The wishes of the client and the technical implementation of the project are involved in the development and implementation of the e-commerce site. Ideally, the desires should coincide with the technical implementation, so that the client gets what he ultimately wanted. To do this, you need to find out all the wishes, collect all the requirements from the client and describe them in the technical specification for developers. And in order to create technical specification, there are such things as: a brief, a description of business requirements, functional requirements.
On the Internet you can find many articles with examples of different requirements. In different companies, these documents may be called differently. Their content and order of creation may also differ, as each company describes its experience of interacting with customers.
Let’s figure out what is what? How to explain to the client what needs to be done? What requirements to collect before meeting with the developers and start developing an e-commerce site faster.
What Are Business Requirements? Example
Business requirements are the backbone of any project. They focus on the needs and goals of the business, defining what tasks the project must solve in order to succeed. These requirements include goals and objectives, critical success factors and expected benefits.
- Information and data about the company. Scope of business, main competitors, customers, main advantages, business documents regulating the activity of the industry.
- Information about the target audience. It is necessary to clearly understand who will be the site visitors. Segment your audience into groups using data on gender, age, regions of residence, habits and hobbies. This will allow you to understand for what purpose visitors will visit the site.
- Information about competitors. What functionality does the competitor’s website offer, what are their advantages, what pricing and assortment.
- Specify the purpose of the site. This can be an expansion of the geography of sales, an increase in customer coverage and, as a result, an increase in conversions and profits.
- Define website performance metrics. By what indicators will you understand that the site helps to achieve your business goal. These can be: ROI, conversion rate, number of leads, etc.
For a travel booking site, part of the business requirement may be to provide opportunities:
- For visitors – they can choose and book hotels, excursions in a selected geolocation, find car rentals, find and book tables in cafes and restaurants. If necessary, pay for services through the site.
- For vendors – place their services on this sales channel and promote for greater efficiency.
- For the site owner – it is to attract more vendors, partners, creating a unique platform and increasing the conversion and profit from the site.
It is important to clarify business requirements at the very beginning of the project life cycle so that the business team and the development team are on the same wavelength. They serve as the basis for determining the appropriate platform, the scope of the tasks, and the development of the project plan.
Without a clear understanding of the business requirements, the project budget can get out of hand or lead to incorrect results.
What Tasks Help To Solve The Described Business Requirements
Clearly formulated business requirements solve the following tasks:
- They help the business team and developers to clearly understand what should be the output, what is the main goal of the site.
- They help to determine in the future with killer features, without which the goal of the site will be unattainable.
- They help to prioritize subsequent requirements in order to wisely spend the budget.
- They help to save time and budget for development in order to prevent a large number of improvements.
What Are Functional Requirements? Example
Functional requirements collect information about how a website, online store or marketplace should work. What should happen with the actions of different site participants and how the system should react. For example, how the functionality of booking a hotel, registering on a website, searching for a suitable tour, etc. should work.
Description of functional requirements will help developers to think through the architecture and create a roadmap for the development of functionality.
Important sections of the site for which it is necessary to describe the functionality
Let’s briefly analyze the sections using the example of a travel and vacation booking site:
1.Home page: this is the main page of your site, a business card. According to it, the user should immediately understand what the site is about, how to get into the catalog of services, where the search bar with the necessary filters is located, where to click to enter a personal account or create it. You also need to consider whether the page will feature ad units, promotional offers, service groups.
2. Search: if the site involves a wide range of services, then it is necessary to provide filters for each of them. But the choice of the required dates, geolocation, the number of travelers is important for all categories.
3. Search results page: after users enter their trip information, they should be redirected to a page where they can view a list of all available flights, hotel rooms, car rental options, cafe selection, restaurant selection, excursions and other travel options, matching their criteria.
4. Catalog of services: it involves different sections of the site, through which the user will navigate depending on the purpose of the visit. Its width and depth is limited by your business goals and requirements.
5. Product / service card: includes a description of the service with photos, reviews, available dates, cost, the ability to contact, leave a request, purchase / book a service.
6. Hotel Booking Page: Users should be able to view all available hotel rooms, their amenities and prices. They should also be able to select their preferred accommodation option and enter their personal information in order to book a room.
7. Flight booking page: If your site offers flight booking services, you should create a separate page for this. It should display all flights available to the user, as well as their prices, departure / arrival times, airports and stations of departure / arrival, information about the carrier, possible transfers, travel time. Users should be able to select their preferred flight and enter their personal information in order to book a flight.
8. Payment Page: Once users have selected a service, they should be redirected to a secure payment page where they can enter their payment details to complete the booking process.
9. Confirmation Page: Once users have completed the booking process, they should be redirected to a confirmation page that displays all the details of their booking along with a confirmation number.
10. User’s personal account: in it the user can specify personal information, choose convenient payment methods, link a card, view the history of purchases / bookings.
11. Personal account and admin panel for the vendor: the vendor must be able to add and edit their services, upload and download documents, manage promotions and sales, process orders, answer customer questions, have access to sales analytics on the site and other reports.
How To Write Functional Requirements?
One approach to writing functional requirements is that you describe the behavior of users depending on their role on the site. These are the so-called user stories.
User stories answer three questions:
- Who is the user?
- What action does he want to take?
- What is it for him?
Roles on the site can be:
- Visitors to the site – can search for the necessary services or view available information. Visitors and buyers on the site can be both individuals and legal b2b.
- Sellers or vendors are individuals or legal entities that place their services on the site.
- Administrators – manage the smooth operation of the site, arbitrate disputes between sellers and buyers, make settlements with sellers, notify vendors about placing an order.
- Moderators – they can moderate and verify sellers, and are also responsible for moderating content on the site. Check for spam, track user behavior, prevent fraud.
A visitor on the site wants to register as a legal entity in order to pay for services on the site through an invoice.
The functionality should provide for separate registration for individuals and legal entities, filling in information for invoicing in the user’s personal account.
What Is A Website Technical Specification?
Website Technical Specification is a document that describes all the requirements and characteristics for creating a site. This document is compiled by developers based on the requirements that are collected from the customer. It describes the technical functionality for the backend, frontend, all integrations, system and infrastructure requirements, and product testing approaches.
In our practice, there are two scenarios for the development of events:
- The client has business and functional requirements. Then the development company clarifies these requirements and transforms them into technical specifications.
- The client has no requirements. Then a brief is held, business tasks are described, functional requirements are drawn up and the Tech Spec is drawn up.
The prepared Tech Spec is agreed with the client and is an integral part of the contract.
Thus, if the client needs to start development faster, then it is necessary to think over and draw up not a technical task, but business requirements, describe how the site’s functionality should work.
Why It Is Important To Describe Requirements?
Firstly, it is necessary in order to get exactly the product that the customer needs.
Secondly, clearly described requirements save the customer’s budget, as they allow you to do what you need the first time.
Thirdly, after describing the requirements, the cost of developing a site may change in the same way as the launch time.
The Main Mistakes In The Preparation Of Project Requirements
1. Vague or overly detailed description of requirements. The wording should be clear and mean the same for all participants, and the result can be evaluated or measured.
- “A clear checkout for the buyer” is vague, and the assessment can only be subjective.
- “Checkout for the buyer must contain a progress bar” – in this case, it is clear what developers need to do.
2. The requirements do not include automation and scalability. Often this is due to cost savings, but in the end it can lead to the wrong decision.
The client’s project is currently small, and administrators can handle order processing manually, which involves data reconciliation. But as the number of orders grows, the operational burden on administrators will increase or more of them will be required in the state. The problem could be solved by setting up automatic verification of the downloaded data.
3. Excessive immersion in descriptions and numerous edits. This does not mean that there should be no edits at all. But as you perfect the description of the requirements, you must keep the goal in mind. And the ultimate goal is to launch the project. Clear business requirements will help you stay on course.
4. Choosing an unsuitable technical solution. The choice and implementation of any services and integrations should be a reasonable decision, and not the wish of the customer. The main task of the services is to comply with all customer requirements and technical compatibility with the platform on which the site is created.
1. In order to prepare for a meeting with the developers, you should think over and draw up business requirements for the project in advance. Formulated business requirements will help determine the main functionality for launching the site, budget and development time.
2. Describing the functionality of the site by sections, use the User Story method. It implies a description of the user’s behavior, depending on his role on the site. Keep in mind what goals users of the site should achieve.
3. Functional and business requirements will help create a quality Technical Specification for the development of an e-commerce site, as well as help avoid corrections, which will save your budget.
4. An analyst can assist in the preparation of functional and business requirements. He will make a single vision and understanding of the site for the customer and developers.
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