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Top 2021 resources on headless

Best headless resource in 2021.
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  • 11 Platforms for Headless Commerce - Headless commerce separates the frontend from the backend of a brand's web presence, in an API-first architecture. Headless technology can provide significant advantages in design and performance. Here is a list of platforms that facilitate a headless approach for ecommerce merchants.
    Topics: platforms, ecommerce, frontend, headless, platform, provides, commerce, backend, storefront, api, content.
  • 7 Reasons to Consider a Headless CMS - There are many reasons for a business to consider a headless content management system. Among them are a need to use content in multiple channels, a desire for improved customization, and relief from a cluttered, conventional platform.
    Topics: app, headless, cms, business, wordpress, web, management, ecommerce, example, consider, content, reasons.
  • A Deep Dive On Monolith Platforms vs. Ecommerce Microservices vs. Headless Commerce - These days, it’s hard to spend too much time reading about ecommerce trends without stumbling on an article on microservice…
    Topics: platforms, headless, ecommerce, system, monolith, systems, deep, vs, frontend, microservices, content, architecture, commerce, dive.
  • A progressive transformation approach to commerce replatforming [infographic] - A progressive transformation with a headless solution allows you to start small with a single segmented touchpoint, product or region, and migrate at your own pace. Check out our infographic checklist to help guide you through this project.
    Topics: commerce, progressive, youve, headless, infographic, allows, solution, transformation, approach, organizations, replatforming.
  • 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.
  • Are Big Changes Coming to the Ecommerce Stack? - Headless content management systems and site generators are driving a new content-centric web. The changes could be coming to ecommerce, at scale, very soon.
    Topics: ecommerce, coming, systems, site, headless, content, management, shopify, big, platforms, product, gatsby, changes, stack.
  • 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): Amplience Headquarters: London, UK Number of employees: 134 Website: www.amplience.com 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.   Contentful Headquarters: Berlin, Germany Number of employees: 676 Website: www.contentful.com 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.”    Contentstack Headquarters: San Franisco, CA, USA Number of employees: 229 Website: www.contentstack.com 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.    Crownpeak Headquarters: Denver, CO, USA Number of employees: 134 Website: www.crownpeak.com 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).    Builder.io Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA Number of employees: 18 Website: www.builder.io Company overview: Builder.io enables teams to build and optimize digital experiences on any site or app. No coding required, and developer approved.  Dotcms Headquarters: Miami, FL, USA Number of employees: 28 Website: www.dotcms.com 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.   E-spirit Headquarters: Lexington, MA, USA Number of employees: 20 Website: www.e-spirit.com 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.    Kentico Headquarters: Czech Republic Number of employees: 245 Website: www.kentico.com 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   Magnolia Headquarters: Basel, Switzerland Number of employees: 177 Website: www.magnolia-cms.com 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.    Netlify CMS Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA Number of employees: 172 Website: www.netlify.com 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.   Prismic.io Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA Number of employees: 36 Website: www.prismic.io 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.   Sanity  Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA Number of employees: 58 Website: www.sanity.io 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.   Need help evaluating Headless CMSs? Our team of experts is ready to chat with you about your particular project requirements and recommend a headless CMS based on your unique needs. Whether you're evaluating Elastic Path or not. Chat with an expert Next, we look at traditional CMS vendors that can be run in Headless mode (again, in alphabetical order): Acquia Headquarters: Boston, MA, USA Number of employees: 1,173 (note: Acquia provides a portfolio of software solutions, including but not limited to CMS) Website: www.acquia.com 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.   Adobe Headquarters: San Jose, CA, USA Number of employees: over 28k (note: Adobe provides a portfolio of software solutions, including but not limited to CMS) Website: www.adobe.com 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.”    Bloomreach Headquarters: Mountain View, CA, USA Number of employees: 608 (note: Boomreach provides a portfolio of software solutions, including but not limited to CMS) Website: www.bloomreach.com 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.    CoreMedia Headquarters: Hamburg, Germany Number of employees: 143 Website: www.coremedia.com 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. Sitecore Headquarters: San Francisco, CA, USA Number of employees: 1,663 Website: www.sitecore.com 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 Conclusion: 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.   Disclaimer: 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.
  • Brian Beck, B2B ecommerce expert and author, on headless commerce [video] - In this short video, B2B ecommerce expert and author, Brian Beck, discusses why headless commerce is a great way for B2B organizations to future-proof their business.
    Topics: website, beck, ecommerce, think, short, headless, brian, outside, b2b, author, commerce, video, organizations, used, expert, way.
  • Chord, a headless commerce startup led by former Glossier execs, raises $18M - Last year, former Glossier executives Henry Davis and Bryan Mahoney unveiled a new e-commerce startup called Arfa. Today, they’re announcing a new vision for the company, along with a new name, new funding and an acquisition. The name first: Moving forward, the New York startup will be known as Chord, which Davis (Chord’s chairman and […]
    Topics: mahoney, offering, data, execs, commerce, chord, glossier, techcrunch, platform, davis, led, startup, 18m, ecommerce, headless, raises.
  • Chord.co Founders: Future of DTC Platforms Is Headless - Henry Davis and Bryan Mahoney anticipated in 2018 an avalanche of direct-to-consumer companies that served smaller, niche audiences. Chord, a DTC-first ecommerce platform, is their answer to bringing sophisticated, "headless" technology to smaller firms. "We like to call Chord the first headless platform with a brain," Davis told me.
    Topics: platforms, founders, future, dtc, headless, platform, brands, going, content, technology, glossier, chord, thats, chordco, customer.
  • Commercetools raises $140M at a $1.9B valuation as ‘headless’ commerce continues to boom - E-commerce these days is now a major part of every retailer’s strategy, so technology builders and platforms that are helping them compete better on digital screens are seeing a huge boost in business. In the latest turn, Commercetools — a provider of e-commerce APIs that larger retailers can use to build customized payment, check-out, social […]
    Topics: continues, commerce, ecommerce, commercetools, retailers, hoerig, valuation, growing, raises, funding, 140m, boom, lot, headless, techcrunch, million, company, 19b.
  • Do Composable Commerce Solutions Come With a - Composable Commerce leverages MACH as a part of it’s core commerce technology and thus means it will follow a Headless Commerce approach. This is great for businesses that are looking for a decoupled architecture to be able to grant them the freedom to customize without any dependencies. However, while headless commerce offers a great deal of benefits, many people are often confused about how it will work. We always get asked, “Now that you’ve removed the “head” to make it headless, where do I find it? Does the head come with Composable Commerce? Do I have to build it?” And the answer is, well yes it can come with a "head", and there are three main options you can choose from based on your specific requirements.   The first option is with an embeddable cart and checkout. This is going to be for you if you have a content site or a blog that talks about your products and services, but you have not yet turned these channels into transactional streams. By integrating an embeddable cart like Snipcart or Elastic Path’s Shopkit, customers can shop and pay for items directly from your existing website without leaving the page. The best part is it requires little to no coding knowledge or experience, is available in seconds and is easily integrated with JAMstack principles. The second option is with a Reference Store Experience. This is going to be for you if you’re looking for a compelling shopping experience right out-of-the-box . You can leverage a library of Omni-Channel Reference Experiences, spanning web, mobile, IoT, in-store, like chatbots, Alexa skill references, A/R and self checkout. These are great for businesses that want to get something up and running quickly but also want to easily change the look and feel of the store to match the brand identity and provide a seamless shopping experience across a variety of touchpoints. The third option is with a third party Content Management System. This is going to be for if you have a substantial development team and your content is mostly managed by your marketing team who is committed to constantly updating pages and content. With this option your team will be building your custom frontend and leveraging best-of-breed solutions. You can choose from a variety of Content Management vendors in the Composable Commerce Hub like Contentful, Acquia, Amplience or Bloomreach and customize your personal content experience across all channels. or If you have an existing structure, you can continue to use that to leverage a JAMstack approach for easy workflows and API calls. With the Composable Commerce approach, you will never be locked into a specific vendor, you can innovate and customize at your freedom and always swap out one for the other to find the right fit for you. In conclusion, there are many ways to get your head easily with Composable Commerce. Of course if you have a more extensive development team and want to design your frontend experience from scratch with JAMStack or any other code language, you are also welcomed to do that. If you have any more questions about integrating your frontend experience, I can always connect you with one of our internal experts, we’d be happy to help.    
    Topics: headless, composable, does, jamstack, great, solutions, team, come, content, experience, shopify, option, head, commerce.
  • Do I really have to lose my “head” to replatform my commerce solution? - If you want to stay competitive, the answer is yes. Replatforming any technology solution is never an easy undertaking –...
    Topics: replatform, head, touchpoints, really, replatforming, platform, commerce, regions, headless, solution, youll, system, lose, progressive.
  • Facebook Shops Are an Ecommerce Game Changer - When the world's largest social media network decides to become an ecommerce platform, you can bet it will impact the industry and make a difference long-term. On May 19, 2020, Facebook added ecommerce Shops to Facebook business pages and Instagram business profiles.
    Topics: product, platforms, facebook, changer, game, instagram, commerce, sellers, headless, shops, businesses, ecommerce.
  • Four Things You May Not Know About API-First Commerce - As previously published on LinkedIn API-first commerce, a.k.a. “headless commerce” is quickly becoming the talk among many commerce teams. It...
    Topics: apifirst, platform, commerce, know, businesses, traditional, legacy, things, systems, great, headless, microservices.
  • 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 .otro-blockquote{ font-size: 1.2em; width:100%; margin:50px auto; font-family:gilroy; font-style:italic; color: #555555; padding:1.2em 30px 1.2em 75px; border-left:8px solid #ea7317 ; line-height:1.6; position: relative; background:#EDEDED; } .otro-blockquote::before{ font-family:gilroy; content: "\201C"; color:#ea7317; font-size:6.5em; font-weight: 600; position: absolute; left: 2px; top:-20px; } .otro-blockquote::after{ content: ''; } .otro-blockquote span{ display:block; color:#333333; font-style: normal; font-weight: bold; margin-top:1em; } 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.
  • Headless Commerce Success Stories: 4 Brands Solving Tough Challenges with Innovative Tech - Headless commerce is the talk of ecommerce at the moment, and for good reason. For brands facing a variety of…
    Topics: commerce, saas, headless, able, ecommerce, shopping, frontend, backend, success, platform, bigcommerce.
  • Headless Commerce: A Digital Differentiator - When anything loses its head, the results are typically less than pleasant, but that’s not the case with headless commerce. Read on to learn why many merchants are warming up to the idea.
    Topics: management, apis, approach, digital, commerce, differentiator, development, headless, ecommerce, experience, merchants.
  • Headless commerce startup Swell raises $3.4M - While new headless commerce platforms are emerging all the time, Swell CEO Eric Ingram told me that it remains “really hard to do something new in e-commerce.” Specifically, he told me that most headless platforms (which offer back-end infrastructure separate from the front-end shopping experience) allow businesses to build a faster shopping experience, but they’re […]
    Topics: flexibility, told, startup, ingram, platform, technical, headless, product, swell, commerce, voydik, techcrunch, ceo, shopping, 34m, raises.
  • How Headless Commerce Prepares you for Black Friday Survival and Success [Infographic] - Our friends at Mobify have put together a handy infographic outlining how headless commerce helps mitigate 3 Black Friday challenges every ecommerce org faces: 1) traffic spikes, 2) the “code freeze” and 3) employee burnout. Mobify’s also put together an ebook The Modern Ecommerce Leader’s Guide to Black Friday 2020 — with only 260 days […]
    Topics: headless, spikes, soon, outlining, commerce, traffic, today, prepares, black, ecommerce, success, prepared, survival, infographic, modern.
  • 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.
  • How an HVACR supplier increased their speed to market and online sales with a modern ecommerce platform - By making the move to an API-driven headless commerce solution, Johnstone Supply was able to build what they want, when they want.
    Topics: ecommerce, solution, increased, market, modern, supplier, headless, commerce, johnstone, customer, business, product, speed, hvacr, platform, products, supply.
  • Italy’s Commerce Layer raises $16M led by Coatue for its headless commerce platform - “Headless” commerce — a set of tools that companies can use with their own customized front ends to build apps for selling goods and services — have become a huge business, not just because companies are seeing a bigger demand than ever before for people buying online, but because those companies are generally more focused […]
    Topics: techcrunch, coatue, 16m, raises, tools, platform, ecommerce, round, layer, headless, build, commerce, italys, companies, led, building.
  • Italy’s Commerce Layer raises $6M led by Benchmark for its headless e-commerce platform - In the world of commerce, the last few months have underscored the fact that every retailer, brand and entity that sells or distributes something needs to have a digital strategy. Today, one of the startups that’s built a platform aimed at giving them more control in that process is announcing a Series A to continue […]
    Topics: ecommerce, platform, led, benchmark, startup, raises, italys, commerce, number, techcrunch, online, investors, headless, layer, italy, fact.
  • Leverage Headless Commerce To Transform Your User Experience with Drupal Ecommerce - Drupal is among the most widely used open source content management systems around, hanging out with the likes of WordPress…
    Topics: business, drupal, initiative, content, transform, platform, bigcommerce, leverage, software, ecommerce, security, headless, commerce, experience, user.
  • Monetizing 5G with headless commerce - 5G adoption is slowly, but steadily rising; and will enable new innovative services and business models both for mass market and enterprises. To successfully sell new 5G-enabled offerings, service providers will need to find the right commerce platform to support several key requirements common across many 5G-enabled services and business models.
    Topics: service, models, sell, quality, providers, 5g, need, able, commerce, services, headless, business, monetizing.
  • Nacelle raises $4.8M for its headless e-commerce platform - As e-commerce companies aim to capitalize on the online spending boom connected to shelter-in-place and keep the party going as physical retailers open back up, more are turning their attention to how they can juice the functionality of their online storefronts and improve experiences for shoppers. Enter Nacelle, an LA-based startup in the burgeoning “headless” […]
    Topics: sites, platforms, online, users, headless, 48m, platform, techcrunch, startup, ecommerce, raises, storefronts, nacelle.
  • Shogun, a front-end e-commerce page builder, nabs $67.5M as retailers look for alternatives to marketplaces - E-commerce marketplaces continue to play a major role in how consumers buy goods online and how retailers show off and sell goods to those consumers, accounting globally for 47% of all e-commerce sales. But today, one of the startups that has built technology to help retailers build and run more direct relationships — by way […]
    Topics: headless, marketplaces, ecommerce, retailers, taylor, way, shogun, look, frontend, used, merchants, customers, nabs, builder, help, page, techcrunch, build.
  • Shopistry bags $2M to provide ‘headless commerce without the headaches’ - Shopistry enables customers to create personalized commerce experiences accessible to all.
    Topics: zabian, venture, techcrunch, manage, ecommerce, bags, haidar, brands, seed, headless, working, shopistry, 2m, headaches, commerce, provide.
  • Ten Tips for Getting Started With Headless Commerce - Headless Commerce decouples the customer facing frontend presentation layer of your eCommerce experience, from the backend commerce engine. This decoupling provides an unmatched level of flexibility that enables you to make changes as your business needs change quickly and easily. Getting started with a Headless Commerce Approach can feel daunting, here are 10 tips to get you started. Evaluate if Headless Commerce Is Right for Your Business Key areas to consider: are you looking to create differentiated commerce experiences or are you happy with out-of-the-box pre-build experiences? Are you looking to be agile and optimize on-demand? Do you have a dedicated technicalteam or are you open to working with a Systems Integrator? Educate Your Team on the Benefits of Headless Commerce For many in your organization, Headless Commerce may be a new concept or their perceptions may be different than your own. By aligning on what it is, and the benefits, you can positively impact the adoption.   Assess the Cost of a Headless Commerce Solution and Determine Your Budget There’s the upfront cost of a solution and there are additional factors that can impact cost such as reference experiences/themes of a website, implementation support, transaction/credit card fees, third-party integrations, hosting, etc. Learn more about total cost of ownership.   Understand the Architecture of Headless Commerce Traditional monolithic platforms provide an all-in-one approach which differs greatly froma modern solution where the frontend “Head” is connected to the backend commerce functionality, through commerce APIs. You can see these differences demonstrated in the diagram below.   Appreciate the Difference Between Retrofitted Headless Solutions and Headless Microservices Solutions A retrofitted headless solution is an all-in-one platform that ripped off the frontend and connected it with bolted-on APIs. Headless microservices solutions are natively built with APIs to provide flexibility on both the frontend and backend.   Evaluate Frontend Options There are three main frontend “head” option types: frontend-as-a-service, digital experience platform, and custom build. Based on the size of your business, skillset of your team, number of products/stores, you will be able to determine which frontend type is best for you. Learn more about these options in the Getting Started with Headless Commerce Guide.   Decide How You Will Implement the Frontend Depending upon the skillset and experience of your team, you may decide to utilize your in-house team, partner with an agency, or partner with a systems integrator. Do you have a partner of record? What technologies are you planning to integrate? What is your budget?   Evaluate Options to Make Headless Commerce Easier There are a number of Pre-Composed Solutions™, pre-integrated business-ready solutions, available on the Composable Commerce Hub that make adopting headless commerce easier than ever before.   Understand the Process of Migrating From a Traditional Commerce Solution to a Headless Commerce Solution Migrating off any platform comes with it’s own set of challenges, we’ve put together a replatforming guide to help you learn the process and we’ve included case studies for your reference to learn from our customers who have successfully replatformed.   Assemble the Right Team to Support Your Headless Commerce Solution Due to the decoupled nature of Headless Commerce, having a dedicated frontend and backend team will be important if you would like to manage the solution in-house. For more information on how to get started with Headless Commerce, check out our comprehensive guide.
    Topics: learn, team, solutions, cost, platform, frontend, commerce, solution, tips, getting, headless, started.
  • The Headless Commerce Showdown: The Unseen Strategy Retailers Use to Win Ecommerce Market Share - Ecommerce businesses today are facing many of the same hurdles. Customer expectations are rising. Online competition for their eyes and…
    Topics: ecommerce, platform, commerce, content, experience, bigcommerce, brands, wordpress, learn, headless, changing, cms.
  • - Intense competition is driving rapid technological innovation in ecommerce. More and more brands are turning to cutting-edge tech to help…
    Topics: layer, brands, ecommerce, headless, enterprises, frontend, commerce, works, merchants, backend, monolithic, enterprise, customer.
  • The pros and cons of headless for B2B ecommerce - As Business Manager at Würth Louis & Company, Carla Gonzales is no stranger when it comes to B2B digital transformations. She recently shared her experience in the ebook, Getting Started with B2B Ecommerce and we're featuring an excerpt from the book on the benefits of going headless with your commerce initiative.
    Topics: ecommerce, platform, digital, b2b, headless, layer, pros, frontend, commerce, business, cons, need.
  • Top 10 Commerce Headless FAQs - 1. What Is Headless Commerce?  Simply put Headless Commerce is the complete separation of the front-end code/ UI layer from the back-end engine where commerce functionality and business logic exist. This separation is essential to the flexibility of a Headless Commerce platform. It allows the rapid evolution of the omnichannel front-end customer experiences (whether that is across touchpoints or geos) while keeping the business logic for things like product catalogs, shopping cart, promotions, payments, etc. in place. Check out our comprehensive review a more in-depth breakdown of Headless Commerce. 2. What Are eCommerce APIs? And, How Do They Relate to Headless Commerce? Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are designed to enable an application to expose specific services (like order management, pricing information, catalogs, etc.) to other applications. In a Headless Commerce context, an API is what allows backend systems to “talk” and relay information to any front-end/ heads (think customer touch-points like mobile storefronts or IoT devices).  3. What Is the Difference between Traditional & Headless eCommerce? A traditional eCommerce approach, or monolith platform, was built with a strong ‘coupling’ between the front-end experience and the back-end commerce functions. A monolith approach delivers value by offering a multitude of out-of-the-box functionality directly connected to a frontend to quickly stand up a web-based/ desktop browser experience. Fast forward to now, monolithic systems are inflexible when it comes to adding new channels or updating customer experiences.  On the other hand, a Headless Commerce ‘decoupled’ approach allows for the flexibility to implement front-end changes, add new channels, and generate quicker release cycles (for example: testing solely the new addition in a Headless architecture vs. testing the entire tightly coupled systems pre-launch). The differences are tangible in your company’s Total Cost of Ownership.   Ready to Get Started with Headless Commerce? Discover the steps for getting started, how to implement your front-end, considerations for choosing the right platform and more with our full guide. Read the Guide 4. How Much Does It Cost to Run a Headless Commerce Solution? While exact pricing will vary based on the details of implementation and your specific business goals, the cost of your core Headless Commerce software generally depends on order volume and GMV. In addition to your core Headless Commerce software cost, you will also have to consider the cost of any third-party software (like search, personalization, etc.), the cost to build your front end (this may be completed using internal resources for not extra cost), and the cost of integrating all these pieces together. Similar to your core commerce software price, this all depends on your goals, timeline, and scope. That being said, when evaluating the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), a Headless Commerce solution will result in savings from a resource allocation and potentially partner implementation perspective. For a detailed look at TCO, check out our comprehensive guide here. 5. Where Is the ‘Head’ in a Headless Commerce Solution? The flexibility of a Headless Commerce solution extends to the choice of ‘head’ or the customer-facing front-end. While some businesses will choose to build the front-end from scratch, leveraging the APIs of a Headless solution. Others choose to use a separate Content Management System (CMS) to attach one of the many heads (think customer touchpoints or desktop vs. in-store mobile check-out). A Headless solution allows for the freedom to choose which option aligns with your business-centric goals best.  6. Is Headless Commerce Future-Proof?  While no life cycle is infinite, the short answer is yes! While eCommerce trends- and more importantly- customer expectations change rapidly, a Headless Commerce approach allows you to quickly launch a new experience on the front-end (adding curbside pickup or voice-enabled chatbots for example) without impacting the core business logic in the back-end. In contrast to a rigid traditional monolith approach that can take months to implement costly changes, a Headless Commerce approach will allow your business to evolve with customer expectations and experiment with new experiences at an unparalleled pace.  7. How Does Headless Commerce Support Omnichannel?  By removing the traditional ‘middle layer’ that connects the front and back-ends in a tightly coupled monolith solution. A Headless Commerce approach relies on a single source of truth to simplify the architecture by removing the middle layer. Enabling each customer touchpoint to connect back to the same core logic & business functions in a ‘decoupled’ back-end.  8. Why Should You Care about Headless? Are Customers Going to Notice a Difference?  Most customers won’t necessarily notice a difference between a traditional storefront vs. a Headless Commerce experience. What a Headless Commerce approach does allow is a brand to regain control of their customer experience and dramatically speed up experimentation cycles to keep up with customer expectations and company growth. This scalability also impacts overall site speed, a crucial factor according to Google as “53% of mobile visitors abandon a site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load”.  Why Is Headless Commerce Being Talked about More? The short answer: customer expectations! While the pandemic fundamentally changed how many businesses operate, it was essentially an exacerbation of the rapid change of pace in customer expectations in today’s world. A Headless Commerce approach’s flexibility, extensibility, and rapid time to market in order to better align with customer expectations and staying one step ahead of your competitors are what is driving the conversations around Headless.  10. How Can I Switch to Headless Commerce Solutions? A complete re-platforming to a Headless commerce approach can be achieved in weeks rather than months with Elastic Path’s Pre-Composed Solutions™. There are a few other options for making the switch as well. A popular approach has been a staggered implementation if you are replacing a monolith solution. Where pieces will progressively be replaced while maintaining business-critical functions. For a more in-depth look at re-platforming, check out our whitepaper on re-platforming.
    Topics: customer, solution, monolith, faqs, headless, business, commerce, approach, cost, traditional, frontend.
  • Top 10 eCommerce Buyer Questions - My team here at Elastic Path manages the buying experiences on the front line of researching and evaluating eCommerce solutions, including business development, chat, Website, and marketing automation.  Being on the front line, my team gets asked many different questions.  Some are very common, like "how much do the eCommerce solutions that Elastic Path provides cost?" But since eCommerce can mean different things to different buyers, we see a wide variety of great questions. Therefore we felt it might be helpful to share what we are hearing to maybe help buyers that are researching headless commerce solutions get insights into what their peers in the market are asking. You can always get your specific questions answered by reaching out to us and we would be happy to have a personalized Q&A.   A Bit of Context Before We Start   Before we get into it, I want provide a bit of context for what it is like being on the front lines of marketing and selling eCommerce platforms and solutions. As I mentioned, eCommerce can mean different things to different buyers depending on the complexity, size and scale of their requirements.  Not to mention, the experience a buyer has working with different eCommerce solutions at different stages of their career. For example a small business owner may only need a simple out of the box solution, like Shopify, that comes with all the basic pieces need to get their products and services online. A rapidly growing emerging business looking to scale up to $50M -to- $100M in revenue might be feeling the need to advance their investment in technology, but they may not know the scope, skills, and architecture required to build and manage a solution that can provide the control and customizations to differentiate its brand. Then there are companies with B2B use-cases that might be looking to digitally transform their business by moving a traditional selling model online to meet customer demand for online engagement that creates more value and improve margins using eCommerce approaches. These B2B companies are likely just starting out with eCommerce, but they need advanced capabilities that can integrate with their existing CRM/ERP architectures. Maybe the buyer is a seasoned eCommerce developer/architect focused on enabling eCommerce as a core business function and looking to modernize and "future proof" their architecture.  But let's be honest they don't need to ask my team questions, they just need access to our product and technical resources to figure out how they want to approach a Proof of Concept (POC) with Elastic Path. The bulk of questions we get on the front lines tend to be from the first three buying groups, and many of those buyers are under pressure to grow and transform their business quickly.  As a result they looking for more control and flexibility to differentiate experiences, improve how they operate and scale up online revenue. Many of the questions we get from these groups indicate they are just starting the path of learning about modern eCommerce technologies - such as microservices, API-centric, composable, headless eCommerce solutions (aka MACH). They may not be fully aware of the skills and budget required to invest in this emerging approach to cloud-based eCommerce. So hopefully the following questions and answers will provide some clarity and if you have more questions - never hesitate to ask Elastic Path for help.   Top 10 eCommerce Buyer Questions   QUESTION: What is the time it takes for a basic implementation? We hear you say two weeks - is that real? ANSWER: Implementation time depends on the scope of the project but some of the Elastic Path customers were able to implement a solution from scratch as quickly as 4 weeks. The key to our fast implementations is a combination of using Accelerators, Pre-Composed Solutions and designing an MVP approach so that we can get customer experiences into market that can flex and evolve vs. trying to boil the ocean with an oversized project plan or build everything from scratch.  QUESTION: I see what your webpage says you are. But who are you really? What is different about you from other vendors? ANSWER: We provide the only commerce solution that combines the flexibility and control of DIY eCommerce (i.e. a custom, home-grown solution) with the turn-key ease of Shopify, Magento, or Salesforce.  Our microservices architecture was built totally de-coupled so that you can customize for your business requirements. Elastic Path vs. Magento (Adobe) Elastic Path vs. Shopify   Vendors like Big Commerce claims to have microservices. Shopify and Magento claim to be headless. The reality is they have taken their monolithic-style platforms and built APIs on top, which means that customizations are incredibly time consuming and expensive.   Elastic Path vs. Commercetools   Vendors like Commercetools promise the control of DIY, but lack the support and guidance to de-risk integrating best of breed technology and partner solutions. Brands who go with this type of solution often find themselves overwhelmed by the complexity.  Elastic Path offers Pre-Composed Solutions which integrate core commerce functionality, partner integrations, and customizations so that getting live is fast.  In addition, we offer Composable Commerce XA which provides operational experience assurance  from Elastic Path services team to triage, manage, and resolve issues across your multi-vendor solution.  When you have an issue (which is not often as our uptime SLA is 99.9%), you have a single throat to choke.   QUESTION: How can Elastic Path provide a way for my 3rd party vendors to manage their selling experience on my marketplace site? ANSWER: eCommerce Marketplaces, especially those who support a third party model, take user experience a notch above traditional digital commerce avenues. Not only are consumers able to save a trip to a physical store, but now they have a one stop shop to compare similar products without switching from site to site. This type of ease of use, convenience, and accessibility continues to attract shoppers presenting an opportunity for many brands to capitalize on.   QUESTION: What is Composable Commerce?  Is it the same as Headless Commerce? ANSWER:  Composable Commerce is an approach that enables brands to bring their unique digital vision to life by launching and continuously optimizing digital commerce experiences leveraging multiple best-of-breed technologies composed together into a complete, business ready solution. Headless Commerce is a component of Composable Commerce, along with other MACH technologies (microserices, APIs, Cloud-native, and headless). Shaneil Lafayette from our Product Marketing team wrote an entire article on this subject, so best to just direct you to her blog: What is Composable Commerce? QUESTION: Does Elastic Path have the capability to handle over 50,000 SKUs? Complex Catalogs? ANSWER: The short answer is yes.  In fact we can support almost infinite SKUs, and by decoupling the way you manage product content, price books, and availability rules we can enable infinite selling experiences on you site using our Product Content Management solution.  We also created a short video that explains how PCM works:   {"preview_thumbnail":"/sites/default/files/styles/video_embed_wysiwyg_preview/public/video_thumbnails/JNY7KimCoV1EHDSCuuNQo2.jpg?itok=AH9fMNXc","video_url":"https://share.vidyard.com/watch/JNY7KimCoV1EHDSCuuNQo2?","settings":{"responsive":1,"width":"854","height":"480","autoplay":0},"settings_summary":["Embedded Video (Responsive)."]}   QUESTION: Does Elastic Path provide a front end solution or Content Management System (CMS)? ANSWER: We are Headless Commerce, so we separate the front-end from the and back-end. Our core platform is the backend which is 100% API-first, microservices-based. That being said, we do have a PWA REACT reference store which serves as a frontend starter kit for our clients. In addition, many clients chose to build their own front end using a JavaScript frontend framework (REACT, Angular JS, Next Js, VueJS, etc) or use a Front-End-as-a-Service like Frontastic or Builder.io. We work with all of our customers to understand their unique needs and can advise you on what approach to frontend would be best for your brand.  QUESTION: How does Elastic Path provide front-end capability and back-end integration with an ERP system?  ANSWER: Because Elastic Path was architected from the API layer up vs. monolithic based headless competitors that retrofitted their APIs, we enable the most open and flexible eCommerce integration framework on the market.  It is one of the reasons we can take an MVP approach to just about any eCommerce project and create new experiences that align with just about any existing architecture.  No matter how complex (or simple) your current architecture we can right size your eCommerce goals and make sure the align with you internal business processes - both human and digital. QUESTION: How are you hosted? SaaS, on-prem, private cloud?  ANSWER: As our CEO Jamus Driscoll likes to say, "Have it your way".  Elastic Path provides flexible deployment models including SaaS, on-premises, and private cloud to address the business needs of any customer.   QUESTION: What development languages does Elastic Path support?  ANSWER: Elastic Path is language agnostic, so you can leverage any front-end language you wish and access the core microservices commerce functionality via standard API calls.  QUESTION: I don't have a large in-house tech team, do I need one to do headless commerce? ANSWER: When looking at any cutting edge technology, there are always learning curves. However, we have developed an ecosystem of capabilities and support to get even an emerging digital savvy team started down the path of headless commerce.  Our foundation is Cloud-based, so you are not dealing with coding the actual platform itself to customize your ecommerce.  Instead you are connecting common systems using an API framework where you likely already have skills inhouse or via existing partnership.  For example the store-front is your CMS, you inventory and pricing might be an SQL database or ERP application, etc.  You then use our business centric composable solutions to manage the data flowing in and out of the eCommerce workflow. Then next way we make headless commerce a reality is by bringing together the best technology and solution integration partner network in the business.  This is one of the fastest growing areas of our business, which is also how we are building core pre-composed solutions new customers can essentially buy and configure with only 20% of the effort. Listening to our customers and thinking different about solutions and support. a. Pre-Composed Solutions were not developed by a back office product team, they are real-world solutions developed by our partners and customer designed to solve real business problems. b. Composable Commerce XA means Elastic Path is your support partner for all the technology within the best-of-breed headless solution you need to succeed. c. Product Content Management service was announced earlier this year to solve one of the oldest challenges in eCommerce, managing/changing online catalogs. eCommerce is now at the core of your revenue strategy and buyers expect the same level of personal experience in a digital world that a sales person or account manager provides, which means it needs to be data driven and capable of delivering an infinite combination of suggestions, pricing, promotions and availability across multiple catalogs, geographies and channels.   Want to learn more about Elastic Path Software? Check out our Demo Library here.
    Topics: business, questions, solutions, different, commerce, elastic, team, buyer, path, headless, ecommerce, solution.
  • Top 4 Reasons Why Headless Commerce is Better for Customer Experience - Consumers expect to transact with brands anywhere and at any time. Discover 4 reasons why headless commerce is better for customer experience.
    Topics: brands, experience, commerce, headless, better, reasons, cms, marketing, ecommerce, customer, system, solution.
  • Top Technology-Driven B2B ECommerce Trends - 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 the technological changes and take advantage of cloud-based technology, Headless Commerce, and progressive web applications (PWAs). Below are some of the major Technology-Driven B2B eCommerce trends of 2021, as well as some key calls to action for B2Bs to optimize their eCommerce strategy. The Cloud: The spread of cloud computing and cloud-based eCommerce has continued to grow, with many businesses migrating ERPs to the cloud to adjust to the disruptions of the pandemic. Cloud eCommerce solutions have helped brands to discover new cybersecurity technologies, leverage analytics, utilize big data, and take advantage of developments in the internet of things (IoT). Key data shows that: 30% of all IT budgets are allocated to Cloud computing, with 94% of enterprises already using Cloud services (Source) 83% of enterprise workloads will be in the cloud by 2020, and the public Cloud service market is expected to reach $623.3 billion by 2023 (Source) 50% of enterprises spend more than $1.2 million on Cloud services annually (Source) More than $1.3 trillion in IT spending will be affected by the shift to the Cloud by 2022 (Source) 66% of enterprises have a central Cloud team or Cloud center of excellence (Source) ECommerce solutions presented by the Cloud are also touted for their ease of deployment, scalability, and lower costs of ownership. Some of the key benefits offered by cloud computing to B2B organizations’ eCommerce efforts include: Enhanced cybersecurity: With the evolving relationships between clients and Cloud Service providers such as AWS, Google, and Microsoft, both parties are responsible for separate aspects of cloud security. Bot detection, fraud protection, and endpoint detection and response (EDR) technologies have all grown, implementing real-time detection and automated response tools to maximize cybersecurity. Scalability and flexibility: Migrating an eCommerce system to the cloud provides a highly scalable environment, empowering B2B businesses to respond to market fluctuations. Businesses can take advantage of the cloud to meet changes in demand and adapt to new scenarios with speed, flexibility, and precision. Rather than installing new servers and experiencing development or implementation costs, organizations can modify capacity based on traffic, demand, and changing opportunities. Removing maintenance and risks: With The Cloud, B2B businesses can run their eCommerce software in a safe external data center, with both hardware and software being monitored and maintained. Working with a Cloud Service provider mitigates risk and shares responsibility. In addition to improving cybersecurity, B2Bs can reduce maintenance costs and avoid allocating resources towards uptime, back-ups, datacenter facilities, and data privacy. Growing digital sales channels: More and more B2B companies are becoming highly dependent on digital sales channels, as emphasized by new market-driven trends. With COVID- 19, digital sales channels have become increasingly important to B2B sellers, and migrating eCommerce to a cloud-based system enables firms to reallocate resources towards digital sales channels and adaptive digital practices instead. Headless Commerce: With headless technology, the data, business logic, and commerce engine are de-coupled from the front-end storefront. This “headless” architecture offers B2B organizations increased freedom, flexibility, and customization to develop unique front-end interfaces across multiple devices, simultaneously removing the constraints of back-end systems. Key data shows: 61% of retailers claimed to leverage Headless commerce in 2020 (Source) Approximately 80% of respondents to a Gartner survey claimed to either already use or made plans to use Headless Commerce or API-based architecture Page load times showed a 50% to 83% decrease in load time when a Headless architecture was used With Headless Commerce, developers can extend commerce functionalities across digital touchpoints, such as mobile applications and the Internet of Things (IoT). B2B manufacturers have taken advantage of Headless Solutions to provide improved customer experiences; they are creating fast and frictionless digital interfaces while distinguishing themselves from competitors through expedited internal innovation processes. With a headless architecture, B2B brands can deliver API-driven experiences using CMS, DXP, or custom front-end. In addition to the high flexibility, B2Bs are able to implement highly complex commerce requirements while saving time and maximizing their resources, avoiding issues related to development and back-end management without compromising on their overall vision. With the high demand for personalized experiences, B2Bs are using Headless commerce to discover and capitalize on new personalization opportunities, finding new ways to leverage less traditional forms of purchasing. Some of the key advantages of a Headless approach include: Faster loading times on webpages: Approximately 53% of mobile site visits are abandoned if the webpage takes more than 3 seconds to load, with a 2-second delay resulting in the abandonment rate rising up to 87%. With Headless Commerce, the de-coupling of the front and- back-end functionalities results in customers having a far smoother and frictionless user experience, with less performance issues and enhanced speed. Unique, custom front-end design: Headless Commerce enables firms to customize the storefront on a strong taxonomy structure with rich product information. By de-coupling the front-and-back-end functionalities, B2Bs can ensure that their customers are presented a well-designed, sleek, and visually aesthetic site. Using further functionalities presented by a Headless architecture can empower self-service capabilities and ensure that users can avoid complex, layered structures. Consistency and Quality: Headless Commerce helps to reduce the loading time on product content from the back-end to the front-end. If information is stored in a PIM, poor optimization and inconsistent displays are avoided even further. Content can be modified and improved in bulk, formatting can be achieved with greater ease, and customization is bolstered. This helps create a greater level of consistency without requiring a comprise in quality, which can be particularly crucial for brands looking to scale, add new products, add new sales channels, or make major changes to their digital storefronts.   Deliver a smoother B2B experience Joinn Bryan Beck and ecommerce experts from Amazon Business and Elastic Path as they discuss the key to delivering a smooth B2B omnichannel experience. Watch the Webinar Progressive Web Applications: Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) have emerged as a method for eCommerce businesses to provide their customers improved digital experiences. By using Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs), eCommerce companies have enjoyed better page load times, engagement, and conversion rates. With the rise of mobile users and more than 50% of online traffic coming from mobile devices, improving user experience is the key to B2B companies bridging the gap between web experiences and mobile app functionality. PWAs have been touted for their high reliability, speed, and user engagement. Here are some key statistics that illustrate the power of PWAs: PWAs have 36% higher conversion rates than native apps (Source) PWAs register 50% higher customer and user engagement (Source) Businesses that have switched to PWAs have noticed a decrease in page loading speed of up to 10 times PWAs cost 3-4 times less than native mobile apps (Source) PWAs cost 33% less to maintain (Source) PWAs have an average bounce rate of just 42.86% (Source) By caching key resources and using service workers, PWAs can load instantly and meet buyers’ expectations for seamless and quick responses, all while providing a visual and immersive interface. Web-based PWAs can also be more easily discovered with SEO, ranked by search engines such as Bing and Google. In 2021, more and more B2B firms took advantage of PWAs to improve the search engine performance of their websites, and Gartner predicts that PWAs will only continue to rise in popularity. Some of the key benefits of PWAs for B2Bs include: Increased mobile traffic: Given the higher conversion rates, increased user engagement, and reduced bounce rates, PWAs have proven extremely effective in driving increased mobile traffic towards websites. This is key for B2Bs seeking to increase mobile engagement and take advantage of the increasing mobile usage demonstrated by the market. Decreased development costs: A single PWA can meet the requirements of all endpoints that it operates on, significantly reducing the effort, time, and cost associated with development. Despite this, PWAs also involve a shorter and simpler installation process, and can be customized to provide responsive and visually appealing user experiences. Improved performance: By caching and serving text, images, and rich content, PWAs improve efficiency and can operate like websites with better running speeds and load times. B2Bs stand to benefit by adopting PWAs, as they provide an improved user experience that translates to higher retention and lower bounce rates. This, combined with seamless offline operation, no issues with updating, and flexibility across endpoints makes PWAs an extremely efficient and effective alternative to native mobile apps. 2021 and Beyond: B2B eCommerce showcased new opportunities and high growth in 2021. These are just some of the technology-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 blog on the top Market- 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: headless, trends, key, commerce, ecommerce, technologydriven, cloud, pwas, user, b2b, b2bs, mobile.
  • Understanding Ecommerce Website Costs and Total Cost of Ownership in 2019 - When staring at the reality of an ecommerce website that needs to either be built from the ground up or…
    Topics: platform, website, guide, understanding, ecommerce, saas, headless, security, onpremise, experience, cost, calculator, features, costs, software.
  • Understanding Headless eCommerce - Brian Anderson is the CEO and founder of GetNacelle.com, a headless eCommerce solution for Shopify Plus. Today he joins the show to discuss the benefits of using headless commerce, what a progressive web app is (and how it’s related to headless), and the kind of investment you may want to consider before committing to headless. […]
    Topics: investment, understanding, anderson, app, brian, youderian, headless, progressive, web, ecommerce, using.
  • Understanding the Rise of PWAs in Ecommerce: How Brands Can Benefit from a Progressive Frontend - Up until a few years ago, it was hard to imagine when any technology could replicate the experience of a…
    Topics: experience, using, pwa, ecommerce, brands, native, headless, benefit, web, pwas, app, mobile.
  • What A Headless Tech Stack Can Do To Conquer Ecommerce Compromises - I’ve been focused on the shopper experience for a while. If you look at brands that are doing it really…
    Topics: ecommerce, experience, platforms, conquer, platform, control, headless, compromises, carthook, shopper, end, stack, page, merchants, tech.
  • What Is The Difference Between MACH and Composable Commerce? - If you're in the commerce space, whether you're evaluating vendors or just staying up to date on the latest and greatest trends, then you've probably heard about Headless Commerce, Composable Commerce and MACH. So what are they and how do they differ?     If you're in the commerce space, whether you're evaluating vendors or just staying up to date on the latest and greatest trends, then you've probably heard about Headless Commerce, Composable Commerce and MACH. So what are they and how do they differ?   Headless Commerce Well, firstly, headless commerce is more widely known, since it was established in 2011 by Elastic Path. Its strategy of decoupling the front end of presentation layer from the back end commerce engine enables businesses to deliver continuous customer journeys across multiple touch points without that dependency on the back end slowing you down. Since then, technology has developed more to create more flexibility across these commerce journeys. And here in lies, MACH.   MACH Now MACH simply a collection of technologies wrapped up in an acronym, which stands for: Microservices APIs Cloud Native Headless Commerce    So what does MACH do? Well to understand that you will need to understand each component separately. Microservices are independently deployed packaged business capabilities that enable flexible development to be deployed quickly. APIs, are software intermediaries that allow two or more applications to talk to each other. So this is going to be crucial for accelerated development of new channels and time to market for different commerce experiences. Cloud Native simply means it's just a SaaS model commerce service that allows for elastic scalability and robust security. This means that you'll only have to deploy the capabilities that you need on demand and not your entire full suite at once. So in conclusion, MACH is simply a marketing term that brings all of these flexible technologies together.   Composable Commerce Now Composable Commerce is the approach that brings it all together. This approach equips brands with the core commerce technology, like MACH, assets like partner integrations and expert written guides, as well as full support to compose and optimize your unique commerce solution. Now, Composable Commerce is characterized by three key tenets. Business centric solutions, which include quick starts for building your solution. and business tools that grant marketing teams the control to make changes and remain competitive. Modular architecture, which leverages flexible technology such as JAMStack for your frontend, MACH for your backend and extensive developer tools. An open ecosystem, which consists of a library of assets, integration frameworks as well as full support and guidance for building your entire solution. So as you can see, it's not a direct comparison, because headless is just a small part of MACH and MACH is only a small part of what Composable Commerce enables you to do. To learn more about how you can leverage these MACH based technologies to deploy Composable Commerce, feel free to reach out to us. We'd be happy to help.
    Topics: youre, simply, mach, headless, commerce, difference, technology, technologies, flexible, composable, end.
  • Why eCommerce Is Losing Its Head - Peter Sheldon, former Forrester analyst – and now senior director of commerce strategy at Adobe – shares his perspective on headless commerce and its impact on the future of eCommerce. Read more.
    Topics: frontend, technology, really, ecommerce, products, headless, experience, commerce, think, business, losing, head, connected.
  • Y Combinator-backed Vue Storefront aims to be the ‘glue’ for e-commerce - “Headless commerce” is a phrase that gets thrown around lot (I’ve typed it several times today already), but Vue Storefront CEO Patrick Friday has an especially vivid way of using the concept to illustrate his startup’s place in the broader ecosystem. “Vue Storefront is the bodiless front end,” Friday said. “We are the walking head.” In other […]
    Topics: middle, company, platform, using, combinatorbacked, glue, storefront, aims, headless, vue, y, ecommerce, end, techcrunch, covid.
  • ‘Headless’ e-commerce platform Fabric raises $43M - Fabric, a startup powering e-commerce for companies like GNC and ABC Carpet and Home, has raised $43 million in Series A funding. The announcement comes less than four months after Fabric announced its $9.5 million seed round. CEO Faisal Masud said Fabric hadn’t intended to raise more funding so quickly, but given its growth and […]
    Topics: techcrunch, ecommerce, customers, funding, masud, fabric, large, platforms, headless, 43m, team, platform, commerce, raises.