Over the past few years, companies have steadily subjected themselves to digitalisation. Internal processes have been automated, collaboration tools have optimised workflows, and sales channels have been expanded by online shops and mobile apps. SEO, SEA, and social media have strengthened the brand image.
Digitalisation has become something common, even standard, among many businesses. This also implies that being digital is no distinguishing feature any more. Inevitably, the question is: What comes next? Accenture CTIO Paul Daugherty refers to this scenario as the »post-digital world«:
» A post-digital world doesn’t mean that digital is over. On the contrary, we’re posing a new question: as all organizations develop their digital competency, what will set YOU apart? «
Customisation through configurators, but also by means of cutting-edge technology like AI, AR, or 3-D printing is gathering pace.
Which companies manage to personalise their products and services, and which approaches are promising in this context?
It was supposedly Goethe’s last word. It is one of the first in the Bible. And as soon as it is put together with other words it indications smart progression. What are we talking about? Light.
The International Day of Light is on the 16th of May every year. It’s celebrated mainly in professional circles: from physicists, who research the world of optics and photonics, and those interested in physics, who take part in special events, in museums, or participants in sightseeing tours of scientific sites.
The date was proclaimed by UNESCO and commemorates the birth of the laser on 16 May 1960. At that time, American physicist Theodore Maiman had developed the first working laser, still puzzled about what his invention of extremely focused light would be good for. But since then it has had numerous uses. The International Day of Light is not just about lasers, or about microscopy and nano-optics, but also about the latest technologies. It’s about transmitting, storing and processing information via light. And so the Day of Light is also a day of the future of digitisation.
When a new employee starts at dotSource, they get a computer, a desk, a chair, nice colleagues, and a bag of candy. It’s grass green, about 45 centimetres long, big enough to stand out and small enough not to make schoolchildren jealous.
The gesture has a two-sided. On one hand, the German tradition of giving bags of candy on the first day of school was invented in Jena. Secondly, dotSource’s headquarters are there. And at the other two locations in Leipzig and Berlin, it’s important for us to promote creativity, impartiality, and curiosity in every day at work. And this succeeds not least through creative concepts in which there is literally room for innovation.
Nowadays, everything imaginable can be bought and sold on the internet. Even groceries. Even fresh food. Despite the growing trend, online food sales in Germany does not appear to be growing. The country’s logistical challenges, its dense network of stores and its unwillingness to buy fresh produce remotely stagnate growth in this market.
But this doesn’t mean that there’s no movement or exciting developments. Never before have so many competitors existed, as a colourful panorama in neighbouring Switzerland shows. Traditional companies and new online players are coexisting. Who can make a breakthrough here and what factors must companies consider in order to compete in this challenging market?
With the digitisation of retail, many niche businesses are coming to fruition. And many others are finding that they’ve needed to change and go online and go farther than before. Globalisation and digitisation aren’t just challenges, but an opportunity for companies to take the next step and gain market share in ways thought impossible. The goal along the way is to eliminate pain points for customers.
What’s happening more and more often is that new companies are coming out of the woodwork and often start with an online presence and want a physical one as well. And there is also the opposite happening with traditional companies. Both are looking to keep their share of the market, take back the share they once had, or be a dominating force to be reckoned with.
Soft drinks and water in PET (plastic) bottles, canned beer, or canned food. Without the right packaging, our daily shopping would be a lot more environmentally friendly, but also much more exhausting. Not to mention the logistics, which would have to be completely rethought.
Hundreds of millions of beverage and food packaging products are produced in Germany alone and largely recycled thanks to a reusable deposit system. One of the biggest players in this field is Krones AG, which develops complete production lines and employs more than 16,500 people worldwide. With a data import via a B2B online shop newly developed by dotSource, Krones is taking a decisive step in the direction of the Industrial Internet of Things.
Returning products could be called an »international pastime«. German online shoppers return the most often. A PostNord survey shows that more than half (53%) of German customers posted at least one return last year, followed by the Netherlands (52%) and France (45%).
The fact that customers have been able to exchange products by law within 14 days without giving any reason since 2000 has significantly contributed to the »misuse« of the customer-friendly right of withdrawal. According to researchers from the University of Bamberg, an estimated 280 million returns took place in Germany in 2018 (this means that 532 orders per minute will be returned).
Of course, this has its effects. Returns have become the biggest problem in e-commerce and it is inevitable to ask yourself: How can online retailers solve this problem? How do companies manage to minimise returns sustainably – not only in terms of the environment but also in terms of business success?
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is now a year old as of late May. And everyone in Europe knows what it is by now. This EU-wide regulation aims to regulate and protect the handling of personal data.
And in a time when »data-driven« is THE attribute par excellence, it becomes more important. Not only do companies act and sell with the new currency, but they’re also adjusting their business models, strategies, and processes accordingly. The majority of digital consumers also know that to put it simply, since May 25, 2018, they have more rights over their personal data.
The challenges that companies face in order to operate in a data-driven manner, but nevertheless to ensure compliance with data, are particularly evident in those areas that deal directly with customer relationship management. So here are a few key hints and tips on what CRM and marketing automation strategists should keep in mind.
As for e-commerce in 2019, there are two important pieces of news: Good and bad. First, the good news. E-commerce is growing and growing, it is and remains one of the strongest growth markets in the DACH region’s economy. From 6.4 billion euros in 2005 to 35.6 billion euros in 2014 and 53.4 billion euros in 2018.
But with or without growth, online commerce is also a competitive market, especially in B2C, but also increasingly in B2B. What to do to maintain competitiveness or even become a pioneer? One of the most important success factors is selecting and implementing a tailor-made e-commerce system. But which e-commerce software suits whom? And what developments are there?
Not only do we describe the leading providers for different sizes of companies from start-ups to Enterprises but we also explain why online stores are evolving towards e-commerce functions as part of a DXP and how technologies such as Framework or SaaS differ.
Expectant fathers were catching virtual monsters in the delivery room when their child was being born. That happened with Pokémon Go. The game that triggered a veritable boom in the summer of 2016 and led the path for AR and even VR to take off in gaming. Although the hype about virtual monsters has somewhat flattened, the technology behind it has not stopped evolving. Three years later, its promising its users impressive experiences.