Ecommerce technology is rapidly evolving and that’s forcing online retailers to keep up with the changes. Consumers are increasingly experimenting with tools such as augmented reality, visual search and voice search to bolster their online shopping experience. However, what works for one retailer may not work for another.

“Personalization and a dramatic shift away from traditional all-in-one ecommerce solutions should be top of mind for retailers,” says Arthur Lawida, president of commercetools Inc., a cloud-native ecommerce software technology company.

That’s forcing retailers to find ways to become more agile so they can create and deliver marketing programs faster, tailor the user experience to the individual consumer and respond quickly to competitive pressures, he says.

Arthur Lawida, president of commercetools US, a software technology company

Amid those challenges, retailers also have limited resources and can’t immediately jump into every new and emerging ecommerce channel, he says. However, they can look to vendors for help. “Retailers are stuck between a build-it-themselves approach, which only works for the largest retailers that have huge budgets, and the all-in-one approach, which gets them an off-the-shelf solution that may not give them the freedom to fully express their brand across a variety of channels,” Lawida says.

With offline sales declining, retailers have to shift their mindset from being retailers to being technology companies that happen to sell products, he says. “That’s a tall order,” Lawida says. “But if retailers don’t make this jump, they can’t succeed in today’s competitive marketplace.”

There are three steps retailers can take to achieve this goal, he says. First, they must give their marketing and merchandising teams the tools they need to respond to changing market conditions. Second, they should integrate the entire customer experience across all channels. And, finally, they need to educate themselves enough so they can choose the best vendor.

Commercetools, along with its global partner network, is just such a vendor. The company takes a consultative approach…

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