You are not alone. These are echoed everyday by other eCommerce store owners.
The unexpected Oops! Yikes and Oh no! are not welcome exclamations in the land of eCommerce. In fact, we’re certain when these frustrations do abound, it’s probably not Oops or Oh No! you chose as your expletive of choice.
There are choices when choosing a shopping cart and as an online store owner, you should absolutely demand a solution with unsurpassed uptime results. It’s paramount to customer satisfaction and pivotal to running a smooth operation.
Why the reliability factor matters:
If your store is down for hours — even minutes — you are losing sales. If customers cannot access your store or complete an already-in process shopping trip or transaction, you are losing business. Even the most established small business owners cannot afford even the most temporary loss of sales. You’ve made monthly projections and set goals and you base your operating budget on these figures. Too much downtime skews those numbers. If you have PPC ads running during this unexpected downtime, think of all the aimless clicks that didn’t even have a chance to convert?
Your online store isn’t ‘set it and forget it.’ You are constantly adding new items, changing pricing, working on product descriptions and importing and exporting data. If you can’t access your own store (for which you are paying good money) you lose that valuable time you have designated in your busy day to add new items, change prices and other ongoing efforts. And time, we know, equals money.
If customers experience server or security errors at the shopping cart level, chances are the trust you’ve been working hard to build during the entire shopping experience will decrease. The customer will feel they have wasted time browsing, comparing, adding and buying only to find a blocked checkout aisle. Customer service calls will increase and if you are lucky, you can process orders offline. However, if customers do not know that (either with a live chat option or toll-free number to call), the order – and the customer – will be lost.
Imagine scheduling an e-mail blast to go out to a highly-targeted segment of your customer list during a peak time in your selling season. And then your store crashes. You were set to receive record traffic at a time when the shopping cart platform experiences an unfortunate overload. Your shopping cart should be reliable enough to handle both day to day traffic as well as a sudden spike in traffic or surge in sales. E-mail marketing, social media efforts, PPC campaigns and other promotional efforts can sink or swim based on your cart’s reliability.