What should you consider while choosing an e-commerce platform?

Nearly 72% of India’s urban internet users and 57% of rural users access the internet daily. With this huge rise in internet penetration, brands are constantly looking for ways to expand their customer base. The explosion of online shopping in the Indian market has given retailers a new outlook towards building their own e-commerce websites. 

Building your own e-commerce website can be a long and intimidating process if you don’t have the right resources. Not only do you need backend support but also a team of dedicated individuals who know your needs and can provide you with solutions that tick all your boxes. The easiest way to set up an e-commerce website is to develop it on an e-commerce platform – where you get technical support readily available and do not have to deal with the hassles of finding modules or extensions repeatedly.

With the staggering growth in the number of options available, there are a multitude of e-commerce platforms available to select from. And if not done correctly, it can be an extremely expensive affair. It is quite easy to get lost with this so we have curated a list of things to consider when selecting your e-commerce platform. These pointers will help you prioritize your business needs and filter out platforms accordingly.

Considerations to keep in mind while choosing an e-commerce platform

  • Technology:
    Being the nucleus of your e-commerce website, it is important that you put emphasis on the technological aspects of the e-commerce platform you are selecting. It is quite possible to get turned around in technical jargon if you are new to this. For this purpose, you need a hands-on team that offers you technical assistance.

Kartify, a brandstore solution by ANS Commerce, offers you comprehensive tech options for your platform with a “no-code” usage for configuration. With no add-ons needed, you can start a fully functional store out-of-the-box. With more than 50 third-party integrations, Kartify strives to make your experience only better along with continuous bug-fixes and feature development.

  • Secure:
    It is no news that consumers value their data and their privacy the most during online shopping. Hence it is imperative that your e-commerce platform is secure and provides customers reassurance regarding their data, especially during transactions.

With regular security audits, Kartify ensures a smooth running website for your brand. It also comes equipped with Cloud armor, regular backup and version control as well as data encryption. It also enables brands to set up payment gateway and payment methods as per their needs, including payment with coupons, COD as well as wallets, and UPI.

  • Scalable:
    While all brands aspire to expand, it is quite possible that the platform may not be able to cater to the size of the expansion. Therefore, it becomes important to choose such an e-commerce platform, which does not put a limitation on the number of products and traffic that your site can have.

Kartify provides you with a scalable platform for your e-commerce needs with automatic deployment and scaling (Google Cloud + Kubernetes), real-time image optimization with cache and DB replication. Not only that, but the platform is also load-tested for more than 1 million concurrent users, making sure that traffic does not hinder the smooth running of the website.

  • Customizable:
    Setting up an online store should not feel like rocket science. You want the ability to fully capture the feel of your unique brand. One solution for this are website templates because they don’t require you to hire outside help or to be a design whiz to create a professional look and make a bold statement.

Kartify offers you a fully customizable UI/UX including user flows, menu, layout, filter, etc. It not only provides a feature of editable CSS/HTML for front-end but also checkout view customization packed with features such as guest mode/login, shipping/handling fee, cashback, COD fee, sales promotion, and many more. 

  • Integrations:
    Another factor you should take into consideration is integrations and plugins. Look for a platform that integrates with your other existing systems and marketing channels.

Kartify is an omni-friendly platform that already has more than 50 third-party services integrated including logistics, payments, loyalty, and engagement partners. It is also integrated with four leading omni-channel partners which enables fulfillment from offline shops for online orders.

  • Analytics:
    While every brand wants to put in efforts for their growth, it is also imperative that you monitor that growth and then make data-driven decisions. The business will soon rake-in money so it is important to monitor the store’s performance. You don’t want to play the numbers guessing game hence you should look for an e-commerce platform that helps you keep tabs on all of the important things – number of sales, payment methods, order amounts, and more—and displays stats in an easy-to-understand format.

Kartify enables you to get reports straight to your inbox or phone with dashboards that are standard and also customizable. Kartify gives you the option of viewing and analyzing data for sales and orders, returns, products, customers, promotions, marketing funnels, and trends. And a cherry on top is that the platform can be integrated with any business intelligence tool.

With the ‘new normal’ slowly making its way into our routines, consumers are looking for ways to buy products without having to put themselves at risk. This is where e-commerce platforms come in, making shopping easier with the consumers’ convenience at its core. Hence, there couldn’t be a better time than now for brands to invest in an e-commerce platform and establish an online presence.

For a demo for e-commerce solution, drop your query at que@anscommerce.com

The Consumer Protection Act, 2019 comes into force – Know how it will impact E-commerce platforms

Receiving the assent of the President of India, The Consumer Protection Act (2019) was published in the official gazette on August 9, 2019. This Act seeked to replace the more than three decades old Consumer Protection Act, 1986.

Ram Vilas Paswan, Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution said this new Act will empower consumers and help them protect their rights. As this new Act came into effect on July 20, 2020, here are the key highlights that you need to know.

The Act covers e-commerce platforms
Widening the definition of ‘consumer’, the definition now includes any person who buys any goods, whether through offline or online transactions, electronic means, teleshopping, direct selling or multi-level marketing. It also includes all models of e-commerce, including marketplace and inventory models of e-commerce. The earlier Act did not specifically include e-commerce transactions, and this gap has been addressed by the New Act.

E-filing of complaints
Unlike the current practice of filing complaints at the place of purchase or where the seller has registered the office address, the New Act provides flexibility to the consumers wherein they can file complaints electronically and for hearing and/or examining parties through video-conferencing.

Product Liability & Penal Consequences –
The New Act has introduced the concept of product liability and brings within its scope, the product manufacturer, product service provider and product seller, for any claim for compensation. The term ‘product seller’ would include e-commerce platforms as well. The defense that e-commerce platforms merely act as ‘platforms’ or ‘aggregators’ will not be accepted.

  • Penalties for misleading advertisements:
    In case of a false or misleading advertisement, the CCPA may impose a penalty of up to INR 1,000,000 (Indian Rupees One Million) on a manufacturer or an endorser and may also sentence them to imprisonment for up to 2 years. The liability of the false claims of an advertisement has also been extended to the endorser, since there have been cases where consumers fell prey to false advertising under the influence of celebrities acting as brand ambassadors.
  • E-commerce Rules:
    According to the New Act, e-commerce platforms are required to provide information relating to return, refund, exchange, warranty and guarantee, delivery and shipment, modes of payment, grievance redressal mechanism, payment methods, security of payment methods, charge-back options, etc. including country of origin which are necessary for enabling the consumer to make an informed decision at the pre-purchase stage on its platform.
    Kartify, powered by ANS Commerce, includes these functionalities, making the platform secure and trustworthy for the consumer to use.
  • Consumer complaints on e-commerce platforms:
    E-commerce platforms are now required to acknowledge the receipt of any consumer complaint within 48 hours and redress the complaint within 1 month from the date of receipt.

According to Ram Vilas Paswan, the Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, the earlier Consumer Protection Act, 1986a provided a single point access to justice, which was also time consuming.

The Consumer Protection Act, 2019 includes provisions that suit the current trend of the digital landscape, making sure the customer’s hassles are substantially reduced. The Act provides consumers with protection not only from traditional retailers but also e-commerce platforms where most brands have grown to start selling their products and services. In order to do so, this act imposes more accountability from e-commerce platforms, manufacturers, retailers and endorsers and can impose penalties on any of these parties. Moreover, there have also been new provisions added which aim to speed the process of clearing any grievances of the consumer by introducing online methods of filing complaints while also mandating that e-commerce websites address these complaints within a 48-hour window and resolve matters within 30 days of the complaint being registered.

While it would take time to adjust to the new provisions made by this Act, it will certainly result in consumer rights being more protected and a speedier method of resolving consumer disputes in the country.