Adobe Commerce Cloud Launches Headless Offering to Serve the High Customer Experience Needs of Enterprise Customers

June 25, 2019

By: Jason Woosley,
Author Title: 
Vice President, Commerce Product & Platform
, Adobe
Headless Commerce

Businesses are eager to embrace new commerce channels and technologies to get closer to their customers and grow conversions. Yet to do this effectively, they must overcome four key challenges: 1) needing to constantly innovate their digital customer experience at speed and scale; 2) designing coherent experiences across multiple touchpoints and technologies; 3) eliminating data silos to effectively harness data and drive real-time decisioning; and 4) integrating new technologies while minimizing disruptions to existing business operations.

To achieve such fine-grained control and create rich and differentiated customer experiences, many companies are turning to “headless commerce” which accommodates an unlimited variety of web, social, mobile, IoT and in-store digital touchpoints, while separating them architecturally from the commerce platform using APIs to deliver commerce services. This improves flexibility to power a wide range of omnichannel scenarios, to commerce-enable any system, application or IoT device, and to seamlessly integrate with any content management systems. A successful headless commerce strategy requires a rich array of capabilities that are open, extensible and easily consumable by developers that have little or no experience with the underlying commerce platform. These capabilities include flexible APIs, extensible microservices, new omnichannel integrations, and comprehensive management tools.

Adobe Commerce Cloud today announced a robust and highly flexible infrastructure that streamlines continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) processes and empowers customers to realize quick and agile iterations of their codebase. Now merchants of all sizes can deploy new features to production many times a day, allowing them to react to changing customer needs at speed and scale.

Every API client is different. Having different representations of APIs for different clients improves performance, ease of development, and the stability of integrations. Adobe Commerce Cloud offers two sets of APIs out of the box: REST and GraphQL. Both well-known platform extensibility and “microservice layer” technologies allow merchants to quickly extend and adopt APIs for all the different touchpoints and integration scenarios they may face. For brands needing to further extend or customize core business processes to support unique business scenarios, Adobe Commerce Cloud builds on the powerful foundation of GraphQL with a microservices layer to extend commerce processes and support fully custom scenarios. With these new additions, businesses of all sizes can power the widest range of omnichannel commerce scenarios to create innovative experiences that drive customer loyalty and increase revenue.

Better mobile experiences

The 2018 holiday season saw 51.4% of visits from smartphones but only 31.0% of revenue from mobile according to Adobe Analytics. Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) represent the next evolution in mobile-driven commerce. PWAs deliver rich native app experiences directly through mobile browsers. In addition to providing headless APIs to support PWAs, Adobe Commerce Cloud provides PWA Studio for creating and managing rich PWAs as well as a sample PWA store to help you accelerate deployment. This way user experience developers can focus on building best-in-class experiences without having to cross-specialize in the back-end processes and applications.

Seamless integrations

Many brands choose headless to integrate commerce with CMS or omnichannel applications, such as Point of Sale. Service-oriented approaches supported by microservices make it easier and faster to integrate with other systems such as store systems, marketing, and loyalty programs. Adobe Commerce Cloud is pre-integrated with the industry-leading Adobe Experience Manager––which is also designed to support full experience delivery, hybrid models that split experience delivery between CMS and Commerce, or fully headless scenarios. In addition, companies can leverage headless commerce integrations for POS, digital signage, and social and conversational commerce. As the system is decomposed, different components can be deployed independently, making integrating new technologies quicker and easier since adding new components does not influence other components of your system.

Tap deep insights and real-time decisioning

A common challenge with headless deployments is optimizing experiences and delivery performance.   Adobe Sensei, the company’s AI and machine learning technology that is deeply embedded into Adobe Experience Cloud solutions, supports API-based personalization while improving page performance and page ranking.  By incorporating A/B testing into the development cycle of single-page applications, brands are able to phase in new innovations and prevent customer-facing errors in production environments.

Power of robust global ecosystem

Headless commerce requires an unprecedented degree of design and integration across systems which can be daunting for all but the largest organizations. Ensuring robust developer tools and a rich partner ecosystem to extend core capabilities is essential to effective deployment and sustained success.

The future of headless commerce

With Adobe Commerce Cloud headless capabilities, businesses have limitless flexibility to deliver seamless omnichannel experiences that support any scenario. From operating in a fully headless mode––using services architecture, a custom front-end, and PWAs––to integrating with customer engagement applications like CMS and beyond. These enhanced abilities put unprecedented control in merchants’ hands to make every experience shoppable and accelerate innovation. Headless commerce supported by Adobe Commerce Cloud provides a distinct competitive advantage to meet customer demands, even as those demands continue to evolve.

To learn more about Adobe Commerce Cloud and its features, visit here.