Magento has developed a reputation over the years as a shining example of what an open source community-driven development team should look like. Interestingly, much of its code originates from developers that are not even on the payroll.
However, this was always the point. It is less about where the code comes from and much more about improving the quality to enhance the service of its clients. There is an argument that the e-commerce giant has enjoyed massive success on the back of their community rather than being held back by internal processes like their competitors.
Many members of the community were understandably concerned that things would change when Magento was acquired by Adobe earlier this year for a cool $1.68 billion. While the global community debated what the new partnership would mean, an announcement at MagentoLive in Barcelona earlier this week attempted to ease any fears.
The Heart and Soul of Magento in Barcelona
Refreshingly, there isn’t a separate user and developer conference, the event encourages collaboration between the community, clients, and sponsors all under one roof. Despite the acquisition by a tech behemoth, from what I saw, the vibrant community is still the heart and soul of Magento.
Predictably, all bases in the customer journey are now being covered as Adobe announced they are integrating Magento commerce cloud into the Adobe Experience Cloud. In a nutshell, Adobe customers that have access to marketing, advertising, and analytics services will now be able to seamlessly add a shopping cart to their digital presences too.
Adobe makes every experience personal while Magento is making every moment Shoppable
Ironically, it’s the rising expectations of customers that are driving these changes rather than the tech giants. Whether it be offline and or online, the quality of the customer experience is rapidly becoming the new battleground for businesses looking to secure quick wins with engagement and loyalty being the ultimate prize.
Engagement Across the Full Customer Journey
In acquiring Magento, Adobe has secured access to every step of the customer journey and is making it easier for brands of all sizes to create engaging experiences. The speed of change is gathering pace, and everyone is expected to continuously adapt and move forward. But will big businesses struggle to keep up the pace when their legacy systems continue to hold them back?
The innovations we are bringing to market enable companies of all sizes and across industries to make every experience shoppable
In the same way that Blockbuster Video, Kodak, Polaroid and Borders failed to tackle digital disruption, I cannot help but think that we are heading for another showdown where household names will once again disappear. Our internet history has already taught us that no brand is too big to big to fail.
There is already a long list of big brands that users have fallen out of love with. Facebook, Electronic Arts, Sears Holdings, United Airlines, and even former tech darling Uber have all suffered a rough year. In many ways, they have become easy pickings for competitors to move in and provide superior experiences.
The experience curve is changing – it’s the new Moore’s law. – Shantanu Narayen
In a year of significant acquisitions, Adobe is leading the way in the experience industry by managing more than 233 trillion data transactions and $141 billion in online sales transactions annually. Make no mistake, experiences are not just another buzzword. It’s big business.
The Right Kind of Personalized Experiences
“If it moves, personalize it, and if it doesn’t, customize it anyway,” is a trap that a few could fall into. If done right, tools such as Adobe Target, powered by Adobe Sensei, which uses AI and machine learning could efficiently deliver contextually relevant shopping experiences.
Brands should find it much easier to drive customer loyalty and enable businesses to compete more effectively. Although personalized experiences make our lives easier and more efficient, you can still have too much of a good thing.
For example, there are occasions that I want to go rogue and look outside of what algorithms recommend for me. Whether it be on Netflix, reading an entire magazine or browsing through bookshelves, those happy accidents in life that lead to great discoveries are an experience that is equally as important.
I suspect that it’s the brands that get this fine balance right will be the ones that succeed. But, in a digital age, I doubt that the size of the business will not determine their success, it will be the experience they provide.