5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Custom Software Developer

It is a fact that bespoke software will give a set of major advantages to your business. Seamless process automation increases productivity and brings down costs. Scalability ensures that you will have a reliable and effective tool to use in the long term as your business grows. How can you be certain that the custom software which you invest in will bring all of these benefits? You need the right developer for the job in the first place. During the assessment process, make sure that you ask the following questions.

What is your experience and can you provide references?
The time, which the company has been in business for, is not as important as the number of projects which they have completed successfully. Ideally, they should be on the website of the developer and you should have the opportunity to study them in detail. Naturally, you wouldn’t want to hire any team without references. When you contact their previous and/or current clients, you should ask them about their overall experience with the developer and emphasize on factors such as the level of collaboration. It is crucial that you enquire about the results which the businesses have achieved thanks to their custom software.

Will the software be easy to integrate with our existing tools?
This is an extremely important question to ask if you plan to automate your marketing with new software, but to keep your existing scheduling tool, for instance. Data transfer across systems should not only be easy, but quick too. Still, even if the two tools are perfectly used together, the older one may get outdated too fast and require replacement thus posing new challenges to your business. That is why it makes sense to consider a comprehensive system covering all of your business processes. This will give the largest possible increase in productivity and cost reduction. This is important for scalability too.

How much training will users need and is it included in the package?
Intuitive user interface is an essential feature of every custom software solution. Simple forms, clear and uncluttered graphics and charts and convenient functions like drag and drop are among the main things to look for. At the same time, even the most intuitive software has to come with detailed training, which is designed to help your employees make full use of each and every feature.

What will be done to keep data secure?
Enquire about the security options which you will receive and the level of data encryption. If needed, ask for explanations to get good understanding of how your business and customers will be protected. Security is always paramount, especially when you opt for web-based software which can be accessed easily from all of your devices including mobile ones.

What kind of support can we expect?
You should receive ongoing support from the software developer. If a functional problem occurs, it should be reported automatically and eliminated quickly. The developer has to guarantee timely optimisation and upgrading.
Finally, remember that as the customer, you will outline the functionalities of the bespoke software. Research and analyse your business processes to find out where improvement and automation are needed. Consider your short and long-term goals and growth target to ensure that the software will help you reach them. I am always available to provide professional consultation.

To receive professional software development consultation, contact me here.

How Do You Achieve High Website Traffic and Conversion Rate?

The simple answer is digital marketing, but you probably already know this. The bigger question is what’s behind this seemingly complex and constantly expanding term. In my experience as a web development consultant, the best way to look at digital marketing is from a strategic point of view. With a complete digital strategy, you will be able to achieve your business goals online. Let’s look at the main elements of the strategy more closely.

The Goal
With digital marketing, the details are paramount. You don’t simply need lots of visitors to your website, but targeted traffic. These are users who are interested in your products and services and seek them as a solution to a particular problem.
At the same time, even high targeted traffic does not guarantee you a good conversion rate if you don’t have a well-developed marketing funnel on your website. It has a lot of elements to it from the design of the pages, menus and CTA buttons to the selection of sign-up and payment options available.
Keeping these factors in mind, you can set measurable goals. Reliable website analytics will help you to monitor your performance, analyse it and make adjustments to your marketing strategy, when required.

Target Audience
Defining your target market is in the core of every business strategy executed either online or offline. You will need to do through research to define your audience’s demographics. Your website’s analytics will help you to learn more about user preferences and behaviour which is crucial for marketing and for building a loyal customer base.
Currently, the trend is for websites and all web-based services and products to become ever more personalised to match the individual user’s preferences and needs even more perfectly. There is a broad set of tools for achieving this. These range from personalised product suggestions to tools for finding your preferred style.

Marketing Channels
Which ones will have the highest return on investment? A well-rounded strategy will include a set of channels, which are focused on your target audience and can be used together for achieving higher efficiency and better results. A key consideration here is that modern digital marketing channels are highly interlinked and the best way to exploit them is to go for full integration.
Modern search engine optimisation and content marketing go hand in hand. The idea is to create content, which is valuable to users and optimised for the current Google algorithms. Social media marketing is an effective channel for promotion your website and content. It can be used for direct advertising and for customer engagement via different campaigns.
Video marketing emerges as a top trend as web video traffic continues to grow and consumers increasingly using this type of content for making purchase decisions. Email marketing has been highly underrated in recent years, but it still has high ROI, especially in the B2B field. This is a highly effective channel for delivering marketing content and personalised offers and for building loyalty.

A digital marketing strategy using multiple integrated channels may seem complex to implement, but you can always rely on automation with custom software especially developed for your business.

Need a solid digital strategy bringing high ROI? Let’s discuss it.

Major Benefits of Custom Software for Your E-commerce Business

Why get bespoke e-commerce software when there are so many SaaS solutions around? It is true that these are usually cheap and easy to use, but none of them can fit your needs precisely and this is something which can bring down your performance, especially in the long term. A solution, developed especially for your organisation, on the other hand, can give you a multitude of benefits. This is what my experience as an e-commerce development consultant has shown.

Full Process Integration
You and your employees will never have to spend hours trying to work with data from several different sources or to transfer it from one tool to another. Everything necessary for managing your online store and your entire business will be in one place. Imagine having one and the same software for customer relationships management, inventory management, human resource planning and scheduling, shipping management, email marketing and every other process that you can think of. All data and tools which you need will be at your fingertips no matter whether you have your laptop or only your smartphone at hand.

Greater Automation
Many of the tasks which you and your employees are used to doing manually will be completely automated. This will allow you to use all available resources more efficiently. There will be additional benefits for your e-commerce business such as higher customer satisfaction. When a customer makes an enquiry or a complaint, for example, acknowledgement of receipt will be sent automatically. This will help you keep the customer at ease and give you time to look into the matter.

Custom Analytics
No one knows your e-commerce business better than you do. When we develop bespoke software for it, we can integrate all the analytics which you require no matter how specific they are. You will have accurate data about the shoppers on your website and their behaviour at all times. It will be easy to follow the daily, weekly and monthly changes in visit and sales patterns and to make improvements timely.

Better Customer Experience
This is fundamental for the success of every business. The custom software will help you with practically everything which you need to keep your customers happy. In addition to providing quick response as mentioned above, you will have all sought products in stock, hassle-free shipping, which is easily trackable by every client, and easily-run newsletter, which is highly popular and allows you to build loyalty.

Flexible Options
No matter what you sell online, the market is highly competitive and driven by innovation. In this kind of environment, you need as much flexibility as possible. This is a key advantage which bespoke e-commerce software can give you. You can count on me and my team of developers to add new features and functionalities when they are needed. This will enable you to be up to date with the latest trends and to stay ahead of competitors.

Higher Efficiency
With the use of the custom software, each business process will be performed more effectively and each one of your employees will be more productive. This results in cost-efficiency and allows you to scale your business for achieving and maintaining high growth. This is the ultimate benefit from using a solution, especially tailored to the needs of your organisation.
Consider these important benefits when making a decision on using custom software for your e-commerce business.

Do you want to have custom e-commerce software for your business? Let’s talk.