How Headless Commerce is the best compared to Traditional Open Source B2B Ecommerce Platform?

By | Date posted: | Last updated: August 4, 2020
Headless Commerce Solution

Headless commerce is the technology of the hour. If you want to be well positioned in future B2B trade, you have to deal with the question of which devices, channels and operating concepts will play a role in the future. But there are already concrete applications. We explain what headless commerce means and in which scenarios it makes sense.

Why do B2B retailers need headless commerce? The most important promise of headless commerce is to make the online shopping cart particularly flexible. This enables dealers to deal with each channel separately.

With headless commerce, every channel gets a tailor-made front end. This does not have to be limited to the ecommerce surface, the user guidance and the operating concept can differ depending on the platform or device. Combined with personalization and a headless CMS, retailers can even play the products and content individually on each channel.

Headless Commerce vs. Traditional Ecommerce platform

In contrast to the headless commerce, the classic ecommerce platform maps the entire functionality and appearance of the website: in the backend, the software manages the products and customer data and processes orders. The software displays interface so that the customer can order in the ecommerce. The integrated front end of the software is typically designed to deliver a well-functioning desktop and mobile version of the online shopping cart.

But it doesn’t always have to be that the ecommerce is used and displayed in a certain way in the browser. In times of the Internet of Things and social media, the variety of devices, channels and thus also usage preferences and operating concepts is increasing. Even B2B buyers are already using an average of six channels today.

Channels & Scenarios for headless commerce:

  • Online Shopping Cart
  • Website
  • Mobile website / PWA
  • Social media
  • Online Store / POS (point of sale)
  • Marketplaces
  • Multistore Platforms
  • Multibrand Ecommerce
  • Individual Country Ecommerce
  • Internet of Things
  • Voice Commerce
  • Conversational Commerce / Chatbots

How Headless Commerce works?

In order to achieve more flexibility and make the ecommerce future-proof, a headless architecture backend and front end of the ecommerce application are separated. But what does that mean? The software no longer provides all the functions of an ecommerce application as a large overall package. Instead, it provides its core function, order processing, in the backend. The front end for the customer is developed separately and specifically for the customer’s usage situation such as the device or channel. On the other hand, the processes from business applications are also connected to the controlling ecommerce software via interfaces.

In this context, one also speaks of decoupled systems. With headless commerce, the individual areas of an ecommerce system are decoupled. This enables a company to view each channel individually. Using optimized front ends, retailers integrate data and functions and can adapt or expand them at any time if necessary.

Why the API and Interfaces are so important?

Interfaces, i.e. application programming interfaces (API), are the link of a headless ecommerce. They are used to call up the desired functionality from the ecommerce backend, to exchange data and ultimately to offer the customer an outstanding user experience.

A headless commerce also communicates reliably with the company’s internal systems via standard interfaces. For example, the queries customer-specific prices in real time from the ERP system. The customer data comes from the CRM, the PIM supplies the product data and the CMS the content. The ecommerce software is the central exchange through which all inquiries and data run.

It is important that the interfaces are well defined, standardized and well documented. This ensures that the APIs provide developers with a set of powerful tools that avoid familiarization with complex systems and many dependencies. If the API is well thought out, retailers also achieve high performance and security for the entire ecommerce application. For this reason, a REST API is often used in headless systems, which is based on standardized processes.

What is API-first and microservices? How did it work for headless commerce?

With an API first strategy, this principle of headless commerce is consistently implemented. At API-first, an interface is first defined for each function. The ecommerce software is as lean as possible. A developer can use the functions in ecommerce applications via the standardized interface.

From Micro Services is called whenever for each small section of an ecommerce application – a small, manageable application is programmed – functions, processes, individual tasks. The sum of the microservices then results in the ecommerce application.

The difference to the classic ecommerce system is not noticeable for the customer, but for the developers there are advantages in headless commerce. The microservice approach reduces complexity because each microservice just does one task. In addition, the microservices can be exchanged very easily. Thanks to the standard interfaces, they can also be created independently of each other by different development teams.

How to switch ecommerce platform as a headless commerce?

API-first and microservices are a modern approach, but also mean a radical change in the development of ecommerce projects. This contrasts with the classic ecommerce platforms, which already master all typical tasks in ecommerce with on-board equipment, but are sometimes not flexible enough. Is there a middle ground between headless commerce and a monolithic ecommerce platform?

There is definitely an approach in which the ecommerce platform and headless commerce can be combined. With ecommerce software that has intelligent interfaces, retailers can switch parts of their B2B online shopping cart to headless commerce if necessary. New areas can be added step by step. This enables a smooth changeover.

9 Best Reasons to Switch to Headless Commerce!

There are several scenarios in which the use of headless commerce already makes sense today in B2B trading:

    Sustainable architecture

  • Sustainable architecture: A more flexible ecommerce allows you to react very quickly to new challenges or changed usage habits of the target group.
  • More Personalization

  • More Personalization: Headless architecture is a good foundation for personalized customer experience. In addition to individual frontends, content and products can be played to match the channel.
  • International Ecommerce

  • International Ecommerce: If international ecommerce store is operated, then headless commerce gives the country ecommerce more control options. Nevertheless, they can access the data and functions that the control centre provides.
  • Multistore / Multibrand Ecommerce

  • Multistore / Multibrand Ecommerce: Even in multistore and multibrand ecommerce, it can make sense to play out individual front ends, products and content for each ecommerce from a central system using headless commerce.
  • Better Performance

  • Better Performance: Lean, headless ecommerce infrastructures and data exchange via standard interfaces enable high-performance ecommerce applications.
  • Less Complexity

  • Less Complexity: Comprehensive ecommerce applications can be broken down and simplified into manageable parts. Dependencies and unwanted interactions with changes that occur in complex environments are avoided.
  • Integrate Business Processes

  • Integrate Business Processes: A strong focus on standardized interfaces makes it easier to integrate business processes from systems such as ERP, PIM, CMS and CRM.
  • Adjustment Costs

  • Adjustment Costs: Dealers avoid high follow-up costs for development projects in which only a sub-area is actually to be changed. Here, the entire ecommerce platform does not have to be reconsidered and possibly converted.
  • Shorter Project Times

  • Shorter Project Times: The project times, for example with redesigns or new functions, are shorter. Sub-tasks as well as changes in the frontend and backend can be transferred to different development teams.

However, especially with the last two points, retailers have to consider that the introduction of a headless system will initially be more complex and therefore also more expensive. After all, the front ends have to develop first. The interfaces must also be programmed first. The savings in time and money only become noticeable with adjustments and extensions.

Conclusion

B2B retailers who now rely on headless commerce well equipped for the future. Regardless of which channels and devices the customers will populate in a few years, a decoupled system adapts and can quickly expand with suitable front ends and operating concepts.

Online shopping carts are already benefiting from the diverse options that result from the decoupling of their ecommerce infrastructure. In combination with personalization, unique customer experiences created with exactly the right content and products per channel. There are also better control options in international business and on complex dealer platforms.

Retailers do not have to rely entirely on an API first concept and implement all headless commerce functions with microservices. You can also decouple individual areas of your B2B ecommerce. This has a positive effect on the complexity and makes maintenance of individual segments easier. It is important to have clean interfaces that form the basis for any further development of the ecommerce.

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A Comprehensive Guide for B2B and B2C Ecommerce Store to Boost Sales & Performance

By | Date posted: | Last updated: August 1, 2020
b2b ecommerce solution

This guide sheds light on the importance of an ecommerce store for medium-sized companies. Every middle-class decision maker comes to the point of considering whether and in what form an ecommerce can be used.

This is exactly where we would like to help you. We have over 19 years of experience in the planning, implementation, support and solution of ecommerce and would like to share this blog with you. This comprehensive guide is intended to provide a brief insight and possibly aimed particularly at B2B and B2C companies.

Customer acquisition plays a central role in every company. As a decision-maker, you strive to establish ways to attract customers. The focus is on the lowest possible cost per customer. But at the same time reaching customers who mean high sales / profits. Another major factor is the reduction in process costs and, at the same time, increased process reliability. Ideally, all this with the aim of customer orientation. Cheaper, faster and better sales for the customer. These are roughly the goals of an ecommerce store.

It is no secret that digitization and especially an ecommerce central importance. Ecommerce means of communication that are comparable to letters, telephones, faxes and e-mails. Something is completely turned upside down or massive new opportunities arise that were never there before.

Do you think you are reading this guide for exactly this reason? Then, you are exactly at right place.

Why does a medium-sized company need an ecommerce store?

Fully Automatic Customer Acquisition

At first that sounds like a marketing lie, but it is 100% the truth. An ecommerce store is the central tool to reach new customers online. Ecommerce is not even primarily about sales. The first step is to show what the company can and does at all. This alone gives potential new customers a much better insight into the product / service range than any exhibition stands, flyer or similar could achieve. Videos, flyers, info texts, product images, inquiry tools, configurators, simulators but also virtual reality and more. Those interested can find all of this 24/7 in the ecommerce.

The potential customer enters your ecommerce store voluntarily and can look around, inform, ask things or possibly order things directly. It depends on how well the ecommerce has been planned and implemented. The easier the transition from “clicking” the page to the request / call, the more efficient this new customer sales works. Nobody forces or annoys the customer to look around the ecommerce store. The prospect is completely voluntary there because they are looking for or need something.

Reduce Process Costs of Ecommerce Store

An ecommerce is ideal for reducing process costs. Instead of cumbersome processing of recurring orders by field service, office staff, e-mail or even fax / telephone, it is understandable that it is also digital. Existing customers can quickly and easily submit recurring orders via the ecommerce.

The internal process has time to take care & reduce processing; and can create individual offers there, provide extensive advice and simply invest better time.

Enhanced Process Reliability through Fewer transmission errors of Ecommerce store

This in turn leads to an improvement in process reliability. There are no manually entered orders, information copied from emails or similar incorrect procedures. The customer himself states in the ecommerce what he wants to order, sees the order, confirms it and then the processing continues.

The case that a customer claims he has ordered ABC 5 pieces but ABC 4 pieces are no longer available. It is 100% documented and visible what exactly the customer ordered when and whether / what may have gone wrong internally or not. This eliminates many unnecessary discussions due to transmission errors or misunderstandings.

Sales Force Receives More Valuable Prospects or Existing Customers

The field staff and their success rates also benefit! The field service receives qualified leads! Customers are already informed in detail about the offer via the ecommerce. Ideally, they have already made a very precise request. After an initial validation of the potential customer, the customer can now receive targeted advice.

The sales representative gets a customer on the silver tray! Instead of having to bother customers, the sales force has interested parties / customers who are already very interested in the offers and “only” have to be advised.

Online Store becomes the Central Tool / Platform for Customer Communication

The ecommerce store serves as a central tool in working with and for the customer. The back office, field service, at trade fairs or in the case of spontaneous contacts / calls can always be referred to the ecommerce store. The customer, prospective customer or applicant can view the products / services quickly and easily.

If the ecommerce has been done well, it will continue from there with info flyers, inquiry tools and similar things. The ecommerce is simply a practical universal tool that finds its place in daily contact with the customer.

Customer-Oriented Action becomes more than just a Phrase

Another elementary point is the chance to provide seamless customer-oriented actions. Everyone in marketing knows that customers are just people or decision-makers are used to shopping on Amazon and other online stores.

Of course, they also expect this in the B2B environment. Everyone knows the situation of positive surprise. You are looking for something and after a short search via Google you are already on a super informative page. This explains exactly what is needed in the situation. A few clicks away, for example, a required spare part is ordered. We are happy that everything went so well. Then we are happy when it is delivered and probably every time we become aware of it again. But it is a normal behaviour in private life.

Why is this not often the case in business? Why do your customers have to make calls through the area until they receive a positive surprise from you by telephone? In the “worst” case, customers tell you that they have been doing this for months? Years? after exactly what you offer! Wouldn’t it be fantastic if these customers would contact you directly after a short search via Google? How much would the inquiries increase if interested parties knew immediately that you actually exist? And that they immediately know what you can really do? What would it be like if this were the case in your company?

As you have probably already noticed, this is nothing less than a completely different way of thinking than the classic (and yes outdated) product-oriented marketing. An online store is about real “customer-oriented marketing”. Ideally, this initiates a complete change of marketing one.

Establishment of Pull Marketing in Online Store

A central point of pull marketing is usually search engine optimization. This allows top placements on Google for the topics relevant to your customers. The whole thing is easier than you think! You just have to adhere to different rules and behaviours and your visibility increases extremely with Google. Requests that you did not expect will become normal.
With all these measures, the customer continues to qualify himself. He turns from the prospect to the contact until he becomes a customer or regular customer. Ideally, a customer is advertising other customers. However, the need for this requires the necessary attitude and mind-set! And the online store is an ideal basis to establish this way of thinking in small steps. The experience can be transferred to your own B2B business.

The Competition Doesn’t Sleep!

The final factor is simply that the competition doesn’t sleep. Nobody can oversleep digitization. Everyone knows that there is digitization. Anyone who overlooked it however, is not actively acting. This is a deadly mistake for your own company and will not make a decision.

Instead of asking the customer about one, one would be forced to issue absurd prices for mail, address data, trade fairs and more. It’s all about surviving financially because customer requests go down.

The reason is that the competition doesn’t sleep, of course! Competitors are constantly working on their own digitization. Direct mail and trade fairs are less and less successful.

The difficulties with ecommerce store for medium-sized companies

As per throughout research, we have been able to get to know a wide variety of companies know the challenges. In the mid-size business, there are major chances of a lot of wild growth.

There are chaotic price structures where nobody really sees through or only the company itself. Various invoice discounts in combination with customer discounts but of course only on certain products.

So, there is complete chaos due to the fact that highly individual prices and conditions were negotiated with customers. This chaos has to be brought to an ecommerce store.

What is the first step to the ecommerce store? – Minimum Viable Products (MVP)

An online marketing advice plan do check for acting start small! Validate what is going well / badly and expand it in the next small step! Every business has internalized this procedure and it is exactly the same here. Under no circumstances invest huge amounts only to notice that the functions were no prospect or customer uses it.

Then you can consider how an ecommerce store should be used in this complex and with which goals. As soon as there is a rough idea, you can start planning further.

The goal should be to have a concept of what the first version of the ecommerce store should be in order to still be functional with minimal functions. The goal is therefore the implementation of a pilot project or the buzzword “Minimum Viable Product (MVP)”. Both are simply about starting as small as possible, but directly involving real customers. Then you can immediately see what is going well / where and what needs to be readjusted.

Of course, there will be a massive need for adjustments and extensions. These can then be prioritized and the next slip of adjustments / extensions goes online. A new validation and it goes on.

Things including UI/UX design is simple and come to the very end. The design is just the design, of course it has to reflect the company image etc. But it doesn’t help if an ecommerce store fits from the design to the company but was planned so miserably that no new customer was recruited.

If you are looking for marketing opportunities for your existing ecommerce store or want to create a new ecommerce store or require any type of ecommerce solutions, Please explore our ecommerce solutions! We also provide ecommerce website maintenance services, online store maintenance services and more. For more information, Please visit our website maintenance services!

If you have any questions or would like to know more about how Skynet Technologies can help your business to reach one step ahead, Reach out us through below form & We'll get back to you soon!

Top Magento SEO Metrics to Boost the Performance of Ecommerce Store

By | Date posted: | Last updated: August 1, 2020
magento ecommerce store

The ongoing support of a Magento Ecommerce Store divided into different areas. It is necessary to look at all areas to position the ecommerce in the best possible way.

Using various tools such as the Google webmaster tool, certain areas of the ecommerce need to monitored continuously. As soon as there are irregularities, it is necessary to investigate them and take appropriate measures.

SEO Key Areas or Checkpoints for Magento Ecommerce Store:

Report and Fix Crawling Errors

One point is the ongoing evaluation of the google webmaster tool about crawling errors. So, problems with URLs can easily identify. When you initially examine your crawl errors report, you may see tons of and thousands of crawl errors from manner back once. it’ll be arduous for you to search out your manner through these long lists of errors.

Here you can find information on how to fix the 502-crawl error?

502 bad gateways that may be a temporary error and to mend 502 bad error trip all you would like to try and to fix for 502 bad gateways is below:

  • Strive to reload the page if you can’t connect with the server and watch for five to ten minutes the page gets fresh and it gets connected.
  • Clear Browsing information can assist you to fix 502 bad error timeout error with chrome browser and alternative browsers similarly can fix this issue.
  • Check if you’re having any DNS server issues with the web site and any firewalls blocks.
  • Restart your router or any networking modem and turn off and activate restart everything.
  • Contact ISP provider if 502 errors doesn’t fix, hence it might your ISP has a networking issue.

Tracking Keyword Position of Your ecommerce website

Tracking is about focusing on the most important keywords. These are usually a handful of keywords that you can remember or easily check. The number of keywords also belongs to it. This is important to determine whether the longtail keywords are also rising/falling.

Keep track of Clicks and Impressions

It is important to monitor clicks and impressions. Here the interpretation of the numbers is important. If, for example, the season is off or no season at all, the impressions and thus clicks can drop massively.

If everything goes according to plan, most keywords should increase continuously, which leads to an increase in impression and thus more clicks. But it can also be that the season is not and the impression drops and only the clicks increase. Even when everything is fine. However, when the clicks drop, something goes wrong that you should take a closer look.

Powerful Backlinks

Backlinks are links from one web site to a page on another web site. Google and alternative major search engines consider backlinks as a ranking factor for a particular page. Pages with a high range of backlinks tend to possess high organic program rankings. In the past, backlinks were the main metric for the ranking of a webpage. A page with tons of backlinks cared-for rank higher on all major search engines, as well as Google. However, Backlinks depend on how often you are linked.

Monitor Conversion Rates

First of all, there are different conversion rates. Not just closing the sale. It is necessary to continuously monitor conversion rates. It is about the key figures which you have defined yourself. If there is a newsletter, the newsletter registrations should monitor when creating new landing pages, the conversion rate of these pages etc. But of course, also the general conversion rate of the ecommerce in relation to sales.

PPC Campaign

If AdWords is used for PPC campaigns, depending on the budget/importance, an analysis require here based on the business target. You have to monitor the keywords. Must throw out the unprofitable keywords based on conversion rates. Must constantly compare ads, the best as a basis for more, Find the best keywords directly from keyword research tools and see which keywords clicked on frequently. These, in turn, should be allowed to flow into SEO measures.

Other Important Areas of SEO

Many of areas are not listed here but they are also still very important. This includes technical factors such as the loading times of the website, the response times and other technical indicators. If the server has a problem, this is not good for performance of your website and therefore the ranking drops.

Another area is usability. If there are massive problems there, this will also affect SEO performance after some time. Visitors do not like the ecommerce store and therefore no backlinks are set.

Do you require SEO Services?

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