An essential element to build an eCommerce project and to control the budget is to have an initial document, a start brief, a list of themes that define the things to do starting from the good reason why you plan to build a sales site online.
Creating a brief is always a real challenge, you risk being too vague or too precise. The specification document can be built together with your consultant, but the best thing is to always have a good idea and precise content before contacting anyone (consultant or agency). This is a track that I recommend and that in 12 points touches the fundamental aspects of the project.
1 – What are the reasons that push you (or who pushed you) to launch your project?
What do you want to change, modify, improve, solve, when selling one or more products, when you have conceived your idea of online sales?
And in case you want to redo the current site, you should also list the strengths and weaknesses of your current project. It’s the best way to prioritize the to-do list.
2 – What are the concrete results you expect?
Identify simple, clear and measurable objectives. Future decisions will be easier if they point to specific goals and are not general statements of principle.
In case of changes to the site, define what you would like to have: more visits, less abandonment, a new image.
3 – Which profiles of visitors accounts to attract on your site?
Who are they, what are their problems, what needs does your site answer?
Describe the profile of your visitors and imagine their needs, their doubts, their questions, their reticence …
4 – Who are your competitors?
Who are your main competitors, which sites you like, what their strengths seem to you, what their weaknesses …
Study your competitors’ websites, put yourself in the shoes of a navigator, try to navigate and understand the user experience.
5 – What is your budget?
If you come in without the idea of how much you want to spend from a car dealer, the seller can offer you a top car or a used catorcio.
Not practical to reach your goal of buying the car you need.
Since you know very well what you want and how much you can spend, hiding the budget is putting your head in the sand, believing in the power of fairies and hoping for miracles. Lying first of all to yourself is not the best way to start. At least define a budget fork within which to move.
Continue Reading: 8 Business Models For Your eCommerce
6 – What is the technical framework of your current business?
Hosting, security, connection with necessary services and tools such as company management, inventory accounting, crm, erp, etc.
All things to check and to know before leaving with a project. Some tools may already exist and are to be connected, others serve immediately, and others may be useful later. It is also important to know any problems and limitations on the use of existing additions.
7 – Does your company have a graphic identity?
Logo, choice of colors, characters …
You have a supplier for these services, you have always done alone, do you want to continue doing alone, and do you want help to do or to redo?
8 – What exactly do you expect from your service provider or your consultant?
Services cost and pay, consultations cost and pay.
Are you looking for just some ideas to put into practice only? Do you need a project from A to Z? Do you have to do only the technical part or do you need the construction of the contents?
It can help you to divide what you can do with external help and what you can do internally in the company, but be careful not to overestimate your skills and those of your employees.
9 – How do you organize the project on your side?
What are the services to consult, who must validate the various steps. Immediately decide the people in your organization who will have a say in your project. It is essential to know this in order to avoid misunderstandings and delays and to make sure that the work with consultant and agency proceeds rapidly.
10 – How will the site be administered?
Who will be the people in charge, what is their level of experience, what elements must be developed and how regularly there will be checks.
Define your site administration needs very early and very precisely. Your budget could vary a lot depending on your choices and needs.
11 – Do not forget the date on which the site was put online
In order for this date to be respected, the boundaries of the project must be precise. Would you ever work at an on-site store without knowing the opening date?
Divide the general project into lots and indicate the priority online commissioning dates, what to produce first and what you can wait for later.
12 – Contact multiple suppliers as well, but present an overview of the offer
How many agencies or suppliers have you consulted, with which roles, which indications, which answers are you waiting for, by which dates?
Do not hesitate to clarify your doubts, your concerns and the aspects of the project that you think are risky.