Alex Ahmad - WhyteSpyder COOThe world of e-commerce is an ever-changing landscape which few professionals are equipped to navigate. In the last decade e-commerce has evolved to incorporate new channels of communication, such as social media and mobile applications (apps). Business owners and managers must adapt to this environment to continue to thrive.

Recently, WhyteSpyder CEO Eric Howerton sat down with WhyteSpyder COO Alex Ahmad to discuss this concept and what businesses need to do to stay competitive. Alex is the co-founder of WhyteSpyder and the co-author of Markendising.

“What is the formula for success with e-commerce?” Alex asked. “It is not just in building the website. It is also in monitoring the visitor behavior. It is in the ease of use, and it is in finding the proper channels to have a successful e-commerce website.”

All these things and more can make or break a business online. Alex explained the concepts of e-commerce, while drawing from more than a decade of experience in the field. Three major factors he pointed out where that businesses must think like the user, don’t make the customers think too much, and give them what they want as soon as they get to the site. These factors have helped companies increase sales by more than three digits, Alex said.

“That is what makes me excited about marketing and e-commerce,” Alex said. “You really can’t do just one. I think you have to do both. You have to build the website, improve it, and then figure out ways to make it work on all channels . . .  it is no longer just about your site.”

Eric and Alex agreed that e-commerce was simpler and easier 10 years ago. They waxed nostalgic for a time when proper coding, some order, good customer service, and a small marketing budget was all any e-commerce site needed.

“Nowadays, and really just in the last two years, e-commerce is not a business model, it is just another channel,” Alex said. “Now, it is only one of many channels for businesses. It is really about getting rid of the ‘e’ and just being normal commerce.”

He continued to explain that businesses need a website, but also a brick and mortar store, a market place, a presence on social media, and a mobile app.

“And in all these places you have to have a strategy,” Alex said. “You have to focus on having a very unique message that is consistent throughout all of these channels. You have to know what your customers want, how much they are willing to pay for it, and how can you best serve them.”

Alex, of course, is referring to the omnichannel shopper and the philosophy/strategy behind Markendising.