Using a product configurator offers several benefits. But the key to success is the implementation. Here are six best practices to help you implement a Magento product configurator successfully.
1. Choose the right extension
Selecting the right Magento product configurator extension is essential. A poor customization tool can bring your project to a grinding halt. The key here is to prioritize functionality and user-friendliness. If the extension you choose doesn’t offer the entire set of features you need or isn’t user-friendly, it can hurt the customization experience instead of helping it.
A safer alternative is to hire a certified Magento developer to build an extension for you. This gives you the ability to incorporate only the features you need. More importantly, it gives you an extension that integrates with your store effortlessly.
2. Plan everything
Planning your approach to implementing product configurators is crucial to its success. It’s rarely as simple as installing an extension and calling it a day. From developing the functionality to deploying it live, you should carefully plan each step in the implementation process.
The key to success is breaking everything down into manageable projects. A minimum-viable-product-style approach that you iterate and improve continually is a safe way to add a new feature to your website. It helps you introduce the feature gradually and gives your customers time to learn how everything works.
3. Focus on feedback
The primary goal of implementing a product configurator in your store is to make it easier for your customers to buy and customize products online. So, prioritize customer feedback from day one. This means even before you start, ask your top buyers questions on how you can improve their buying experience through online customizations.
Additionally, get your sales and customer service teams involved in the development as well. With customer feedback and inputs from your team, you’re more likely to build a product that solves problems instead of creating them.
4. Pick customization options carefully
Another key to a successful implementation is choosing your customization options carefully. Although it might seem like giving your customers multiple choices is good, it can also hurt the buying process. Don’t try to build a complex tool and then work downward trying to simplify it. Start simple and then expand.
Keeping customizations basic out of the box will improve the end-user experience significantly. With a few smart defaults, you can simplify choices for new customers. Focus on non-technical users when you’re starting and design the configurator to suit their needs. Your customer service and sales staff will thank you for it.
5. Design visual guides
Here’s a tip that can save your sales and customer service staff hours of fielding customer questions: design “how-to” guides. If you want your investments to start paying off early, don’t wait till customers contact you to ask how to use the product configurator.
Remember, at that point, there’s a strong chance many would have already tried, failed, and abandoned their purchase. Instead, take a proactive approach and make it glaringly obvious how to use every feature by preparing visual guides using blog posts and YouTube videos.
6. Iterate and optimize
Your project doesn’t end once you’ve deployed the product configurator on your website. The only way to ensure it succeeds and gives you a healthy return on your investment is to optimize it to suit your customer’s needs.
Talk to your sales and customer service teams for insights. Speak with customers that place orders manually instead of using the online configurator to identify how you can improve your implementation and make it easier for them to use. A single conversation can go a long way in helping you design a user-friendly customer experience.