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The Ultimate Guide to Creating an Effective Social Media Marketing Strategy

The Ultimate Guide to Creating an Effective Social Media Marketing Strategy Table of Contents Intro Social media is one of the most effective ways to promote your business and reach out to potential customers. Even if you have a general idea of what you want to post, it’s hard to know exactly what to say […]

What is Parallax Web Design? What are the Benefits and disadvantages of Parallax website design?aa

What is Parallax Web Design? What are the Benefits and disadvantages of Parallax website design?a Table of Contents Intro Parallax scrolling is an effect that causes the background image to move slower than the foreground image. It’s a popular technique in web design, and it can be used to emphasize the depth of certain elements […]

10 Things To Make A Successful & Powerful Homepage

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What Are The Three Types of Digital Direct Marketing?

What Are The Three Types of Digital Direct Marketing? Table of Contents Intro Digital direct marketing (DDM) has taken over the marketing world. Digital marketing is a form of marketing that utilizes digital technologies, such as the Internet, social media, mobile devices, display advertising, and more, in order to promote products or brands to an […]

A Facebook Ads Expert Reveals -How to Get More Clicks From Facebook Ad

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Reasons Why Magento Is the Best Platform For Your Ecommerce Store

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The Importance of Video in Digital Marketing: 5 Benefits of Video Marketing

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Why Digital Marketing is Important for Small Business

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10 Tips for Email Marketing Success: A Simple Guide that Works

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Web Design Guide: The Ultimate SEO Factors To Consider In Web Design

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Three Steps to Evaluating Your Strategic Roadmap for D2C Adoption

Post-pandemic, brands have a surmounting pressure to re-evaluate their channel and sales strategies as direct-to-consumer (D2C) channel adoption increases, and the need for a nurturing customer experience is in demand. In tandem, brands are offered conflicting advice from channel partners, recommending staying away from D2C adoption. To guide brands, Gartner has created a strategic roadmap to support companies in making the right strategic decisions and technology investments to increase brand adoption, revenue, and future-proof their digital commerce vision. In this blog we break it down into three steps:

Step One: Your Current State

The pandemic forced brands to re-think their go-to-market strategy. Due to the shift in shopping behaviors over the past few years, the consumer-packaged goods (CPG) and branded manufacturer industries were the early adopters. However, D2C can be implemented across industries, from healthcare and medical devices to automotive and more. Reasons for holding off on adopting a D2C channel include the following:

Whatever the reason, brands that fail to embrace D2C may fail to see future growth in monetary terms, brand awareness, customer adoption, and brand loyalty, to name a few.

Step Two: Plan for Your Future State

Gartner believes that the future of digital commerce will include a mix of strategies and technologies that many companies may already have today. Gartner also believes that having an eCommerce strategy and indirect channels like a marketplace are not mutually exclusive. Building a multi-channel strategy can increase customer adoption by going where your customers are across channels. Doing this will drive customer loyalty and in turn increase geo-expansion and revenue.

In the not-too-distant future, weall see an increase in D2C sites where customers will have a variety of products available to them, often with the ability to create a subscription. The subscription offering will be unique to a brand's site, as this feature is not typically available through indirect channels. The benefit of incorporating subscriptions include recurring revenue and indirect customer loyalty.

When adopting a multi-channel strategy, Gartner recommends diversifying your SKUs across channels to create curated experiences versus offering all products in one channel. For example, you may feature an entire product line of pillow covers on your site but offer a limited-edition line of pillow covers on a 3rd party marketplace to create a sense of exclusivity and customization for that audience.

Interested in Learning More About Managing SKUs?

Managing a large amount of SKU variations can become complex, learn how you can manage unlimited catalogs across channels 5x faster, with Catalog Composer.

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Creating a multi-channel strategy will also open a world of ever-expanding data sets from products to customers and customer ordering preferences. Merging data from different channels will enable brands to create multidimensional strategies to further optimize their digital commerce vision. Gartner notes that in a future optimized state, companies will leverage from data sources such as:

Step Three: Creating a Migration Plan

Migrating from your current state to your future state will depend on your companyas digital maturity. As a starting point evaluate the following:

To learn more and leverage next-step recommendations from Gartner download the report here.


Digital Merchandising Best Practices

No argument that eCommerce sales skyrocketed in the last two years, as the world turned to mobile devices to buy everything from a weekas worth of groceries to a new couch for the family room. But even as the world opens up post-pandemically, eCommerce retail sales maintain the top spot on the leaderboard. Projections point to upwards of $7 trillion in sales by 2024.

Whatas happened to merchandising as weave made the shift from brick-and-mortar to a virtual store and cart? Plenty. How do you translate an in-store experience into an engaging digital one that leads a shopper to Buy Now sight unseen? Letas dive into the world of eCommerce merchandising and find out how retailers create a path to purchase from the physical to the digital experience.

What is Digital Merchandising?

Also known as eCommerce or online merchandising, digital merchandising is the practice of marketing goods in the digital space. Just as you map product placement and displays in-store with branding considerations to draw the customer over, the same actions happen in a virtual store to entice the shopper from their chosen device. Product merchandising is about having the right assortment, and showcasing it at the right time to the right customer. You are essentially creating content; and given the 2024 online sales projections retailers canat afford to sit this one out.

Make a Plan & Get Campaigning

You may have a number of goals for your business; youave targeted a specific sales growth percentage or doubling down on the number of promotions per month, or youad like to grow your loyalty program for top spenders. Whatever the case may be, once youave set the goals itas now time for strategizing. Youave stated the what - now you need to flesh out the how.

Personalization: Itas a New Day for Data Collection

When it comes to eCommerce merchandising campaigns itas ok to get personal. In fact, itas mission critical. With the death of third-party cookies, retail marketers are forced to revisit how they collect data and lean in on first or zero-party solutions to power personalized shopper experiences. Research shows todayas shoppers care how you get their data and what you do with it.

aSeventy percent of consumers like personalization, as long as brands are using data theyave shared directly.a

Source: Twilio

A Common Personalization Trap: The Creep Factor

There are many schools of thought on how much personalization is too much. I think we can all agree that ultimately personalization should best serve the customer and fulfill a need. Stepping outside the boundaries and creating an inaccurate assumption defeats the purpose of winning trust.

For example, Iam a pet owner. I often browse and shop online for pet food and supplies and have tried the numerous subscription services based on this category But that also means over the years Iave had to inevitably say goodbye to pets. Here is a snapshot of the types of personalization I could experience based on the data capture:

Zero Party: The cat food you liked in our poll is now BOGO

First Party: The pet carrier you browsed last month is on clearance

Second Party: Congrats on the kitten! Need pet insurance?

Third Party: Itas hard to lose a furry friend. Next time, check out our pet caskets and internment services

Youall notice as we progress through each scenario, the degree of personalization falls a bit further into the off-putting range. What you ideally want to do is solve a problem or create a convenience; not push the limits of knowing too much.

aPersonalization can mean a lot of things, so itas important to understand what a marketer thinks it is and how itas creepy. This can often clear up initial concerns. Then for us, the guiding personalization principle is to figure out if and how it adds value to the end usera|a

Source: Paul Munkholm, Kettle

Interested in Learning More About eCommerce Merchandising?

Discover 10 areas to optimize your eCommerce merchandising strategy for your business and more with our playbook.

Go to Playbook

Ecommerce Merchandising Trends and Tips to Consider

Many of todayas digital merchandising tips and trends are based in AR/VR technology, embraced in greater numbers by Gen X and Millennial groups. A few examples of these tactics include:

  • Virtual dressing or try-on rooms allowing shoppers to try clothing or makeup swatches from any device, wherever they are, before purchase
  • aSee it in your rooma capabilities for furniture or dA(c)cor accessories to replicate digitally what the item will look like in a shopperas home or space (a useful deterrent from returns)
  • Social networks like Pinterest and Instagram have leveraged this technology in their algorithms. Studying how they strategize and leverage it in the path to purchase in-app can be useful if youare looking to see more AR/VR in play
  • Implement 360 plug ins and enable virtual product tours across devices

It really depends on your product assortment and what youare able to invest in as far as technology a you need to assess what works best for your business. Bear in mind how critical it is for shoppers to get the same level of comfort and confidence they do from an in-store experience and a face-to-face conversation with a retailer - having a unique experience is key to engaging (and keeping) todayas shopper.

Product Merchandising

Product merchandising is key to all types of channels. And what eCommerce has shown us is the complexity around merchandising. In todayas eCommerce landscape retailers have multiple digital storefronts, complex pricing needs to reflect flash or scheduled sales, loyalty pricing, or bundling models.

A Rapidly Changing Landscape

Ecommerce changes rapidly so itas important to be on top of whatas trending in digital merchandising technology and how that affects your customer. The in-store experience is not going away; instead the merging of the physical and virtual is now the combined commerce narrative. Operating and streamlining the experience in both worlds is becoming the norm.

Above all a make it easy, friction-less, predictive, and personalized (appropriately), from discovery to purchase. Answer questions for your customers before they even know they had them. Build trust and confidence from the first time they click on your site or app. Make shopping with you an unforgettable experience they simply canat do without.


eCommerce Platform TCO Comparison: BigCommerce, Adobe Commerce (Magento), Commercetools, Shopify & Elastic Path

This post was originally published on June 30, 2019 and has been updated for relevancy.

When itas time to choose an eCommerce platform, everyone wants to know which solution will be the best one for their business. But more often than not, the next question is aHow much does it cost?a Ideally, we all want the best bang for our buck, but itas easy to get distracted by the displayed pricing on a website, or the lack thereof. Sometimes we end up jumping for a cheaper priced solution and shying away from those vendors that donat display their pricing on the website, because we think itall be too costly. Only to find out, your acheapera solution is more expensive, because you were unaware of all of the additional cost you would incur.

At Elastic Path, we happen to be one of the vendors without upfront pricing because our pricing is truly customized to a businessa needs. However, to help you understand how your Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) would compare to other vendors on the market, we will outline all the factors that you should be taking into consideration when evaluating your eCommerce solution. Weall also make reference to some of the top eCommerce vendors on the market such as Salesforce Commerce Cloud, BigCommerce, Adobe Commerce (Magento), and Commercetools to give you a better idea of where Elastic Path is positioned in comparison.

To get a true understanding of your total cost of ownership, and you will need to take into account both your first-year costs as well as your future costs. These costs include but arenat limited to:

  • Base software fee / Licensing fee
  • Implementation cost
  • Third party integrations cost
  • Cost of changes

In this article, we will first dissect each category of cost you should be considering followed by a breakdown of the total cost you can expect over a typical contract period for the aforementioned vendors.

Base Software Fee/ Licensing Fee

The base software fee or licensing fee is what we like to refer to as the aupfronta pricing. These fees tend to reflect either monthly or yearly licensing fees, which can be: Tier based, continuous revenue based or percent of sales based.

Tier-based means that there is a predefined price that your company will get locked into based on your current and expected revenue. Elastic Path and Commercetools are examples of microservices-based vendors that do tier pricing by revenue. The Elastic Path model is based on your transaction volume, which can be structured by Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) or by the number of orders processed (used more regularly for B2B companies).

For example, our pricing starts at $50,000 for companies who are just getting started and have revenue under $10 Million. Our pricing strategy allows you to plan your estimated growth over the next three years, lock in pricing, and allow you to plan for your spend in the future. This promises guaranteed pricing and clarity year over year so you can make plans for the future, not to mention the economies of scale driving the unit costs down as your revenues grow.

By continuous revenue, we mean the strategy by which vendors price their customers based on the revenue tier that theyare in, but automatically bump them up to the next pricing tier as soon as they go over. Weave seen vendors such as Shopify, BigCommerce, and Adobe Commerce (Magento) use this type of strategy.

By percent of sales-based pricing, we mean the strategy by which vendors take a small percentage of your Gross Merchandise Volume. Salesforce Commerce is an example of a vendor that uses this type of model. For example, Salesforce Commerce Cloud takes 1-2% of your GMV annually. So, at $10 Million in revenue, you can expect to pay around $100K to $200K. This type of model can be quite attractive because thereas no immediate upfront cost and it scales based on how your business performs.

However, there is also an additional annual fee of $150K that is mandatory to begin. This is a great example of hidden costs that you may not be aware of upfront. Generally, you can expect to pay a lower premium with modern Composable Commerce solutions than with an all-in-one solution like Salesforce Commerce Cloud. Check out our TCO guide to learn more.

The last component of the base cost is the hosting costs. With most modern cloud-based solutions, the hosting cost will also be tier-based on volume. Hosting costs are evenly comparable across most modern cloud-based eCommerce solutions.

Implementation Cost

Implementation costs are usually the most feared by businesses as it is perceived as the highest costs they will incur. These will usually be dependent on the cost of your developer and the time it takes to build the frontend and backend of your system. However, if youare in the market for an out-of-the-box solution, the majority of your cost will be dependent on the changes and customizations you will need to alter your pre-built solution. For brands with a unique brand vision and requirements, there will most likely always be customizations needed, and therefore, we recommend working with an agency or systems integrator. Here are a few of the tasks you can expect an agency to complete, that will determine your implementation costs:

  • Frontend development
  • Backend development
  • UI/UX design
  • Software systems integrations
  • Omnichannel design

Increasingly, we see customers looking to adopt a modern Composable Commerce approach use a progressive replatforming approach. This essentially means replacing your existing commerce solution (usually an all-in-one legacy solution) piece by piece. The benefits are two-fold: first, you can replace the component that is causing significant pain in your current solution quicker than a full-scale replatform. Catalog management, or easily customizable cart/ checkout capabilities are common first steps. The second benefit is on the cost front, where the development and customization costs are lower than a complete replatform can be evenly spread across the progressive replatforming process.

For a more detailed break-down of implementation costs, check out our blog post.

Third Party Cost

Third party costs are a little bit more intricate. When we think about this cost, we think about either plugins that are supplied by your platform as an application, or API integrations from third party vendors. The purpose of these integrations are to essentially extend your existing platform with other functionality. Some of the core third-party integrations include: content infrastructure, search engines, sales tax management, product information management (PIM), and shipping solutions. These costs will differ from vendor to vendor depending on if you leverage the third party as a plugin to your out-of-the-box solution, or buy a specific vendor solution for your Composable Commerce solution.

This can be a significant factor for brands that are looking to tailor their commerce solution to their needs with a Composable Commerce approach. They will not need to pay for components they do not use or need compared to an all-in-one solution. In some cases, brands that are already on an all-in-one solution like Salesforce will also add on higher performing third-party solutions to replace the out-of-the-box offering. Search is a good example of this, where brands will choose to implement a leading AI-driven search solution but ending up having to pay for both the third-party solution and the unused native solution from their monolithic provider.

Cost of Changes

One of the most important costs that are often neglected or forgotten are the costs associated with making changes to your solution. Most times we tend to plan and make decisions for anow,a but when the time comes and you are faced with costly changes that you werenat prepared for, it can be very detrimental to your fiscal budget planning. In addition, if youare the type of brand that wants to keep up with the ever-changing times, updates and changes are inevitable and therefore it is imperative you understand what those costs will look like in the future. Typical changes you will need to prepare for include:

  • Upgrades to your commerce software
  • Maintenance of your system
  • Upgrades or changes to your third-party technology partners
  • Changes in the backend functionality to fit your business requirements
  • Addition of new user experiences to keep up with customer expectations

These changes can become costly very quickly with traditional legacy platforms, as their rigid structure makes changes more difficult, thus driving up developer costs. Composable Commerce solutions on the other hand are more flexible by nature and therefore will end up lowering your overall total cost of changes in the future. As each businessa requirements will be different, we will not be able to provide an estimate of these costs across each vendor.

However, from feedback from past customers, on average, Composable Commerce solutions like Elastic Path and Commercetools, lower cost of changes by 40% when compared to rigid legacy platforms like Salesforce Commerce Cloud. Learn more about the expected cost of changes in our TCO guide.

Now that we've dissected the various cost categories, we have provided an overview of the total costs you can expect either on a monthly or annual basis for a few of the top legacy and Composable Commerce solutions on the market.

BigCommerce

BigCommerce positions itself as an eCommerce platform for high volume brands, with two main payment plans: Essentials Plan and Enterprise Plan.

BigCommerce Essentials

Plan BigCommerce Standard BigCommerce Plus BigCommerce Pro Yearly Sales $50,000 $180,000 $400,000 Monthly Pricing $29.95 $79.95 $299.95

The pricing represents their upfront license fee. At these rates, you get your average out-of-the-box store with zero customization, providing you with all the features you need to get a basic store up-and-running. Keep in mind the additional costs you may not be considering when choosing BigCommerce, they automatically bump you to the next tier if your actual sales exceed the threshold.

BigCommerce Enterprise

BigCommerce Enterprise offers all the core features, along with the addition of some premium features including unlimited API calls, price lists, and support. Their pricing widely varies based on the average order value and the average number of orders processed per month. Based on conversations from some of their sales representatives, the pricing plan ranges anywhere between $400 and $20,000 monthly.

To learn more, check out our comparison between BigCommerce and Elastic Path.

Shopify

Shopify is the market leader for SMB customers looking for an out of the box eCommerce website. Shopify customers give up flexibility, meaning that they'll need to be comfortable running their eCommerce website according to Shopify's templates and structures - but for many companies, that is fine because they're just looking for a standard website.

Shopify has 5 primary offerings:

  • Lite starts at $9/month
  • Basic starts at $29/month
  • Standard starts at $79/month
  • Advanced starts at $299/month
  • Shopify+ starts at $2,000/month

There are also gateway fees, which range from 2.4-3% + $.30 per transaction. Similarly, they charge an extra 2% transaction free for purchases not made through Shopify Payments.

Check out our comparison page to learn more about the major differences between Shopify and Elastic Path.

Magento

Magento Community Edition positions themselves as an Open Source eCommerce platform that provides businesses with a flexible, digital commerce solution to successfully sell online. Weave already written a more detailed post on our blog that digs into Magentoas TCO. To give you a brief overview of their pricing structure, weall focus on Magentoas two main plans: Magento Open Source and Magento Enterprise.

Magento Open Source

Magentoas aFREEa Open Source plan proves to be a more customizable option when compared to BigCommerce. Be careful - the only thing free about this option is their licensing fee/download. There are few costs hidden in the background:

  • Implementation a $30,000 - $100,000+
  • Hosting a $1000+
  • Themes a $29-$499
  • Maintenance and Support a $30,000+
  • Extensions a $0 - $10,000
  • Third Party Integrations a $6,000

I know what youare thinking, those added up pretty quickly! To be upfront, the price for a more customized store than BigCommerce is going to start somewhere between $30,000 and $100,000 upwards.

Need Help Evaluating eCommerce Solutions?

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Adobe Commerce (Magento Enterprise)

Adobe Commerce (Magento Enterprise) is the premium paid version of Magento, designed for those stores that need more than the community edition offers, based on the size of their company, and the level of customization theyare looking for. However, with this option, you have to empty your pockets for a much higher licensing fee. Based on your revenue, Magento displays their upfront price between $22,000/year and $125,000/year.

Of course, this also includes access to more advanced features such as security, mobile commerce, and free professional customer support. However, in addition to including all the core features that the open source version consists of, the same features tend to come at a higher price for this plan. Some of these higher feature costs include:

  • Implementation a $60,000+
  • Hosting a $7000+
  • Themes a $29-$499
  • Magento Certified Gold Partner a $10,000
  • Extensions a $0 - $10,000
  • Third Party Integrations a $6,000+

Overall, this comes with more customization, but still lacks complete control over your content. The price for this package starts between $100,000 and $250,000.

Overall, Magento Enterprise comes with more customization, but still lacks complete control over your content. The price for this package starts between $100,000 and $250,000 upwards! These are high costs and to make it even worse, Magentoas performance has not been up to standard either, especially when comparing site speed. You may want to consider the costs associated with their slow performing stores when considering your total cost of ownership as well.

Check out our comparison pagefor a detailed look at each solutionsa capabilities.

Commercetools

Commercetools is a Headless Commerce Platform. To be completely frank, there are no signs of Commercetoolsa pricing anywhere! They seem to be a bit secretive, but we have done our best to provide you with the most accurate information based on feedback from our customers, who shared what Commercetools has proposed to them. These costs include:

  • Implementation a $300,000 - $1 Million
  • License Fees a $200,000/year - $500,000/year
  • Specialized resources a $150,000/year

Click here for a more detailed look at a side-by-side comparison with Elastic Path.

Elastic Path

Elastic Path offers Composable Commerce-as-a-Service, an API-First headless commerce microservices solution. Composable Commerce is a modern approach to eCommerce that is built on the concept of composability, where core commerce functionality and partner integrations can be selected and assembled in various combinations to satisfy specific business requirements, at the speed digitally driven brands need to succeed. Composable Commerce were built on three main tenets:

  • Modular architecture
  • Open Ecosystem
  • Business Centric Solutions

And itas with these tenets that Elastic Path has been able to reduce businessa overall total cost of ownership by up to 50%.

As mentioned before, Elastic Path provides a tier-based pricing based on Gross Merchandise Revenue. Overall based on a $10 Million revenue, pricing would be around $50K for Elastic Path. Elastic Path also offers Composable Commerce Experience Assurance that de-risks the management of multi-vendor solutions by providing an expert 24x7 global support team for all issues. This cost of the feature will be 25% of your annual contract value and capped at $25,000 USD/ year.

Additional costs will include: implementation costs, hosting costs and third-party costs which will lie in the same range of costs for Magento. Where you will end up seeing the greatest cost savings are in the phases of customizations and changes. To get a better understanding of how cost of changes can be 5x lower compared to traditional legacy platforms and Composable Commerce solutions visit our Total Cost of Ownership Guide.

If you have more specific questions regarding Elastic Path costs, please refer to the pricing page here.

Summary

Understanding your total cost of ownership is not straight forward and often times we prioritize certain categories of costs and lose overall sight on our expected total cost in the future. As each vendor has different offerings, it will never be easy to compare them across the board. However, if you follow the guide of assessing each category of cost, this will give you and your team a good understanding to make an informed decision. If you have any questions, we are always happy to help - Just reach out to us.


The Myth of Headless Commerce

Headless Commerce is the buzz word that just wonat go away. So much talk about being headless evokes the image of the headless horseman for me. And so, I finally looked him up, to satisfy my curiosity about what he represents. The headless horseman symbolizes a past that never dies and continues to haunt the living. That sounds a lot like what Headless Commerce has turned into lately.

Over my last several years supporting organizations and brands looking to modernize their customer experience, the first qualifier seems to be aare you headlessa? But what does that really mean? When a brand asks a commerce vendor if they are aheadlessa, the answer will always be YES! Every eCommerce Platform available today makes a claim that they can operate in a headless manner.

Letas pause for a moment. What are brands really looking for when they are asking for headless? A read through of the past several (dozen or so) RFPs that have come across my desk indicate that organizations, whether they realize it or not, want the headless horseman. The aheada separated from the body, but still haunted by the past. What do I mean by that?

Organizations want headless, ostensibly to create a more flexible and extensible commerce architecture that will support long term growth. They want more engaging experiences that drive more conversion. They want blazing fast site speed. They want a commerce architecture that will support the rapidly changing nature of commerce.

But simply removing the aheada (or frontend) will not accomplish any of that. When I read an RFP asking for Headless Commerce typically what follows is a ridiculously long checklist of the features from the monolithic platform the customer is currently on. If this approach sounds familiar, then you are inviting the headless horseman into your organization. You will be haunted by a commerce architecture thatas as inflexible and rigid as it has always been. Being aheadlessa just isnat enough to help brands drive revenue growth.

Ready to Get Started with Composable Commerce?

Discover the steps for getting started to truly capitalize your commerce strategy and more with our full guide.

Read the Guide

So, what is the alternative? How does an organization respond to the pace of change in the market? How do you prepare for the expansion of commerce to touchpoints we havenat even imagined yet? To fully realize the promise of aCommerce Everywherea (more on that in an upcoming post), brands should consider each part of their customer experience independently.

For example, how important is search to how your customers experience your brand? If search experience is important to you, consider it independently from your eCommerce platform, against the requirements and KPIas relevant for your organization. Do you have a large content management team that has robust requirements around driving engaging content? You wonat be able to satisfy those requirements with a built-in CMS in a monolithic commerce platform.

Instead, you should consider separating your content management and your commerce platform. This acomposablea approach to commerce allows organizations to fit solutions to their requirements, instead of having to fit their requirements to the technology.

External composability is important however, this acomposablea approach should also be applied to your evaluation of a Commerce vendoras solution. While every Commerce vendor can reasonably claim to be Headless, few are truly composable. And even fewer have designed their own architecture from that same composable viewpoint. At Elastic Path our APIs are built around packaged business capabilities, each of which is easily composable both with each other and external capabilities (like search, content management, etc.).


Why Your Agency Needs Composable Commerce Solutions in the Mix?

Composable Commerce may have reached buzzword status, but its driving force in todayas eCommerce success stories is unrefuted. Both major and up and coming brands are adopting its approach and architecture to transform the customer experience at speeds faster than ever expected. Todayas customer demands it.

As an agency itas critical to be at the forefront of technology, with every resource at your disposal to deliver on your clientas expectations. Composable Commerce is the right now of eCommerce. Hereas why your agency should join the movement.

Composable Commerce Changes the Game

With the flexibility of modular architecture and the open ecosystem of vendors, brands like never before have more control of user experiences and have the ability to scale at speeds faster than ever before.

One of the Big-Five publishers had outgrown ShopifyPlus, but was worried it would take too long to move to a new eCommerce platform. They migrated in only 54 days using one of our Pre-Composed SolutionsaC/.

Composability supports brands and businesses who need to pivot quickly with growing demand. And if the last two years taught us anything itas that change is constant.

Composable Commerce Supports Complex Business Requirements

In the early days of eCommerce, monolith systems were the gold standard; an out-of-the-box functionality with core features in a one-size-fits-all model. But for businesses (and your potential clients) with more complex needs, this platform canat keep up with demand when itas time to iterate.

Think of businesses with instances of amultisa a multi brands, multi geographies, multi channels, or multi catalogs. This level of complexity requires modularity; the flexibility and speed that a microservices-based, API-first approach offers without the bloat of features not needed and the slow to market speed of a monolith. (If the wheels donat fall off first).

Composable Commerce Opens Up New Partnerships and Revenue

With an open ecosystem of vendors great partners lead to even greater implementations. For functionality ranging from search, tax, chat, payments, CRM, OMS, and more, youare opening the possibilities to develop even better solutions. Through our community of implementation, solutions and tech partners, weave developed unique solutions for brands ready to take the first steps into composability.

Composable Commerce is future-proof. Referencing the modular building block analogy, the components are meant to be swapped for better functionality. There is no locked-in vendor solution, the approach is based on a best for the business need.

For your agency this means growing partner relationships and opportunity to develop unique solutions a great for your reputation as an innovator and great for your revenue to always be building better. You want to stay ahead of the game with your clients, and composability by design is built for change.

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No Other Approach Brings Business and Tech Users Together

Speaking of a growth mindset and the power of partnerships, another key tenet of Composable Commerce is its benefits to both business and tech stakeholders. Weave already touched on complex business requirements and the ability to iterate at speed, but letas take another look at what that means for the stakeholders involved.

In a recent Gartner study, 84% of respondents indicated there can be more than twelve primary leaders of a digital commerce initiative. The remaining respondents cited no primary lead for a digital commerce strategy. Similar questions posed in a 2019 survey produced the same results. A shift has occurred towards a digital commerce approach of total ownership distributed across the organization.

So what does that mean? A siloed environment is death to the customer experience. A friction-free customer journey starts with open communication and a shared roadmap among all teams involved. And that opens the conversation to developers, marketing, customer service, and operations teams; wherever data and customer touchpoints can be identified and streamlined in the solution.

A happy customer is confident and ready to purchase. For you as an agency, happy customers lead to conversions, and conversions lead to happy clients.

The Composable Commerce Approach Can Be Gradual

Letas say you have a client on a monolith commerce platform who is reticent, rightfully so, of making the switch to a more composable solution. It can be daunting for a business new to a multi-vendor solution and microservices-based architecture; especially those without an in-house dev team.

The good news is they can gradually transition over one functionality at a time. Letas say they need more self-checkout options at point-of-sale a those integrations can be made with their existing legacy system and launched quickly without disruption to the business.

You can now set the stage for future implementations with total client confidence because youare meeting the client where they are, not forcing a canned sales pitch of services they donat need.

Incredible Opportunities in Growth, Technology, and Industry Reputation

Itas official a eCommerce has gone composable. It will benefit your agencyas bottom line to advocate for its adoption, but also your reputation as a thought leader and innovator.

Read more about our community of Solutions and Tech partners and find out more about joining the Composable Commerce movement as a partner.


Seven DTC eCommerce Trends in 2022

The world of digital commerce is constantly changing, and with the rapid shift to online retailing as a result of the COVID pandemic, 2022 promises to be no different. With this trend in online shopping, the DTC eCommerce industry will only continue to grow. In 2021, U.S. direct-to-consumer (DTC) eCommerce sales reached 129 billion, and are projected to reach 151 this year. Now isn't that crazy!

As DTC businesses continue to prioritize digital commerce experiences, brands are facing more market competition than ever. With that being said, in this blog, I will give a general overview of seven major DTC eCommerce trends you should keep an eye on for your brand to succeed in 2022.

What is DTC eCommerce?

DTC eCommerce is an eCommerce business model in which brands sell directly to their end customers, as opposed to using third-parties such as wholesalers, distributors, or other retailers. There are many benefits of selling direct to consumers, including:

  • Differentiation: Having full power on decisions, brands can better differentiate themselves as well as their products in the marketplace.
  • Boosted Customer Loyalty: As a result of the direct relationship brands can facilitate with customers, they can build a more loyal customer base.
  • Better Customer Experiences: By being able to have a close relationship with consumers, brands are able to collect direct feedback from them that can be used to create better customer experiences in the future.
  • Direct Control: Without having to rely on parties to sell their products, DTC businesses are able to have direct and full control over their pricing, products, and branding.

An example of a DTC eCommerce brand is Glossier, a company in the beauty industry, which uses the platform Contentful to facilitate their sales channels. Through Contentful and social media, Glossier has created a strong, loyal customer base and enhanced customer experiences. Their instagram page consists of 2.6 million followers with a content mix of customer reviews, product promotions, and influencer partnerships to draw in more customers. Today, Glossier is a billion dollar brand company that sells online beauty products, branching into millennial and Gen Z target audience through brick-and-mortar shops to provide the best brand experience possible.

Top 7 DTC eCommerce Trends

1. Social and Live Commerce for Expanded Shopping Experiences

Shopping on social media platforms and livestreams has become increasingly popular in recent years. According to Swirl, from 2015 to 2020, revenue from online video commerce went from $3.5 billion to $17.6 billion, and that number is expected to be $25 billion by 2023. Platforms such as Instagram offer tags on photos that direct consumers to a brandas website, where they can quickly purchase the product they were viewing. This immersive shopping experience appeals to consumers as they are able to purchase products that are endorsed by their favorite celebrities or influencers. Livestream shopping is similar to QVC (a televised shopping service that showcases live retail programming 24/7), but consumers now have access to the products at their fingertips.

See How Elastic Path Delivers Unique Customer Experiences

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2. Consumers Becoming Increasingly Sustainability Conscious

Sustainability is at the forefront of consumersas minds nowadays and companies are following suit. According to a global survey, "66% of global consumers would pay more for sustainable businesses and products." With that being said, many brands are becoming environmentally conscious and shifting away from plastic in packaging and now include the origin of materials used, as well as information on how to recycle them. In addition, many companies now include data about their carbon footprint with their customers. Overall, these trends depict the shift in consumer and brand consciousness toward our natural environment, leading to a bright future for eCommerce businesses.

3. Omnichannel Shopping Leading to Better Customer Retention

According to Omnisend, acustomer retention rates are 90% higher for omnichannel versus single channel.a An omnichannel approach to eCommerce is being adopted by companies to make the customer experience more convenient. For example, allowing a customer to shop online but return in-store guarantees that the customer has a seamless shopping experience. Furthermore, integrating digital channels enables a company to maintain a consistent brand appearance across all devices.

4. Personalization Means Better Brand Experiences

Personalizing the customer experience increases the likelihood that the customer makes a purchase and has a positive experience with the brand. According to Accenture, a74% of consumers would find aliving profilesa valuable if they could be used to curate the experiences, offers, and products they receive.a With direct access to customer data, such as browsing history, interests, and searches, brands are able to create unique experiences like hosting a live stream eventor even creating a hologram. The ability to personalize also allows companies to more easily adapt to trends, by making changes such as new colorways for products.

5. Delivery and Return Policies Will Become a Key Service Differentiator

Studies have shown that delivery fees and return policies are important factors when customers are choosing where to shop. According to Forrester, aabout three out of five French, UK, and US online adults prefer retailers that offer free return shipping; about two out of five prefer retailers that provide refunds via the original form of payment.a Free delivery and free returns are services that customers strongly desire, and can cause customers to choose one brand over another. Brands who care about the customer experience should invest in streamlining their delivery and return processes.

6. AI Creates Innovative Ideas

AI plays a significant role in omnichannel planning, which enables companies to capitalize on business opportunities in real time. Machine learning is especially useful in forming the demand plan for product attributes, marketing events, and style or color forecasts for the lifecycle of a product. AI automates these processes and drastically reduces the time needed for planners to create manual aSKUsa.

7. Subscriptions Build Up Customer Loyalty

As DTC eCommerce continues to grow, many companies have adopted a subscription model that has shown great success with traditional retailers. A subscription eCommerce service offers consumers a lower-cost way to buy what they need. Around half of companies surveyed in 2019 stated that they would implement subscription services to boost customer retention.

Whatas Next for DTC eCommerce?

DTC eCommerce offers tremendous opportunities for brands due to the growing trend in online shopping. Large retailers such as Nike have already begun to shift their focus to appealing to the needs of online shoppers. The cost savings achieved through DTC eCommerce is directly transferred to the consumer, which leads to people preferring DTC eCommerce brands over traditional retailers.

Also, DTC eCommerce allows companies to be more adaptable and in control of their distribution. In a fast-paced world where trends are ephemeral, a digital presence is vital. Digital commerce enables DTC brands to keep up with consumer trends and gives them a significant advantage over traditional retailers.

Above are just a few of the DTC eCommerce trends that represent how companies are adjusting to the post-pandemic digital world. As companies adopt these trends of sustainability, AI, and personalization, DTC eCommerce will continue to become an approach more companies will look to expand to. For more information on DTC eCommerce, check out our DTC eCommerce pagehere.


API-first or Dressed-Up Middleware

How to Know if Your Commerce Platform is Truly API-first?

In case you missed it, last week I covered what it means to be API-first, and how thatas different from a code-first approach. In this piece, Iall write more about what API-first means for commerce, and why itas not as hard to implement as you may think.

The lingua franca amongst commerce vendors in 2022 is composable and API-first. Itas why I invested in Moltin years ago and why I joined Elastic Path in 2020 to run the product team. Thereas a foundational shift in how modern software is built and consumed. First software ate the world, then a16zas Martin Casada highlighted in 2017 that world is now available through an API.

Given that aecommercea is a well established market, there are a lot of legacy systems masquerading as API-first, bringing along all their complexity for the ride. One can aAPI anythinga a but, in doing so, one does not become API-first.

When considering a new commerce technology, potential buyers should understand that API-based platforms generally come in two forms:

  • API-first approach: Cloud-native APIs built from the ground-up to simplify communication between systems to facilitate rapid-cycle application development. Stripe is a great example here.
  • API-secondary approach: Legacy monoliths that have refactored existing architecture constructs and capabilities to make them available via APIs but bring all the complexity of the legacy architecture along for the ride. Most of the companies I worked for in the first decade of the 21st century come to mind here.

The benefit of an API-first approach is that the APIs are lightweight and can be designed to be easily extended to serve a variety of specific use cases. For complex use cases, itas possible for developers to design these APIs to communicate with one another and streamline requests that pull related data in. This approach removes a lot of the complexity that comes with a disassembled monolith.

Legacy monoliths, on the other hand, offer a broad spectrum of APIs to serve a myriad of use cases. While that comprehensiveness may seem appealing at first, it drags along all the complexity originally designed into the monolithic architecture. Refactoring does not eliminate complexity; it simply presents it via new interfaces. As a result, we often see vendors tout their support for tools such as GraphQL as a benefit, when in actuality, a separate orchestration layer serves to combine their many disparate APIs into useful functional requests.

Letas get into these two issues a bit more.

See How Elastic Path Delivers Unique Customer Experiences

The Elastic Path Demo Library features multiple demos that showcase the power and scale of our products.

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Simplified Request/Response

Elastic Path Commerce Cloud was purpose-built for the singular function of supporting commerce applications powered by the catalog. That means the request/response model works seamlessly, abstracting away unneeded complexity behind the scenes, rather than surfacing it all for the developer to navigate. For example, a single call is designed to return all the information needed to support building a product details page. An API call for this purpose would return:

  • Full product details and attributes, including custom and product-specific details.
  • Situational pricing, such as rules for a specific channel, customer or other rule-based pricing. For example, a northeast price book vs. a southwest price book can be automatically returned based on request parameters.
  • All available product variations and options, as well as the mapping of those options to the specific child product for adding to cart. This includes all possible iterations of sizes, colors and SKUs.
  • Availability information.

The Elastic Path Commerce Cloud REST APIs have only four ways to interact. For example, following REST standards:

  • To create a product, the products endpoint is called with an HTTP POST request
  • To retrieve, a GET is called
  • To update, a PUT is called
  • To remove, an HTTP DELETE is called.

To contrast, in monolith conversions, there could be dozens of actions required to be called to perform those four simple functions to manage a product. Because Elastic Path Commerce Cloud is built with commerce product information in mind, following REST standards keeps it simple. That way, developers can focus on building out the specific business value instead of navigating the many dozen actions a monolith conversion may require.

No Need for Separate Tools as Intermediaries

As mentioned above, monoliths with hundreds of discrete APIs need orchestration, and will often require a tool such as GraphQL between the APIs and the front end. This is not the case with an API-first platform like Elastic Path Commerce Cloud. Additional orchestration tools are required due to the under-fetching issue common among monolith conversions. By mapping the various APIs to GraphQL and using the query language to combine many APIs together, developers have to do a significant amount of work to get the same result available in a single Elastic Path Commerce Cloud call.

Itas important to consider the performance aspect of this issue. Think about adding a GraphQL call to the backend APIs that then respond to GraphQL, and finally GraphQL responds to the initial request. This adds latency and degrades performance, where Elastic Path Commerce Cloud allows you to call your APIs directly by combining related data into a single call.

Consider the following common extended API use case: a customer wishlist. Normal REST APIs would require several API calls to get the customer data and wishlist items. With Elastic Path Commerce Cloud, the customer API can be extended with a aone to manya relationship to products that are on the customeras wishlist. Then, a single request of the customer record can be made that does not aincludea the products in the wishlist. Or, if the endpoint is called with the query string include=wishlist_products, all of the products on the wishlist will be returned. This avoids the need for an interstitial tool such as GraphQL.

Abstracting Away Complexity with API-first

To sum it up, API-first commerce platforms like Elastic Path Commerce Cloud can make it much simpler to take advantage of the flexibility and combinatorial power of the API economy. It doesnat have to be difficult to assemble a platform of components that create competitive differentiation for your commerce experiences. Or your team can focus on building custom components that matter most to your customers. Regardless of your strategy, to avoid legacy baggage and complexity, API-first is key.


What Does It Mean to be API-first?

If youare building a commerce platform, why reinvent the wheel when the right APIs will do? In his essay, APIs All the Way Down, Packy McCormick suggests that instead of building from scratch, companies can gain a competitive advantage from leveraging APIs. According to McCormickas argument, by building a commerce platform out of APIs, there are two main ways to differentiate: By creating custom solutions paired with API-based components, or by organizing API-based components in a novel or interesting way. (Iall talk more about how that can work later.)

The issue for many companies is the abundance of commerce APIs, which create an unnecessary perception of difficulty. The old way of thinking is based on the illusion of simplicity, wherein one vendor controls the entire commerce stack. Unfortunately, a monolithic software stack creates inertia and an inability to move fast enough to keep up with changing technologies and shopper preferences. As a result, commerce teams are forced to look beyond the monolith to achieve their business objectives a shattering the illusion of simplicity that drove their purchase of a monolithic solution in the first place.

Thatas where a solution like Elastic Path can help, as it provides the logic and building blocks for getting started with an API-first commerce ecosystem. We make it simple to select and integrate the best tools for your business requirements and follow best practices to unleash the combinatorial power of APIs, as opposed to drowning your business and technical teams in complexity.

But how do you know if the technology you select is truly API-first? Many companies attempt to disassemble legacy monoliths and repackage or refactor them as microservices-based, API-first platforms. This approach adds unnecessary complexity, and flies in the face of API-first, cloud native principles meant to accelerate innovation.

In part one of this two-part series, Iall cover what it means to be API-first. In part two, weall dive into what differentiates an API-first company from dressed up middleware.

See How Elastic Path Delivers Unique Customer Experiences

The Elastic Path Demo Library features multiple demos that showcase the power and scale of our products.

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The Rise of the Request/Response Model

An API-first approach means thinking of an API as the most important user for an application. In an API-first company, the APIs are often the first thing to be developed, and all new functionality should be exposed as an API. This approach is much different than acode-first,a where developers create an application first, and insert the API at the end. Legacy commerce vendors that are retrofitting their software to work with APIs fall in the code-first category. This approach can be an issue if the original application isnat structured in a way that makes it simple for the API to access data.

API-first isnat as simple as adding an API to the end of an overly complex system. As Chris Sperandio wrote while at Segment, aAPIs are eating the value chain.a In the old enterprise software business model, companies bought packaged applications to streamline certain functions of their business, and these vendors charged extra for external API connectivity. Companies were forced to adapt to the way software vendors did business. Today, software is too interconnected to play that way.

Instead, a request/response model is taking over. API-first companies exist entirely between the HTTP request and response. As Sperandio writes: aCompanies like Stripe and Twilio set themselves apart not only by the sheer amount of operative complexity theyare able to put behind an API, but because of how elegant, simple, and downright pleasant their APIs are to use for developers. In doing so, they give developers literal superpowers.a

The packaged enterprise software suites of the past few decades donat function well in this Request/Response model because they arenat built with APIs in mind. Theyare built as self-contained ecosystems. That means their users are missing out on everything great about an API-first ecosystem: an improved developer experience, higher performance storefronts, reduced costs, faster time to market, and the ability to easily integrate with countless other abest-for-mea services.

Stay tuned for part two of this series, where Iall explore what this means within ecommerce, and what differentiates an API-first company from dressed up middleware.


Why Site Performance Matters and How to Improve It

Site performance (or lack thereof) is one of the biggest pain points eCommerce businesses face today, due in part to its direct correlation to conversion rate. If you donat think site performance matters to your customer - your revenue, and your reputation, are at risk.

Iall cover why site performance matters and how best to improve it if you find yourself on the slower end of the speed trial.

Consider this:

  • It takes about fifty milliseconds, or .05 seconds, for users to form an opinion about your site and determine if they will stay or go. Think about your personal experience with a slower-paced load time on a site. How many times have you bounced off as quickly as you found it? From ordering a pizza to buying a couch, todayas consumer simply does not have time to wait. A
  • Fifty-seven percent a-of internet users say they wonat recommend a business with a poorly designed web application on mobile.

Given the miniscule timeframe to make a good first impression on a consumer, plus the hefty influence of word-of-mouth first impressions by those same consumers (either favorable or less than), site performance is not a anice to have,a it is critical.

Poor site performance is expensive. Industries may vary as far as numbers, but letas see on average what the damage looks like when it comes to what slow site speed will cost you. For example, if youare running an ecommerce site that makes $100,000 per day, a one second page delay coulda- cost you $2.5 million a-per year in lost sales. To put that in eCommerce behemoth terms, letas take Amazon. Performance tests showed they would lose $1.6 BILLION every year if they slowed down by just one second.

What is the Benchmark for Optimal Site Speed?

The Google-recommended page load time is under a-two seconds. Two seconds is the threshold for ecommerce website acceptability, while Google aims to keep load time under a half-second. Additional food for thought: 47% of consumers expect a page to load in two seconds are less, while studies show for every 100ms decrease in home page load speed results in a 1.11% lift in session-based conversion.

Other factors that affect site performance to keep in mind: mobile device usage, bandwidth, and variable internet speeds by user region.

So now that youare aware of the high stakes of slow site speed, the good news is you have options for improving it. First things first, always be testing.

Web Application Performance & Speed Testing Tools

There are many products and services in the market to diagnose web application speed and performance. Itas important to have a clear picture of how your site is performing and be able to make tweaks quickly and easily. More benefits to these tools include:

  • Find out how your site is performing across devices. Most users are visiting through a mobile device so optimization is key
  • See how your site is performing across regions and countries
  • Analyze and optimize for better rankings and UX
  • Triage bottlenecks and make optimization decisions based on ROI and conversion rates

Interested in Learning More About Elastic Path Commerce Cloud?

Launch and optimize innovative experiences fast, with a modern, headless, SaaS, API-first, & microservices-based commerce platform.

See the Future of eCommerce

The Top Web Performance/Speed Testing Tools:

Pingdom Speed Test

GTmetrix

Google PageSpeed Insights

Yellow Lab Tools

WebPage Test

KeyCDN Website Testing Tools

DotCom-Monitor

Dareboost

IsItWP Website Speed Tool

GiftOfSpeed

A

A

Figure 1: A typical Web Performance Tool interface Source: Pingdom

Next Steps: How to Improve on Speed and Overall Performance

Now that youave invested the time in the proper tools to monitor and improve site speed, and understand the slim window to keep a user engaged and on the path to purchase, here are a few things to consider that affect speed:

Dynamic vs. Static Content Management a The difference between the two is dynamic content is anything subject to change based on user input such as product, pricing, or descriptions. This content is stored in a database and is fetched when the user engages with it, otherwise known as async communication. Static content on the other hand is anything remaining the same in the experience such as the navigation menu. Both types of content have distinct yet crucial functions on a site but are managed differently.

While static content typically loads faster there are ways to manage dynamic content to alleviate issues and slower load times. As you edit dynamic content you want to avoid editing the HTML code as this will cause breaks in your site. Additionally when managing dynamic content use proper caching and Content Delivery Networks (CDN) to bridge the gaps between dynamic and static content.

Use a Faster Website Host a upgrading your website host can significantly affect your site speed. While youad also be looking at site uptime, traffic volume (especially the ability to manage spikes during peak activity), customer support, and of course price. Here is a helpful Top 10 list of vendors to get started. Youall want to review many providers and continuously comparison shop especially as you scale your business.

Image Optimization - no surprise that visual content engages users. However, high quality imagery means larger files that eat up load time. Using resized and compressed files is a lighter lift for the server to load the image.

Within imagery youall want to pay attention to the file format. There are four file types: PNG, JPEG, GIF, WebP, and SVG. A general rule of thumb is to avoid GIFs since they do drag on site speed. When choosing between PNGs and JPEGs, PNGs work well for graphics and screenshots, while JPEGs are ideal for photographs. The newcomer is the SVG file format, or scalable vector graphic that renders well in web applications and across other use cases. Lazy load plugins are also useful to only render photos where the user is browsing.

Reduce HTTP Requests a HTTP requests occur when the browser sends a request to the server for information. The fewer requests a website must make the faster the site can load. The amount and the size of the requested files affects load times, however most engaging sites have both multiple and larger files. The best way to address this issue and is to run a full report on your site and assess what images are taking the longest to load and if in fact you need them. After you assess whatas needed, you can reduce the file size.

Web Application Optimization is a Team Effort

Web application design and management is a collaborative effort between IT and marketing teams. Youall want to consider the user experience but also look at the technical load of what youare providing to the user. Poor site speed results in bounce rates; essentially all the work you put into an engaging interface is null and void if the load times are sluggish. It takes the unique roles and goals of each side to create a memorable experience that consistently drives conversion.


Why Partner With Elastic Path

Todayas eCommerce requires innovation at speed. Microservices-based, API-first solutions deliver on that innovation by opening the door to differentiated customer experiences. Elastic Path has been an early adopter of the Composable Commerce approach, enabling sales, marketing, and merchandising teams to launch and optimize digital commerce experiences leveraging best-of-breed vendors into one business-ready solution.

But you already know this if youave come this far. Also no surprise that Composable Commerce runs on an open ecosystem of vendors. With vendor functionality ranging from search, and OMS (to name just a few), we partner with you to create modern, agile commerce solutions based on specific business needs. Together we navigate the complexities to deliver a highly scalable, and easily customizable solution composed of best-of-breed functionality.

Weare looking for partners to build our community, reimagine eCommerce, and grow revenue. (That means your revenue too).

So why would you partner with Elastic Path? You certainly have plenty of commerce platforms to choose from, the competition is fierce. Do any of these scenarios sound familiar to you?

  • You donat want to be left behind when it comes to the latest technology a rigid, slow, monolith platforms are a thing of the past and you want to be a leader in a composable, microservices-based practice
  • You want a high implementation success rate to build your customersa trust
  • You want to be a part of joint GTM strategies and business planning

Or, maybe

  • You prefer to work across many modern programming languages based on your preference and skill, without the need for specialized architecture knowledge and language
  • You find it difficult to deliver on specific client needs working with rigid, monolithic systems. You prefer flexibility and speed in architecture for rapid deployment
  • You expect extensive documentation, guided tutorials, and self-enablement capabilities

If any or even all these points resonate with you, letas take the discussion a step further. What can you expect from us? A few key attributes of our partner program to consider:

  • No pay to play modeling. Your investment is your time, thought leadership, and desire to create unique commerce solutions. We donat require any monetary commitment.
  • State-of-the-art training modules designed for your schedule. Youall access trainings wherever you are, anytime, at your pace. Our dedicated learning portal provides the knowledge you need to be successful.
  • Progress through our tiered certification levels and be rewarded as you go with successful implementations and greater access.
  • Access to support from sales and partner enablement teams through a range of channels.
  • Interested in Partnering With Elastic Path?

    Elastic Path is the leading independent provider of commerce solutions for digital experiences. We build for our partners, so contact us today.

    See the Future of eCommerce

    Our Customers

    The Elastic Path story would be incomplete without our customers. Weave helped companies ranging from retail, manufacturing, professional services, consumer goods, healthcare, and hospitality spaces realize their eCommerce goals and bring their brands to life including:

    Pella Windows and Doors came to Elastic Path with a need to develop an online revenue stream to continually evolve their business. Today Pella has a custom-built configurator that empowers customers to create their perfect windows and doors online, resulting in an elevated path to purchase and reduced cart-abandonment.

    Paro is a growth platform bringing businesses and expert finance and accounting professionals together through AI technology and acute industry knowledge. Their community of professionals provides a range of services to clients, from bookkeeping and accounting to highly specialized corporate development and strategic advisory.

    Paro successfully launched a customer portal in 5-6 months with the support of implementation partners Algolia for search functionality, Stripe for payment processing, and GetStream for a chat feature.

    Luxury jeweler Teilor had aggressive goals to expand their eCommerce presence in the next five years. They were looking for a partner to guide them through the digital transformation towards an omnichannel experience, and the critical future-proofing of the solution as they scale. With the typical buying journey lasting between 4-6 weeks, they needed an experience to balance both the online and in-store components of their customeras highly personal discovery and purchase.

    They achieved their desired customer experience through an SI partnership for migration and pre-built solutions to launch quickly.

    How Elastic Path Differentiates

    Let me take a moment to familiarize you with more of what Elastic Path has to offer in the way of products, services, and resources.

    Elastic Path Commerce Cloud: All the Power in a Single Platform

    With core capabilities ranging from cart/checkout to product content management, to payments, inventory, and account management, Elastic Path Commerce Cloud (EPCC) is a single platform solution across channels, (B2B, B2C, or even B2B2C), brands, and geographies. Weave eliminated the need for messy workarounds and costly development time. Your development time is significantly reduced for use cases across multiple brands, channels, and touchpoints in a signal instance.

    But weave taken that a step further with value add-ons, services, and solutions:

    Pre-Composed SolutionsaC/

    For those businesses ready to embrace a multi-vendor solution that may be new to Composable Commerce we offer pre-integrated, business-ready packages for a quicker launch with less risk. Capabilities like search or front- end management are built-in and enable easier customizations and management. Weall also collaborate with SI partners to develop new pre-composed solutions based on customer needs.

    Elastic Path Payments Powered by Stripe

    Provide a seamless customer experience at checkout with Stripeas best-in-class security and fraud management. Improve conversions, support subscriptions, BNPL, and alternative payment methods such as digital wallets.

    Composable Commerce XAaC/

    Service and support are a touchstone at Elastic Path. One of the common pain points of a multiple vendor solution is support when issues arise. Our answer to this is Composable Commerce XA. We are the single point of contact across vendors and solutions to identify and resolve issues in a timely fashion. This reduces risk and gives customers greater peace-of-mind when managing a composable, multi-vendor solution that could otherwise be overwhelming.

    Migration Packages

    Weave developed the only Salesforce Commerce Cloud Migration Package. After hearing many SFCC customers share the limitations theyave encountered with an all-in-one platform we answered the call. Through Pre-Composed Solutions, migration services and tools, and the multi-vendor assurance of Composable Commerce XA, weave de-risked the transition to Elastic Path Commerce Cloud.

    Composable Commerce Hub

    While weare talking firsts, the Composable Commerce Hub is the first and only open exchange of business solutions powered by an ecosystem of leading digital commerce providers. Whereas traditional vendor marketplaces were home to just partner integrations, the Hub includes all the pieces for a brand to combine with the Composable Commerce platform to quickly and confidently launch with a truly DIY, composed solution.

    You Would Be in Good Company

    Youave heard quite a bit about us. And now wead like to hear more about you. Take a moment to reach out and connect with us, and feel free check out whoas currently in our expanding directory of Solutions and Tech Partners.


    The UNas Achilles Heel Mires International Action to Halt Aggression and Atrocities in Ukraine

    Russiaas unlawful invasion of Ukraine has led the international community to respond with unprecedented speed and intensity. Reactions to this European conflict are in stark contrast with the lack of effective international action to halt ongoing atrocities in Myanmar, Afghanistan, China, and other places. The crisis in Ukraine has also brought to the foreground the limitations of international law and mechanisms to halt aggression and atrocity crimes.

    This article summarizes recent attempts within United Nations (UN) bodies to halt the war and atrocities in Ukraine. Also considered are actions in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and . . . [more]

    The post The UNas Achilles Heel Mires International Action to Halt Aggression and Atrocities in Ukraine appeared first on Slaw.


    Wednesday: Whatas Hot on CanLII

    Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and French-language cases have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about.

    For this last week, the most-consulted three English-language decisions were:

    1. Denis v Sauvageau, 2022 ABCA 166

    [31] Granting a stay of proceedings pending appeal does not send a message that an appeal has merit. All it says is that there is a serious question to be decided about the contempt finding and that the remainder of the test for a stay has been met. The serious . . . [more]

    The post Wednesday: Whatas Hot on CanLII appeared first on Slaw.


    Tips Tuesday

    Here are excerpts from the most recent tips on SlawTips, the site that each week offers up useful advice, short and to the point, on practice, research, writing and technology.

    Research & Writing

    Use Polls During Student Training
    Susannah Tredwell

    Itas May, which means (if you happen to be a law firm librarian) it is summer student training time. COVID-19 has meant that a significant amount of training is now offered online rather than in person. Online training has its own set of challenges, one of which includes keeping the participants involved. … . . . [more]

    The post Tips Tuesday appeared first on Slaw.


    Challenging the Status Quo With Style Guides

    There is more than one way to approach setting standards for the writing and formatting of documents. An important thing to keep in mind is having a continuous awareness of, and sensitivity to, the use of text within our changing world, and to build style guides as tools that can help reflect our values, rather than a set of rules that never advance.

    In my work at CanLII, Iave had the opportunity to develop a style guide to help meet the needs of our collaborative writing projects. I also think about writing standards in my volunteer work as the associate . . . [more]

    The post Challenging the Status Quo With Style Guides appeared first on Slaw.


    Mondayas Mix

    Each Monday we present brief excerpts of recent posts from five of Canadaas awardA-winning legal blogs chosen at random* from more than 80 recent Clawbie winners. In this way we hope to promote their work, with their permission, to as wide an audience as possible.

    This week the randomly selected blogs are 1.The Defence Toolkit 2. Durant Barristers Blog 3. David Whelan 4.A Canadian Appeals Monitor 5. Avoid a Claim

    The Defence Toolkit
    The Defence Toolkit a May 14, 2022

    This weekas top three summaries:A R v Barrett,A 2022 ONCA 355: #provocation,A R v Brown, 2022 SCC 18: #automatism, . . . [more]

    The post Mondayas Mix appeared first on Slaw.


    How Successful Law Firms Really Work

    A book has come along that every lawyer who wishes to run a firm at its peak should not only have on his/her shelf but it should be well-thumbed, stained from coffee spills, its cover torn from constant use and sits on the corner of their desk within arm's reach for quick reference. I am speaking of "How Successful Law Firms Really Work" by David L. Ginsberg and Robert A. Feisee, published by the American Bar Association, Law Practice Division

    The post How Successful Law Firms Really Work appeared first on Slaw.


    The Milgaard Storyas Importance for the Presumption of Innocence

    David Milgaard is reported to have passed away this weekend at the age of 69. He spent 23 years in prison for a rape and murder he did not commit.

    Milgaard was convicted in 1970, and spent the ages of 16 to 39 in prison, following the discovery of a nurse’s body in the snowbank. His appeal to the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal was dismissed the following year, and the Supreme Court of Canada refused him leave to appeal. That same year, a pattern of sexual assaults committed by Larry Fisher came to light, which matched the offence in question. . . . [more]

    The post The Milgaard Story’s Importance for the Presumption of Innocence appeared first on Slaw.


    Summaries Sunday: SOQUIJ

    Every week we present the summary of a decision handed down by a QuA(c)bec court provided to us by SOQUIJ and considered to be of interest to our readers throughout Canada. SOQUIJ is attached to the QuA(c)bec Department of Justice and collects, analyzes, enriches, and disseminates legal information in QuA(c)bec.

    PANAL (DROIT)A : Atant d’avis qu’il incombe aux tribunaux d’utiliser les moyens fournis par le Parlement afin de s’attaquer au mal sociA(c)tal qu’est la conduite avec les facultA(c)s affaiblies, le tribunal impose une peine d’emprisonnement de 16A ans A un accusA(c) impliquA(c) dans une collision ayant causA(c) la mort de . . . [more]

    The post Summaries Sunday: SOQUIJ appeared first on Slaw.


    Friday Jobs Roundup

    Each Friday, we share the latest job listings from Slaw Jobs, which features employment opportunities from across the country. Find out more about these positions by following the links below, or learn how you can use Slaw Jobs to gain valuable exposure for your job ads, while supporting the great Canadian legal commentary at Slaw.ca.

    Current postings on Slaw Jobs:

    • Director of Programs and Partnerships (Full-time) | Virtual with a preference for Ottawa or Montreal)
      (CanLII)
    • Real Estate Legal Assistant (Full-time) | Abbotsford, BC
      (Waterstone Law Group LLP)

    . . . [more]

    The post Friday Jobs Roundup appeared first on Slaw.


    Keyword Selected: energy

    Meet Dos Rios Ranch, California's newest state park

    If all goes well, California's newest state park will be open and accessible to visitors within a year. The 2,500-acre Dos Rios Ranch is at the confluence of the Tuolumne and San Joaquin rivers, about ten miles southwest of Modesto in Californiaas Central Valley.[...]

    Japan's first carbon capture and storage facility to be live by 2030

    Japanese oil refiner Eneos Holdings has partnered with utility J-Power to set up Japan's first Carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) facility. The facility is expected to begin operations at the end of the decade, helping giant firms to cut down their carbon emissions. A site is targeted in western Japan with designs beginning next year and final financial investment decisions in 2026.[...]

    10 Asian American and Pacific Islander businesses to support

    With May being Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we specifically want to shed light on businesses owned and operated by members from the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander communities. One opportunity to lift up hard-hit AAPI businesses is to show support with your purchasing dollars. Celebrate the rich history and modern contributions the AAPI community added to the American story by seeking out AAPI-created products.[...]

    NASA contracts Canoo to design new EV for Artemis astronauts

    After a competitive process, NASA chose Canoo to design an electric vehicle to transport its Artemis astronauts to the launchpad on their next mission. It's a short drive compared to reaching the moon, but the specialized vehicle needs to be able to carry fully-equipped astronauts, support staff and gear to the launch site.[...]

    Partners Coffee makes great brew through sustainable actions

    It started with a dual passion for great coffee and protecting the environment. Over 10 years later, itas a local establishment and growing mail order coffee roaster. New products are released regularly to keep the palette curious and content.A [...]

    Tonga volcanic eruption largest explosion in modern history

    TheA January volcanic eruptionA near the Pacific island of Tonga has been confirmed as the biggest eruption ever recorded by modern instruments. Its explosion also surpassed any atomic bomb tests conducted after World War II.[...]

    California rejects desalination plant in Huntington Beach

    The California Coastal Commission unanimously rejected Poseidon Wateras proposed Huntington Beach desalination plant. Despite the promised 50 million gallons of water per day, the commission decided it wasnat worth the risk to both sea life and residentsa water bills.[...]

    Achieve a net-zero lifestyle with the help of Joro app

    If youare environmentally-conscious, yet overwhelmed. If you want to make a difference, but feel helpless. Or perhaps climate anxiety has taken hold. Joro app is here to help.[...]

    Climate Islands brings nature and community into the city

    Barcelona landscape and architecture firm SCOB created seven architectural-landscape "interventions" called Climate Islands. They created inviting, green urban environments in inner city spaces that help mitigate the effects of climate change.[...]

    3D printing robot displayed in retail store upcycles plastic

    Selfridges in London has been a premier shopping destination for buyers and browsers to see what's going to be hot. That's why there really is no better place for an amazing new window display that showcases a 3D-printing demonstration. The printer is creating amazing designer items using recycled marine plastic. Selfridges has always believed in the "theater of retail." This window display demonstration definitely captures that idea and so many more.[...]

    Heinz to package ketchup in recyclable paper bottles

    Food and beverage giant Heinz announced that it will be launching a new sustainable paper package for its ketchup. In partnership with sustainable packaging company Pulpex, the two will launch the world's first ketchup packaged in 100% recyclable bottles. According to Pulplexc, the bottle will be made from wood sourced in a sustainable manner.[...]

    Cows and deer threaten Earth's largest living organism

    We expect destruction to come from something obviously terrible, such as nuclear war or a giant asteroid plunging towards Earth. But a much gentler threat may be the death of the worldas largest living organism; Utahas Pando Aspen Grove. Deer and cows are nibbling it into oblivion.[...]

    11 perfect tiny plants to decorate your tiny home

    Living tiny means making decisions about every item in your home. From clothing to cookware, only the essentials will fit into the minimalist lifestyle. However, no home should be without greenery. So even if your space is limited, there are tiny plants for your tiny home that will make the perfect addition without contributing clutter.[...]

    Thailand home connects to its beautiful surroundings

    The Baan Hom Din House by TA-CHA Design is situated on a former rice paddy in Thailand. The paddy rests in the lush valley between parallel ranges of the Petchabun mountains. The house's design caters to the lives of the residents and fosters a close connection with the surrounding environment.[...]

    IKEA launches a beachy collection with World Surf League

    Two iconic agencies have come together to launch a product lineup that caters to the outdoor lifestyle and the environment. IKEA, in partnership with the World Surf League, released the KASEBERGA collection in early May 2022.A With respect to the ocean and the recreational lifestyle surrounding it, the collection is practical and made fromA eco-friendly materials.[...]

    Plants grow in lunar soil for first time

    If youave ever dreamed of moving to the moon and planting a garden, you just might be in luck. A new study has successfully grown plants in lunar soil for the first time.[...]

    Scientists discover how to stop banana peels from browning

    Understanding and changing how banana peels brown could help the world save tons of food that go to waste each year, according to a new study published inA "Physical Biology."[...]

    This barn achieved LEED Platinum with its Zen design

    The Zen Barn by Christopher Simmonds Architect is a home in a historic Ottawa neighborhood. It achieved LEED Platinum for homes status while maximizing on a casual, modern style. The second story is cantilevered over the first story to shade it from the sun, while a recessed courtyard allows for large windows on the south for passive solar heating. All of this work is invisible, with a light, effortless and tranquil effect to the final home.[...]

    Ovolo is the world's first hotel group to go vegetarian

    In October 2020, Ovolo Hotels announced its aYear of the Vega campaign. All the hotel restaurants went vegetarian for a whole year. It was such a success the hotel group decided to continue with the mostly plant-based (plus some lacto-ovo) menus. Now Ovolo is the first hotel chain to go all veg.[...]

    Asian woman-owned EQUO creates 100% plastic free utensils

    Vietnam-based sustainability company EQUO raisedA $1.3 millionA in seed funding to create sugarcane-based alternatives to single-use plastics. EQUO, founded in 2020 by Marina Tran-Vu, offers plastic-free and compostable products made of coffee, coconut and sugarcane.[...]

    Can a controversial desalination plant ease California's drought?

    Spurred on by the western megadrought, the California Coastal Commission is expected to vote this week on a controversial $1.4 billion desalination plant near Huntington State Beach. Proponents say it could help the drinking water shortage. Skeptics claim marine life will pay the price.[...]

    Greek island changes fortune with green tech

    Authorities on the small island of Tilos in Greece have announced that 80% of its trash is now being recycled. Tilos almost lost all of its population due to power and waste problems, however, Greek policymakers decided to use the island to test green tech. In due time, they have turned around its fortune.[...]

    Australian townhouses minimize water and energy use

    Green Sheep Collective Architects from Melbourne, Australia answered the call from a client to create an exceptional set of townhouses. They were to be sustainable, high-quality construction with an eye for modern architectural details. We'd say they succeeded.[...]

    Aura Bora sparkling waters give back to the planet

    For those who get bored of drinking plain water or prefer to add bubbles without calories, sparkling water is a popular choice. But along with the bubbles, many sparkling waters offer bland flavors or artificial junk. Aura Bora Founders Paul and Maddie Voge set out to change all that with plant-based flavor combinations that are bold, natural and different.A [...]

    This is the first passive house dormitory in Canada

    UBCO Skeena Residence complex has 220 bedrooms, a beautiful Commons area and sustainability features throughout. Its integrated design process is energy efficiency and fits practical living needs.[...]

    Organic mushroom farm sets up shop in LA County

    Soon Los Angeles shoppers will be able to buy organic, locally grown mushrooms in more than 90 stores. A mushroom farming company called Smallhold is opening a 34,000-foot shroom enterprise in LA County.[...]

    Dinosaur extinction caused unexpected changes in plants and fruits

    About 60 million years ago, the CretaceousaPaleogene (KaPg) extinction occurred, wiping away almost a third of all existing animals, including dinosaurs, from planet Earth.In recent years, scientists have been toying around with the idea ofgenetically reengineeringsome of the long-lost animals. Although still a far-fetched dream, researchers have now found that restoring the Jurassic Park would take a lot more than just reengineering the lost animals.[...]

    Bamboo diapers are better for your wallet and the planet

    The average baby will use 5,000 to 6,000 diapers before they are toliet trained. According to a report from the EPA, disposable diapers make up about 7% of nondurable household waste. DYPER, bamboo diapers, are addressing this environmental issue.[...]

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