Friday, March 2, 2007

Ecommerce Features and Cash Flow

I can't tell you how many times I see businesses make this mistake:
  • They want to create an ecommerce store
  • They have in mind a certain set of features
  • Some of those features are not supported "out of the box" by any popular ecommerce system
  • They spend time and money adding them to the shopping cart software that they decide to buy.

Wrong way to go...

Of course, if one or more of those new features are crucial to your business, then you have no choice. But in the vast majority of cases... don't start developing before you start selling!

In most cases, the right way to go is...

  • Phase 1: Open your online store and start generating some positive cash flow
  • Phase 2: Based on your experience running the store, develop a Wish List of new features that you want to add and set priorities for all of them
  • Phase 3: Start devoting time and money to implementing the new features based on those priorities.

There are always exceptions, but being successful online normally takes time: don't run out of money before you get there!

On another note: My friends at BAIA recently published an interview with me on their BLOG, in case you want to know more about what I'm up to :-)

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