A Step-by-step guide to a successful launch.
Every eCommerce platform implementation and re-platforming project is highly complex since it touches all aspects of the
business. The most successful projects are usually led by a senior Client resource who coordinates decisions through a committee
made of up cross functional stakeholders and external vendor resources. The following checklist is used by OrderDynamics
and its Clients to ensure all aspects of the project are covered prior to going live.
1. Ability to Measure Goals
Revenue goals and operating targets were set at the beginning of the project. At this point the reports should be available
and tested so the businesses can immediately begin monitoring results. Many times this is a combination of standard eCommerce
web metrics, backend OMS reports, and custom reports.
2. Communications Plan
An external customer communications plan is required to ensure all current website customers know when the new website will
go live and what to expect. It is often helpful to provide customers with instructions and details about how the new website
will work and the new features. For example, they may need a new password.
3. Marketing Plan
It is recommended to increase marketing efforts well through the launch period as an important way to boost sales and reduce
the inevitable traffic dip that can occur after migration. An effective marketing plan should include launch promotions,
more frequent email campaigns, increasing paid advertising and affiliate spending, additional shopping comparison sites,
and public relations.
4. Search Engine Optimization Plan
A critical component of every eCommerce platform migration is the search engine optimization (SEO) plan. Organic search traffic
can immediately dip upon changing server environments. To soften the impact of the change, merchants need to have an SEO
plan that includes the following: 1) Optimizating all product, category, brand, and manufacturer landing pages 2) implementing
additional landing pages 3) updating external links to the new URLs and increasing link building activities. OrderDynamics
provides Advanced SEO Services designed specifically to help our Clients during a re-launch of their platform.
5. Promotions Schedule
OrderDynamics recommends its Clients document their promotional requirements for the first 90 to 180 days after launch. Each
promotion scenario can be previously validated by OrderDynamics to ensure end-to-end operation of the promotion and smooth
6. Order History, Customer Details
Importing previous customer order history and account information into OrderDynamics provides several benefits. For the website
customer, it allows for the lookup of order history and management of ordering preferences from their My Account section
of the website. For the merchant, it provides additional marketing and operational benefits such as the ability to build
marketing segments and quick lookup a customer in the Call Center for customer care.
7. Additional Human Resources
Once the website has launched on OrderDynamics it is helpful for the merchant to allocate additional human resources during
critical points in time to ensure a smooth transition of business processes. Examples of tasks that are impossible to fully
test until the website is live are changing promotions, personalizing site content, optimizing fraud rules and others tasks
that require real-world traffic and ordering scenarios. As such, having the initial project resources engaged for a period
of time after launch in addition to extra resources available can make this transition more seamless.
8. End-to-end Testing
OrderDynamics uses a robust and comprehensive testing process designed to fully vet the eCommerce systems prior to launch.
This includes every button, page, and functionality on the frontend of the website and the promotion scenarios provided
for testing. In addition, the order fulfillment process is tested along with all integrations (ERP/POS for example) and
third party feeds.
9. Prepare Domains
Moving a website to OrderDynamics requires a change in the Domain Name Service (DNS) settings for that domain. As part of
every project OrderDynamics uses advanced DNS tactics to move traffic to the new website as quickly as possible. By taking
these extra steps, our Clients receive the best possible launch experience.
10. Business Signoff
Once all aspects of the new website have been tested, and training has occurred, the business should be ready to sign off
on the proposed launch date. A formal signoff process is followed to ensure expectations are managed across the business
and technical teams.