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eCommerce

7 Questions To Ask Your Magento B2B Commerce Development Agency

Great businesses are built on the foundation of partnerships. Choosing the right partner for Magento B2B commerce development can be a tricky affair. There are tens of hundreds of development agencies that claim to be good.

But, how do you zero in on a Magento B2B commerce development agency that can deliver what it promises? After all, there is time, money and expensive resources at stake.

Here are 7 questions that will help you appraise your options better and pick at the right Magento B2B commerce development agency.

1.Are You A Full-service Firm?

A full-service firm is an agency that offers end-to-end design, development & deployment services. Compared to a one-man shop, they have a team of professionals who can handle diverse roles and responsibilities with ease. It brings down drastically the delays and inefficiencies that a single person development team would be prone to.

2.What Is The Size Of Your Magento B2B Commerce Team?

Taking sides with a full-service firm is a wise choice, but, do they have sufficient Magento expertise? Ask the Magento B2B Commerce development company the size and breadth of experience of their Magento team. Ideally, they must have a dedicated team made up of experienced and certified Magento developers.

There are four types of Magento certifications:

  1. Magento Certified Solution Specialist
  2. Front End Developer Certification
  3. Certified Developer
  4. Developer Plus

Depending on your project requirement, you can look for a Magento development company that has a team with adequate certifications.

Certified Magento developers will adhere to code standards that will run smoothly without the hindrance of bugs. And, the experience means that work gets done faster with results.

3.Can You List Some Magento B2B Commerce Achievements Of Your Firm?

This is just like asking a candidate about his/her past achievements in an interview. The motive is obvious. Has this company helped its clients overcome critical challenges with its Magento B2B commerce development services?

A company which does not have much to talk about is not an ideal candidate. If they can demonstrate the list problems they solved, the innovative solutions they devised and the final results they delivered, the company is an ideal option to go with. In fact, you can head straight to their website’s case studies section to find all the information to get a heads-up.

4.What is your project management process?

Agile. Agile. Agile.an Agile project management is the perfect partner you can ask for. The Project Management Institute reports that at least 71% of the organizations use an Agile approach for project management. Why Agile project management?

Because it is inherently beneficial in delivering benefits like:

  1. Better project control
  2. Reduced project risks
  3. Faster ROI
  4. Stable releases
  5. Continuous testing

Agile project management methodology ensures that your project turnaround is minimal, which brings us to the next question. So a Magento development company that follows Agile methodology should be your natural choice.

5.What is your average turnaround time?

There is no definite answer to this. Each company would have a different timeline. For a Magento development company with immense B2B expertise and experience, it shouldn’t take long. However, don’t be misled by the assumption that a company which delivers within a short phase of life is good to go it.

Your focus should be in finding out whether the company has a solid process of sticking to a timeline. It is here that a company following an Agile process would prove beneficial. They run sprints with established goals that push the project towards completion at a constant pace.

6.How would I stay in the loop about the project update?

As a stakeholder, you have the right to be updated on the project status, the plans set for the next sprint, bugs that need to be fixed and so on. This is because the project would be usually handled by a person other than the business development executive who attended to your inquiry.

In a well-established firm, there would be a dedicated project manager who would be the one-point contact for everything related to the product. The PM would be responsible for sending status reports, following up bug fixes, attending to client calls for a revision in project requirements, timelines and so on.

7.What if something goes wrong?

Things rarely go wrong with professional firms. But, when they do, there is always a backup plan in place that ensures that things are reset to resume progress. Before engaging the Magento B2B commerce development company, ask for their Escalation Matrix.

An Escalation matrix it the list of people and their contacts who should be alerted when something doesn’t work the way it was supposed to work. The matrix would include everyone from project manager to the director depending on the level of escalation. Without an escalation matrix, holding the firm accountable for its shortcomings would be a problem.

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What makes Magento 2.0 a winner for B2B commerce?

Magento is one among the top 3 most used eCommerce platforms in the world. Magento is such a sturdy platform that even global brands like Nike, Ford Motor Co., Procter & Gamble Co., 3M, Cisco and the likes are using it for their B2B commerce operations.

Here is a look at how much volume of commerce these brands are transacting using Magento:

Companies and their annual B2B Commerce sales for 2015:

  • Ford Motor Co. – $16.71 billion
  • Nike – $13.2 billion
  • Procter & Gamble Co. – $8.97 billion
  • 3M – $8.5billion

Apart from these giant brands, there are also 650,000+ Magento stores functioning in the B2B space.

So, what makes Magento so lucrative an option for these brands?

B2B Commerce-friendly features of Magento B2B

Magento Commerce is engineered to empower B2B enterprises to deliver a modern, intuitive and smooth purchasing process. For B2B enterprises that are already used to the offline route, Magento also paves the way for the digital transformation of legacy commerce systems.

Here are some highlight features of Magento that makes it a winner for B2B commerce.

Customized Pricing made easy

In B2B merchandising, each customer is unique and so are their wants. They want the products to be showcased differently and also priced to suit their budget limits.

Spreadsheets and word processors cannot help achieve a level of efficiency that B2B marketers would expect. Magento B2B Commerce helps assign custom catalogs and price rates for each individual customer that takes care of the entire purchase journey – from proforma invoice to final invoice.

Comprehensive Company Account Management

Magento Commerce enables traversing the many levels of procurement layers found in enterprises. Customers can also track order statuses, punch new orders, monitor credit lines, assign buyer roles and permissions and much more using built-in self-service tools.

One-touch Bulk ordering

Unlike B2C commerce where the orders are transactional in nature, B2B buying usually happens in bulk quantities. Magento makes it easy to process bulk orders. Additionally, there is also an option to set up bulk discounts. The eCommerce platform has flexible rules for a shopping cart, catalog management and product management which makes it easy to process bulk orders seamlessly.

Quick Ordering

B2B businesses need to address customer requisitions on the fly. The luxury of time to create fresh orders for similar orders or replenishments is not there. Magento’s quick ordering facility ensures that orders can be quickly created from saved shopping lists or pre-built templates.

Simple, functional & Interactive CMS

Magento is one of the best eCommerce platforms that gives maximum flexibility and visual-friendliness in merchandising. The Visual Merchandiser feature enables B2B merchants to showcase their products with proper categorization, visual elegance and simple navigation. All this and much more can be done with minimal steps like drag-and-drop.

Mobile-readiness for the mobile generation

Mobile commerce has become a mandate than an option for B2B players. According to Hybris report, 54% of B2B customers are using mobile devices to research and buy products online. Magento Commerce users are primarily business owners who want to make purchase requisitions on the go, from the place where they are, with the device they have. Magento’s mobile-readiness also helps deliver an advantage SEO that is native to mobile-responsive websites.

Built-in reports for quick decision making

With 75 built-in reports and many other customizable report templates for, Magento Commerce is a B2B retailer’s best friend. The interactive report presentation in the form of charts and graphs helps make quick decisions out of an otherwise mathematical mayhem of numbers.

Final Thoughts

All these features and the recent updates rolled out with Magento 2.2 release makes Magento an unbeatable winner for B2B commerce selling. It makes the lives of merchants as well as customer simpler and easier.

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100 eCommerce metrics to Drive 10x Growth in 2018

The most successful online stores track their eCommerce metrics with an obsessive interest. That is what gives them 360-degree control of their business. But, it can be hard to zero in on the right metrics that will give your efforts a proper direction. That is why we compiled this list of 100 eCommerce metrics.

As the old saying goes, information is power, but it is those who use it properly, truly prosper. If you are in the business of selling products online, be it B2C or B2B or B2B2C, here are some 100 eCommerce metrics you can track and help your business grow by 10x or beyond in 2018.

At Ziffity we believe that eCommerce metrics is a lifeline for your business, the more you use them to measure, act and evolve, the better your eCommerce business performs, be it Operations, Marketing, Sales or Customer Service.

Sales

Daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly

  1. Total Turnover
  2. No: of orders
  3. Average order value
  4. New vs existing customer sales

Overall/product-wise/category-wise

  1. Total Turnover
  2. Average margin
  3. Conversion rate
  4. Shopping cart abandonment rate

Overall/category Level

  1. Total cart purchased vs abandoned
  2. Market share
  3. Product affinity analysis

Top 10 Things to look out for

  1. Top 10 abandoned products
  2. Top 10 lowest margin making products
  3. Top 10 products to stock up
  4. Top 10 products to discontinue
  5. Top 10 out-of-stock products which were searched

Others

  1. Top 5 pages where sessions are abandoned
  2. Competitive pricing
  3. Top searched product/category
  4. Average revenue per customer

Marketing

Monthly Marketing Spend

  1. Marketing spend vs rev
  2. Marketing spend vs net profit
  3. Sales driven by personalization campaigns
  4. Pay-per-click metrics (impression/CTR/etc)
  5. Ad spend mobile/web
  6. Revenue mobile/web
  7. Engagement rate mobile/web
  8. Total value offered in promotions
  9. $ Value offered by promotion type

Website Traffic

  1. Site traffic (overall/by source)
  2. Unique visitors versus returning visitors
  3. Average user dwell time
  4. Page views per visit
  5. Top product pages by views
  6. Organic search metrics

Website Traffic

  1. Newsletter subscribers
  2. Social followers
  3. Social engagement metrics

Website Traffic

  1. Revenue by Source (email/PPC/social/etc)
  2. Day part monitoring
  3. Total sales from referral sites
  4. Customer acquisition by campaign/promotion
  5. Sales by campaign/promotion
  6. % of shopping cart revived thru follow-ups
  7. Sales from revived shopping cart
  8. Sales by demographics (sex/age/interest)
  9. Next quarter top selling products (predictive)

Top 10

  1. Top 10 products whose price can be raised
  2. Top 10 products whose needs reduction
  3. Top 10 lowest rated products
  4. Top 10 content by dwell time
  5. Top 10 referral sites
  6. Top 10 highly competitive products
  7. Top 10 products which needs to be abandoned
  8. Top 10 trending products (aggregate of sale/pageviews/reviews)

Campaign Responses

  1. Email campaign metrics (open/CTR/etc)
  2. Engagement rate with personalization campaigns
  3. Product reviews (day/month)
  4. Drop-offs by stage (journey)
  5. Drop-offs by stage (journey) by product
  6. Average Clicks to Buy (CTB)
  7. Heat maps for all pages (find patterns)
  8. Top 5 journeys used for buying
  9. Least used journeys for buying
  10. Last interaction attribution model
  11. First interaction attribution model
  12. Assisted interaction
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Why Magento 2 Migration Would Be The Best Thing For Your eCommerce Business

Magento 2.0 was released in 2015. The Merchant Beta version was released in July and Merchant General Availability came in force in November 2015.

Magento 1.x has been an influential factor in the massive growth of the eCommerce industry as a whole. In fact, an estimated 200,000 online stores have been launched on Magento till date.

Magento builds upon the existing eCommerce prowess of its earlier versions. From the look and feels to the internal technical advancements, the tech boffins at Magento have really improvised the second version to be a real eCommerce growth catalyst.

This is a blog is a round-up on all that. We are getting under the skin of Magento 2 to bring out the best features that will help you address 3 critical questions:

  1. #1 Should you migrate to Magento 2?
  2. #2 What are the steps involved in the migration process?
  3. #3 Is Magento 2 Migration worth the effort and time?

#1 Should You migrate to Magento 2?

If your store is running on older versions of Magento like the 1.7 Community Edition or its predecessors or the 1.13 or earlier, then an upgrade is recommended.

How about performance issues? If you are running into technical glitches, slow page loading, erratic error messages, and so on, perhaps an upgrade will eliminate all of that in one shot.

Do a Magento site performance audit to know where your Magento website currently is and how it can be improved in terms of performance.

Turbocharge your Magento website performance Talk to our experts

#2 What are the steps involved in the migration process?

Magento 2 migration goes through four major processes:

  1. Theme migration
  2. Extension migration
  3. Code Migration
  4. Data migration

Theme Migration

Fact: Magento 1 themes cannot be migrated to 2nd version directly. What you can do is:

  • Work with a Magento frontend developer to replicate the theme for Magento 2
  • Check if the Magento 2 compatible theme is available in Magento marketplace. Under the platform section, you can filter out themes applicable for Magento 2
  • Tweak the Magento 2 default Luma theme to make it look and feel like your Magento 1 theme

Extension Migration

Magento has not released any tools for moving all Magento 1 extensions to Magento 2. You can check if the extension provider has released a Magento 2 version in Magento marketplace. If not, it would be necessary to create the extension from ground up. Ensure it is in compliance with the Magento 2 coding standard.

Code Migration

Magento 2 follows a modular and better-organized file structure. This requires reworking on your Magento 1 code to make it compatible with Magento 2. Magento has also released a code migration kit to make the process easier.

Data Migration

The longest of all steps is perhaps migrating all Magento 1 data to Magento 2. You will need a Magento Data Migration Kit which can automate some of the code and data migration to your Magento 2 database. The data migration process would also require you to provide network access to both Magento 1 and Magento 2 databases among many other permissions.


Ziffity’s Magento 2 Migration kit

A quick, hassle-free & effortless way to migrate to Magento 2 Learn More

#3 Is Magento 2 Migration worth the effort and time?

By all means, yes! If you are an omni-channel eCommerce business, then Magento 2 will be a perfect choice to springboard conversion rates and improve customer experience.

Of course, you do not have to upgrade today itself. Magento is going to continue providing support for the older versions for the foreseeable future.

But, with competition getting fiercer by the day, it is ideal to make a move now or be left hanging at the tail end of your rivals. Magento 2 has some striking features that will definitely put your business performance on steroids.

Here is a quick list of all major Magento 2 benefits:

Features to look out for in Magento 2.0

Magento 2.0 is literally a strip down of the earlier versions to weed out the deficiencies and to build something even better for eCommerce. The long list of benefits include:

Open & Flexible Modular Structure

Magento 2 is powered by a new open and flexible modular file structure that gives much convenience for developers to create custom Magento themes. The base theme is replaced with a modular structure that is flexible yet sturdy in performance.

Magento Cloud Deployment

Magento 2.1 Enterprise Edition comes with cloud hosting. This helps you scale and craft amazing brand experiences without being burdened with infrastructure demands. AWS cloud platform gives you the best possible cloud tech stack that offers the combined benefits of scalability, security & flexibility. You also have the option to deploy your site in other deployment models including on-prem or hosted premises.

Streamlined Checkouts

Braintree, Authorize.net and Paypal payment gateways come as built-in integrations. New hosted fields are set up to allow payment gateways to securely collect customer payment information. This makes it easier to attain PCI compliance too. The payment gateway integrations have also contributed to improving checkout speed by 50%.

Ramped up page loading speed

In the Magento 1.x, too many JS made the site load slower. It had a negative impact on the customer experience and also SEO ranking. Magento 2 has weeded out the biggest drawback of Magento 1 by replacing JS with JQuery and Requirejs. JS Bundling has also been enabled in Magento 2 to quicken the page loading speed.

Testing-friendly environment

Magento 2 comes with Functional Testing Framework (FTF) which is designed to run automated testing processes easily. Smoke testing, regression testing, User Acceptance testing, etc. are easier to run with integrated PHPUnit, Web browsers and Selenium Standalone server. There is also the facility to run tests independently, many tests at once or all available tests at once.

Heightened Security

Magento 2 developers can be assured that all their hard work in creating custom codes will remain intact from breaches and unauthorized access. Magento 2 comes with a ‘pub’ directory which developers can use to protect their code from security breaches.

The Way Forward

Magento 2 brings to the table a whole suite of benefits that retailers cannot simply ignore. If your store is suffering from performance issues or a need for revamping is felt, Magento is definitely an ideal choice to go with.

The migration process is definitely worth every single second and dollar invested. The returns would come back in the form of easier administration, better customer experience (which leads to more conversions) and a simplified maintenance environment where everything seems under total control.

So, stop waiting for too long. The support for Magento 1 will reach its end-of-life anytime. Don’t be caught off-guard. Be ahead of the curve by migrating to Magento 2.

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What it takes to replatform your eCommerce platform

Replatforming is a process by which you enhance your eCommerce platform’s capabilities. It is required if your

  1. eCommerce site is built on a platform which is no longer supported by your vendor.
  2. eCommerce platform is custom developed and you don’t wish to invest further on it.
  3. eCommerce platform is not scaling to your needs.

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How eCommerce Predictive Analytics Can Arm your Businesses With Data Intelligence?

Data will talk to you if you’re willing to listen to it.

Every day, we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data — so much that 90% of the data in the world today has been created in the last two years alone” says IBM.

Data has grown out of its avatar as information in bits and bytes form. Today, statistical tools help businesses visualize data in bar graphs, charts, trends, curves and many other forms that quicken decision making.

Unfortunately, despite the increase in data creation and accessibility, enterprises are yet to leverage it as a strategic benefit. Too many businesses underestimate the power of data to give insights. especially eCommerce stores where every single inch of the website creates and archives some of the data.

Of course, most eCommerce store owners follow the good habit of taking MIS reports based on top 100 eCommerce metrics.

Your MIS reports will tell you where you are with your eCommerce business, but the bigger question one might have is ‘What will be the future of my eCommerce business?’

Some of the questions eCommerce predictive analytics can help you answer:

  1. List of customers who will have a higher propensity to purchase from us again?
  2. Top 5 products which might need a change in Reorder level to avoid revenue leakage?
  3. How many subscription cancellations we might have in the forthcoming quarter?
  4. What kind of impact will the current social media image have on our future revenue?

Techniques Used For eCommerce Predictive Analytics

There are quite a number of statistical modeling methods which can help in eCommerce predictive analytics. Here are a few techniques that can help you develop insights about your eCommerce business.

  1. Linear Regression
  2. Logistic Regression
  3. Correlation analysis
  4. Time series regression analysis
  5. Repeated Measures ANOVA
  6. Binomial Logistic Regression
  7. ARIMA model
  8. Point-Biserial Correlation

Imagine a big LED display in your office with the most important predictive metrics, wouldn’t that be good? It will give a periodic display of your most important metrics that you should track and stay updated. Compare them against benchmarks and whenever there is a deviation, corrective measures can be taken.

Inputs from predictive analytics can help scale your business and stir towards the right direction.

Most eCommerce platforms don’t have built-in predictive analytics; you either have to build one ground-up or go for an independent eCommerce reporting tool which can be customized to your needs. Whether you buy or build, make sure the solution is scalable and can integrate with existing systems.

Big Data technologies like Apache Cassandra, Spark, MongoDB can help you manage and process a lot of structured and unstructured data quickly and enable real-time predictive metrics. With their capabilities, you must be able to find insights out of chunks out of data even if they are scattered and heterogeneous in nature.

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‘5C Framework’ for a successful eCommerce implementation

For few, eCommerce implementation is all about technology platforms. If one chooses the right platform and finds the agency which has experience in it, they feel that they’re pretty much covered. For few others, emphasis is around design and understanding user behavior. In this article we are going to cover why eCommerce implementation is much more than just design and technology.

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Protect your eCommerce Brand

Building an eCommerce brand can be challenging, and there are several aspects which can help or undermine your brand image, here are few basic things you need to take care to build and safeguard your brand.

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Multi facets of Interaction Design

Let me start with this phrase from Bryan Lawson and Kees Dorst, author of Design Expertise.

“One of the difficulties in understanding design, is its multifaceted nature. There is no one single way of looking at design that captures the ‘essence’ without missing some other salient aspects. ”

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