Place a bet and toss a coin in the air!

E-commerce and surroundings – brief glimpse into trends for 2020.

A new year always brings new opportunities – while we cannot predict the future, we for sure must look at trends and make assumptions consider them for predictions around relevant topics in today’s business world.

Earth First! Ecological awareness – dare to care.

Indifferent to your personal beliefs and thoughts around climate change, we cannot deny that in today’s world this is an important topic which will be screamed out loud in 2020 and beyond: we are seeing and living through a shift towards greener living, companies and people alike are attempting to reduce their carbon footprint, new environmental laws are being introduced worldwide and the younger generations are now considering “how green a company is” when calibrating a product’s quality.

 

But what does this have to do with e-commerce, which is not involved directly in selling eco-commodities? Everything.

Below you will find 5 simple ways to make your e-commerce eco-friendly (and more attractive to likely buyers who will judge you on your impact to our planet!):

Toss a coin to your audience and make them fans

Cashing in on pop culture is not new. However, there are multiple new globally sweeping trends which everyone can use to engage their public, their customers or their peers even more. Today’s big topic may be The Witcher Netflix series – get our reference for the coin? Thought so! Now we have broken the ice and have a conversation starter. Don’t be afraid to cash in on today’s trending topic, icon, meme or challenge to increase brand awareness – and you can do all of it without needing deep pockets. In fact, you can spend next to nothing to achieve this. No license from the author, no sponsorship for tv series? Where is the catch?! No catch, just a different scale and approach – buy some paper books and make them a prize in your survey / quiz / contest, then post it on your social media account and count your shares and likes!

 

If books are better for dust and not for you, you can always summon your followers or gain new ones by calling for action in real time. Enough with these empty phrases. Just announce a competition in which “best Witcher or Witcher’s inspired cosplay published with photo in this tread will have a chance to win…” Sit down and see the responses. Trend it on social media for a small cost and you are doubly winning.

 

Almost every kind of online shop can adopt these tactics – thanks to “halo effect” you will be part of the buzz around The Witcher’s fandom. Let someone else make the marketing campaigns (and spend a ton of money in the process) to promote it, you just use name of the bestselling book series to attract and engage your target group and a lot of potential fans, completely unrelated to your business but eager to get the prize.

 

If you can’t predict trends, make them! Do you have interesting ideas and recognitions as well? Share them with us in the comments, like original post and follow us on LinkedIn or Facebook to win a complete set of books (you can chose the language!), I bet you will not guess which ones… ?


What we learned at Magento Live 2019

1. B2B Order approval process

B2B sales are a complex beast. They are usually done with more than one decision maker & until now there was no way to handle this in Magento. With the new Order approval process (currently in advanced development) you will be able to create an order, which needs to be verified by the manager before placing the Purchase Order. Adobe focused on making it highly customizable. You have bulk approval options; It will also have API and the rules can be set up from the admin panel. Can’t wait for this feature.

2. Other changes in B2B

Magento did not give any hard promises on when they plan to deliver these features, but the stories in development look as follows:

*Adding quote filtering in My Quotes

*Searching the order history in My Orders

*Exporting the requisition lists to .csv files

*Quick adding items to requisition lists

*Creating the requisition lists from the cart

*Login as Customer to frontend (so-called “ghost-mode”)

*Different shipping methods per company

*Granular ACL for all B2B modules

Last but not least – new Venia PWA B2B theme! Can’t wait to see these features in action!

3. PWA Venia

Progressive Web Apps are the next best thing. We should know – we already implemented 4 projects with this approach. Now Magento is doing “half” of the work for us with a new PWA theme called Venia. It was presented at this year’s Magento Imagine, but they keep adding new features.

In 2019 they added Google Analytics tracking, authoring of catalog and increased the API coverage. For 2020 they plan:

*Content optimization for mobile devices with a preview

*B2B Venia theme

*Full AEM integration (more details below)

*B2B Data Import/Export (including shared catalog)

*100% GraphQL API coverage

4. Manage content better

You all heard of Page Builder. Adobe is now pushing a page-builder on steroids – Adobe Experience Manager (AEM). This tool not only allows you to manage content in the omnichannel environment, but also, it provides you with an AI capable of adapting the experience of every person visiting your store. You can now get so much more from your marketing team. The system was also production-tested with the Venia theme. Get ready for personalization!

5. Better reporting

In 2019 Adobe has already done a lot with Business Intelligence. In 2020, you can expect further development in this field with Role-Specific Dashboards, Adobe Analytics integration & New B2B Reports.

6. Security updates

Starting with the next M2.3.X quarterly release, Magento will offer streamlined “security-only” updates based on the prior quarter’s comprehensive update. This means that instead of having to update the entire system you will be able to only update the Security update, which will keep your store safe. The process gives you more time to install the Quality update.

7. Updated Support Policy

Starting with Magento 2.3, end of support date for a minor release will be based on the General Availability date of the next minor release. The Quality updates will be rolled out via incremental quarterly releases for +12 months. The Security ones, will follow a +18 months roll-out process. This gives you more time to adapt your store. This also means that you can accommodate the releases in the yearly budget better. Please refer to the Magento Imagine summary for more information on this.

8. Azure Early Adopter

As you are aware, Magento Cloud will now allow you to choose between AWS and Microsoft Azure for your servers. What you might not know, is that in Q1 2020 you can expect additional support from Magento for the first 6 Early Adapters. This support is only for the first stores that choose Azure. What they offer is a highly collaborative engagement of their team. If you are interested in working with Azure – contact us at [email protected] (we are official Microsoft Azure partners with years of e-Commerce experience).

9. What’s next?

We can’t wait to hear what Magento has planned for 2021 at Magento Imagine / Adobe Summit. If you want to talk to them sooner, they are planning to attend quite a bit of conferences in 2020:

*EComm Expo UK – Sept 2020

*DMEXCO – Sept 2020

*WWVD – Jan 2020

*Netcom Italy – May 2020

And of course – see you there at Adobe Summit 2020 in May!

Magento Imagine 2019

What did we learn?

1.Progressive Web Apps

It is no surprise that Adobe would be pushing this hard, as we already heard about PWA Studio before the conference. This year they presented a road map of things to come. They include things like Docker support, UI components, and GraphQL development. What was most interesting was the presentation of the apps built with PWA Studio and the promise to connect the PWA front to Page Builder in the future.

2.Longer support policy

One thing which will make everyone happy is the elongated support policy for the new releases of Magento. Adobe has received a lot of feedback from the users, and they are listening. Starting from Magento 2.3, each new minor release will be supported until the date of the next major release. Furthermore, the large quality updates will be supported for even 12 months after the next release. For security updates, it will be 18 months. This means that if you have M2.3 and M2.4 shows up, you can still get updates for M2.3 for 12 to 18 months.

3.Magento Cloud with Microsoft Azure

Currently, Magento Cloud is hosted on Amazon Web Services. Soon you will also have an option to choose Microsoft Azure for your Magento Cloud implementation. Adobe is also working on horizontal auto-scaling features to bring added flexibility for cluster-based setups with improved performance guaranteed.

4. Magento connects to Amazon and Google Merchant Center

Amazon and Google Merchant Center. Inventory management, prices and working with multiple Amazon accounts will be available right from the admin panel.

As for Google – now you can manage the campaigns right from the admin panel as well. With almost everybody using at minimum one of the two platforms – this is a great step in the right direction for the convenience of Magento store managers. You can read more about this directly from the source here.

5. Magento is now part of Adobe Commerce Cloud

We are not surprised. With the acquisition of Magento by Adobe, we expected this to happen. Magento will become connected to all the tools available from Adobe, creating an all-you-need easy to use solution. This includes Business Intelligence tools, integration with Adobe Analytics and others. The end result is a Magento integrated solution with all the tools needed for data analysis, customer segmentation, personalization, easy to use content management and advertising in a single bundle known as the Adobee Experience Cloud. This will give you all you need to make it big. You can read more about all the details of the products and services that are part of the Experience Cloud here.

6. SMB and Mid-Market support

As Adobe embraces Magento as part of a larger scalable Experience Solution, one thing Magento and Adobe both cannot reiterate enough is the continued support and growth of the smaller guys. Magento and Adobe will continue to grow their engagement with the SMB and Mid-Market business owners. They know that without these sectors, the Magento community would not be where it is today. Thanks to the engagement received from the Magento community, in most part driven by innovations for the SMB and Mid-Market, we can expect a big push for continued engagement and bigger supporting forces behind community innovations. We cannot be happier about this.

7. Our takeaways

As Adobe embraces Magento as part of a larger scalable Experience Solution, one thing Magento and Adobe both cannot reiterate enough is the continued support and growth of the smaller guys. Magento and Adobe will continue to grow their engagement with the SMB and Mid-Market business owners. They know that without these sectors, the Magento community would not be where it is today. Thanks to the engagement received from the Magento community, in most part driven by innovations for the SMB and Mid-Market, we can expect a big push for continued engagement and bigger supporting forces behind community innovations. We cannot be happier about this.

All in all – the conference was amazing, a highly recommended experience to anyone who would like to understand the strengths of the community behind Magento and Adobe.

Nowhere else can you encounter fanboys all dressed in orange, with orange shoes and orange suits made to look like a Magento marketplace. Amazing opportunity to see more than a dozen celebrated Magento Masters awarded for their state-of-the-art innovations or numerous successful contributions to the Magento and Adobe ecosystems. Being part of a community of hundreds of Technology and Solution Partners who come together to share ideas and to try and figure out ways to work together (or outsmart each other with the next best thing!) keeps us coming back for more.

Here is to another successful year until we meet again at Adobe Summit 2020!

New Strategic Advisor for ORBA – Andy Walter

As of September 2018, ORBA is a member of the Lingaro Group, a digital transformation and data analytics partner to Fortune Global 500 enterprises. Accordingly, Lingaro Group leadership has extended Strategic Advisor Andy Walter’s responsibilities to include guiding ORBA’s continued growth.

ORBA, a top e-commerce expert, continues to strengthen its position in American markets. The company is pleased to announce its best year since its founding in 2010. In 2018, ORBA’s year-on-year revenue and headcount growth of 70% and 50%, respectively, are both results of an ongoing commitment to meeting and anticipating clients’ evolving requirements in the fast-moving, strategically important world of online sales

From its North American headquarters in Cincinnati, ORBA provides top brands like Strauss Coffee, Microsoft, and Chicago Steak Company with innovative B2B and B2C e-commerce platforms that scale with the growing strategic importance of web sales and incorporate the best emerging technologies that actually support day-to-day business.

As of September 2018, ORBA is a member of the Lingaro Group, a digital transformation and data analytics partner to Fortune Global 500 enterprises. Accordingly, Lingaro Group leadership has extended Strategic Advisor Andy Walter’s responsibilities to include guiding ORBA’s continued growth.

Today’s customers want to buy online, so it is no surprise leading North American enterprises need to get their online sales right. But this is uncharted territory for many of them. ORBA has the proven ability to understand where customers want to go with e-commerce and the technical capabilities to get them there. It’s a great team that I’m excited to be working with” said Walter.

Learn about our Values

Get to know the ORBA core!

satisfaction2

A satisfied customer and a team of their work. We act in such a way that the satisfaction from the project is shared by both parties.

What it means in practice?

If we feel the solution we provide is enough for us – it will be enough for our customers. Make sure that you are proud of what you deliver.

proactivity

Can you see the need for change? Share your idea with us and help us implement the change.

What it means in practice?

Our company is made of a lot of people. Each and everyone can help us grow – if you see room for improvement, not only tell us about the change needed – lead the change!

cooperation

Share both challenges and successes! Inspire, help, build trust and develop together with your team!

What it means in practice?

Don’t break into open doors. Learn from the team, share experience & know-how. If one person in the company knows how to solve an issue – everybody should.

openness

We take your feedback into account. We are always here to talk to you – share your thoughts with us.

What it means in practice?

There are no closed doors. If you need to tell us something – we are here for you, from the CEO to the janitor. Find the person you feel can help you best & share your thoughts.

e-volution

Continously search for and implement innovations. Improve your skills and develop your company together with us – become part of the e-volution!

What it means in practice?

In 2017 we were one of the first companies implementing Headless. In 2018, we drive the innovation by adding CI/CD. In 2019 we are opening to ReactJS & finalizing our fourth PWA implementation – lead the change!

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