Important backend modules every eCommerce venture should have
Post success of companies like Flipkart, Snapdeal, PayTM, Myntra etc. eCommerce has been the new trend in India and nowadays you can literally buy anything online. This article is for the ones who are planning to start a new e-commerce venture or already run one.
We need to understand that eCommerce in its bottom-line is representative of the technology behind it. The better your technology, the better your customer acquisition and retention. eCommerce technology helps a company to cut down their operational cost and time to a great extent. Below are some of the must-have backend tech modules for your e-Commerce startup:
(Let’s take an example of an eCommerce company named Saquib’s Fashion apparels for men; single vendor model)
eCommerce Inventory management
This is the module that helps you manage your product listing on your e-Commerce portal. For Saquib’s Fashion, following would be the structure:
Post mapping the product to the right categories, following details need to be available:
- Name of the product (avoid adding the SKU as name)
- Short description
- Long description
- Necessary product info (material, definitions of sizes, weight etc.)
- Product pricing
- Special pricing to control discounted price for an individual product
- Quantity (to maintain stock)
- Enter SKUs (if you maintain one)
- Variants (e-Commerce backend should be able to make combinations of multiple variants if required or keep them as a stand-alone like Small, Medium, Large in size with colors and it should also allow entering the price of the variants specially when the prices vary based on variants)
- Taxes (if applicable)
- SEO tags (meta title, meta description, keywords)
- Related products (if you don’t have a recommendation tool or an automation module in place for this)
- Product image(s) – system should allow you to set the primary image
- Any other information you find relevant
Your backend system should allow you to add and edit any of these at any time. If you already have the list of products in an excel sheet, your system should allow you to add all of them through an excel sheet upload feature where columns are mapped to respective fields in your product addition process.
“India is a country of deal chasers” – one of my mentors mentioned this to me long back and it still holds true. The better variety of discounting system you have, the easier it is to acquire or retain your customers. We will have a detailed blog on the entire discounting system later but just for a heads up it should have:
- A coupon generating module with various criteria.
- Flat or percentage discount with an upper cap.
- Option to add a time range for this coupon system.
Various types of coupons available these days:
- Discount coupons which gives you a flat or percentage discount on the order amount.
- Cashback offers which will add points in the consumer’s wallet and can be used in subsequent orders.
- A mix of the discount and cashback models.
- Complimentary deal (buy 2 shirts and get 1 shorts free).
- Combo offer (one shirt, one short and a t-shirt at a price of Rs 1,000 instead of the individual sum of these three)
- Free delivery (order above Rs ‘x’ and get free delivery)
A system to track various stages of the order so that you can communicate the same to the user as well as for easy internal management of the orders.
Various stages in the lifecycle of the orders could be:
- New order – acknowledgement of a new order when received in the system
- Processed – when the team starts working on the order request
- Packed / Ready for shipment – when the team has prepared your order and has packed it with the invoices attached to your order
- Shipped – this is when the order leaves the premise either through a third party logistics partner or through an owned logistics system.
- Order delivered – when the ordered is finally delivered to the user
Some points that need to be considered here:
- This will have the entire details of the customer (phone number, name, address, payment type etc.)
- An order can be cancelled completely or partially
- Return module – partial return or complete return of the module
- Refund module – when amount paid by the customer has to be refunded partially or completely
Generally considered as the complaint management module, it also helps a lot in internal communication. It should have the following abilities:
- Admin should be able to add ticket category and subcategory (to track what types of complain are generally floating)
- Ticket no. with order no. (if the complaint is related to an order)
- Details of the ticket
- Priority of the ticket
- Assignee (who has the ownership of ticket)
- Ticket logs (a log of whatever has happened on that ticket with timestamp)
This module is mostly subjective, but some basic reports include:
- Business report – overall summary of the business
- Sales/order report – how many orders/sales have happened
- Marketing report – which channel generated the maximum sale & which marketing campaign/coupon was successful
- Product report – which product sold the most
- Customer report – new customers vs. returning customers and their LTV and ordering frequency etc.
This module is applicable if you have multiple backend/admin users for your e-Commerce website. This module works on 3 definitions based on backend user’s behavior or access granted:
- No access – this means no access to a particular module
- Read – where the user can only see the respective module but can’t take any action
- Edit – where the user has the complete access to the given module
Easiest way of doing this is to list all the modules and allow radio button with the above mentioned access levels while adding any user.It is suggested that when you add any user in the system, make sure you take a log of all important information like name, number, alternate number, email ID, address, address proof, photograph and upload other documents for verification just in order to keep track of the user.
There are many other modules which can be incorporated separately as a module or are part of these modules like subscription module for the product addition, drip marketing module, transaction communication module (where the backend user can define what should be the content of various transactional communications sent over email/SMS/push)
Fortunately, over 2.5 years, BrandzGarage has been able to build these modules as separate entities which can be incorporated with any native e-Commerce website. These modules are very dynamic and robust and we at BrandzGarage custom build it to fit your needs. So if you are looking to build an e-Commerce website, give us a shout.
Think I have missed an important module? Add it in the comment and I will update this blog. Happy Selling 🙂