The New Gatekeepers Of Digital Commerce

The pace of consumer adoption and technology innovation is accelerating like never before. From extended reality to bots and conversational interfaces, new touchpoints are emerging. Digital commerce experiences seem more and more fragmented. However, few players are aggregating majority of time spent. Brands need to evolve their ecosystems and open their infrastructures to deliver more contextual experiences.

Ahead of commercetools upcoming webinar featuring Thomas Husson, VP and Principal Analyst, Forrester, and Kelly Goetsch, Chief Product Officer at commercetools, sat down to discuss the key trends shaping the future of digital commerce experiences. Below see the key takeaways from that conversation.

Mobile – A Gateway To New Connected Customer Experiences

Kelly: To which extent is mobile the new face of digital commerce?

Thomas: While direct mobile purchases are still low – even though growing very fast, Forrester forecasts that smartphones would influence a hefty $977 billion in offline US sales, or four times more than what desktop devices alone influence. Beyond commerce, mobile is becoming the primary touchpoint to engage consumers and generates a majority of the traffic for many retailers. There is no question that mobile moments are the battleground to win, serve, and retain your customers. App usage as we know it has peaked. In 2017, experience fragments begin to take on monolithic apps to offer more convenient mobile experiences.

Kelly: How do you expect the mobile Web, bots or voice-based interfaces to play a role?

Thomas: Mobile has transformed into a gateway to new interactions that are rapidly gaining customers’ mobile moments — from messaging apps, chatbots, and platforms like intelligent agents. Brands will seek to borrow these mobile moments in 2017. They will first reinvent the Web for mobile moments but will have to anticipate the rise of new touchpoints and interfaces like Amazon Alexa.

Win Against Your Competition Despite Increasingly Fragmented Customer Journeys

Kelly: How do you keep customer engaged if experiences become more and more fragmented?

Thomas: The challenge is to deliver contextual experiences whatever the channel: a mobile website, an app, a bot or an intelligent agent. Relevant content plays a key role in more personalized experiences.

Kelly: What are the implications for the digital commerce infrastructure?

Thomas: Consumer demand for messaging, app fragments, and better browser experiences will push marketers and digital business professionals to work with technology counterparts to create more flexible apps, architecture, and infrastructure. Open and secure APIs are critical to deliver such experiences and to leapfrog competition.

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