Using a content management system might be more convenient but there are still many elements to look at, especially when choosing a CMS for your e-commerce store. Here are a few things you should keep in mind:
Shopping cart: Is your shopping cart secure and easy to use? This is the most important part of keeping track of your orders and making sure that you have enough goods in stock. Security and ease is also a part of it, which is why most e-commerce site owners use an e-commerce shopping cart from Yahoo!, Google Checkout, PayPal or plugins that enable these. Other popular alternatives include Magento, Shopify and many other WordPress plugins.
Easy to use backend: Do you plan on having a lot of different products? Make sure to choose a CMS that lets you easily name (and change if necessary) a page name. Your store should be structured into specific folders and sub-folders for easy navigation and organization. Many custom CMS allows different users with different editing abilities so that you can’t accidentally erase an existing product/page.
Design: Don’t be fooled by the limited, generic templates available on WordPress. Using a CMS doesn’t mean that your site has to look like hundreds of other online stores. There’s always a way to edit or customize an e-commerce site design to your specific wants and needs. Just like with any other website, it also doesn’t hurt to think about display options for mobile. Perhaps, responsive website design is an option for your site.
Customization: It all comes back to customization and what you need for your e-commerce store. Some owners will put up all the products they need at once and just update the quantity. Other stores might have new additions every month or have a different rotating stock of merchandise based on seasons. Although content management systems like WordPress have custom fields, they might not be customized enough to your specific needs. Especially when it comes to pricing, product details and everything that is important to an e-commerce store that wouldn’t be a concern for a normal site.
There’s a lot more to a content management system and managing an e-commerce site than meets the eye. If you have any more questions about the flexibility of a custom CMS, feel free to contact us for more information.
Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.