Nine months ago we kicked off our Language of Modern Commerce series with APIs (for the letter A), which we defined along with cloud and composable commerce. We’re wrapping up the year with resilience, scalability and user experience (UX). Since we started, some new terms have emerged in the lexicon of modern commerce — unified commerce, generative and predictive AI and ROPO (Research Online Purchase Offline) to name a few. That’s the wonderful and sometimes frustrating thing about commerce, it continues to evolve. While this blog marks the end of the series, there’s no doubt we’ll be exploring whatever comes next and introducing it to our readers in 2024.
Resiliency: Delivering non-stop commerce
Resiliency as it applies to commerce, is the ability of technology to recover from catastrophic events, whether they are technological, physical or cyber-related to maintain uninterrupted services for customers.
According to McKinsey, resilient technology is “agile, scalable, flexible, recoverable, and interoperable.” The analyst firm also stresses that “resilience needs to exist not only in the architecture and design but also through deployment and ongoing monitoring.”
By ensuring their systems deliver resiliency in both service availability and data recovery, software vendors can provide nonstop commerce to customers, no matter what hurdles come their way.
A guiding principle behind commercetools is to build solutions that can function as stateless as possible — this is a key driver for scalability, reliability and resiliency.
DIRECTOR OF PORTFOLIO STRATEGY, COMMERCETOOLS, RESILIENCY EBOOK
Imagine a lily pad floating on a pond. When disaster strikes, such as a turbulent storm or a predator lurking beneath the water's surface, the lily pad remains afloat and unaffected. This is because the lily pad has multiple features that protect it and enable it to deal with change. Just like the lily pad, resilient technology systems have built-in mechanisms to operate during adverse conditions and quickly recover from any disruptions so that you’re able to continue ongoing operations at all times.
Scalability: Handling fluctuations in demand
Gartner® defines scalability as “the measure of a system’s ability to increase or decrease in performance and cost in response to changes in application and system processing demands.” In simpler terms, scalability is what businesses enjoy when they have modern, performant, adaptable technology in place that can easily handle any kind of change it encounters, whether planned or unplanned.
Businesses that implement cloud-native scalable technology, such as commercetools, don’t have to worry about downtime or glitches during traffic spikes on Black Friday or any other day. In addition, they can offer an infinite amount of products on their website(s), launch new websites and expand into new markets at any time without capacity constraints. With scalability, businesses can avoid bottlenecks, ensure optimal performance and meet the evolving demands of their customers.
With rapid changes in the food delivery market, we needed a system that can scale with us to even better support the needs of our partner restaurants. As a headless system, commercetools gives us the flexibility, scalability and speed to support our ambitions.
GLOBAL HEAD OF ECOMMERCE PARTNER MARKETING, JUST EAT TAKEAWAY.COM
Think of scalability as a symphony orchestra that can seamlessly adjust the number of musicians based on the demands of each musical piece. When the composition calls for a grand symphony, additional musicians join in, filling the stage with harmonious sounds. Conversely, during a more intimate melody, the orchestra gracefully scales down, maintaining balance and precision.
Similarly, scalable technology empowers businesses to flexibly and efficiently handle fluctuations in demand, automatically adjusting resources to match the workload and ensuring that businesses have the optimal infrastructure to handle any situation. This ensures that your digital commerce operations remain finely tuned, delivering a harmonious and flawless experience for both customers and businesses alike.
User Experience (UX): Creating the customer journey
While User Experience is pretty self-explanatory, people tend to use it interchangeably with User Interface (UI) which creates some confusion. When you talk about UX, you are referring to how users feel when interacting with a company’s website, which encompasses the entire journey from the moment they land on your site to the moment they leave, hopefully after making a purchase. The goal, of course, is to offer a UX that aligns with your brand, engages visitors and is easy to navigate so customers can find what they want and need as well as checkout easily.
The UI of a website is a critical component of the UX as it focuses on the visual elements that users encounter while on your website. It includes the colors, fonts, menu bars — all the details that make a site look good. However, if the UX isn’t an intuitive, easy experience, how good your site looks doesn’t really matter.
With the horizon stretching far beyond, the journey of hyper-personalization is just beginning, promising a future where user experiences are not just enhanced, but transformed.
PRODUCT MARKETING MANAGER, COMMERCETOOLS
The UX of a website can be compared to a brick-and-mortar store. Let’s say you walk into a shop that is well-organized and beautifully designed. All of the fixtures are clean, the products are neatly arranged and clearly labeled with pricing, and everything is intuitively placed for easy navigation. As you explore the store, you find that the staff is friendly, knowledgeable and readily available to assist you with any questions or concerns. Of course, you’re inspired to buy something, and you find that there’s no line and you can pay however you want. You leave the store satisfied. This seamless and enjoyable shopping experience is akin to User Experience (UX) in digital commerce.
It’s an exciting time to work in commerce. As consumers get ever more digitally savvy and new shopping channels continually emerge, business leaders are constantly facing new challenges and having to develop new strategies. Thankfully, at the same time, composable commerce has emerged as a new approach to building a commerce technology platform — and it’s uniquely able to deliver the flexibility and agility businesses need to thrive today. commercetools Composable Commerce solutions stand out from the crowd by also delivering unparalleled scalability and resiliency along with the ability to create exceptional user experiences.
To learn more about what makes composable commerce the best choice to drive your digital future and explore business use cases from more than a dozen commercetools customers, download our white paper, Why composable commerce will change the way you run your business.