Out with the old, in with the new is the basic sentiment behind spring cleaning. A time to go over your closet and remove old clothes making room for new trends, new items, a new style if that is what you desire.
As the world evolves so do concept like this. For us, spring cleaning means freeing up space of that which no longer serves who we want to be in the future. When we think about it, we are not who we were one year ago so it is the perfect moment to reanalyze the situation and ask yourself, is what I have what I really need?
We are talking about technology of course, specifically your tech stack as an Ecommerce business. (The closet cleaning is really all you my friend).
Your tech stack is part of your everyday life and of those that work with you, chances are, you use some, if not all of them everyday you are in business. And why? Because that is why they are there, to make your everyday life easier, to achieve those pesky business goals like growth, lead generation, lead management, retention, etc.
The question to ask at this pivotal springy moment is, is that tech stack still powering you up? Do you need to clean some apps, upgrade some others, maybe some of them are even holding you back.
Here are 3 key questions you should ask yourself about every single app in your tech stack:
Are you using to get the value you needed when you first signed up?
Underusing of a platform is one the most common things. We all see amazing potential in so many things but then, do we have the time to act on it? Every platform requires man hours to work to the best of its ability.
What to do when underusing?
- Take a step back and ask remember why you decided to sign up for any specific platform.
- What is that value worth to you? Is it key for growth, and this can mean that it helps productivity or keeps your people happy just as much as it can mean it allows me to automate everything, or is it a nice-to-have?
- If it is key for growth in 2022, we suggest you devise a strategy to start getting the most out of it, talk to your people, organize teams, include it in your plans.
- If it is a nice-to-have and you are not even using it, maybe some research and analysis from your team should be done and a decision made.
Hint: it is always up to you and remember to include your teammates in any big decision. Maybe the decision is to look for other options or the decision is that you will make sure you use your nice to have.
Are you close to reaching usage limits?
This one is important! Let's recall, chances are you are not in the same space you were one year ago when 1000 customers seems so far off or when 100 coupon codes felt like too much. If you are close to reaching usage limits (we would say 70% capacity is when the conversation starts, 90% capacity is when it is urgent) then you need to prepare for when you do exceed them
- Check the platform and how it will act, will it cut you off or charge you more automatically? Are you ready to lose data or spend more money?
- Maybe talk to your account manager about a deal if you are at that stage.
- Ultimately, begin thinking about the budget you will need but also about what it means for your company. Chances are, if you are close to usage limits, this will not be the only aspect of your company that requires growth.
Hint: Check your past usage data to try to anticipate when you will reach your limit, talk to your team about how they want to proceed.
Do you need to upgrade your plan or your platforms?
Let's be honest, we have all been there.
Budget constrains and prioritizing means some of those apps in your tech stack were perhaps a 'for-now' decision. They got you what you needed with the resources you had but maybe, they weren't the best for the long-term.
When taking a look back at your tech stack remember this hard decisions, look at were you are now and think about what you missed out on.
Maybe it was that awesome platform with was easier to use and had all the features in one place, but was too expensive.
- Can it now increase the productivity of your team, making it worth the money?
- Will it allow you to stop using other platforms that maybe don't work too well together?
The final consideration here is not only the right now but the long term. You know how fast you intend to grow, will this tech stack be enough in a year? If the answer is no, make plans and think about migrating now, before more is at stake.
Just take a look!
The goal of spring cleaning is not necessarily to get rid of things or upgrade, maybe you are happy with what you have and it suits your current growth rate. It is simply important to look through things to make sure they are working for you, plan ahead in case they may not be working in the future or even just look back at all the great decisions you made.
While we would strongly recommend you give those round-toe booties a good hide out place, when it comes to technology we can go back to one universal truth:
If it ain't broke....