Start up businesses and small business with traditional brick and mortar stores are venturing into the world of online commerce, knowing that this is the future but more often than not, because it is a “new world” and involves unfamiliar technology, it can often be intimidating and frustrating. Instead of viewing their online store as another physical location and extension of the business, they often treat it differently from a business management and operational standpoint.
When looking for solutions for their online business, they often go shopping for solutions online like a consumer goes looking for a new laptop or flat screen TV. This is dangerous and can often lead them down a path that will hold them back from creating an online venue which can offer extreme profitability.
Pre-canned, popular hosted propriety systems offer what appear on the surface to be a quick and easy answer but when you start to think of how these “solutions” fit into the business model, an online store owner could be giving away control of their business to another entity who will govern how they will do business, what experience their customers will have and how much profit margin they will make.
- With these platforms you are basically leasing the technology, it is SAAS (Software As A Service) or PAAS (Platform As A Service), it never belongs to you. Your content and your data do not truly belong to you. They belong to the service provider and will be available to your customers only as long as you continue with their service. If you discontinue the service, you lose your site. In essence, the service provider holds all the value of your online business instead of you, the business owner.
- These systems are closed so customization to make the system work the way a business owners needs to fit to their your unique business model is not available. One may be able to customize the outside appearance of a hosted, proprietary site/cart but will not be able to change how the overall cart functions, operates and handles your transactional/customer data. It is limited as to what the platform and approved 3rd party plugins or enhancement providers will allow.
For some businesses, this is acceptable but most growth oriented and visionary business owners wouldn’t turn over total control of one of their shops or business divisions to some 3rd party and hope they would do right by them. They want control – they need control, it is the only way to drive and increase profitability.
The bottom line— the only way a business owner can truly own the total value of their online store and maintain control over their business destiny is to own and develop their own technology.
Through open source technology, Creative Raven offers e-commerce clients the ability to own their own technology. We do this by integrating some of the most popular open source e-commerce solutions and our own custom features to deliver shopping experiences that are unique and tailored to our client’s customers and how they want they do business.
For more information about our complete e-commerce capabilities, please call or email us.
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