What the FUD? Part 1: Don’t Fear the Partner

When you’re gearing up for a new e-commerce platform implementation, a lot of the planning may cause you to ask yourself: What the FUD? Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. They can easily get involved when making a decision so big, but I’m here to tell you why these worries aren’t so necessary.

Picture this scenario: you’ve chosen a platform and you’re ready to pick a partner. But, you’ve also never worked on a project of this scale, and you’ve also had experiences that you’d prefer not to repeat. You fear the partner can’t scale, or doesn’t know your business. Your fear is justified, though, because you’ve heard of the many battle scars from implementations that didn’t go quite as planned.

I’m here to tell you not to be scared. Instead, be excited. This is your shining moment. You get to put your name on what may be the key driving channel of growth for your business in the years to come. The stakes are definitely high, but that alone isn’t a good enough reason to have so much fear.

Fear of the Partner – Risk! It’s not just a game

It’s real life. Choosing a partner based on strong credentials for your chosen platform seems like a solid idea. It’s a great place to start. That being said, what do you know about their delivery approach? Launch as fast as possible, for as little as possible? Or maybe they’ll roadmap you to death? find the best partner at all?!

One area you should look for when selecting a partner is their overall focus on risk mitigation. Here are some excellent questions to ask:

  1. How often and in what way do you communicate with your clients?
  2. What is your process for handling bug fixes?
  3. How important is QA to your business, and how do you overcome project unknowns?
  4. Will my team be able to participate in implementation? How so?
  5. What is your planning process for implementation?
  6. How does your past work influence future clients?

If your partner can’t answer, or doesn’t have a written plan in place for these questions, then they may not be the best fit. Given the scale of these implementations, risk mitigation as a practice is an absolute must.

Fear of the Outcome – Metrics, KPIs, and Results, oh my!

Congrats! So you’ve launched your new site, brand, platform, experience, etc. Things are humming along smoothly, but you’re not seeing the lift in results you were hoping to see. In order to ensure your are on your way to meeting and exceeding your metrics, the best partner will lead you down a path that clearly maps development to outcomes:

  • How does this feature enable us to increase AOV?
  • Have we created the right personas?
    • Do we really understand our customer’s buying habits and journeys?
    • Do we have new customers?
  • If B2B, how do our customers expect to buy from us – portal, marketplaces, direct – and how can we market better to them?

Something to note: 99% of partners certainly have influence over results, but are not solely responsible for hitting metrics. The right platform, combined with a partner that understands your goals and how to get the platform to work for you, will set you on the right path from the beginning. However, in the end, proper planning for metrics and mapping digital commerce features to those metrics is what will ultimately lead to success… or more fear.

Fear of the We-Can-Do-Anything Mentality

Straight and simple, avoid partners who say they can do everything. Look for partners who have a solid track-record of success in the key area you’re seeking to improve. For example, Luminos Labs is focused on enabling omni-channel commerce for our clients in 4 key areas – commerce, experience management, product information management, and order management. We have purpose-built our partnerships with Episerver, InRiver and OrderDynamics in order to fulfill needs in these major pillars of digital commerce.

If your partner is telling you they have practices in 3 major e-commerce platforms, 4 CMS tools, 2 PIMs, and “can figure out” order management because they’ve had to do it in other areas, you better believe they’re dropping the ball somewhere; and you best hope it won’t be on your project.

At Luminos Labs we believe the right client understands the value of building a tightly integrated, proven solution. Our core focus is on enabling omni-channel commerce via the technologies our clients have trusted us to own – commerce, experience management, PIM, and OMS.

Enterprise, omni-channel commerce isn’t easy, and as a result we hold risk mitigation as a core competency, plan features for metrics, and know precisely how we can add value for our clients.

Discover your digital transformation with Luminos Labs

Our teams across the world are experts at helping companies implement the Episerver platform efficiently and effectively. We also consult with the client to integrate valuable 3rd party systems – like InRiver and OrderDynamics – seamlessly into the platform.

Find out what Luminos can do for your business. We work with several clients of varying sizes and industries, so we’ve got the experience to find the proven solutions you need, as a best partner should. All initial consultations are free of charge. And if now just isn’t the right time, then please feel free to subscribe to our weekly newsletter for more e-commerce updates, trends, and announcements.

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Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] my last What the FUD? post, I discussed “fear” in choosing the right partner. In this post, I examine what “uncertainty” means in today’s extremely convoluted […]

  2. […] the right decision for your business? We’ve already assessed the risks around potential fear and uncertainty, and you should go back and check those out if you’re still feeling uneasy. […]

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