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Commerce Anywhere


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The debate and doubt is long over. Gone are the days when an e-commerce division
was the lonely stepchild of a merchant’s business, clamoring to prove its value.
e-Commerce has fully stepped up to assume its rightful place as a critical growth
channel for businesses in just about every industry. And now, with the emergence of
social and mobile commerce, and the continuing integration of these channels with
physical stores and contact centers, the e-commerce infrastructure has gone from
fringe to foundation. e-Commerce platforms are becoming cross-channel platforms,
serving as the core engine powering an entire cross-channel commerce operation. With
this evolution business managers need to think strategically about how to engage, sell
to, and serve customers across all established and emerging channels and devices.

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Commerce Anywhere

  1. 1. White Paper Commerce Anywhere A Business and Technology Strategy toMaximize Cross-channel Commerce Growth
  2. 2. Introduction Commerce Anywhere is the term ATG uses to describeThe ATG Commerce Anywhere View the approach businessesThe debate and doubt is long over. Gone are the days when an e-commerce division must take to serve “anytime,was the lonely stepchild of a merchant’s business, clamoring to prove its value. anywhere consumers” ine-Commerce has fully stepped up to assume its rightful place as a critical growth a seamless, personal waychannel for businesses in just about every industry. And now, with the emergence ofsocial and mobile commerce, and the continuing integration of these channels with whether they research or buyphysical stores and contact centers, the e-commerce infrastructure has gone from on the web, in a store, overfringe to foundation. e-Commerce platforms are becoming cross-channel platforms,serving as the core engine powering an entire cross-channel commerce operation. With the phone, using a mobilethis evolution business managers need to think strategically about how to engage, sell device, or all of the, and serve customers across all established and emerging channels and devices.The well-informed “anytime, anywhere consumer” with mobile device in hand,ubiquitous access to broadband, and passion for social media has far more controlover the research and buying process than ever before. This consumer, in his orher quest for the right purchase, will have many interactions across channels andrely more heavily on peers, friends, and family to make final decisions. Businessesare striving to understand this more complex consumer journey and intelligentlyconnect with consumers wherever they are and however they prefer to researchand purchase. Marketing, selling, and building lifetime value in this evolvingenvironment is clearly a new endeavor altogether.Commerce Anywhere is the term ATG uses to describe the approach businessesmust take to serve “anytime, anywhere consumers” in a seamless, personal waywhether they research or buy on the web, in a store, over the phone, using a mobiledevice, or all of the above. This Commerce Anywhere view encourages businessesto extend their concept of the research and purchase process beyond individualtransactions, and to adopt a holistic view of the customer life cycle over time, usingboth traditional information and new sources such as social media.Companies need to understand how they can best evolve both their businessstructure and technical solutions to effectively meet the challenges of CommerceAnywhere. Planning for and implementing a more unified cross-channel, multi-touchpoint, multi-interaction selling solution is critical.Whitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 2
  3. 3. For which of the following activities do you use your mobile device? (Select all that apply) Chart: Detail of the 27% who complete activities directly on their mobile devices Steady Growth of Mobile Fuels Commerce Anywhere I compare pricing between stores I search for coupons I use my mobile device’s GPS capability to find a store near my location I browse through a merchant’s collections on their mobile store or application 18-24 25-34 While I’m in a store, I seek customer or expert ratings and reviews 35-44 45-54The evolving consumer journey involves numerous interactions, channels, and touchpoints. I receive SMS notifications of product promotions and sales 55+ I use a mobile barcode scanning applicationThe shopping and buying cycle is much more complex than ever before, spanning: to learn more about specific products 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% • Channels (store, website, contact center ) In a consumer survey conducted in 2010, ATG found that • Device types (mobile phone, tablet/iPad, kiosk, POS, personal computer) consumers are rapidly increasing their use of mobile devices for a wide range of commerce-related activities. This finding was further supported by growing mobile commerce activity • Locations (home, work, travel, in the store) during the 2010 holiday shopping season. • People (peer, friend, sales assistant, personal shopper) Source: ATG Research: Consumer Shopping Experiences, Preferences, and Behaviors, October 2010 • Sites (social sites like Facebook, marketplaces like eBay or Amazon, and comparison sites like Shopzilla and PriceGrabber) • Times (in and out of normal business hours and over time, as the consumer moves from consideration, research, and recommendations, to purchase)Plus, there are significant forces driving growing consumer expectations of theirbuying experience: • New “cross-channel” consumer expectations are being escalated by innovative brick and mortar companies like Best Buy that offer convenience services such as the option to buy online and pick up in a store • The popularity of social sites and user generated content are changing the way consumers research and shop, and thus shifting how companies market to them • The proliferation of mobile devices, smart phones, tablets and e-readers enable consumers to look for product information online, even when they’re standing in a store aisle • Extremely busy lifestyles have consumers researching and communicating in bite-size chunks at home and on the road with their mobile devices • The willingness of consumers to share personal information, especially when they see a benefit to themselves - is helping sellers provide better treatment, more relevant content, improved suggestions and recommendations, and more valuable promotions.Whitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 3
  4. 4. Yet, as consumer expectations of commerce continue to rise, many sellers are stilltreating interactions as discrete, disconnected visits. They miss the context of previouscontact, and as a result fail to provide the customer with a satisfying, consistentexperience that intelligently understands where a customer is, what they’ve askedbefore, what kind of device they’re currently using, to inform the current interaction anddrive a purchase. The seller’s goal should be to choreograph every channel to be able towork in unison to meet consumer expectations and drive revenue.A New Commerce EnvironmentSelling via multiple channels (web, store, call center, catalog) is not a new phenomenon:most companies sell products and services through more than one channel, andhave done so for decades. The complexity of back-end systems, cost of integrationprojects, and deeply entrenched, disconnected business processes, however, havemade it economically prohibitive to deliver a truly unified and optimized multi-channelexperience across channels. In the past, these limitations left no choice but for eachchannel to operate independently, missing opportunities for synergy or coordination.Now, however, new technology opportunities have tremendous potential. Some ofthe most exciting technical trends driving cross-channel commerce include: • Broadband penetration and wireless advancements that make mobile and rich media applications practical and consumable by large consumer populations • Smart mobile devices like the iPhone, Android, and Blackberry that are starting to deliver a compelling browsing and buying experience as well providing a compelling platform for mobile checkout and POS (Point of Sales) • Tablet devices like the iPad that offer an ideal footprint for sales and field assistance applications • Advancements in integration solutions that enable the unification of data across channels and lines of business • Technologies like web services, REST, location-based services, and SaaS applications that make Commerce Anywhere a cost-effective, viable possibilityAn effective Commerce Anywhere environment must provide a consistent cross-channel experienceto customers, and give companies a single view of the customer.Whitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 4
  5. 5. The Need for Business Transformation By leveraging a new generation of technologies, devices, andFrom a business perspective, Commerce Anywhere requires a company to deliverthe optimal customer experience for both the brief single-channel, single-device, software, enterprises can cost-single-interaction buying session and the more complex multi-channel, multi- effectively and efficiently movetouchpoint, multi-interaction buying cycle that spans a longer period of time from a model of independent(days, weeks, months). This ideal “cross-channel selling” model must be unified,while allowing some aspects to be independent. The traditional approaches are to multi-channel sales processestreat channels separately, to hook them up pairwise over time, or to try to force all to an integrated and unifiedchannels to use exactly the same approach at all times. The right approach is a mix cross-channel sales model.of distributed and centralized aspects optimized for the strengths of each channel.The challenge is that the data and systems supporting a unified, more intelligentcustomer experience can be complex and difficult to access, typically buried ina range of legacy systems, applications, and business functions both inside andoutside a company’s boundaries. This technology hurdle has often been thebarrier to fast or straightforward implementation, and a legitimate excuse for notimplementing the ideal customer experience.However, the technology landscape has changed significantly. By leveraging a newgeneration of technologies, devices, and software, enterprises can cost-effectivelyand efficiently move from a model of independent multi-channel sales processes toan integrated and unified cross-channel sales model.Technology is a critical enabler, but technology alone will not lead businesses tosuccess. Companies must also address the business processes and organizationalstructure best suited to achieving Commerce Anywhere. They need to commit totransforming themselves from a siloed structure into a unified cross-channel sellingorganization. They also need to reengineer their customer experience and businessprocesses accordingly.Commerce AnywhereEfficiently create and manage a unified, personalized customer experience across all product categories,brands, and sites. Any customer, Web in any geography PC B2B Contact Center Research Smart Phone At every stage Using In any Store of the customer Browse any device channel lifecycle Tablet B2C Catalog Purchase Kiosk Email Service Point of Sale Social Whitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 5
  6. 6. Consider how consumers are changing their researching and purchasing habits Consider what’s happeningand how engaging and servicing them will change as a result. Consumers have with the in-store experienceextraordinarily high expectations for access to rich valuable information and in-the-moment service. This is driving a change in the nature of interactions that companies for businesses that have saleswill need to support over the web or mobile device, in the store or over the phone. associates in the store. WithFor example, consider what’s happening with the in-store experience for businesses eroding consumer satisfaction,that have sales associates in the store. With eroding consumer satisfaction, it will it will become increasinglybecome increasingly important to untether the sales associate from the register andprovide personalized service in the aisle. By enabling the ability to shop with the important to untether the salesconsumer, fully armed with the consumer’s information, providing a personalized associate from the register,experience turns the associate into a consumer advocate. Companies can employ and provide personalizediPads or other mobile devices to enable in-store personnel to provide superiorservice, such as personal shopping advice and in-the-aisle check-out (sometimes service in the aisle, as thereferred to as “line-busting”). These personal assistance applications allow consumer increasingly usesassociates to create and update consumer profiles, preferences, and wish lists. It a mobile device to seekalso enables associates to view cross-channel order history and make appropriaterecommendations to the consumer. better prices, read reviews, and comparison shop.Companies are also developing in-store kiosks for those customers who prefer self-service. These kiosks, which can be stationary or accessed via mobile devices, enablethe consumer to “touch” or “experience” a product in the store, and then place anonline order immediately for the same item in a different color or to arrange for moreconvenient home delivery, etc. These apps offer access to inventory or assortmentsnot available in every store, thus expanding selection and access without incurringadditional shipping costs or using valuable store real estate for onsite inventory.Further, a mobile application could recognize that a consumer is in a store, and offerpersonalized suggestions and recommendations based on affinities and informationcaptured through all their past interactions in all channels.What else does the future hold for in-store applications? Will POS, sales assistanceapps, and kiosks converge? There is already evidence of new in-store applicationsemerging that combine basic transaction-processing POS capabilities with personalizedservice features such as account, profile, and preference management. These in-storeapplications will offer more direct-to-consumer promotions and have the ability tosell merchandise and service that may not be available in the store itself. The headsof business functions will need to define the requirements of next-generation in-storeapplications to include capabilities to deliver up-sell and cross-sell recommendations.These will help lift average order value and generate repeat visits. In the end, thefocus should be on the ideal experience, knowing full well that these applications willneed to integrate with a commerce engine, other enterprise apps like loyalty or ordermanagement, and in-store direct-to-consumer promotions.The business transformation will not only be in technology and customer experience. Itwill also include transformations in personnel skills, business metrics, and organizationalstructures. The marketing function is a great example of an area that will evolve frombeing very channel-specific to enterprise-centric. Progressive retailers are alreadyintegrating their direct-to-consumer and retail store organizations to unify strategiesand processes in a goal to deliver a more consistent overall brand experience acrossthese channels. For example, the business process of setting up a new item can bere-engineered to support holistic multi-channel item attributes and enable the setupWhitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 6
  7. 7. for all channels at once. Metrics will change to better understand the entire cross- There is no single systemchannel business, including the impact of mobile and web applications on in-store and in enterprise data centerstotal sales. Lastly, employee compensation models must account for multi-channelshopping, so that employees are justly rewarded, whether a shopper buys goods off the today that effectivelystore shelf, places a web order in the aisle, returns home to place the order online, or choreographs all of thesecompletes a phone order. disparate elements. There is,The Need for an IT Transformation: e-Commerce however, one infrastructurebecomes the Foundation of all Commerce that already houses much of this information: theCapturing information in multiple channels, aggregating it into a 360-degree e-commerce platform.view of the consumer, and painting the full picture of the enterprise operation is asignificant undertaking, to say the least. Current architectures need to transformto a new approach suitable for a Commerce Anywhere environment, where manydisparate systems are integrated. The new architecture must adapt to varyingkinds of information available in various formats, through various API’s. There is nosingle system in enterprise data centers today that effectively choreographs all ofthese disparate elements. There is, however, one infrastructure that already housesmuch of this information: the e-commerce platform.A well-designed e-commerce system can form a solid foundation for a CommerceAnywhere capability. e-Commerce systems already interface with product, inventory,order management, and financial information; and with customer relationship andtransactional systems. They adapt to different levels of information availability anddifferent rules that dictate which systems provide the final authority on particular data.e-Commerce sites are built to aggregate information for a high volume of visitor traffic,and can personalize customer views. While no single architecture fulfills all CommerceAnywhere needs completely on its own the information and services needed by mostselling applications (web storefront, kiosks, call centers, mobile) can be elegantlydelivered via an e-commerce platform.The Comerce Anywhere environmentWhitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 7
  8. 8. ConclusionDropping the “e” in e-CommerceCommerce Anywhere is within reach today. More and more companies arechoosing their e-commerce platform as the engine and software foundation for alltheir selling/commerce applications supporting all their channels and devices.Managing a unified view of customers, orders, and products across channels usinghistorical approaches has been almost impossible to pull off both financially andorganizationally. The complexity of back-end systems, cost of integration projects,and deeply entrenched silo’ed business processes have made it prohibitive todeliver a truly unified cross-channel experience for customers. In the past, theselimitations meant each channel must operate independently, without synergy or,in some cases, coordination. This is no longer the case. New solutions and newtechnologies can unify cross-channel commerce for companies.The Challenge and the OpportunityThe commerce industry is in a major re-platforming cycle – many companies arereplacing outdated e-commerce systems that can no longer handle their growthand new business requirements. As they plan their re-platforming projects, CIOsand architects are rethinking their approach, striving to serve more than just theweb storefront. They see the opportunity to leverage their new platform to providecommerce services to other sites and applications, while significantly reducing bothinitial and ongoing IT costs.The e-commerce platform can capture information in multiple channels, aggregate it intoan actionable view of the customer, leverage content and interaction history for use in otherchannels, and paint the full picture of the enterprise operation. It provides the flexibilityto adapt to varying kinds of information at different times, even when that informationcomes via separate interactions. There is no other single system in enterprise data centerstoday that choreographs all the necessary elements so well. Current architectures aretransforming, to deliver commerce services and unified customer, product and orderinformation to all the applications that need them. Here’s where the e-commerce platformemerges and takes on a new role – as the Commerce Anywhere platform.The Commerce Anywhere PlatformA well-designed e-commerce system provides the base of a true cross-channelcommerce solution. This system must already interface with product, inventory,order management, financial information, customer relationship and transactionalsystems. It typically must adapt to different information availability and rulesabout what system is authoritative on which data. It aggregates information in ameaningful way for a high volume of visitor traffic, and is capable of personalizingthe view to serve different audience needs. It is the most compelling place toaggregate customer-facing information.The bottom line is that e-commerce is no longer just a web solution. It is quicklyassuming its rightful position as the foundation for all customer-facing commerceapplications across all touchpoints. So goodbye “e”, hello “commerce”.Whitepaper › Commerce Anywhere: A Strategic Vision to Maximize Commerce Growth › 8
  9. 9. Worldwide HeadquartersArt Technology Group, Inc.One Main StreetCambridge, MA 02142USATel: +1 800 RING ATGwww.atg.comEuropean HeadquartersArt Technology Group (Europe), Ltd.Apex Plaza, Forbury RoadReading RG1 1AXUKTel: +44 (0) 118 956 5000www.atg.comATG (Nasdaq: ARTG) provides the most advancedcross-channel commerce software and services tofuel the growth of the world’s best brands. Offeringthe industry’s leading commerce solution, ATGenables its clients to drive sales via a personalizedcustomer experience — unifying and optimizinginteractions across the Web, contact center,mobile devices, social media, physical stores,and other key channels. ATG powers the mostinnovative and successful commerce experiences,with results that outperform industry norms.About OracleOracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) is the world’s mostcomplete, open, and integrated businesssoftware and hardware company. For moreinformation about Oracle, visit© 2010 Art Technology Group, Inc.ATG, Art Technology Group and the ATG logo areregistered trademarks of Art Technology Group. All othertrademarks are the property of their respective holders.AT11A01