Choosing the right Omnichannel Commerce Software for your direct selling or retail business can be daunting. There are too many available choices, not enough time to review them in-depth, and information that is way too technical to understand at first glance can be some of the most common challenges for businesses to choose a new technology.
We have seen how so many companies end up not seeing the results they originally expected from a newly acquired software or even decide to cut short halfway through implementation.
But don’t get discouraged too soon!
Choosing the right software can be a lot easier when you know the correct questions you should answer to make the best decision.
At S4DS we have been working for many years on becoming the best omnichannel software solution for digital-based businesses with online and offline sales channels that include Social Selling, direct selling, affiliate marketing, points of sale, e-commerce, and more. And, this is what we think, based on our experience, any company should answer when evaluating the purchase of new software.
Keep in mind that picking a software solution can be very subjective. Meaning that the best tool for others may not be the best one for you.
Sooo, buying the largest one, just because your cousin works there or because the market leader has it… Hm, might not be the smartest choice. Instead, take the time to read through these questions and ponder your possible answers to help you evaluate your software options and choose the best fit for your company.
These are our top 4 questions any company should answer before acquiring a new software:
1. Does the technology meet the needs of the company in terms of features?
Knowing for sure, how a tool can bring short-term value to the company will be key before making a choice. It makes no sense to jump into the first provider who offers a discount or a freemium version if it’s going to stay short in the long term.
Before deciding on the software, make sure to find out about all its key functionalities and what value will it bring to your company. It may be helpful to put the features of the tools you are comparing in a chart to create a visual map of how complete each of them is in relation to the others.
Then, you can get the vendor to help you understand how those features apply to you: are they ready to use, configurable without the need for coding, have requirements on extra development, or are not possible to implement within the software’s framework?
In S4DS, we offer modular configuration for our SaaS – Software as a Service solution. From all the available functionalities and offered modules on our software, you may choose to implement only the ones needed for your business and leave the scalability option open for the future as the business grows and new needs are generated, without having to consider another change of Software provider later.
Keep in mind that flexible software will most likely adapt to your future needs better that a large but not configurable one, no matter how complete it may seem in the beginning.
Now, if you already figured out that the software complies with functional needs, it’s time to ask about usability and security.
2. Is the software secure and can it be easily configured in terms of roles, permissions, and use?
No matter how complete a software tool is if it’s not easy to use and learn, onboarding will be long and difficult. Look out for frictionless customer service practices, onboarding processes that are inclusive for your team, and support fees that include constant training of your lead users.
At S4DS, we set Go Live times that are enough to make sure everything is tidy, information is secure and users master the tool for launch.
We are committed to making your sales team’s daily job easier and improving the quality of life of your employees. Therefore, our documentation process is complete, reliable, and constantly updated alongside a capable team of support experts who will guide you through every step of learning to use our software.
In S4DS, security comes first once you implement it. Our server is based on the AWS cloud, one of the safest in the entire world to keep your data safe and secure: while role permissions are configurable to restrain certain profiles from accessing delicate data or from running certain processes.
It’s up to you to decide what you want each of your users to be able to do in the platform while we worry about the infrastructure needed to make that customization possible. As a tip, always look out for this: how customizable are the roles in the platform? It’s basic to make sure your team is able to see and do the right things only.
Contact us and we can explain in depth how our infrastructure is the right fit for your omnichannel business.
3. Is the technology scalable enough to meet the company halfway for integrations and innovation needs?
Thinking ahead of time is fundamental to staying on top of the sales game. Now, since we already mentioned scalability in the first question, seems right to continue with that matter.
Answer: What do we need right now versus what may we need in a near future? How big is the business today and how much growth potential does it have? The answer is, that if you are looking for omnichannel commerce software, probably a lot.
The software you choose should be able to foresee that future and have a roadmap in the process to meet you halfway to your needs. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a shiny, expensive tool that is not able to adapt or evolve. And we all know that those who can’t afford to adapt to change tend to get left behind, right?
So, make sure to ask your potential providers these five questions:
- How often do you invest in R+D?
- Is the software constantly being updated with newly launched functionalities and improvements?
- If I need data integrations with different software: is it achievable and how hard will it be?
- Is automatization part of the roadmap?
- Is the technology able to adapt to future needs or business model modifications and how much may that cost?
The best provider doesn’t necessarily fill out all of these questions, yet they may help you identify the most sustainable options.
At S4DS we send our Customers constant communication to let them know what is new in our software: the improvements we made, the issues we fixed, and the newest functionalities we released, as a common practice; but also, we take a lot of pride in our constant innovation model in which we are always looking into worldwide trends, business model and best practices to keep our clients ahead.
We also engage in collaborative workshops with our clients to understand their changing needs while coming up together with good practices and innovative solutions that may be tailor added to their software implementation to keep the experience as complete as possible while we develop a roadmap for our software that complies with the specific future needs of our clients and the business environment they belong to.
Ask your vendors about this sort of flexibility before making any decision, you won’t regret it.
4. How affordable is it in comparison with similar software?
When comparing the prices, make sure the Total Cost of Ownership is as transparent as possible, from the beginning of the negotiation with any possible vendor. So you are able to know exactly what the software will cost before jumping to implementation and unexpected expenses get minimized.
Usually, Software as a Service TCO tends to be divided into three components:
- Set up: is a one-time payment you make when you start the implementation
- Monthly Fee: is the monthly cost to keep the software up and running
- Support Package: Is the monthly payment for the level of service and support you access after the Software goes live
Now, an additional cost not many take into account are the customization charges. Building a complex tool means there might be additional charges that are not specified within generic pricing proposals. Make sure you go through all the customization needs and fees with your potential vendors before jumping into any agreements so no surprises show up along the way.
At S4DS, we take the pricing very seriously and to be able to customize it and adapt the best we can to each of our client’s needs, we make follow-up meetings in which we use checklists to identify where each of our prospects fit better. Then, together we decide which of our plans is the best fit for them.
Book a Demo with our team today to discover more on how our software could be easily implemented for your business to take it to the next level.
Experience firsthand why S4DS All-in-one Omnichannel Commerce Software may be the best fit for your company’s needs
With our powerful, Omnichannel Commerce Software you will be able to ease the digital transformation of your business while accelerating digital sales and simplifying daily tasks through frictionless management and sales automation processes.
Achieve complete management of your sales process in a single, all-in-one solution and watch how it can strengthen the potential of your business growth by optimizing typically manual processes so your representatives may focus on what they do best: drive sales.
Experience the power of technology to drive growth within your business firsthand by scheduling your free demo today!