December 1st, 2020 | 4 MIN READ

How to compose a best-of-breed commerce solution with key technology integrations

Written by author_profile_images Anatolii Iakimets

Anatolii is a Product Marketing Manager at Elastic Path, where he is responsible for the telecommunications and media industry.

According to Gartner, 85% of effort and cost in the digital experience platform program will be spent on integrations with internal and external systems. For anyone who has been involved in any software implementation project, this fact hardly comes as a surprise. Integration of multiple applications developed by different software vendors is usually a tedious and challenging process.

Integration Challenges

The type of integration and data exchange required between a company's digital commerce platform and its ecosystem components depends on many factors.

Varying API styles, quality of service across applications, and the prevalence of homegrown or highly customized back-end systems make a reliable and consistent exchange of data across the ecosystem challenging at best. And the complexity only grows as new applications are added, and unique customer engagement channels are enabled. To support a modern digital experience, businesses need an agile commerce platform that can be integrated with any ecosystem component and define when, where, and how data and business services are delivered. 

Commerce Integrations

Some of the software such as CRM can live on their own, but headless commerce is almost always a part of a broader ecosystem and is integrated with if not all of the systems below:

  • CRM
  • Customer Service Application
  • Order Management
  • Shipping
  • Product Information Management
  • Digital Experience Management
  • Inventory Management

If you multiply the number of integrations by the challenges, you will end up with a highly complex implementation project. And this is why commerce initiatives often can take 12 months or more to complete.  Integrations become even a more significant concern in composing a best of breed solutions, simply because of the increased number of integrations.

De-risking your integrations with Composable Commerce

If you are looking to minimize risk and accelerate time-to-market for your commerce initiatives, there are several things for you to look for in your next commerce solution:

  1. Modularity that allows to deploy and swap commerce components at your convenience independently.
  2. Interoperability to seamlessly integrate with all other applications within the system and prevent vendor lock-in.
  3. Pre-integrated partner applications that work with the commerce solution out-of-the-box.
  4. Ready-to-go reference applications that can be used as best-practices and starting points for the development of front-end experiences.

With Composable Commerce-as-a-Service commerce offering, Elastic Path provides you with all the necessary tools and capabilities to de-risks your commerce initiatives:

  • Well-defined packaged business capabilities that can be quickly composed into a best of breed solution.
  • Comprehensive capabilities, frameworks, and tools to integrate with any application in your IT ecosystem. Visit the documentation to learn more about integration capabilities.
  • Commerce Hub - a single place for all of the assets and applications created by Elastic Path, its partners, and community to simplify and accelerate integrations. Learn more about Composable Commerce Hub here.

Composable Commerce Hub is the home to all necessary integrations to compose a best of breed solution to deliver unique experiences to your customers:

CMS

The content management system is essential for your commerce solution since it provides methods to manage all content in a centralized way and distribute it across touchpoints. Elastic Path offers integrations with CMS providers, including Acquia, Adobe Experience Manager, Contentful, and more. 

Search

Search is a vital part of the customer journey, with more than 30% of site visitors use the search bar on the website. To maximize conversion rates, brands should strive to deliver contextual, personalized search experience. Elastic Path offers integrations with search providers, including Elasticsearch, Coveo, Algolia, and more. 

Payments

Providing convenient payment methods for your customers is extremely important for customer experience. The easier it is for the customer to transact – the higher the conversion rates. Composable Commerce Hub offers integrations with payment providers, including PayPal, Adyen, Stripe, and more. 

Tax

Tax management capabilities are essential for companies working across multiple markets or states. With automation, rate calculations are more accurate, use tax is assessed, returns are filed on time, exemption certificates are up to date and easily accessible, and you're registered in all the right locations. Composable Commerce Hub offers integrations with various tax management software, including Avalara, TaxJar, and more.

Product Information Management

Product information management (PIM) is the heart of any commerce solution. PIM software allows you to manage your product portfolio, manage the product lifecycle, define pricing, and publish the products across different channels. Composable Commerce Hub offers integrations with InRiver product information management software. 

Digital Asset Management

For any medium or large organization, it is vital to keep their digital assets in order. Digital Assets Management (DAM) allows us to do exactly this by providing a centralized place to store and manage content. Composable Commerce Hub offers integrations with Amplience and Acoustic Content DAM software.

You can find all available integrations in the Composable Commerce Hub.

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