here are some questions to ask regarding communication:
How do you communicate with clients during the eCommerce website development process?
What communication channels do you use, and how often do you provide updates?
How do you handle feedback and revisions during the development process?
How do you ensure that all parties involved in the project are on the same page?
Lastly, there may be other questions specific to your business that you want to ask an eCommerce development agency. Here are some examples:
Do you offer any marketing or SEO services to promote our eCommerce website?
How do you ensure that our eCommerce website is secure and protected against cyber threats?
Can you integrate our eCommerce website with our existing business systems, such as inventory management or payment processing?
How do you ensure that our eCommerce website is optimized for mobile and other devices?
Questions that might as well impact your decision
Design & User Experience
E-commerce websites need to be visually appealing, user-friendly, and optimized for conversions. Asking about the agency's approach to design and user experience can help the client evaluate their ability to deliver an engaging and effective eCommerce solution.
Platform & Technology
Choosing the right platform and technology stack is critical for the success of an eCommerce website. Asking about the agency's experience an expertise with different eCommerce website development platforms and technologies can help the client evaluate their ability to deliver a scalable, secure, and customizable solution.
Analytics & Reporting
Measuring and analyzing website performance is essential for optimizing conversions and making informed business decisions. Asking about the agency's approach to analytics and reporting can help the client evaluate their ability to provide valuable insights and actionable recommendations.
Marketing & SEO
E-commerce websites need to be optimized for search engines and equipped with effective marketing strategies to attract and retain customers. Asking about the agency's approach to marketing and SEO can help the client evaluate their ability to deliver a comprehensive eCommerce solution that meets their business goals.
Payment & Shipping
eCommerce websites need to be integrated with secure and reliable payment and shipping systems to ensure a smooth and hassle-free shopping experience for customers. Asking about the agency's experience and expertise with different payment and shipping solutions can help the client evaluate their ability to deliver a seamless and secure eCommerce solution.
Client References & Case Studies
Checking client references and case studies can help the client evaluate the agency's track record and level of customer satisfaction. Asking the agency for references and case studies can provide valuable insights into their approach to eCommerce development and their ability to deliver high-quality solutions.
Some advance questions
What sets you apart from other eCommerce development companies?
This question helps you to understand what the eCommerce development company can bring to the table that makes them different from others. It can also give you insights into their unique value proposition, which can be useful in making a decision between competing agencies.
What's your level of expertise with particular eCommerce platforms such as Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, etc.?
Asking questions related to expertise with particular eCommerce platforms such as Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, etc. can help you determine whether the agency has experience and expertise with the eCommerce platform that you are interested in using for your online business. It can also help you to gauge the depth and breadth of their technical knowledge.
What specific online retail experience do you have related to our industry?
This question is important because it helps you to determine whether the eCommerce development agency has experience working with businesses in your industry. If they have experience, they may be better equipped to understand your unique needs and challenges.
Do you offer the ability to re-platform or migrate us as we grow and our needs change?
This question helps you to determine whether the eCommerce development agency has the technical expertise and capability to re-platform or migrate your website if needed. This can be important if you anticipate significant growth or changes in your business needs in the future.
What support do you provide if the site goes down or there are technical issues?
This question helps you to understand what kind of technical support the eCommerce development agency provides in the event of technical issues or downtime. You want to make sure that you have access to support when you need it, and that the agency has a solid track record of resolving issues quickly and efficiently.
Do you have experience with improving site speed and optimizing website performance?
As website speed and performance can have a significant impact on user experience and search engine rankings, this question can help you determine whether the eCommerce development company has the expertise to optimize your website's speed and performance. It's important to work with an agency that understands the importance of website speed and has a track record of success in this area.
If at some point during the project one of us needs to part ways, what process do you have in place to ensure a smooth transition?
This question helps you to understand what happens if you need to end the partnership with the eCommerce development agency before the project is complete. It's important to work with an agency that has a process in place to ensure that the transition is smooth and that there are no issues with transferring ownership of assets and completing the project.
If customizations are created, who owns the intellectual property of the code?
Asking this question is important to ensure that there is clarity around ownership of any custom code that is developed during the project. You want to make sure that you have the necessary rights to use and modify the code as needed for your business.
What will you require from us, in order to ensure a successful partnership and project completion?
This question can help you to understand what the eCommerce developers expect from you as the D2C brand owner in order to ensure a successful partnership and project completion. Understanding their requirements can help you to be better prepared and can set clear expectations for both parties.
In conclusion, partnering with an eCommerce development agency can help take your D2C brands to the next level. However, it's crucial to ask the right questions to ensure that you are working with the right agency for your business needs. By asking questions about eCommerce website development costs, experience, development process, post-production support, available employees, project management, knowledge, communication, and other specific business needs, you can make an informed decision when selecting an eCommerce development agency.
You can always get in touch with our experienced eCommerce experts at Design Process who can help you get a better understanding of things and guide you throughout the process right from the scratch.