Paul Thomas
Paul Thomas
Client Development Director
Manchester

Engineering

How a composable approach can accelerate commerce experiences

Worldwide retail e-commerce sales reached $4.9 trillion last year and are forecasted to surpass $7.4 trillion by 2025. That’s without mentioning B2B ecommerce, which is now valued at $14.9 trillion. And with e-commerce transactions forecasted to account for nearly a quarter of total global retail sales, up from 20% in 2021, it’s clear that the market is showing no signs of slowing down. 

Alongside this growth, the market has transformed. The pandemic fuelled a major shift for brands, retailers and consumers alike. And while many companies pivoted to launch or optimise digital commerce operations, consumers’ digital maturity accelerated, driving their expectations to record heights. 

Competition is now fiercer than ever, which has seen many leading brands focus on creating exceptional digital experiences to stand out from the crowd. But this is only possible with the right technology architecture in place. Here we explore how a composable approach can assist brands in keeping up with the rapidly changing landscape. 

Solution evolution

One of the biggest blockers of delivering optimum digital experiences is outdated, inflexible and disconnected technologies and tools. But in a world where change is constant, the ability to analyse, pivot, experiment and deploy quickly relies on agile solutions. 

Historically, the leading choice for many businesses have been ‘monolithic’ platforms, also known as suites. But the rapid acceleration of digital transformation has driven a dramatic increase in the volume of companies opting to implement more modular, composable technology ‘stacks’. 

And with Gartner predicting that organisations adopting an intelligent composable approach will outpace the competition by 80% by 2023, it’s evident that composability is a critical element in helping brands keep pace with the market.

Tech providers have taken note and are adapting to market needs. Take Sitecore for instance. Its agile commerce solution, OrderCloud, is a move towards SaaS-based, composable architecture. 

The API-first, cloud-based architecture gives businesses free rein over the UI of store fronts and omnichannel activity due to its high customisability; as well as allowing brands to create a streamlined system to provide shopping solutions for complex digital processes. 

Improving the experience

Composable tech solutions allow brands to follow a best-of-breed strategy, leveraging integrations through APIs that come together as a custom application.

With the front and backends separated and each API/microservice having a specific function or specialism, companies can implement optimum solutions that can flexibly be updated or swapped out without posing a threat to the larger structure; providing them with the agility to keep up with forever changing customer needs and expectations. 

As opposed to having a solution that serves as a jack of all trades, the composable approach allows businesses to master all aspects of the customer journey to provide a truly customer-centric experience. Here are some examples of how… 

01 Omnichannel management

Nailing the omnichannel customer experience is more imperative than ever. Today’s consumers have a minimum of six touchpoints before purchase and brands have never before had to facilitate and monitor so many customer interactions. 

Almost all online shopping experiences previously started through search, but they’re now being initiated through social channels, marketplaces, IoT devices and more, and consumers expect a seamless experience wherever they interact. 

Constructing a shopper’s journey with all of those factors in mind requires a level of flexibility that wasn’t previously necessary. With a composable solution in place, marketers can better create content and campaigns that can be distributed across all channels, whilst collecting data at each touchpoint that will help optimise future activities.
 
02 Data-driven activations 
 
Composability opens brands up to reams of new data that can be activated to drive growth. For example, from a personalisation perspective, getting access to real-time purchase intent helps brands provide a tailored shopping experience to each consumer through more relevant search results and product merchandising. 
 
Data on abandoned baskets and average order size can also help marketing teams develop campaigns that are based on insight rather than instinct or opinion. This new data can be integrated with marketing automation platforms to ensure consumers are reached in the right place, at the right time, driving sales by leveraging past trends to make future predictions as well as saving time.

03 Market differentiation 
 
Front and backend decoupling gives brands freedom to create engaging digital experiences that can help differentiate them from the competition while effectively engaging customers with your brand and products; as well as the flexibility to continue making changes as every element is customisable unlike the templates often used within suites. 
 
With the best technical solutions in place to your business’ needs, you can tailor applications and experiences to your customers’ needs and expectations and that UX is consistent no matter what end-point the consumer is engaging at.

A composable approach allows brands to gain more control over the functionality and performance of commerce operations to deliver seamless and superior experiences across the ever-growing number of touchpoints that consumers interact. 

Want to know more about composable commerce? DEPT® and Sitecore discuss how to create composable commerce experiences fast. Watch the webinar on demand!

Sitecore webinar 3

DEPT® x Sitecore – Composable Commerce: The Experience Accelerator

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Client Development Director

Paul Thomas

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