As we settle into 2023, there are many technology apps our team is bringing into the New Year, and some that we are reassessing based on client needs, capabilities, and customer trends. In their 2023 trend report, Klaviyo shared that “with customer acquisition costs rising on paid channels, profitable growth for eCommerce brands increasingly requires a flawless customer experience. Customers need to want to buy again. And again.” ¹
The main way to ensure a seamless customer experience is through a fully integrated and cross-functional tech stack.
Below are Fireside’s considerations when building an app ecosystem along with a few of our tech stack recommendations.
Tech Stack Considerations
We think of e-commerce platforms as being the foundation of a house, with technology apps being the walls, beams, windows, etc. Having just the foundation is nice, but what makes a house truly great are the elements within the home that keep it running and functional.
Choosing the right apps to add to your site takes a lot of consideration, especially as some apps can lead to site speed issues or a decrease in conversion. It is imperative to take the time to vet out the best platforms for the unique needs of your business. A few steps we take when analyzing platforms are:
- Functionality - We take a deep dive into the platforms and see if they are quality products built to sustain a business. We do this through demos and test sites.
- Capability - We look at whether the app can hold the specific client or scale with the client. We analyze how long the app has been on the market, what partners are they working with, and if they have a strong team backing the platform.
- Cost - Depending on a client’s wants and needs, we find the best platforms for every budget constraint.
- Integrations - One of the biggest pieces to vetting apps is ensuring they integrate with your other platforms, especially your eCommerce platform and email service provider. This will allow you to provide a seamless experience for not only the customer, but the merchants as well.
Our Preferred Tech Stack
We are closely partnered with a wide range of technology platforms and truly believe there is a perfect app fit out there for every merchant. It’s important to note that eCommerce app technology is constantly evolving and there is no one-size-fits-all tech stack – your app ecosystem should always be unique to your specific business goals and eCommerce needs. That said, here is high-level insight into a few of our tech stack recommendations, keeping in mind there are many apps that will suit various needs.
- Email Service Provider: Klaviyo
- Klaviyo automates the process of managing email and SMS campaigns. They have advanced segmentation and reporting capabilities that set them apart. The main win for Klaviyo is its wide range of integrations and its drive to support customers' requests.
- Data Analytics: Google Analytics + Elevar
- Google Analytics (GA) provides real-time insights in regard to traffic sources, site behavior, and other customer data. We often pair GA with Elevar to never miss a conversion. This platform is able to assist with proper tagging and tracking events.
- Loyalty: Rise.ai
- Rise.ai provides a unique loyalty experience by offering points in the form of store credit. They also have the capability to integrate gift cards onto a merchant's site.
- Reviews: Junip + Okendo
- Junip is the perfect platform for a mid-sized business wanting to scale its reviews. Junip integrates seamlessly on the site and with Klaviyo to request reviews and share them within email campaigns.
- Okendo is the powerhouse of review platforms. It was built to assist brands in creating strong relationships with their customers. Alongside reviews, they are also able to collect customer preferences and behaviors and then pass them to their various integration partners.
- Customer Service: Gorgias
- Gorgias easily connects to your store with a live chat widget that provides support whenever a visitor comes to the site. It also integrates with social media platforms to provide further support.
- Subscriptions: Smartrr
- Smartrr has reimagined subscriptions by utilizing the Shopify checkout. They have provided an experience that makes subscriptions easy for the customer and merchant.
- Product Recommendations: Wiser.ai
- Wiser.ai provides an immersive experience across your store and email with personalized recommendations. It seamlessly integrates with Klaviyo to provide advanced recommendations via email.
- Mobile App: TapCart
- TapCart is a mobile app builder for Shopify. Their team takes your store and turns it into a mobile app. This gives people the ability to own their audience experience through the app.
- Quiz: Octane.ai
- Octane.ai is far better than a typical quiz platform. This platform helps merchants get to know their customers on a deeper level to further personalize other marketing efforts.
We are grateful to work with each of these vendors and many more. As our clients scale, we find it imperative to source the best tech that will support their eCommerce efforts and drive revenue. If you are looking to optimize your app ecosystem as you scale in 2023, Fireside is here to help! From info gathering and discovery to implementation and ongoing app management, our team will set you up for success every step of the way.
Interested in learning more?