To have a successful eCommerce business, you’ll need more than the best eCommerce platforms and tools -- you need the right process and project plan in place.
After all, managing your eCommerce projects becomes a nightmare if you don’t set up a project plan.
Without a solid plan, you’ll fall behind schedules, miss completing small but crucial tasks, have inefficient workflows, and, ultimately, your sales will suffer.
The key is to plan out your processes carefully, implement the right workflows, and even break down your project into milestones and tasks to make running your eCommerce store and managing your projects as efficient as possible.
In this guide, we’ll look into four tried and tested ways to plan and manage your eCommerce projects.
1. Select a project management strategy
Choose a project management approach to help guide your project implementation from start to finish.
It should best fit your team and business needs, allowing you to efficiently run your projects and minimize risks.
Essentially, the goal of using the strategy is to do what’s needed, when necessary, and in the output required.
This allows you to sort your tasks as “To do,” “In progress,” and “Done,” which you can easily track and manage through some of the best project management software such as Teamwork.
The software lets you create and edit tasks, assign them to your team members, set due dates, and more.
Create dashboards, visual project boards, track milestones and reporting, forecast potential issues that might arise during your project’s lifecycle, and other features that support your Kanban method application.
The Kanban approach lets you make regular updates and small changes to contribute to your overall task’s progress.
It also allows you to focus on lead times and strategize your projects around how long your deliverable takes to execute and gain a visual understanding of your projects and upcoming tasks.
The Agile process requires that teams manage a project by breaking it up into different stages. It includes constant stakeholder collaboration and continuous improvement and iteration at each stage.
To use this strategy, start by having your customers describe how to use the end product and what problem it solves. This gives your team a good idea of your consumers’ expectations.
Your team will then cycle through a planning, execution, and evaluation process, which can change your final deliverable to fit your customers’ needs best.
Scrum focuses on allowing teams to unite knowledge and efforts to produce ready-to-use, high-quality projects.
Start by discussing your customers’ main objectives for your product and use sprints, which are short, time-constrained periods for your team to work and complete a set amount of tasks.
These sprints lead to a ready product that your team later improves during the next sprints.
Scrum’s features include:
- Daily team meetings where each of your team members explains their progress on ongoing tasks, describes upcoming jobs and shares their obstacles
- A backlog of your team’s prioritized tasks
- Brief planning sessions of backlog items and defining the sprints
- Brief backtracking sessions for your team members to reflect on the previous sprints
Choosing a project management strategy from the get-go helps you organize and refine your projects. It also keeps you from getting bogged down by your tasks, allowing you to implement your eCommerce projects more efficiently.
Additionally, applying these project management methods isn’t limited to eCommerce projects. Your other ventures, such as a life coach certification training program, and other projects can benefit from implementing these approaches.
2. Set up a team structure
How you structure your team can greatly impact the effectiveness of implementing your eCommerce project.
After all, your team members, along with their specific roles and skills, will help you in carrying out your eCommerce projects, such as your omnichannel marketing campaigns, successfully.
Establish the right team structure, such as self-managed, cross-functional, and even virtual teams, based on the number of members, task distribution, hierarchy, and more.
Know the people working on your eCommerce projects to determine the type of work organization and role assignments that will produce the best and most efficient outcomes.
3. Establish a workflow process
Workflows can be unique to each process. However, you need to establish clear stages and a general system to efficiently accomplish your eCommerce project tasks.
Start by discussing all your project details and requirements with key stakeholders, including your marketing team, for instance, clients, etc.
Doing so gives you solid ideas about what you need to do and necessary information for your planning, timeline, budget, tools, and more.
Then, divide your collected data into sprints and spread out the tasks among your team members. Visualize each step to help you identify what you have and need to carry out the project.
Set regular meetings with your team daily, weekly, or after each sprint to assess changes, identify obstacles, and make some tweaks to improve your process.
With a carefully planned workflow process, you’ll successfully deploy your project, use your resources efficiently, and achieve your main objectives.
4. Layout your plan
Running a successful eCommerce store requires balancing key projects, which can include:
- Website design and planning
- Competitor analysis
- Marketing strategies and campaigns
- Payment process organization
Adopting a project management strategy and setting up a solid eCommerce project plan will help you manage these.
You’ll also need appropriate tools, such as eCommerce platforms for web building, to maintain order and keep things moving properly.
The right tools will help you automate your tasks to streamline your processes and attain better productivity and efficiency in your project implementation.
Here’s a sample project plan to help start you off.
- Set goals. Identify your project’s objectives, such as running an email marketing campaign to boost clicks and opens. This will help shape your strategies and measure your success later on.
- Perform competitive research. Know who your competitors are and learn what works for them. For instance, you could look at some of the most compelling portfolio website exampleswhen building your own site.
Doing so allows you to build on your competitors’ successful strategies and gain insights into how your brand can stand out from them.
- Identify roles and major projects for a specific timeframe. Know your team’s existing skillset to help you determine if you can carry out your project and if you need to invest in hiring new people to accomplish your project goals.
- Break your projects into tasks. This allows you to divide and conquer your project and assign each task to your team members to make it easier to work towards overall completion.
- Execute and test. Testing critical aspects of your project implementation allows you to identify which parts contributed or hindered your success.
- Compile your learnings and refine your process. Determine what worked, what didn’t, and the gaps in your process that you need to address.
This helps you cut out aspects in your process that failed, allowing you to make tweaks to streamline your tasks and be more efficient in completing your eCommerce projects.
Implementing your eCommerce projects requires focus, strategy, and the right tools for proper execution.
There might not be a perfect approach to guarantee excellent results, but following the tried and tested tips in this guide is a good starting point for your successful eCommerce project planning and management.
About the Author: “Jimmy is a freelance writer and the owner of the GuildofBloggers.com. He has contributed to several reputable websites like SEMRush, SeachEnginePeople, and Business.com."