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Tech Stack Optimisation: The Key to Sustainable eCommerce Success

Tools to help businesses make better tech stack decisions
Christine Roxas
Mar 18
Mar 14, 2024
March 18, 2024 11:00

Sponsored by:


Tech Stack Optimisation: The Key to Sustainable eCommerce Success

Today, eCommerce success hinges not just on having a robust online presence but on having a tech stack that's as efficient as it is sustainable. The right combination of technology can be the difference between thriving and merely surviving in 2024. This was the focus of our expert panel webinar, where we dived deep into optimising your tech stack to not only boost your bottom line but also elevate your brand's commitment to sustainability.

The discussion during the webinar shed light on the different tech solutions available to help you fast-track your sustainability credentials—from buy-back schemes and streamlined fulfillment to creating faster websites with a lower carbon footprint. Given the webinar's valuable insights, we wanted to extract the key points and share them here, aiming to assist brands in harnessing these strategies for enhanced sustainability and eCommerce success.

Our expert guests for the webinar have inspired this content, so huge shout out to:


The Impact of Choosing the Right Tech Stack

The discussion highlighted the critical balance between enhancing customer experience and avoiding operational inefficiencies in tech stack choices, stressing that the wrong technological integrations could significantly impede a brand's growth. It emphasized the value of simplicity and autonomy in managing tech systems, advocating for tech stacks that brands can easily adapt and modify independently.

The conversation also covered the importance of establishing a solid technological foundation for performance analysis before expanding marketing efforts, as well as the need for a mindful approach to sustainability. Specifically, it pointed out the environmental concerns associated with AI technologies and the necessity of evaluating new innovations for their business impact and ecological footprint. Overall, the insights provided underscored a holistic strategy to tech stack optimisation, focusing on operational efficiency, user experience, cost management, and environmental sustainability.


Why You Should Consider Sustainability in Your Tech Stack Choices

The discussion underscores the influence of tech stack decisions on operational performance and customer experience, highlighting the importance of these choices for both business functionality and environmental sustainability. It was noted that understanding and acting on the impact of tech stacks is crucial for enhancing a company's operational efficiency and public image. The integration of sustainable practices within the tech stack is presented as a strategic response to the rising consumer demand for environmentally responsible brands, offering the dual benefits of cost savings and improved competitiveness in the market.

The growing consumer preference for brands that embody sustainability values is emphasized, advocating for technology solutions that enable brands to effectively communicate their commitment to sustainability and align with consumer expectations. Collectively, the insights stress the essential role of sustainability in tech stack optimisation. They point out that the incorporation of sustainable practices goes beyond immediate operational benefits, playing a pivotal role in meeting consumer expectations, building a positive brand reputation, and contributing to environmental sustainability goals.


Ways to Improve Business Performance Through Tech Stack

The conversation emphasized the importance of simplicity in tech stack decisions, suggesting that starting with basic, efficient solutions can lead to a faster website, lower operational costs, and an enhanced user experience. It advised against incorporating unnecessary features that do not directly contribute to sales. It’s more important to focus on functionalities that promote meaningful customer engagement and are energy-efficient.

The strategy of caching was mentioned as a method to improve website performance and sustainability by reducing server load. This technique stores snapshots of user visits, decreasing the energy needed for reloading the site for returning visitors, thus speeding up load times and enhancing the user experience by promptly providing relevant information.

A holistic approach to tech stack optimisation was also covered, advocating for a focus on recycling customers through community building and cross-promotion with like-minded brands. This method aims to minimize the resources typically used for marketing and customer acquisition, encouraging the growth of brands with shared values and contributing to a more sustainable business ecosystem.

The discussion concluded by linking operational efficiency with sustainability, asserting that a streamlined tech stack not only improves the customer journey but also boosts sales performance. Achieving business success and sustainability are interconnected objectives that can be realized through deliberate and thoughtful optimisation of the tech stack.


Metrics to Use for Optimisation

The discussion highlighted the approach of carefully selecting and evaluating technology to ensure it positively impacts both operational efficiency and customer experience. This underscores the importance of continuous assessment to gauge the tech stack's effectiveness accurately.

Sustainability should be a factor in tech stack decisions, with an emphasis on considering a technology's carbon footprint and the eco-friendliness of hosting services. It was noted that consumer preferences are increasingly leaning towards brands with strong sustainability practices, suggesting that optimising for energy efficiency can enhance both a website's performance and its appeal to environmentally conscious consumers.

The conversation also covered the wider social and environmental repercussions of technological choices. It pointed out the need for increased public awareness and honesty in companies' sustainability endeavors. Despite the potential challenges posed by accusations of greenwashing or green shaming, the importance of remaining open to dialogue and cooperation in the pursuit of sustainable technological solutions was emphasized.

Overall, the panelists said that strategy is needed when evaluating a tech stack, considering its immediate effects on the business and its broader environmental implications. This approach aligns with the escalating consumer expectation for sustainability, illustrating that technological decisions should factor in both operational success and the company's environmental impact.


Does tech matter for a startup?

The panelists emphasized the importance of establishing a robust tech foundation from the very beginning, with a particular focus on leveraging platforms like Shopify that enable startups to utilize pre-existing developments. The concept of "green guilt" is mentioned, highlighting the increasing consumer demand for sustainable products and the potential of green strategies to boost profitability. This trend goes beyond merely reducing carbon footprints, aiming to generate positive impacts through regenerative practices and catering to consumers who prioritize sustainability.

Additional insights covered the benefits of simplicity in the tech stack, advising against the inclusion of superfluous apps and functionalities that may complicate the system and reduce efficiency. The necessity of thoughtful selection of technology is important, with an emphasis on ensuring that choices are not only suitable for immediate needs but are also sustainable and capable of supporting the business's growth and adaptation over time.

Overall, the discussion advocates for a strategic approach to tech stack development that marries operational effectiveness with long-term sustainability. Startups are encouraged to be deliberate in their technology choices, aiming for a balance between a solid initial setup and the flexibility to evolve, ensuring their growth is scalable and sustainably minded.


2024 Tech Projects to Undertake

The panelists offered various suggestions focused on sustainability, efficiency, and customer retention for 2024.

Liam emphasized the importance of sustainable hosting as a straightforward way to make eCommerce shops more environmentally friendly. He highlighted the benefits of switching to hosting providers that offer renewable energy, which can significantly contribute to a brand's sustainability goals. Liam also mentioned the technical advantages of caching and utilizing content delivery networks to improve website performance and reduce the environmental impact, especially for international customers.

Tom speculated that the reason behind the low rate of replatforming might be businesses focusing on optimising their current tech stack and platform. He suggested that brands are likely assessing and enhancing their existing setups to improve performance rather than switching to entirely new platforms.

Trudy pointed out the emergence of new apps on the market and the importance of selecting apps that are optimised for performance and sustainability. She said that apps using Shopify's native app blocks could be more sustainable than those relying on external content delivery networks, as they operate directly on Shopify's servers, reducing unnecessary load and improving site speed.

Steven suggested focusing on technologies that facilitate repeat sales as a critical tech project. He argued for the need to leverage tech that minimizes dependency on high-cost customer acquisition channels. He advocated for testing different apps and strategies to enhance customer retention and maximize repeat business, considering the competitive and costly landscape of acquiring new customers.


Final Takeaways

In their concluding remarks, the panelists underscored key themes of optimisation, intention, simplicity, and purpose in managing eCommerce tech stacks efficiently and sustainably.

Optimising website elements, particularly for stores with numerous images, was highlighted as crucial. It was suggested that focusing on image optimisation and careful data usage can lead to faster site speeds, better usability, and enhanced sustainability, thereby significantly lowering the website's carbon footprint and improving the overall customer experience.

The importance of integrating sustainability and social impact deeply into the tech stack and the company's broader strategy was emphasized. Businesses were encouraged to continuously engage with their sustainability objectives throughout their development journey, indicating that a thoughtful approach to these goals can significantly influence a myriad of business decisions and practices.

The virtue of beginning with a simple foundation in eCommerce site development was also stressed, cautioning against the hasty addition of apps and features. By making deliberate technology choices, brands can ensure their operations are streamlined and in harmony with sustainability goals.

The discussion concluded with a reminder of the value of being intentional and specific about tech stack components. A focus on simplicity and purposefulness over mere convenience was advised, suggesting that careful technology management can foster both environmental stewardship and positive business results.

Overall, the panelists' insights point to a strategy for achieving efficient and sustainable eCommerce, advocating for a thoughtful approach to tech stack development centered around optimisation, purpose, and simplicity.



Thank you to our sponsors Noughts & Ones and Droxic for making this webinar possible!


To watch the replay of the webinar, click >> here <<

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