toy plastic flamingos in a field

Ecommerce Integration: What you may have missed: May in Review


Integration Flamingos

May seems a blur as I put together this blog. We didn’t have any trade shows lined up in May because we were getting ready for IRCE which is happening next week in Chicago. IRCE for those of you who don’t know is the largest ecommerce trade show in the world. Its held every year at McCormick Place in Chicago. This will be our third year attending.

From the VL Blog and around the VL world

So to recap our May blog articles. We started the month with a review of April. You can read the article here. Our charting series examined the infographic done by CueComemrce of Ireland on integration trends. We realised we have our customers and potential customers well covered with ERP, WMS, webstore and loyalty integration. You can read the article here.

In May, we published the first in what will become an on going series the “7 Questions Series”. We are really excited about this and the thought leadership we will bring to our readers from around the world. The first Q&A 7 Question session that was released with was Dan Cence of Sprocket Express. Dan was enthusiastic about the initiative and felt it was important to be part of this when we first approached him. You can read his take on technology and integration in logistics here. Further 7 Questions series will cover not only logistics but omnichannel, EDI and data.

Our second charting article examined the history and future of ecommerce. Starting way back with EDI and evolving into where we are today inetgration has been a recurring theme. The more complex things become the more integration becomes critical. But then you all knew that right? You can read the article here.

Finally, we rolled out the Why you need to visit with us at IRCE in Chicago blog article. Besides being an awesome show, IRCE is a chance for our readers to catch what is going on in omnichannel retailing. As B2C and B2B merge into a single stream and as retailers change their tact IRCE has become the go to place to understand the trends in technology affecting this sector. This year we are partnering with Bluelink ERP, MapsBI and our customer Maple Logistics Inc to provide a one stop solution center for the etailer that is scaling. You can read about the solution sets in the article here.

So May was a busy blogging month !

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From Around the Web

In May we collected up some really great content that we wanted share with you.

Forrester published an interesting study on the growth of m-commerce (mobile e-commerce) compared to pure play e-commerce. The numbers are staggering and reflect the rapidly changing retail landscape. What is amazing is that they predict that e-commerce will represent $414B in the US by 2016. The growth curve is surely at the detriment of the big box bricks and mortar establishments. I quote “US mobile phone and tablet commerce will top $293 billion by 2018 (tablet = $219B; smartphone = $74B) — a whopping 54% of total US eCommerce sales. By the end of this year, combined mobile and tablet sales will reach $114 billion, with the biggest purchase categories including media products, apparel, and consumer electronics”. You can read the press release here.

Bob Renner, CEO of Liaison was interviewed in Sramana Mitra’s blog One Million by One Million on the topic of cloud computing. In a series, much like our 7 Questions, titled Thoughts Leaders in Cloud Computing Bob was interviewed and gave a state of the union in cloud integration. The interview is an interesting read.

Middleware isn’t dead. We never thought so. Gartner in May released an interesting study on middleware usage growth. They predict a changing landscape as digital demands change company approaches to data. This is something we at VL have been seeing and saying for some time. I quote from the Gartner report, ‘Enabling digital business transformation requires IT organisations to operate with much greater agility and ‘on demand’. They must provide much deeper business insights, web scale systems and the ability to integrate myriad of endpoints, such as mobile apps, cloud-based applications, social networks, heterogeneous data sources and a growing number of ‘things’. You can read the Information Age summary report here.

Finally, we came across a study released in January by Forrester Research titled Customer Desires vs. Retailer Capabilities: Minding the Omnichannel Commerce Gap. The study was commissioned by Accenture and hybrids an SAP company.  One of th e interesting findings is that retailers of all sizes struggle with data siloes the result of legacy approaches to integration. 40% indicated that these silos were considered to be significant barriers to integrating across all channels. We at VL have been preaching that companies need to embrace a comprehensive company-wide data usage strategy for along time. This is yet another analyst report that validates what we have been saying. You can read the report here or go through the slide share presentation below.

So as we gear up for IRCE next week think about data. We are now starting to hear talk of the creation of nation-states based on data. Google passport with Linkedin and Facebook visas?

Send us your thoughts, comments, flames and unicorns and in our next blog we will recap the IRCE show.