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1. What is an ecommerce tool?

13 essential ecommerce tools every online store needs

Running an online store is a daunting task indeed. However, in this digital age, an array of innovative ecommerce tools has emerged, making your entrepreneurial journey less strenuous and more fruitful. These tools address various ecommerce needs - from project management to customer service

This article provides an insightful list of 13 must-have ecommerce tools that promise to catapult your online business to new heights in 2024.

Main takeaways from this article:

  • Ecommerce tools are essential for online stores, covering a broad spectrum from creating a user-friendly storefront and content to managing inventory, processing payments, and optimizing sales through platforms like Gelato and various CRM, email marketing, and analytics tools.

  • Effective communication and project management are crucial for team coordination, utilizing tools like Slack, Asana, Trello, and Zoom, while content creation tools such as Canva, Grammarly, and Biteable boost engagement and professionalism.

  • Inventory, shipping, and fulfillment tools streamline operations, ensuring real-time inventory management, efficient order processing, and a variety of shipping options to meet customer demands.

  • Robust marketing strategies powered by SEO tools, social media management, and email marketing platforms, coupled with secure and versatile payment processing tools, enhance customer reach and ensure seamless transactions.

  • Security measures and compliance tools protect sensitive data and ensure adherence to regulations, while conversion rate optimization and analytics tools offer insights into customer behavior and website performance, aiding in strategic decision-making.

  • Customer service tools, along with ecommerce research tools, provide comprehensive support and market insights, ensuring a customer-centric approach and informed business strategies, with added benefits from innovative solutions like print on demand to minimize risks and maximize design versatility.

What is an ecommerce tool?

Ecommerce tools are a set of technological applications and solutions that empower businesses to sell their products or services online. They can handle everything from creating a user-friendly online storefront to managing inventory and processing payments. Whether it's data analysis software, digital marketing tools, or customer service apps, these tools make an online store function smoothly. 

"Successfully running an online store requires much more than just an attractive website. It necessitates robust and powerful ecommerce tools."

13 essential tools to optimize your ecommerce website in 2024

Running a successful ecommerce store in 2024 can be streamlined with the right toolkit. Here are 13 indispensable tools for optimizing your online store, each serving a unique purpose in your ecommerce journey.

1. Ecommerce platforms

an ecommerce platform homepage

Your journey into ecommerce begins with the selection of an appropriate ecommerce platform. This is the cornerstone of your online store, providing the digital infrastructure needed to showcase your product offerings, process transactions, and connect with customers. Your chosen platform should be both robust and flexible, scaling with your business needs and offering the features necessary for your success. Let's take a look at some key considerations: 

  • Usability: The platform should be user-friendly, allowing you to manage your products, sales, and customer service effectively.

  • Customizability: To optimize the look and feel of your store, find a platform that offers wide-ranging customization options.

  • Integration: Screen for platforms that can easily integrate with different systems like marketing automation tools, payment gateways, and shipping services.

2. Content creation tools

Content is king — and that statement holds true in the realm of ecommerce. A tremendous part of your online store's success involves crafting compelling and shareable content for email and SMS marketing. The following are a trio of key content creation tools that could dramatically improve your productivity: 

  • Canva: This tool provides easy-to-use design templates for all your ecommerce needs, from infographics to product images.

  • Grammarly: A powerful tool for fine-tuning your product descriptions and other written content, ensuring professional-level grammar and tone.

  • Biteable: This is a top-rated video creation tool for making engaging, high-quality videos to highlight your products or services.

3. Communication and project management tools

Running an online store requires great coordination and a seamless flow of communication between teams. This is where communication and project management tools come in. These tech resources ensure streamlined operations and productive collaborations. Whether you’re managing creatives for your social media content or coordinating with front-end developers for your site’s user experience, reliable and efficient communication and management tools mentioned below are non-negotiable essentials. 

  • Slack for real-time team communication and collaboration,

  • Asana for project management and task assignment,

  • Trello for visualizing project progress on boards, and

  • Zoom for virtual meetings and discussions.

These nifty tools allow for organized workflows, fewer missed details, and more tasks accomplished on time.

4. Sales tools

a computer screen displaying sales analytics charts

In the competitive world of ecommerce, sales tools not only help you sell your products and services more efficiently but also understand your customers, forecast trends, and optimize sales strategies. Let's delve into some of these necessary tools: 

  • CRM software: Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools help you manage, analyze, and improve relationships with your customers, contributing to customer retention and driving sales growth.

  • Email marketing platforms: These tools allow you to connect with potential customers, send personalized messages, and foster relationships that ultimately encourage conversions and repeat business.

  • Sales analytics: Analyzing your sales data is crucial for forecasting and decision-making. Sales analytic tools provide powerful insights into trends, purchasing behaviors, and potential opportunities for growth.

5. Inventory management tools

Inventory management tools are indispensable for running an online store smoothly. They help you keep tabs on every product, guaranteeing an optimal stock level and reducing the risk of overselling. Here's what they can do: 

  • Track and manage inventory levels in real-time

  • Sync inventory across multiple sales channels

  • Trigger restock alerts when inventory levels fall below a set threshold

  • Provide analytical insights on top-performing products

  • Predict future sales trends based on past data

Choosing the right inventory management tool can assist in efficient order fulfillment, ensuring you never disappoint a customer by being out of stock or delaying shipment.

6. Shipping and fulfillment tools

In the fast-paced world of ecommerce, efficient shipping and fulfillment tools are non-negotiable. These tools wire your online store directly to your product suppliers or warehouses. They auto-update with tracking info, which you can relay to your customers. Here are some features you should look for: 

  • Order processing: Look for tools that automatically process orders from your website. They should also create and print shipping labels, making fulfillment seamless.

  • Inventory syncing: Your chosen tools should keep your website's inventory in step with your actual stock levels, preventing overselling.

  • Shipping options: The best ecommerce tools offer a range of shipping options such as overnight, two-day, or standard delivery, giving customers greater choice.

  • Return handling: In the case of returns, your toolset should assist with handling and processing, making the experience hassle-free for both you and the customer.

7. Ecommerce marketing tools

a computer / mobile device with icons / notifications for email and social media

Your ecommerce business might have the best products in the market, but without effective ecommerce marketing tools, your potential customers may never even find out about it. You need strategic marketing to reach your target audience, increase traffic to your site, and convert those visitors into actual customers. Some tools that can complement your marketing efforts include: 

  • Email marketing platform: Send personalized newsletters and product updates to your customers. MailChimp and ConvertKit are popular choices.

  • SEO tools: Optimize your store's visibility on search engines with tools like SEMrush or Moz.

  • Social media management tools: These help you curate, schedule, and analyze your social media posts. Explore tools like Hootsuite or Buffer.

8. Payment processing tools

Smooth, secure, and efficient payment processing is pivotal to ecommerce businesses. It not only ensures a rich shopping experience but also boosts your reputation. Some essentials include: 

  • Credit card processors: Tools like Stripe and Square make credit card transactions seamless, with advanced security features to keep customer data safe.

  • Digital wallets: Popular options like PayPal and Google Wallet speed up the checkout process, making shopping convenient for your customers.

  • Mobile payments: Amplify your reach by accepting mobile payments. Systems like Apple Pay, Venmo, and Zelle cater to the increasingly mobile-first consumer base.

  • Subscription management: If you offer subscription-based products, tools like Chargebee can simplify your recurring billing process.

9. Security and compliance tools

Your online store's security and compliance are things you can't afford to compromise on. These tools ensure that your site is hack-proof and that it complies with payment card industry (PCI) standards: 

  • SSL certificates: Necessary for encryption of the data shared between your server and your clients. It protects from hackers and reassures customers about their information security.

  • Firewall: Sets a barrier between your trusted internal network and untrusted outside networks. It prevents unauthorized access and updates you about any suspicious activities.

  • Compliance management software: Helps you to comply with local, national, and international regulations to avoid penalties and legal complications. It gives you updates about changes in regulations and reminds you about compliance deadlines.

10. Conversion rate optimization tools

heatmap tools / A/B testing interfaces / visitor recording analytics

As an online store owner in 2024, optimizing your conversion rate is crucial for driving sales and growth. Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) tools offer key features to keep your customers engaged: 

  • Heatmap tools: They visually present where your customers spend the most time on your site, helping you place your most important products or information optimally.

  • A/B testing tools: They allow you to experiment with two versions of your webpage to identify which delivers better results. This can be based on design, content, or functionality changes.

  • Visitor recording tools: These record how customers navigate through your website, making it easier to identify and remove potential barriers in their buying journey.

Implementing CRO tools will help you increase sales without needing to invest heavily in acquiring new visitors, making them a must-have for any ecommerce venture.

11. Analytics tools

To thrive in this digital age, you need an understanding of how visitors interact with your online store. That's where analytics tools come in. These platforms provide key insights into customer behavior, such as traffic sources, bounce rates, or conversion ratio, allowing you to make data-driven decisions. Here are some top-rated analytics tools: 

  • Google Analytics: This platform helps monitor customer activity, identify trends, and assess the effectiveness of your marketing strategies.

  • Adobe Analytics: Adobe's tool offers real-time analytics and detailed segmentation across all your marketing channels.

  • CrazyEgg: With heatmaps and recordings, you can see where individuals click, scroll, and even where they stop reading on your site.

12. Customer service tools

Another essential tool you'll need in your ecommerce arsenal is customer service tools. If there's one thing that can significantly impact your online store's reputation and sustainability, it's how well you handle your valued customers’ needs. Leverage these tools to provide prompt and efficient responses, manage complaints, track interactions, and even automate processes where necessary to boost customer loyalty and satisfaction. Here are some key features to consider: 

  • Live chat functionality: This allows for real-time interaction with customers, providing them with immediate assistance.

  • Automation and ticketing: These features help manage a high volume of inquiries and ensure each issue gets the attention it deserves.

  • Integration capabilities: Customer service tools should integrate seamlessly with your online store and other tools like CRM systems to provide a comprehensive overview of customer interactions.

13. Ecommerce research tools

Unearthing insights about your market and competition is imperative to ride the wave of success in ecommerce. That's exactly what ecommerce research tools assist you with. These tools allow you to: 

  • Understand the market trends: Stay abreast of current market trends, popular products, and in-demand services to strategize your offerings accordingly.

  • Analyze the competition: Evaluate competitors' strategies, strengths, and weaknesses to refine your competitive edge.

  • Identify the target audience: Understand their behavior, preferences, and shopping patterns to enhance your marketing and sales approach.

  • Evaluate SEO strategy: Research popular keywords in your industry to boost your store’s visibility and ranking on search engines.

Tools like SEMRush, Ahrefs, Google Trends, and Moz can provide you with the research power necessary for ecommerce success.

Streamline product offerings and fulfillment with print on demand

Print on demand is a revolutionary tool designed to streamline production and fulfillment processes for your online store.

Print on demand provides numerous benefits: 

  • Reduced risk: With no pre-made inventory, you're never left with unwanted stock.

  • Lower costs: In most cases, you only pay for products once customers have made their purchases.

  • Design freedom: The ability to offer a range of designs and variations without inventory restrictions.

  • Time-saving: Free up valuable time with automatic printing and shipping on every order.

So whether you're a blossoming artist or a well-established online store, print on demand can powerfully impact how you manage products, delivering a smoother, more efficient fulfillment process.

Establish a robust online store with Gelato

Effectively utilizing the right set of ecommerce tools is vital in 2024 to run a successful online store. As a powerful solution, Gelato’s print on demand services enhance your product offerings effortlessly by supplying a vast range of products such as personalized t-shirts, captivating wall art, unique mugs, and tailored phone cases

This provides you an edge over your competition, perfecting your execution and ensuring your growth in the ecommerce realm. Sign up for Gelato today.


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