Why your ecommerce platform is only one element of a replatforming project

Tuesday, 23 April 2024

On the face of it, ecommerce replatforming involves switching from one platform to another. However, the different platform (or potentially newer version of an existing platform) is only one element of the replatforming equation. Our ultimate guide to ecommerce replatforming covers this in great depth, so if you’ve not read it, we’d suggest having a look at that to understand why, when and how you might need to replatform. While the choice of ecommerce platform is undoubtedly crucial we’re going to concentrate on the other components that play a significant role in the success of an ecommerce replatforming project

From the agency guiding the process, to the hosting company providing infrastructure support and the integration partner facilitating seamless connections with other systems, each element is integral to the project's overall success and how they work together is vital. Is one company doing everything, or are you using separate companies? Who is managing them? Do they have the skills and experience? Or are you intending to do all the work in house and not use any third parties? Do you have the requisite skills and experience to do it?


Unless you are intending to do all the work in house, choosing the right agency or partner to lead the replatforming project is paramount. They serve as a trusted partner, providing expertise in ecommerce strategy, design, development, and implementation. From conducting thorough requirements gathering to designing intuitive user experiences and implementing custom features, the agency plays a pivotal role in bringing the vision to life. Clear communication, collaboration, and project management are essential for ensuring the project stays on track and delivers the desired outcomes.

Ecommerce solutions are quite complex requiring in-depth technical knowledge to implement effectively. From product catalogue management to payment processing, order fulfilment, and promotions management, ecommerce platforms encompass a wide range of functionalities. A full-service ecommerce agency and platform provider like Red Technology will always have an advantage over other agencies. Not only do they have access to the platform's core code, they can shape and support its future direction. They're also best placed to support and maintain it. That just isn't true with an agency who build on a third-party platform.

Many agencies will be design-led meaning the front-end of your website might look nice for your customers, but they lack the technical knowledge required to implement robust ecommerce solutions effectively. While a beautiful website can captivate users initially, without a deep understanding of ecommerce platforms, integrations, and technical requirements, design-led agencies may prioritise form over function, resulting in suboptimal user experiences and limited ecommerce capabilities. When delivering sites on third-party platforms like Shopify or WooCommerce for example, they’re also constrained by the platform’s limitations, making it difficult to meet clients’ specific functionality requirements. They may also be limited by those platforms’ ability to scale, or reliance on third-party apps and plugins to expand their feature set.


Businesses have several options when it comes to designing their new ecommerce site during a replatforming project. Whether choosing a separate design agency for specialised expertise, leveraging the ecommerce platform or agency's built-in design services for accessibility and cost-effectiveness, or utilising an in-house design team for brand alignment and flexibility, each option offers unique advantages and considerations. At Red Technology, we understand the importance of design in ecommerce success and can work with you to determine the best approach for your specific needs and goals.


Support following an ecommerce replatforming is crucial for ensuring a smooth transition and continued success. While the launch of a new platform marks a significant milestone, the journey doesn't end there. Ongoing support is essential for addressing any post-launch issues, providing training for staff, implementing updates, and optimising the platform for maximum performance. At Red Technology, we understand the importance of post-replatforming support. Our dedicated team is committed to being your partner every step of the way, offering comprehensive support services to ensure your ecommerce platform continues to meet your evolving needs and delivers exceptional results. With our support, you can rest assured that your ecommerce operations are in capable hands, allowing you to focus on growing your business and achieving your goals.

Who will support your new site? How responsive are they? What level of service do they provide? It’s important to try and ascertain these answers before commencing on any replatforming project so look for references or read reviews online.

Hosting, Data & Control:

The hosting company is responsible for providing the infrastructure and support needed to host the ecommerce platform. Reliable hosting is essential for ensuring optimal website performance, security, and scalability. The hosting company should offer robust infrastructure, including servers, networks, and data centres, as well as comprehensive support services to address any issues or challenges that may arise. A scalable hosting solution is particularly important for accommodating growth and handling increased traffic during peak periods.

Many off-the-shelf ecommerce platforms like Shopify or BigCommerce typically retain ownership and control over critical aspects of the ecommerce infrastructure, including hosting, data storage and platform updates. Whilst that might be fine for convenience it places limitations on the agencies’ ability to customise and optimise the underlying infrastructure to meet client’s specific requirements. No agency will ever have any influence over the direction of a third-party platform.

Is the platform a hosted solution or do you need to source your own hosting? Is the hosting managed? How scalable is it?

Integration Partner:

Ecommerce platforms rarely operate in isolation, often requiring integration with other systems such as ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), CRM (Customer Relationship Management), payment gateways, shipping carriers, and more. The integration partner plays a critical role in facilitating seamless connections between the ecommerce platform and these third-party systems.

They are responsible for designing and implementing integration solutions that ensure data consistency, streamline operations, and enhance efficiency across the entire ecosystem. Close collaboration between the integration partner and the agency is essential to ensure a cohesive and integrated solution that meets the business's specific needs.

Now, depending on how technically competent your ecommerce agency are, the relationship between them and your systems integrator is crucial to the success of your project.

Data Migration:

Planning for the migration of existing data, including product information, customer data, and order history, is crucial to ensure a smooth transition to the new platform. Are your agency able to transition it across to your new site? Is it being pulled from an existing system or does it require manually uploading? Can you safely port sensitive customer information like passwords across, or will you need all customers to recreate their account on your new site?

Compliance and Security:

Ensuring compliance with industry regulations and data protection laws is paramount. The ecommerce platform should adhere to relevant standards such as GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard). Implementing robust security measures to protect customer data and prevent cyber threats is also essential.<,/p>

Data privacy and security concerns may arise, as ecommerce many agencies have limited visibility and control over how client data is stored, accessed, and protected within off-the-shelf platforms.


Providing training for stakeholders, including internal teams and external partners, is critical to ensure they are equipped to effectively use and manage the new ecommerce platform.

In conclusion, ecommerce replatforming projects are multifaceted endeavors that involve more than just selecting a new platform. The agency, hosting company, and integration partner all play vital roles in the project's success, working together to deliver a seamless, scalable, and feature-rich ecommerce solution. By choosing the right partners and fostering collaboration and communication throughout the project lifecycle, businesses can embark on a successful replatforming journey and position themselves for growth and success in the digital marketplace.

Have questions about replatforming or want advice from our ecommerce experts?