Global ecommercecan be a challenge to manage, while the internet is a global phenomenon and with a few exceptions any website can be accessed from anywhere around the world, there are lots of obstacles to building a successful multinational website.
The Language barrier is not to be underestimated. While shoppers dedicated to making a saving will translate your pages to their own language, either by hand or by using a browser based tool, most will ignore sites that cannot be presented in their own language.
Currency conversion is also a major hindrance to successful international business as it makes it more difficult for customers to properly evaluate the competitiveness of your merchandising offers.
One way around the obstacles to successful international eCommerce is to produce a separate website for each country you wish to target. While this will work it becomes an almost impossible task to manage once your business grows, especially in Europe with the continent's density of languages.
A further drawback to creating a new website for each language or country you supply is the difficulty of managing the orders you receive. In a European environment you could be looking at at least five different ordering channels that your warehouse staff will need to check on a regular basis in order to keep up.
A skinnable ecommerce solution, such as the systems built by Advansys, is ideal for managing international websites as it gives you the flexibility to present your company correctly for each target marketplace without creating a difficult work flow for your warehouse staff.
You can create as many or as few sites as you want, Advansys bespoke development means that even if you have a separate skin for each language, you can have a custom module to handle currency conversions.
The greatest advantage, though, in using a multi skin ecommerce solution for your international business is the fact that all of your orders, and indeed your entire group of websites, can be managed through a single CMS, allowing you to be efficient in your management and making life simple for your warehouse staff as they work to fulfil international orders.
- Paul Gurnell - GlaxoSmithKline -