Top 2021 resources on experiences
Best experiences resource in 2021.
Learn more about experiences to improve your e-commerce strategy.
#RoadtoImagine 2019: Capturing Exceptional Experiences
Share the commerce experiences that have wowed and inspired you over the past 12 months
Topics: thats, submissions, commerce, roadtoimagine, youre, exceptional, experience, tag, experiences, inspired, tell, capturing, whats.
11 B2B ecommerce must-haves when it comes to UX
Here are 11 B2B ecommerce must-have experiences that an organization must launch to provide a relevant B2B customer journey.
Topics: pricing, comes, ecommerce, different, ability, b2b, ux, fastfollow, view, featuresstoriesi, experiences, search, musthave, site, musthaves.
2019 Partner Award Winners: Magento Solution Partners
Put your hands together…
Topics: experiences, america, order, strong, winner, magento, partners, award, winners, solution, business, partner, commerce.
24 Data-Backed Reasons to Personalize Your Marketing
When Larry Drebes, CEO of Janrain, set out to study online consumer experiences earlier this summer, he knew that relevant content would be at the forefront of consumer minds. We've seen for years that emails which are personalized to the recipient do better than their generic counterparts.
Topics: say, personalize, experiences, marketing, personalization, personalized, relevant, consumers, data, databacked, content, marketers, reasons.
3 Strategies for Ecommerce Sales and Growth Using the New Technologies.
Create new value offerings using blockchain and augmented reality.
Topics: experiences, using, blockchain, growth, brands, strategies, ecommerce, ar, sales, business, online, technologies, platform.
5 Retail Trends That Will Transform the Industry in 2019
Growing up, my town’s local shopping mall was a bustling hub of commerce, chock full of busy shops and pesky tweens. But today, half the place has been gutted -- it looks like an empty morgue of stores now.
Topics: customers, furniture, facebook, industry, retailers, transform, retail, experiences, consumers, stores, brands, trends, buy.
7 Inspiring Brand Activations to Help You Launch Your Own
One of my favorite themes from the critically-acclaimed show Mad Men is that 1960’s advertising was based off the half-truth that you would be happier if you owned more material possesions.
At the beginning of the series, the show’s main adman, Don Draper, passionately believes in this notion. It helps him sell whatever he advertises and it’s also the concept he molds his life around. Not only does Don sell the lie of money, status, and material items being the keys to happiness, but he also lives it.
Topics: brand, launch, actually, help, inspiring, campaign, invision, brandon, attendees, activations, vitamin, suicide, material, experiences, water.
Adobe Commerce Cloud Launches Headless Offering to Serve the High Customer Experience Needs of Enterprise Customers
Businesses are eager to embrace new commerce channels and technologies to get closer to their customers and grow conversions. Now merchants of all sizes can react to changing customer needs at speed and scale.
Topics: experience, experiences, technologies, high, cloud, customer, scenarios, enterprise, needs, serve, launches, headless, apis, commerce, adobe, offering, customers.
Adobe SVP Outlines 3 Trends Driving Experience-Driven Commerce
Everyone in business is navigating uncertain times and trying to find ways to quickly adapt to the new reality, said Aseem Chandra, SVP, strategic marketing for Adobe Experience Cloud, during his keynote as part of the all-digital, on-demand Adobe Summit.
Topics: moment, trends, driving, chandra, customer, commerce, svp, outlines, experience, experiences, consumers, online, experiencedriven, adobe.
Adobe to Acquire Magento
Mark Lavelle shares his thoughts on the announcement.
Topics: acquire, step, create, adobes, experiences, magento, share, tremendous, commerce, adobe, customers.
Announcing New Pre-Composed Solution™ for B2B Commerce
B2B Digital Transformation: Easier Said Than Done
Your customer: “How much does that cost?”
You: “Well… that depends.”
As a B2B business, maybe you don’t do set pricing. You can’t do it. Maybe your offerings are too complex. Maybe you like to treat every single customer differently. Maybe you manufacture from base materials that are vulnerable to rapidly fluctuating commodity prices. Maybe you’ve just always done it that way. Regardless, you have your reasons and so your business relies on quoting. But you’ve held back from implementing automated, digital quoting because of the perceived complexity and expense.
The ubiquity of digital commerce, however, has set different expectations and it’s no longer good enough for you to entice your buyers with an amazing discovery experience only to end up at a “Please call for pricing” pop-up.
A New Approach to B2B Digitization
With our new Pre-Composed Solution™ for B2B Commerce, co-developed in partnership with Systems Integrator DigiCommerce, B2B brands can quickly launch and optimize the automated, digital B2B commerce experiences (including quoting!) that your buyers demand. Powered by Composable Commerce, an approach that enables brands to bring their unique digital vision to life by leveraging multiple best-of-breed vendors composed together into a complete business-ready solution, brands no longer have to compromise between the rigid B2B commerce solutions of the past or taking on the risk of stitching together modern technologies.
This solution composes core B2B commerce functionality (like Account Management, complex catalog support), Role-Based Access, etc.) from Elastic Path Commerce Cloud, with pre-built digital experiences for B2B buyers and sellers to make quoting, and other core B2B experiences, possible.
Power The Convenient Experiences Your Buyers Demand
These pre-integrated B2B features are used to power the digital-first experiences that your customers demand. The granular system of Role-Based Access Control (RBAC), allows your customers to fully model their organizational structure – who can order what and for how much, who can transact, etc. Within this controlled context, your customers can easily:
Create carts (orders) manually or via convenient CSV upload
Share carts across their organization
Save carts for later use including often repeated orders
View all their orders and their status
Submit an order for quote, as well as modify and re-submit
Accept a quote and transact via credit card or purchase order
Split the resulting order fulfillment across multiple delivery addresses
…And Digitize The Key Processes Your Account Reps Rely On
The same RBAC system allows you to model your side of the equation – who manages what, who can set prices, approve quotes, etc. right down to who manages Betty’s accounts when she’s on vacation. Your account reps can easily see the orders of their assigned accounts in detail and manage them accordingly. In addition, the Pre-Composed Solution™ also comes with a powerful built-in dashboard that provides, to those with adequate permissions, rapid analysis of all orders across the entire organization.
Another great capability comes from the fact that essentially everything your customer can do with their order, so too can an account rep. This enables what is known in the B2C world as buying on behalf of or shopper impersonation. Maybe some of your customers are a little old-school or maybe they’re in the field and just can’t get to their computer. In these cases, the rep can create the order, share with the customer, provide the quote, and move it along in the process. When you combine that ability with our flexible catalog and multiple price book model, you’ve instantly (and inexpensively) put a powerful tool in the hands of your field reps whether they be online, on the phone, or on the road.
Whereas your end customers drop by your site, conduct some business, and move on, your employees live in these systems all day every day. There are still plenty of folks out there (even one is too many in my opinion!) who spend hours tabbing their way through complex legacy “green screen” systems to get the job done. One of the most enduring benefits of this solution will be just how pleasant it is to use. Despite packing in a lot of really high-powered functionality, this Pre-Composed Solution™ offers a UX that is highly intuitive and logical in its flow and a UI that is clean, giving the users power with an easy learning curve and no cognitive overload. Your team is busy keeping the customer satisfied. The last thing they need is to struggle with their tools.
Transformation + Trust = The Future of B2B eCommerce
Your core business isn’t easy. If it was, someone else would be doing it for less. Our highly flexible solution acknowledges the inherent complexity in what you sell and how you sell it, and helps you transform from what has been a high-touch offline process to a new frictionless digital experience for your customers without jeopardizing your most valuable asset – their trust.
Topics: quoting, order, digital, maybe, customer, commerce, announcing, experiences, customers, b2b, solution, precomposed.
Awakening Better Sleep Through Digital Experiences: How a Global Leader In Sleep Health Is Empowering Customers To Improve Their Sleep Online
Sleep science has come a long way in the past few decades. When ResMed first got its roots, sleep science…
Topics: health, awareness, sleep, way, problems, help, resmed, australia, better, online, need, experiences, digital.
B2B Online 2019: How to take your commerce practice from good to great
B2B Online 2019 did not disappoint. Attendees got their questions (and then some) answered but if you weren’t able to make it in person, Shreyas Sali synthesizes the key takeaways here.
Topics: b2b, firms, ecommerce, experiences, b2c, commerce, good, practice, buyers, online, journey, experience, digital, great.
Best Headless Content Management Systems (CMS) Vendors
If your business is committed to growing revenue through digital channels, and wants to be able to continuously iterate and optimize your website’s look and feel to keep up with ever evolving customer expectations, then you know how important it is to have a robust system for your team of marketers and merchandisers to manage your digital properties.
For decades now, teams have leveraged Content Management Systems (CMS) to manage and deliver dynamic content across the web. However, with the increased adoption of headless architectures in the CMS space, and the proliferation of new CMS vendors, it can be a bit overwhelming to choose the best CMS for your business.
In this article you will learn all about Content Management Systems (CMS), the difference between “headless” and traditional CMS offerings, and get a concise overview of all the major vendors that provide Headless CMS offerings so you can select the best CMS for your project.
What is a Content Management Systems (CMS)?
Let’s start off by understanding what a CMS is all about. A Content Management System is a software solution that powers the content on your website and other browser-based digital properties, and allows users to publish and manage website content without needing to build a custom website front-end in code.
CMSs will often provide pre-built templates that make it fast and easy for users to create, publish, and update web pages with new content – such as new copy, images, and more.
As digital channels have become a critical battleground for businesses to interact and transact with their customers, partners, suppliers, etc – the importance of Content Management Systems has increased considerably.
Like most other types of software applications, CMSs used to be primarily sold as on-premise software that you would buy, deploy, and manage on your own – but have increasingly moved to the cloud and are sold as Software as a Service (SaaS), which lowers the total cost of ownership for companies and increases the agility at which they can manage their digital properties.
What does it mean for a CMS to be “Headless”?
“Headless” is a concept that has gained increasing popularity in recent years, across a variety of application types, use-cases, and industries. It refers to the decoupling of the front-end of an application (i.e the user interface) from the back-end.
Using a headless approach is appealing for some projects because it provides more flexibility in how the back-end functionality is able to be configured.
This is because in a headless architecture you are accessing the back-end functionality directly via APIs (application programming interface), vs using a traditional architecture (i.e. non-Headless) where the front-end and back-end are fused together into a single application and you can only access and configure the back-end functionality through that application’s native front-end user interface.
However, a drawback of a headless architecture is that now you have two or more application components to integrate and manage, vs just a single application.
With a headless architecture, you (or a counterpart in your IT department, System Integrator, or Digital Agency) will also have to be comfortable working with APIs in order to get your headless application architecture up-and-running.
Looking to implement a headless approach?
Our comprehensive guide to getting started with headless commerce will teach you more about the architecture, how to work with the front-end of your choice, and how to choose a platform that fits your needs.
Read the Guide
Top factors to consider when selecting a CMS vendor:
Selecting the right Content Management System for your business is not unlike selecting any other piece of software. It all comes down to matching your business and technology requirements to the various vendor offerings in the market. That being said, some of the primary factors to consider:
Headless vs Traditional: as discussed above, deciding whether going with a Headless CMS architecture or a traditional approach is one of the key decisions you will need to make. This will come down to your desired flexibility, uniqueness of your business model, and digital maturity (either in-house or through an SI or digital agency).
On-premise vs SaaS: this one is fairly self-explanatory. You will need to decide if you want (or need, due to regulatory or other requirements) to host your CMS on your own or use a SaaS-based solution.
Integrations: you will need to map out what else you will need your CMS to integrate with (e.g. analytics, personalization, ratings and reviews, eCommerce, A/B testing, chat, etc), and determine if those integrations are pre-built and ready to use, or if you will need to build those integrations yourself.
Digital channels: you should think about your businesses revenue strategy for the 2-3 years and determine if you will only need a browser-based website, or if achieving your revenue goals over the next few years will require you to activate additional digital channels that may not be supported by a CMS (e.g. IoT, Kiosks, etc).
Best Headless CMS vendors you should be considering:
There are a LOT of Content Management System vendors in the market. And as much as analyst firms or peer review sites will try to rank the “best” CMS vendors, the reality is that there is no one best, there’s just the best for you. To that end, we’ve tried to provide an honest overview of the major Headless CMS vendors in the market, so you can pick the one that best addresses your specific needs.
First, we will start with a list of the native Headless CMS vendors (in alphabetical order):
Headquarters: London, UK
Number of employees: 134
Company overview: Amplience powers digital-first brands and retailers with the freedom to do more. Their low-code Content Management System, Digital Asset Management, and Digital Experience Management platform allows more than 350 of the world's leading brand teams to manage content, not code. The result is a rapid ROI for their clients who are delivering data and insight-driven customer experiences that drive deeper, more valuable customer relationships. Amplience supports the industry's transition to Microservice, API-first, Cloud and Headless (MACH) technologies, is MACH certified and an executive member of the MACH Alliance.
Headquarters: Berlin, Germany
Number of employees: 676
Company overview: Contentful helps digital teams assemble content and deliver experiences, faster. Their open and flexible content platform adapts to how digital builders work to meet business goals through easy customization and deep integration with any tech stack. Digital teams can reuse and automate content across devices and channels, so they can worry less about content maintenance and more about their customers. With offices in hubs including Berlin, San Francisco, and Denver, and a global team distributed across every time zone, they help thousands of businesses across the spectrum of digital maturity to move fast and meet customer demands. Contentful supports IKEA, Vodafone, Electronic Arts, and over 30% of the Fortune 500 to deliver market-leading digital experiences at scale through every stage of the customer journey. As stated in the Forrester Wave™: Agile Content Management Systems (CMSes) Q1 2021 report, Contentful has “a well-articulated vision for helping companies become digital first, plus the capabilities to help them get there.”
Headquarters: San Franisco, CA, USA
Number of employees: 229
Company overview: Contentstack was the pioneer in API-first, headless CMS technology. They accelerate and simplify content management across today's and tomorrow's digital channels, including web, mobile and IoT. From desktops to smart phones, from kiosks to smart watches, from billboards to jumbotrons, from dashboards to VR headsets – content is delivered with the push of a button and optimized for every screen, device, and channel.
Headquarters: Denver, CO, USA
Number of employees: 134
Company Overview: Crownpeak provides the leading, enterprise-grade, cloud-first Digital Experience Management (DXM) platform. The Crownpeak DXM platform empowers Fortune 2000 companies to quickly and easily create, deploy and optimize customer experiences across global digital touchpoints at scale. Besides featuring content management, personalization, search, and hosting, it is the only digital experience platform that includes built-in Digital Quality Management (DQM) to ensure brand integrity, best practices, and web accessibility compliance. Recently, Crownpeak acquired Evidon, the leading provider of simple technical solutions to complex digital Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC) challenges, including a new Universal Consent Platform, designed to help companies comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA
Number of employees: 18
Company overview: Builder.io enables teams to build and optimize digital experiences on any site or app. No coding required, and developer approved.
Headquarters: Miami, FL, USA
Number of employees: 28
Company overview: dotCMS empowers users to build, deliver, and scale memorable and lasting customer experiences with their cloud-based or on-premise content management system. Used by Fortune 500 companies, SMBs, and digital agencies alike, dotCMS enables organizations to create, reuse, store and manage content with key features, including content authoring, multi-channel deployment, role-based access, REST-APIs, workflows, and analytics. dotCMS allows marketing teams to take control of their content with a NoCode authoring environment, including drag and drop builders for content, templates, layouts and more. Managers can use the system’s search feature to retrieve documents as well as index content and assets of a website. Additionally, the built-in SEO tool helps teams analyze keywords, compare pages, and optimize website visibility across various search engines. Built as an API-first platform, dotCMS offers best-of-breed capabilities that mean users can easily integrate with third-party applications they already use like Marketo, Hubspot, Salesforce, SAP, Magento, Google Analytics, and more.
Headquarters: Lexington, MA, USA
Number of employees: 20
Company overview: e-Spirit™—maker of the FirstSpirit Digital Experience Platform and best-in-class hybrid headless CMS—helps businesses engage customers and increase revenue with personalized, content-rich digital experiences anytime, anywhere. Savvy digital marketers across all industry sectors rely on the FirstSpirit platform for individualized and synchronized content delivery across all channels to differentiate their companies and compel their users to action. e-Spirit’s FirstSpirit Digital Experience Platform, offered through a SaaS or on-premises model, helps businesses engage customers and increase revenue with personalized, content-rich digital experiences anytime, anywhere. Savvy digital marketers across all industry sectors rely on the FirstSpirit platform—which includes a hybrid headless CMS, AI-driven personalization and omnichannel marketing capabilities—for individualized and synchronized content delivery across all channels to differentiate their companies and compel their users to action. e-Spirit, a Crownpeak company, has offices in the US, Europe and Asia Pacific. Customers include international brands and corporations such as BASF, Bosch, Belk, GNC, Nintendo, Olympus, Santander Bank, Carter’s, and many others.
Headquarters: Czech Republic
Number of employees: 245
Company overview: Founded in 2004, Kentico Software is a software vendor with 17-year experience in developing the best way to work with content. They are proud of being a Czech company with global impact that, without any external funding, managed to develop two products that help you tell your stories —Kentico Xperience and Kentico Kontent. We are headquartered in the Czech Republic with offices in the US, UK, Netherlands, Singapore, and Australia. They have 1,000 digital solution partners and our products power 30,000 websites across 120 countries. Customers include Gibson, Starbucks, Ingram Micro, Mazda, Kingspan, Hyundai, Vogue, and Allergan. Kentico Xperience is a fully integrated digital experience platform (DXP) combining content management system (CMS), digital commerce and digital marketing including marketing automation and personalization in a single comprehensive platform. Mid-market clients love Xperience because it helps them deliver complex digital experience to their customers. #DXP recognized by analysts Kentico Kontent is a recognized leader in headless CMS that empowers enterprise content teams to manage all their content in a single repository while freeing developers to build engaging digital experience by using the latest technologies of their choice. #NoCompromises with #ComposableDXP
Headquarters: Basel, Switzerland
Number of employees: 177
Company overview: Magnolia is a leading digital experience software company. They help brands outsmart their competition through better customer experiences and faster DX projects. Get full headless flexibility and seamless workflows across best-of-breed digital experience stacks. Global leaders such as Tesco, Avis, Generali and the New York Times all rely on Magnolia for maximum reliability, high-speed project implementation and exceptional omnichannel experiences.
CMS Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA
Number of employees: 172
Company overview: Netlify is a Platform as a Service that integrates and automates all services that go in to making modern web projects. From free personal blogs to huge enterprise solutions, Netlify provides instant global performance.
Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA
Number of employees: 36
Company overview: Prismic provides a headless CMS with an API. They aim to simplify editing content on your website and make work enjoyable for developers, marketers, and content teams.
Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA
Number of employees: 58
Company overview: Sanity is the platform for structured content that lets teams build exceptional digital experiences. By treating content as data, modern organizations use their APIs to build optimal editing workflows and share content between systems to increase digital velocity. Their mission is to be the most versatile system for creating and distributing digital content to any device, application or channel.
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Next, we look at traditional CMS vendors that can be run in Headless mode (again, in alphabetical order):
Headquarters: Boston, MA, USA
Number of employees: 1,173 (note: Acquia provides a portfolio of software solutions, including but not limited to CMS)
Company overview: Acquia is the open digital experience platform that enables organizations to build, host, analyze, and communicate with their customers at scale through websites and digital applications. As the trusted open source leader, they use adaptive intelligence to produce better business outcomes for CX leaders.
Headquarters: San Jose, CA, USA
Number of employees: over 28k (note: Adobe provides a portfolio of software solutions, including but not limited to CMS)
Company overview: Adobe is the global leader in digital media and digital marketing solutions. Their creative, marketing, and document solutions empower everyone – from emerging artists to global brands – to bring digital creations to life and deliver immersive, compelling experiences to the right person at the right moment for the best results. In their own words: “In short, Adobe is everywhere, and we’re changing the world through digital experiences.”
Headquarters: Mountain View, CA, USA
Number of employees: 608 (note: Boomreach provides a portfolio of software solutions, including but not limited to CMS)
Company overview: The Bloomreach Experience Platform (brX) competes in three core categories: Engagement (CDP and marketing automation), Content (headless content and experience management), and Discovery (e-commerce search, merchandising, recommendations, and SEO). They connect both customer data and product data to personalize all customer touch-points, leveraging our patented AI to recommend, predict, and segment. This empowers the marketer to create individual experiences, increase revenue, strengthen customer loyalty, and improve efficiency. With a global footprint, Bloomreach powers over 25% of all e-commerce experiences across the US and UK, and supports 300+ global enterprises including Neiman Marcus, CapitalOne, Staples, NHS Digital, Bosch, Puma, and Marks & Spencer. Their global network of certified partners includes Accenture Interactive, WPP, and market-leading commerce platforms.
Headquarters: Hamburg, Germany
Number of employees: 143
Company overview: CoreMedia is the company behind Content Cloud, the product that empowers marketing professionals to master the rapid rollout of personalized, content-rich global campaigns without the need to code. Content Cloud makes brands more agile and enables them to successfully stage more product drops per year with less resources and higher quality. CoreMedia Content Cloud also provides a powerful platform for frontend and backend developers to innovate. CoreMedia Content Cloud empowers developers to build personalized experiences and integrate their own choice of best-of-breed services with ease. CoreMedia Content Cloud is architected to be the "missing piece" for both headless content and commerce systems, as well as existing eCommerce and Marketing applications which typically lack sophisticated tools for creating and previewing content-rich digital experiences. CoreMedia Content Cloud is an open, best-of breed, API-driven solution that combines a headless content repository with an advanced Web-based UI that allows editors to access content from any source and preview front-end customer experiences in real time. CoreMedia Content Cloud’s omnichannel content delivery engine can expose content in a media-neutral format to be rendered by any target channel – from websites and mobile apps to point-of-sale kiosks and shelf displays. CoreMedia Content Cloud ships with a set of pre-built productized integrations with leading eCommerce and marketing tools including IBM Watson Commerce, SAP Commerce Cloud, Salesforce Commerce Cloud, and Elastic Path.
Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA
Number of employees: 1,663
Company overview: Sitecore delivers a digital experience platform that empowers the world’s smartest brands to build lifelong relationships with their customers. A highly decorated industry leader, Sitecore is the only company bringing together content, commerce, and data into one connected platform that delivers millions of digital experiences every day. Leading companies including American Express, ASOS, Carnival Cruise Lines, Kimberly-Clark, L’Oréal and Volvo Cars rely on Sitecore to provide more engaging, personalized experiences for their customers. Website: www.sitecore.com
In conclusion, a “headless” approach to your Content Management can offer tremendous benefits, in terms of the additional flexibility and agility in how you configure and manage your website content. But going headless is not for everyone, as it can sometimes introduce additional complexity into your application architecture.
Elastic Path provides a Composable, API-first, Headless Commerce Platform, so we are admittedly biased to a “Headless” approach, but we tried our best to provide an honest view of the pros and cons of “going headless” in general, whether for CMS, eCommerce, or any other application use-case. Also, given that our digital commerce platform is CMS-agnostic, we work with almost all of the CMS vendors listed in this article.
Topics: digital, platform, company, experiences, overview, cms, management, content, systems, headless, website, vendors, best.
BigCommerce Doubles Down on Headless Commerce with BloomReach, Sitecore, Adobe Experience Manager, Drupal and More
Today, we are excited to announce additional headless heads for ecommerce brands of all sizes as a front-end-agnostic headless checkout…
Topics: aem, content, commerce, experience, platform, bloomreach, frontend, experiences, wordpress, brands, bigcommerce, headless, sitecore.
COVID-19 pivot: Travel unicorn Klook sees jump in staycations
Spring 2020 was gloomy for Klook. As countries closed their borders and went into complete or partial lockdown, the SoftBank-backed travel platform saw its revenue plummet by as much as 90% through March and April. The World Travel and Tourism Council said in April that the coronavirus could put up to 100 million jobs in […]
Topics: business, techcrunch, million, tourism, jump, pivot, things, unicorn, world, worldwide, klook, covid19, sees, experiences, staycations, peoples, travel.
Carrefour and Google to partner in online retail initiative
Carrefour and Google have formed a strategic partnership to develop innovative online shopping solutions.
Topics: carrefour, france, shopping, assistant, companies, initiative, google, experiences, partnership, online, partner, retail, including.
CommerceCo Recap: Tailor-made Shopping Experiences
When eBay and Amazon were founded, in 1995, ecommerce pioneers worried that pictures of products would never provide the same experience as handling a product on a rack. Ecommerce has generally overcome this challenge, but there are still products that are more difficult to present online.
Topics: shirt, tailormade, shopping, shirts, press, options, commerceco, products, physical, instore, madetoorder, online, recap, experiences, j.
Community, Commerce, and Commitment at MagentoLive Europe 2018
Check out the coolest moments from Barcelona
Topics: europe, commitment, adobe, experiences, mleu, ideas, partners, commerce, community, magentolive, shantanu, magento.
Conversational analytics are about to change customer experiences forever
Today, companies can capture intent data through conversational interfaces for proactive customer interactions and hyper-personalized experiences.
Topics: intent, forever, customers, conversational, companies, experiences, change, analytics, interfaces, data, techcrunch, customer, ai.
Create Better Shopping Experiences With Magento Commerce
The latest release enables merchants to create exceptional shopping experiences that minimize cart abandonment
Topics: amazon, abandonment, rates, create, experiences, shoppers, commerce, customers, cart, pay, shopping, better, magento, shipping.
Creative Segmentation to Elevate Customer Experience This Holiday Season
Go beyond sales and promotions to captivate customers
Topics: customer, segmentation, creative, season, sales, experiences, shopping, digital, ecommerce, experience, instore, customers, elevate, holiday, online.
Customers Big & Small Can ‘Expand The Experience’ With Adobe + Magento
Highlights from General Session 1 at Adobe’s Imagine 2019 event in Las Vegas
Topics: experiences, platform, adobe, customer, small, cloud, customers, expand, experience, gary, magento, big, commerce.
Delivering Superior Merchant Experiences
Latest release of Magento Commerce to deliver best-in-class B2C and B2B shopping experiences that accelerate sales
Topics: experiences, tools, inventory, mobile, rates, magento, conversion, merchants, merchant, commerce, payments, superior, delivering.
Four steps to enhance personalised shopper experiences
Every consumer has a unique preference, so here’s how retailers can enhance the shopper experience.
Topics: experiences, experience, online, brand, sales, shopper, content, enhance, customers, product, marketing, brands, personalised, steps, retail.
Frictionless Commerce – the future of customer experience is seamless
As we close out 2018, there’s a lot of new experiences (like checkout-free stores), surprising acquisitions (like the Amazon/Whole Foods...
Topics: experiences, shift, brands, future, video, consumers, voice, devices, voiceactivated, customer, experience, frictionless, seamless, commerce.
FullStory raises $103M at a $1.8B valuation to combat rage clicks on websites and apps
Even with all the years of work that have been put into improving how screen-based interfaces work, our experiences with websites, mobile apps and any other interactive service you might use still often come up short: we can’t find what we want, we’re bombarded with exactly what we don’t need or the flow is just […]
Topics: websites, customers, clicks, customer, apps, 18b, raises, tools, rage, experiences, valuation, techcrunch, combat, round, experience, fullstory, data, company, digital.
Going Headless: Governing Content and Capabilities Guest Blog
The need for purpose-built marketing capabilities has created a demand for modular backend services, resulting in a move away from monolithic Digital Experience Platform (DXP) solutions. Expectations for Digital Experience (DX) are now greater than ever, and we continue to see growing budgets dedicated to digital transformation. To set our clients up for success, we work with them to provide the most flexibility from the start. This includes orchestrating content from multiple sources as well as leveraging Machine Learning to unlock the value of customer data and drive one-to-one interactions across channels at scale.
Adopting a decoupled architecture lets us combine capabilities from multiple vendors and capabilities developed internally. This gives us the ability to produce solutions tailored to our client's business that can be extended over time as capabilities become available. Single platform DXPs offer predictability by providing best practices around implementation and workflows. The finite set of capabilities, however, that make a DXP predictable becomes an obstacle as needs evolve.
Decoupled systems help solve some of the limitations of the single-platform approach. Combining backend services allows organizations to compose the best-of-breed solutions tailored to their needs. But tailored fit and adaptability provided by decoupling systems create the need for additional governance since we lose the guardrails that we get with a single-system solution.
When we say headless, decoupled, or composable, we are talking about business capabilities delivered through APIs that can be combined into larger solutions. Moving to a composable architecture brings power and flexibility, but also requires a more API-centric mindset, and in many cases, a new way of doing things therefore we need to approach it as a program for it to scale. If we look at large-scale adoption, here are things to consider as you get going:
Have business goals and sponsorship;
Start with a strategic pilot;
Identify a team(s) with proper skills and augment where necessary;
Design the Experience Architecture;
Have a Design System;
Establish Experience Operations.
Define Your Goals
You will need to clearly define a set of goals around headless and the business value they unlock. Goals should be easy to understand and ideally have a value and be bound by a cost and date, something like, "The improved user experience delivered by decoupling systems will increase conversion by 3 percent during holiday peak." Whether it's capabilities, cost, and/or agility, get it out there. It will serve as a general reference and provide plans to demonstrate value in early releases.
The move to a decoupled system will impact how departments collaborate, and communicating goals clearly across the organization is key to getting the alignment needed for success. Leadership needs to buy into the broad vision early and understand the near-term goals to provide the support required to make the project successful.
A headless program will span multiple teams and will most certainly face some initial headwinds. Aligning on the long-term aspirational vision, some achievable short-term goals, timing, and the value you’re looking to bring to the business will help leaders embrace the program and help teams understand how it will impact them.
You will be explaining things often and to a variety of audiences. We recommend using clear language that is accessible to all levels. Having shared goals defined, understood, and supported by leadership will get the buy-in needed to succeed and avoid many headaches.
Run a Pilot Program
A successful pilot simplifies messaging by quickly demonstrating value, building the trust needed to unlock the budgets for more significant initiatives. A well-designed pilot avoids the institutional headwinds common to high-visibility projects by acting as the reference model for introducing new processes and capabilities.
Making the pilot low-friction and showing tangible results provides valuable evidence needed for internal stakeholders to buy-in. A well-designed pilot illustrates the story around the tools, gets adjacent teams thinking about their use cases, and avoids getting people too caught up in technical details. Make it something you can deliver in less than a quarter.
In contrast, more significant initiatives have more organizational inertia to overcome and get more political. When taking a monolithic or a hybrid approach, where we weave headless features into a preexisting system, we increase the institutional complexity, slowing progress and introducing risk. By starting with a successful high-visibility pilot, you demystify the tools which reduce stress and prepare the organization for some of the operational change associated with updated workflows.
Assemble a Team
There is no out-of-the-box for headless. The primary team will start to establish the standard practices around decoupled systems and support them through enablement. That will require experienced business and technical leads with a clear vision defined by business goals and the resources to deliver the vision with fidelity.
The initial team will be responsible for architecting and delivering the pilot and the vision for expansion. A decoupled architecture requires heightened collaboration between creative and technical departments. Therefore, the primary team will need to have the right cross-functional hard and soft skills to bridge any communication gaps. As the project evolves out of the pilot phase, units that can operate autonomously will start working more closely as a shared core model gets established.
It is essential to have the right mix of institutional knowledge and experience to hit the ground running. A standard solution is to set up hybrid teams using both internal and external resources. Use consultants to act as guides for the initial phases. Experience is critical, use contracted talent to augment your internal team as they develop expertise on the platforms and best practices.
Also, contract resources to smooth any spike in resources needed to launch the initiative. Individual product vendors can provide excellent guidance within their platform. Still, their expertise and worldview remain skewed to their product, so they are not incentivized to guide the high-level architecture.
Define your Taxonomy and Experience Architecture
Content is the fundamental building block of a composable architecture. We need a structured approach to content in order to drive successful journeys. The taxonomy formalizes how we classify and catalog content. By standardizing the types of content and structure, we can work at scale. The taxonomy gives us the structure to define metadata which simplifies content management and provides the hooks needed to deliver connected cross-channel experiences, personalization, and machine learning, across touchpoints and business units. A well-crafted taxonomy gives us the hooks we will need to introduce the advanced features the business is asking for.
Experience Architecture articulates the user journeys we need to deliver and acts as a guide for mapping personalized content. We have to account for evolving content and data sources like UGC, search, analytics, customer data, machine learning, and an array of personalization engines which will be combined to deliver contextual experiences across channels.
We have the content and signals to design highly personalized customer experiences. But we need to account for the business user experience. There need to be well-defined processes and interfaces for business users or journey creation will become a bottleneck. An optimal authoring experience is intuitive and designed around how the business operates, allowing team members to do routine tasks independently without hopping between systems. The internal authoring experience that manages interactions with back-end systems needs to be defined in a way that remains intuitive. The Experience Architecture and taxonomy give us what we need to define the high-level architecture that can evolve as our marketing capabilities grow over time.
Establish Design System
Design Systems unlock the communication between marketing and engineering. To deliver personalized content, marketing needs to deliver more content faster. Creative has a different cadence than engineering, which becomes a point of contention. A solid design system that embraces the principles of Atomic Design provides a vocabulary that abstracts content creation from the engineering needed to deliver it.
A complete design system lets the marketing folks design, author, and publish across channels without the help of a developer. But more importantly, it provides a framework for marketing to request enhancements using a common language. It then allows engineering to develop the enhancements with technical rigor in a reusable way that integrates with company data and personalization platforms. Finally, the design system establishes the vocabulary that engineering can work with to build, support, and evolve the tools marketing uses all day.
A design system is a set of standards to manage design at scale by reducing redundancy while creating a shared language and visual consistency across different pages and channels. - Nielsen Norman Group
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Experience Operations: How We Deliver Experiences at Scale
Experience Operations (XOps) streamlines the operational tasks required to deliver experiences with better velocity and stability. Analogous to DevOps, XOps is a set of processes that optimize the reliable deployment of new and updated experiences by combining QA and Operations with content creation.
With a defined experience architecture and design system, we have a blueprint for building journeys and their associated experiences. But we need processes that give business users' ability to access capabilities and assemble experiences regardless of the mix of content services available. We also need to provide creatives the agility to design experiences while fostering creativity and experimentation.
As the platform scales with the business, we need to maintain delivery and authoring usability. We need an architecture that can grow as our audience grows while delivering complex experiences during peak traffic. We also need a simple and powerful authoring experience to serve many business users with minimal enablement.
Using Packaged Business Capabilities (PBC), we can break monolithic systems into logical blocks of composable elements that can pivot to the needs of the business and gracefully scale. In addition, building content and experience pipelines simplify and accelerate production by automating testing and deployment at the experience level. And finally, by breaking functionality into smaller business-specific components, we can build continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) tools that bring speed and reliability.
Composable Architecture Offers a Competitive Advantage
Successfully implementing a composable architecture offers a competitive advantage by adding capabilities, increasing marketing agility, and unlocking creativity. Moving to a decoupled architecture can be complex, but with a bit of planning and solid communication, it is possible to demonstrate value quickly. Most importantly, it unlocks customer value by providing the best-in-class user experience they deserve.
Topics: guest, commerce, pilot, business, deliver, experiences, content, blog, experience, architecture, need, design, capabilities, headless.
Google AMP Helps You Make Stunning Web Experiences. Here's How.
Earlier today, I learned about a type of page that would load "almost instantaneously." Well, with a rap like that, I had to test this out for myself. So, I went to Tasty, a cooking website, on my desktop and on my phone to test the loading times for each. The homepage for both took one second to load and display. That was impressive.
Topics: work, web, helps, text, heres, download, images, amp, google, experiences, page, load, pages, stunning.
Groupon stops selling goods
Groupon has announced it will stop selling goods. Instead, it wants to focus on the local experiences market opportunity. Groupon announced the transformation news after a disappointing fourth quarter. “We did not deliver the financial performance we expected during the fourth quarter and we recognize we must move swiftly to… Continue reading
Topics: market, selling, online, experiences, stops, fourth, company, focus, webinar, groupon, goods.
How Digital Experience Platforms (DXP) Help Brands Create Memorable Experiences (Through Multiple Customer Channels)
You’re watching a basketball game on your favorite sports app. Your favorite player hits a game winner. You celebrate on…
Topics: business, touchpoints, platforms, multiple, dxp, content, customer, brands, help, memorable, digital, deliver, experiences, experience, create, dxps.
How Swisscom lost its “head” to create a unified commerce experience
Swisscom was struggling to get new offerings to market fast and the overall customer experience was becoming fragmented. Since they had used a full stack commerce platform, their heavy back-end systems were slowing down customer-facing front-end innovation.
Topics: create, head, experience, unified, experiences, headless, systems, platform, customers, customer, swisscom, commerce, record, lost.
Lalamove teams with Klook in Hong Kong for food-delivery service
Hong Kong on-demand delivery startup Lalamove and travel-activities booking-platform Klook have collaborated in a new express food-delivery service.
Topics: teams, food, service, local, activities, kong, lalamove, experiences, delivery, fooddelivery, consumers, klook, hong.
Magento 2.3.4: Building More Engaging Customer Experiences
To kick off the new decade, Magento Commerce and Magento Open Source 2.3.4 arrive today to help merchants build more engaging customer experiences that exceed expectations, keep customers returning, and drive sustained growth. Read more.
Topics: building, merchants, magento, customer, pwa, builder, studio, stock, adobe, experiences, engaging, release, customers, page.
Master the Art of B2B Mobile Commerce with These 4 Tips
Mobile is changing the way people research and eventually purchase products and services. Indeed, the speed, simplicity, and evolving features and functionality of the devices we use have transformed the buying experience and mobile commerce is finally moving to the mainstream. Read how you can master the art with these 4 tips.
Topics: art, tips, experience, mcommerce, commerce, experiences, b2b, services, mobile, payment, master, customers, buying.
Mastercard acquired and shut down IfOnly, an experiences marketplace hit by COVID-19
Travel has undoubtedly been one of the industries hardest hit in the coronavirus pandemic, constrained by restrictions on how people can move between and within countries, many venues closing, new rules to minimise gatherings, shrinking economies, and a general reluctance among consumers to engage in getting out and about. One startup in the space has […]
Topics: tours, platform, startup, acquired, techcrunch, priceless, wake, company, hit, ifonly, marketplace, covid19, experiences, shut, site, mastercard.
Maximizing Your Adobe Summit & Magento Imagine Digital Experiences
We are grateful for the understanding, support, and flexibility our customers, partners, and developers have shown us over the past couple of weeks as our teams have worked around the clock to reimagine Adobe Summit and Magento Imagine as a set of digital experiences. Read more.
Topics: adobe, content, digital, sessions, experiences, maximizing, magento, breakout, imagine, weeks, summit, experience.
Product Packaging: How Top Brands Delight Customers With Memorable Unboxing Experiences
For ecommerce businesses, the shipped package represents the most direct touch point and connection with a customer. It also happens to be one of the most underused marketing opportunities.More
Topics: unboxing, memorable, customers, packaging, brand, custom, experience, ecommerce, shipping, product, experiences, brands, delight, boxes, products.
Spinn taps into $40M to create better coffee brewing, discovery experiences
When you are a coffee lover, taste matters, and Spinn is brewing up some fresh funding to bring connected coffee to new customers through its hardware-enabled coffee marketplace.
Topics: funding, machines, cup, machine, rode, round, discovery, 40m, experiences, taps, spinn, coffee, techcrunch, better, spark, create, brewing.
Study Shows Digital Commerce Maturity Among Consumer Brand Manufacturers Leads To Revenue Growth
A new report, commissioned by Adobe in partnership with 451 Research, focuses on the high-level IT trends, digital transformation pain points and opportunities, and technologies exerting influence over the digital commerce experience. It also offers a road map to achieving global digital commerce excellence. Read more.
Topics: customer, technologies, experiences, transformation, revenue, shows, leads, consumer, maturity, commerce, study, leaders, growth, manufacturers, digital, strategy, businesses.
Target marketing: Taking digital knowledge into real-life experiences
While it’s an exciting time for marketers as we leverage personal insights to add relevance to modern marketing experiences, we also need to be mindful that we upkeep the highest standards of both content and privacy.
Topics: experiences, taking, advertise, technology, knowledge, ad, digital, target, networks, reallife, exciting, marketers, companies, marketing, advertising, customers.
The Future of Retail Lies with those who Personalize Brick-and-Mortar
The retail industry started off 2018 with a big priority on personalization – it was set to serve as the...
Topics: app, relevant, brickandmortar, retail, lies, experiences, shopping, retailers, store, mobile, retailer, personalize, personalization, future, instore.
The Limitless Opportunities of Experience-Driven Commerce
Originally posted on The Adobe Blog
There’s never been a more exciting time to be in commerce. Whether you’re a consumer brand or a manufacturer, whether you sell to millennials on Instagram or procurement officers, there’s never been a more perfect storm of change—or a more perfect confluence of opportunities to seize.
Topics: business, experiences, brand, experiencedriven, customer, digital, commerce, companies, customers, experience, opportunities, limitless, adobe.
The Ultimate Guide to Experiential Marketing
As a marketer, you’ve struck gold when you can engage your audience in an organic and meaningful way. Going a little further, you’ve found the Holy Grail when those engaged audiences are so intrigued that they voluntarily share those experiences with others. If you do it right, that’s exactly what […]
Topics: event, marketing, company, online, campaign, campaigns, experiences, guide, ultimate, consumers, experiential, right.
The Ultimate Guide to Facebook Canvas Ads
Nowadays, Facebook is one of the top platforms for digital advertising -- in fact, 93% of social media advertisers use Facebook ads on a regular basis.
Topics: guide, campaign, experiences, ads, instant, youre, products, experience, canvas, ultimate, facebook, ad, campaigns.
The Ultimate Guide to Virtual Reality
Imagine your favorite vacation. Where was it? What did you do? Who went with you? How was the weather? What were you wearing? Can you remember every little detail? If you're anything like me, you can remember the overall vacation, maybe some specific moments here and there, but most of the fine points have faded. It's a bummer, right?
Topics: experience, virtual, help, vr, experiences, technology, content, ultimate, users, guide, reality, create.
Three big takeaways from the Consumer Census 2019
As a retail marketer you want to provide your customers with “great” experiences. This much is obvious,but lies behind amazing customer experiences? We spoke to 4,000 consumers about their expectations, likes and dislikes in our latest piece of research, which you can download from the Ometria Academy. Here are the top 3 takeaways.
Topics: takeaways, experiences, retailers, data, emails, consumers, messages, marketing, consumer, census, great, big, customers, ai.
Top Market-Driven B2B eCommerce Trends of 2021
B2B eCommerce has rapidly been changing over the past few years, and 2021 is no exception. With the disruption of COVID-19, new trends have emerged, and the eCommerce landscape is transforming. B2B companies are implementing new strategies to adapt to a changing market and take advantage of a growing online customer base, characterized by rising mobile usage, new expectations for personalization and self-service, and increasing demand for digital connectivity. Below are some of the major Market-Driven B2B eCommerce trends of 2021, as well as some key calls to action for B2Bs to optimize their eCommerce strategy.
1) M-Commerce is on the rise:
Mobile has continued to transform the B2B landscape, with more and more consumers demanding seamless, aesthetic, and flexible mobile experiences. Rather than simply comparing product offerings and services across businesses in an industry, consumers are increasingly comparing the digital experiences they have had and have come to expect. Google recently partnered with The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) to research how mobile has been impacting B2B customers and organizations. Key data shows that:
Mobile influences an average of over 40% of revenue in leading B2B organizations.
50% of current B2B search queries are made on smartphones, with BCG expecting that figure to grow to 70% by 2020.
Daily mobile usage per B2B worker is expected to increase from 2 hours to 3 hours, driven by millennials, Gen Z, and the increasing use of smartphones by older workers.
More than 90% of B2B buyers reporting a superior mobile experience claim that they would be more likely to repurchase from the same vendor, while only 50% claim so when reporting a poor mobile experience.
The effect of mobile on B2B eCommerce is expected to continue accelerating, with B2B leaders doubling down on mobile commerce to increase engagement, drive traffic, and boost customer loyalty.
BCG characterizes these trends by the emergence of “a new generation of B2B customers” that “look for the same digital experiences they encounter as consumers”. These individuals have become accustomed to using mobile devices for work, value multitasking across multiple devices, and have shifted away from desktops and laptops in favor of smartphones.
Marketers have previously claimed that there is insufficient research to justify prioritization and investment into mobile experiences, citing low mobile conversion rates and poor mobile marketing performances. In reality, while mobile still accounts for a smaller fraction of aggregate sessions on most eCommerce storefronts, B2B mobile leaders are increasingly incorporating M-Commerce into their marketing mix. This has helped them to develop and bolster existing customer relationships, establish their brand for the consideration of prospective clients, and poise themselves to capitalize on the rapid growth of mobile towards reaping future benefits.
BCG explains how slow-moving companies that fail to build mobile-optimized experiences and improve mobile integration are at a serious risk of being left behind. B2B businesses should avoid succumbing to “Mobile Doom Loop” thinking, signalled by:
Doubts surrounding mobile ROI
Fears of mobile underperformance and establishment of a new medium
Prioritizing channels with larger contributors to current traffic
As of 2021, mobile has continued to expand and proliferate the B2B eCommerce space, and its growth will likely extend over the coming years. B2B marketers must boost their mobile efforts to capitalize on this rapid trend. Here are 5 calls to action for businesses hoping to accelerate their mobile integration:
Track buyer experiences across media and devices
Invest into building visual and frictionless mobile experiences for customers
Adapt data collection to a company’s business model and size
Increase mobile advertising while adjusting marketing strategies based on results
Simply the B2B purchase process on mobile, de-emphasizing text in favor of rich media
2) Customers are showing a preference for Digital Self-Service:
B2B buyers increasingly desire control over their eCommerce experiences, with a strong preference for self-service; seamless shopping experiences in their personal lives have shaped their B2B buying expectations. The COVID-19 pandemic has further pushed B2B sales towards self-service, and research shows that digital self-service will likely remain a dominant element of the B2B go-to-market model.
A report published by McKinsey & Company earlier this year detailed results from a global survey, highlighting key takeaways for B2B businesses aiming to adapt their practices in the wake of the pandemic. Results show that:
When asked what kind of interaction was most helpful in choosing a supplier, 47% of respondents preferred some form of online self-service. 25% chose “supplier website”, while 22% selected “online material from supplier”.
When asked what ordering method they preferred, 46% of respondents chose “using a supplier’s website”.
When asked “How do you currently interact with sales reps from your company’s suppliers during the 4 stages of interaction”, an average of 34% of respondents chose digital self-service for the Research, Evaluation, Ordering, and Re-Ordering stages. In comparison, results for 2020 showed an average of only 29% for self-service across all 4 interaction stages, with a 12% increase for self-service in the Research and Evaluation stages.
83% of B2B decision makers feel that the new selling models emphasizing remote interactions and online self-service are as effective as or more effective than pre-COVID-19 models that prioritized direct interactions.
87% of B2B decision makers believe that these shifts in selling models will likely sustain 12+ months after the COVID-19 pandemic.
The results of the report show that in the post-COVID world, B2B customers are shifting towards digital interactions and self-service as their primary means of researching and evaluating products. For B2B manufacturers, enabling customers to perform tasks such as ordering, checking stock inventory, and paying invoices online has collectively lowered service costs. Digital self-serve and remote channels free up businesses’ CSRs and sales representatives for higher value services. As a result, customer relationships are strengthened further, as organizations can now allocate time and resources for when customers truly need support.
By becoming the new standard, self-service has re-vitalized B2B operations and resource allocation, maintaining its majority hold despite certain geographies now reopening in-person operations and direct sales efforts. Research conducted by Forrester supports and enforces this trend, showing that:
53% of customers prefer to gather information online by themselves
59% of customers prefer not to interact with a sales representative
74% of customers believe that buying from a website is more convenient
86% of customers prefer self-service tools to order, re-order, and check order statuses
93% of customers prefer to buy online when they have decided what to buy
Digital self-service has become the new “normal”, dominating the B2B buyer journey and driving B2B manufacturers towards implementing customer self-service portals. Here are 5 calls to action for B2B organizations hoping to re-engineer their sales efforts towards digital self-service:
Integrate eCommerce catalogs with rich media, including photos, videos, interactive content, product comparison features, and various self-service tools to support the research and evaluation stages.
Provide responsive interfaces and intuitive commands that help buyers save time during the ordering and re-ordering stages.
Implement customer self-service portals with the optimal ERP-integrated solution, enabling post-order care that supports independent tracking, invoices, and payment.
Adopt an Agile approach and apply it to self-service digital solutions, empowering adaptability, flexibility, and speed when the digital transformation process.
Incorporate the voice of the customer while developing self-service digital solutions, gathering feedback to address customer needs and realize requirements prior to rollout.
3) Omnichannel Experiences are the new standard:
When given the choice of in-person, remote, and e-commerce channels, buyers have expressed the desire for all three. Omnichannel retailing has become a cornerstone of global B2B sales, establishing itself as the new standard, not the exception.
The COVID-19 pandemic has anchored omnichannel interactions in B2B sales, with businesses realizing the importance of omnichannel to centralize various sales channels and customer relationships together. The rise of M-Commerce and mobile, increased social media engagement, and consumer’s growing affinity for self-service have all emphasized the importance of B2B businesses establishing a cohesive omnichannel experience.
McKinsey published a report earlier this year highlighting the growing impact of omnichannel on B2B sales. Data shows that:
Approximately 80% B2B leaders say that omnichannel is as or more effective than traditional methods
83% of B2B leaders believe that omnichannel selling is a more successful way to prospect and secure new business than traditional sales approaches
85% of US B2B leaders claimed that new omnichannel-based sales models were equally as effective or more effective than previous sales models, indicating a 43% increase compared to the previous year
20% of B2B buyers said that they would be willing to spend more than $500,000 in a fully remote/digital sales model
11% of all B2B buyers would spend more than $1 million in a fully remote/digital sales model
64% of B2Bs intend to increase the number of hybrid sellers over the next six months
85% of B2Bs expect hybrid sellers will be the most common sales role in their organization over the next three years
Omnichannel is only expected to grow over the coming years, already proving to be as or more effective than traditional sales methods. This pattern has held true across various geographies, industries, and markets, prominent in countries such as South Korea, Spain, China, and the USA. B2B leaders are confident that investing in and expanding on omnichannel experiences will lead to greater success in a post-pandemic world, reflected by increased expenditure in IT hardware, software, and digital marketing, all directed at optimizing omnichannel retailing.
As the rate of digitization increases across various industries, it is imperative that B2B manufacturers boost their digital infrastructure to keep up with the trend towards omnichannel. McKinsey’s report also highlights two key go-to-market changes that are driving the hybridization of sales models in B2Bs:
First, although 95% companies expect to be able to connect with customers in physical locations by the beginning of 2022, only 15% of B2Bs expect in-person sales meetings to be the norm.
Second, with buyer interest and comfort in digital sales rising, e-commerce has become the most popular route to market for B2Bs, with 41% of leaders saying that it is their most effective sales route.
To effectively capitalize on the expansion of omnichannel and maximize its power, B2B organizations must first overcome some key challenges and pain points. Investment into effective infrastructure, facilitating hybrid selling, and adapting to remote operations are all important steps. Here are 3 calls-to-actions:
Make remote interactions feel intimate, genuine, and effective, providing proofs of concept, digital demos, and clear visual representations that provide an equal or superior level of insight to physical walk-throughs.
Innovate sales approaches using customer feedback, data, and consumer insights to ensure that digital transactions are not a zero-sum game
Adopt an Agile approach to facilitate quick and improved pivoting of resources
4) B2Bs are leveraging Marketplaces:
Marketplaces have been a major part of B2C eCommerce sales for years, but rapid digitization, changes in consumer preferences, and the effects of COVID-19 have led to accelerated B2B eCommerce sales via online marketplaces. In fact, B2B marketplaces are one of the fastest growing eCommerce channels, with digital sales expected to more than double over the next year.
Marketplaces have helped customers to save time and money during the Research and Evaluation stage of their buyer journeys and find a greater variety of solutions to satisfy broad needs. Furthermore, marketplaces have enabled B2B customers to enjoy streamlined shopping experiences that facilitate comparison shopping, a greater sense of security, and an overall superior user experience.
B2B marketplaces have exploded in popularity, and key analysis from a report published by Digital Commerce 360 highlights the effects of this trend:
There are now 250 B2B marketplaces, in comparison to only 70 B2B marketplaces two years ago.
Collective digital sales on commercial trading platforms and industry marketplaces will grow by 130% to $56.5 billion.
Marketplaces will account for 3.5% of all business eCommerce sales.
Furthermore, Gartner predicts that over 15% of medium-to-high-gross eCommerce brands will have deployed their own marketplaces by 2023, and 70% of all marketplaces launched by 2023 will support B2B transactions. Demand for B2B-ready marketplace management software is expected to rapidly increase in line with these trends, and it is vital that B2B manufacturers take advantage of marketplaces to further their sales.
Here are 3 calls-to-action for B2B organizations looking to leverage marketplaces:
Find and implement an effective B2B marketplace management software to facilitate the use of and expansion into digital marketplaces
Use marketplaces to build relationships with prospective clients, improve personalization efforts, and support customers during their buyer journey
Find the right marketplaces and establish your brand identity early, helping your business gain a competitive edge, differentiate your products and services, and improve your marketing efforts
2021 and Beyond:
B2B eCommerce showcased new opportunities and high growth in 2021. These are just some of the market-driven trends that represent how B2B companies are adapting to the changes caused by COVID-19, providing customers with fresh digital experiences, and leveraging new technology to deliver on buyers’ expectations. Check out our articles on the Biggest Technology-Driven and Biggest Customer-Driven B2B eCommerce Trends of 2021 to learn more about how 2021 has solidified B2B eCommerce in various industries and how B2Bs can form a new path forward.
Topics: digital, b2b, omnichannel, selfservice, sales, mobile, customers, marketdriven, experiences, trends, marketplaces, ecommerce.
ToursByLocals snaps up its first funding, C$33M, to link sightseers with guides globally
The tours and experiences market is projected to be worth $183 billion this year, and today a startup that has made inroads into the space through bootstrapping is announcing its first outside investment. ToursByLocals — which sources local guides in some 162 countries, then helps tourists search and book them for either individual or small […]
Topics: experiences, snaps, startup, tours, funding, globally, private, tritium, toursbylocals, local, sightseers, guides, tour, link, techcrunch, business, c33m.
Use Your Brand Purpose To Guide Your Customer Experience
This webinar, the first in our new “Accelerator Webinar” series aimed to help marketers understand customer needs and optimize their buying journeys, focuses on the importance of brand purpose. Read more.
Topics: experience, need, guide, experiences, series, customers, understand, purpose, customer, best, brand.
Using Brand Archetypes to Craft Unique Digital Experiences: Meet Herdl
When you begin to suspect “the way things are” in your industry no longer serves you or your customers, do you keep your head down — or buck the trend? Earlier this month we chatted with WooExpert Neuralab and today we hear from Herdl: a U.K. agency born from of a desire to shake up the status […]
Topics: woocommerce, meet, unique, wordpress, craft, digital, clients, way, projects, work, using, experiences, marketing, design, need, brand, herdl, archetypes.
Walgreens takes a minority stake in Birchbox, which will now come to its stores
Walgreens has entered into a strategic partnership with beauty-in-a-box startup Birchbox, which will involve building Birchbox experiences inside Walgreens’ stores so customers can shop and try new brands. The deal also sees Walgreens acquiring a minority equity interest in Birchbox, the companies said. The deal follows a change to Birchbox’s ownership structure reported earlier this […]
Topics: deal, takes, million, customers, minority, come, stake, brands, beauty, experience, stores, experiences, birchbox, walgreens.
We’re Committed to Helping You Realize the Power of Commerce — Without Limits
Highlights from General Session 2 at Adobe's IMAGINE 2019 event in Las Vegas.
Topics: experiences, committed, commerce, adobe, mobile, helping, limits, experience, build, magento, steve, amazon, power, end, realize.
What Benefits Will I Receive From Replatforming My Commerce Solution?
With the advancement of technology and ever evolving customer habits, many companies have been increasingly entertaining the idea of replatforming, but are still hesitant. Why? Well for starters:
The task of replatforming can quickly turn into an extensive and expensive project.
The past investment of a previous platform is hard to let go of.
And the risk of a new investment not working could cost you your job.
These are all valid reasons for contemplation, however, replatforming can bring many benefits to your company that you may be missing out on.
Benefits of Replatforming
Traditional incumbent platforms were designed to quickly spin up website only experiences to embark on your commerce journey. However, due to the rigid architecture, customization has been quite burdensome and oftentimes impossible. By replatforming to a more flexible solution that leverages MACH based technology, both your technical and business teams could benefit from having more control of designing unique commerce experiences to outpace competitors.
Every business’ ideal goal is to continuously grow and maximize on revenue. So the last thing you will want is a solution that is unable to sustain that growth. According to a study conducted by Forrester, Understanding TCO When Evaluating E-Commerce Solutions “74% of businesses have concerns that their platform will not allow them to scale properly.” These kinds of issues can cause slow load time of your website, thus providing a poor experience to customers. To mitigate this risk, you will want to consider cloud-based platforms that ensure your security but allow your solution to scale for peak demand times on your website.
Traditional platforms were designed in an all-in-one solution, where all functionality was built fit for purpose. This means one vendor provided all your commerce functionality like search, carts and checkout and content management wrapped up in one system. This was great, until other vendors became experts in each area and specialized in creating each commerce functionality to support the market. Though these are attractive, the rigidity of many platforms don’t allow these third party solutions to integrate well or even at all, with your commerce solution. By replatforming to a more agile solution that follows a best-of-breed approach, you could eradicate these limitations and integrate freely.
Consistent Experiences Across Multiple Touchpoints
As customer expectations and needs continue to evolve post the pandemic, we are seeing more and more demands for commerce experience across channels, like mobile, voice, chatbots, A/R and more. However, consistent deployment across these channels can be difficult if the frontend UI experience of your system is hardwired to the backend commerce functionality of your system. To create more flexibility for your team to deliver these experiences, you should consider replatforming to a headless commerce platform that eliminates the dependencies. This will be a game changer for customer experience and retention rate as they would have the ability to start a transaction in one place and finish it in another.
And lastly, the most critical issue that is at the top of everyone’s list, cost. Many businesses get drawn in by attractive pricing, only to be surprised by exuberant costs later down the line. Many platforms advertise cost based a standard commerce experience that was pre built it their vision for your company. However, the reality is, each business is unique and will require different changes and customizations. For the majority of these legacy platforms, making changes is the largest factor in the total cost of ownership for your solution, thus causing your eCommerce costs to be much higher than you expected. By replatforming to a Composable Commerce solution, you can reduce your total costs of ownership by approximately 47%. Composable Commerce solutions were built for change, so you can continuously innovate and optimize your solution without the risk of failure and impacting your budget.
While these benefits can be attractive, we are still aware that a replatforming project can be quite a bit of work. Therefore, you should:
Evaluate if you truly need to replatform Understand the process of replatforming Ensure your business is in the right position to undertake such a project And choose the right vendor to conduct your replatforming project
To better help with understanding your potential replatforming process, join us for a live webinar where you will learn expert tips for replatforming to a Composable Commerce Solution. Hear from replatforming experts and hosts of Re:Platform podcast, James Gurd and Paul Rogers about the top tips for both business and technical users and then hear from the Director of Digital Experience at Illumina about how they made the switch from IBM Websphere to Elastic Path.
Topics: system, commerce, business, experience, replatforming, functionality, cost, benefits, receive, experiences, platforms, solution.
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