Discover the Power of Simplicity

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The late Steve Jobs famously said: “Simple can be harder than complex: you have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.”

Whether you are debating to open your first online store or upgrade your existing application, you are likely to base your store’s design on a template.

After countless hours of comparing templates, you eventually come to the realization that there is no perfect one. All the features you like cannot be found in one single template. So, which template is the best pick?

Let’s begin by finding out how your business creates value for your customers and how your customers perceive this value. These are two different views. Understanding these views is important because you do not want to spend your money on features your customers do not care about.

A two-step exercise may help you with the answer:

In the first step, make two columns, one containing your own wishlist, and the other representing the wishlist of your typical customer. Mark the features, which appear in both columns. Do you see any commonalities?

For the second step, go through the commonalities and ask the following question: if this feature was not available, how would my business be impacted? Eliminate those features which do not pose a business impact. Try to be as rigorous and honest as possible.

I know, this is a tough exercise, and the ensuing discussions may be long and controversial. However, in trying to answer these questions lies the power of simplicity — and your template pick.

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