But (yes, there’s a but) you lack expertise in the development of ecommerce websites.
Why is this important? You may ask.
Well, with the global ecommerce industry in full swing, becoming an expert ecommerce web developer can be an excellent way to step up your professional career and have an edge over others.
And before you wander off in the wrong direction, you need to set your eyes on the Australian ecommerce industry.
Australia has nearly 20 million mobile users, rising GDP per capita, and interestingly 80% of the country prefers online shopping. The Australian ecommerce market is anticipated to join the top ten global ecommerce markets in the near future.
So if you’re wondering how you can become an expert web developer of ecommerce websites in Australia, this detailed guide will benefit you the most.
Reasons to Specialize in Ecommerce Development
Apart from professional growth, there are several reasons to specialize in ecommerce development. These are as follows.
Rapid growth of the Australian Ecommerce Market
Specializing in ecommerce development is valuable in itself. However, starting from your own home (by acquiring a wealth of experience in the Australian ecommerce market) will give you the launch pad you need to avail better opportunities and get a head start.
According to Statista, the already growing ecommerce sales in Australia are forecasted to exceed $16,500 (in millions) by 2022.
This means that brands, big and small, will be on the hunt for the best web developers with unique technical skills to improve their stores.
Learning Curve of Using Latest Technologies
Over the years, however, platforms such as WordPress, Magento, WooCommerce, and OpenCart have gained popularity, particularly amongst ecommerce stores. And gaining experience with these tools and platforms provides a wealth of knowledge and skills. Developing ecommerce sites on such open source platforms and applications requires technical skills and expertise.
Wealth of Upselling Opportunities
Specializing in ecommerce store development doesn’t just limit you to one area. Instead it gives you plenty of upselling opportunities that can help position you as an overall ecommerce expert.
The basic approach would be to stay in your lane by becoming proficient in a range of web development technologies and tools. A better approach is to develop experience outside of your comfort zone and venture out into different (but relevant) areas that add value to ecommerce sites.
A good example of this is integrating customer support tools, such as chatbots and HTML newsletter. Or you can learn product photography, social media advertising campaigns, and the integration of third-party apps (e.g. shipping and accounting). Regardless of what you choose, there are a myriad of ways that you can add value as an ecommerce expert.
Long Term Career With Prospects of Your Own Agency
Being able to start your own ecommerce web development agency in Australia can be a possible career move for you. Once you have a wealth of experience in ecommerce store design and development specific to the Australian market and testimonials noting your worthy contributions, you will be able to carve out an enviable position for yourself in the industry.
How to Acquire an Ecommerce Design Edge
It shouldn’t come as a surprise when I say that the web development industry is fiercely competitive. You will find countless web developers available for hire to work on ecommerce websites from around the world (thanks to freelancing).
This can put you at a very difficult spot in terms of competitiveness. Now you ask yourself:
‘How can I possibly stand out from thousands of web developers out there?’
I know that becoming an ecommerce expert will be no walk in the park. You will need to get several ‘medals’ under your belt to reach the top of the cliff. But, as long as you proceed step-by-step and stand out from the rest, you can make your journey a lot easier. Here’s what you need to do:
Understand The Dynamics Of Ecommerce Store Operation
First things first; get an in-depth grounding of how ecommerce stores operate. Know what the web development requirements for each ecommerce website and the dynamics involved in the process.
Start by understanding the basic templates. An average ecommerce store has: a homepage, an about us page, a product listing page, and a page that details the products sold. On the other hand, professional ecommerce stores will involve many more functionalities and integrations.
You will have to get a number of ecommerce projects to get a feel of the kind of work involved. This way, you will be able to acquire and grow your skill set as a web developer and become familiar with the basic tools.
Have a Polished Web Development Work Portfolio
Whether you want to work at a company or have several clients through freelancing, you need to have an impressive portfolio of projects that showcases your accomplishments and skill-set.
Employers are flooded with CVs and profiles of web developers, so having a polished portfolio of projects under your wing will be a crucial differentiating factor.
As a key tip, focus on taking projects that require different web development platforms (such as WordPress, Magento, and Woocommerce). Sure, becoming an expert with one platform can give you an edge. But it is better to broaden your web development experience with a range of tools and platforms. When the time comes to start your own agency, you will have the command and authority to offer a comprehensive service.
Complete Industry Accredited Certifications
Having extensive experience is important, but it isn’t the only way to make yourself stand out. You should complete certifications to highlight your relevancy and proficiency as a web developer. Following are some of the most recognized web developer certifications that can give you a solid grounding.
- The Rogue Wave Zend Certified PHP Engineer Certification
- Symfony Certification
- Magento Developer and Developer Plus Certifications
- Magento Certified Solution Specialist Certification
- Magento 2 Certified Solution Specialist Certification
- Salesforce Certified Commerce Cloud Digital Developer
- Salesforce Certified Platform Developer I
- Salesforce Certified Platform Developer II
Cultivate a Professional Network (Of Fellow Designers and Potential Clients)
Networking is one of the best methods for growing your professional network. The larger your network of developers, ecommerce retailers, and potential clients is, the more opportunities you have.
Be sure to attend events relevant to web development or ecommerce in Australia and interact with people on a regular basis. You never know how easily you can secure top clients and projects.
Follow Australian Web Development Groups on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is an excellent resource for keeping up with the latest happenings in the industry. Make sure you actively participate on LinkedIn by first updating your professional profile that highlights your projects and participating in group discussions by asking questions and sharing your thoughts in the comment section.
The following is a list of Australia-based web development and ecommerce groups that you should join on LinkedIn.
- Website Design | Website Designer | Application Development Sydney Australia
- Looking for partner in US, UK, Australia, Canada for Web Development Projects
- Web Industry Australia
- Ecommerce Retailers Australia
- eCommerce of Australia and New Zealand
- eTail Asia: The Event for eCommerce & Multi-Channel Retail Innovators
- eCommerce Australia
Stay Updated With Key Influencers and Industry Updates
Growing your professional network to take advantage of new project offers is important. However, without staying abreast of the industry updates, you miss the bus on key developments and trends.
This is why it is so important to connect with industry influencers and stay updated with the top blogs. Check out our list of top ecommerce influencers that you should follow. As for industry resources, these are:
- HTML5 Doctor
- Killer PHP
- PHP Builder
- Magento Blog
- Inchoo Blog
- Upload WP
Wrapping It Up
The growth of the Australian ecommerce market is an excellent opportunity for you to develop and hone your personal expertise. As with any industry, mere technical proficiency isn’t enough. You need to be ahead of the curve with the latest trends and practices and anticipate where your professional career is heading.
By following the aforementioned steps, you can be on your way to be an ecommerce development juggernaut in the local market.
If you think there are influencers and blogs that should be included in the list, let me know in the comments below.