Tech Trends 2020: Double Feature, Part I [5 Reading Tips]

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A new year is always a chance to open up new horizons, implement new business ideas and develop innovations. In order to fulfil these resolutions, it is mandatory to identify the technologies that have development potential and to understand which effects they can have on the digital economy and society.

For this reason, we have already published an entire series of articles on Handelskraft, in which we discuss key topics such as artificial intelligence, marketing, SEO, user experience, social media, customer relationships and product data.

(Tech) trends alone do not create innovation. The symbiosis of humankind, space and technology is what makes a digital strategy successful. This is why we will present and explain in our Handelskraft double feature which strategic tech trends are the key to digital success in 2020 according to Gartner and how people can use these for their respective field of application.

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E-Sports as a Marketing Instrument for Companies in the Digital Age [5 Reading Tips]

E-sports are growing rapidly, potential as marketing instrument
Source: 2019 All-Star Event – LoL

Digitisation is not a megatrend anymore, it has become normality nowadays. It determines both our private and professional daily life. In particular how people spend their free time has changed enormously in the course of digital change in recent years. The best example is the way sport is done nowadays.  Thanks to digitally connected devices, more and more people train more specifically and more consciously. This way, they can constantly check their vital signs and their fitness level.

But not only that. The way in which classic sports are consumed has also changed significantly. Furthermore, the improvement of network connections as well as the increasing popularity of smartphones have contributed to completely new sports being created, for example League of Legends (LoL).

The progress of technology has already turned well-known gaming competitions into huge global events and thus ultimately brought e-sports into our daily lives. The number of spectators in e-sports is rising. The corresponding turnover and the number of companies that make investments is increasing as well. The most recent example is Bayern Munich. Together with its partners Telekom, Allianz and Siemens, the tradition-steeped football club announced its participation in the eFootball.Pro league.

So the question is: Why could e-sports as a marketing instrument be interesting for your company?

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Online Shopping in the Alpine Republic – Where Do the Swiss Go Shopping? [5 Reading Tips]

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E-commerce just keeps growing – not only in Germany: even in our neighbouring countries, the shopping mania via desktop and smartphones only knows one direction – upwards.

A good reason to take a closer look at a neighbour who is particularly interesting for German retailers.

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Experiential Marketing: Experience the Brand Up Close! [5 Reading Tips]

experiential marketing
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Consumers still want to go shopping, see products with their own eyes, touch them and interact directly with brands. Offline is far from being dead, it is currently experiencing a boom instead – whether it is pop-up stores, events or eventful product demos. Digital brands are positioning themselves quite quickly and vehemently in the physical world in order to meet customer requirements.

With such stationary concepts, the product itself has fallen behind. It is important that the customer feels comfortable, has good memories of his visit and ultimately passes these on through word-of-mouth or »social propaganda« so that brand fans become enthusiastic customers – and vice versa.

For this reason, a type of marketing that promotes interaction between customer and brand in order to permanently strengthen customer relationships is becoming more and more important. We’re talking about experiential marketing! What is it all about and why is it so important for retailers, manufacturers and brands nowadays?

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Black Friday – Service Beats Low Price [5 Reading Tips]

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Two weeks after the spectacular Singles’ Day, it was time for the next online shopping mania: Black Friday and Cyber Monday – and they did not disappoint. Consumers and retailers enjoyed a week full of special offers and made millions of transactions. Similar to #Double11, this e-commerce mania far exceeded all forecasts.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday which have their roots in the USA have already established themselves as the most relevant sales events of the year in Germany (and throughout Europe).

Not only do they shape customer behaviour, they also revolutionise calendars as well as price and marketing strategies. Everybody wants to take part. But how should retailers, manufacturers and brands approach these huge sales events so that they constantly make a profit from them?

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Internet of Things Was Only the Beginning – Here Comes »Smart Dust« [5 Reading Tips]

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The development of the Internet of Things is nowhere near slowing down. Quite the opposite: by the end of this year, presumably 4.8 billion networked endpoints will be used in the enterprise segment and car industry. According to a forecast by Gartner, this figure will even rise to 5.8 billion by 2020 which is equivalent to an annual growth of 21 per cent.

Two forces are driving this development forward: speed and size. On the one hand, companies use an improved broadband connection to make real-time analysis and on-demand intelligence possible. In B2C as well as B2B, several use cases have already shown their potential. On the other hand, sensors – an essential component of the Internet of Things (IoT) – become smaller and smaller and more and more sophisticated.

In this context, Gartner states that companies will use physical space to interact with their customers through these tiny sensors. Smart Cars, Smart Cities, Industry 4.0 or Smart Farming are familiar terms surrounding a phenomenon that covers way more – for example the next stage of the IoT technology called »Smart Dust«, which currently attracts a lot of attention.

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Adobe Updates Strengthen Commerce Cloud in DXP Portfolio [5 Reading Tips]

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Photo by Lindsay Henwood on Unsplash

In May 2018, Adobe acquired Magento for 1.68 billion dollars. Even back then, it was only a matter of time until the giant from San Jose would integrate Magento into its tech stack. In April 2019, Adobe launched the Magento-based Adobe Commerce Cloud. By doing so, Adobe complemented its portfolio with the missing e-commerce platform which works in B2B as well as B2C relationships and fits in seamlessly with the Adobe Enterprise Cloud.

Recently at the MagentoLive conference in Amsterdam, important updates and key integrations with Adobe were announced. They will enable Magento users to deliver more personalised shopping experiences and to use the huge amounts of collected data more intelligently.

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Super Apps – The New Way To Attract Customers [5 Reading Tips]

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If you want to book an accommodation, order something to eat, transfer money, chat with friends or colleagues and shop some new shirts, how many apps do you need? In the Western world, you certainly need six different ones. In Asia, however, a new model that centralises all these actions in one single place is establishing itself: the super app.

The Chinese pioneers WeChat and Alipay are the largest exponents of this super app revolution and are therefore considered to be role models. Companies from all over the world now aspire to put this successful Chinese model to use in their own region. But what actually is a super app, which advantages does it have and in which other regions does it already experience a boom? Will super apps even be able to gain a foothold in the Western world?

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Microservices Instead Of Monolith: The Publisher C.H.BECK Is Restructuring Its Online Shop With Commercetools [Case Study]

Microservices Monolith C.H.BECK Case Study
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Faster, more flexible, more efficient, more scalable, more performant. These five requirements are the Holy Grail of each online shop nowadays because customers expect lightning-fast loading times, simple operation and an up-to-date product range at all times. Companies, in turn, want to develop innovations quickly, optimise cost savings and attain maximum productivity.

With increasing growth and rising ambitions, however, outdated structures and solutions quickly reach their limits. Courage is required when it comes to digitalisation. C.H.BECK, the German market leader in the field of legal literature, therefore decided to break with its 15-year monolithic platform developed in-house and to rely on modern and flexible technologies. Keywords are microservices and cloud, technology partners are commercetools and Microsoft Azure.

In our new success story, we show how C.H.BECK managed to restructure its online shop with commercetools to make it fit for the future.

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CRM Is More Than Software – Technology On Its Own Does Not Create A Competitive Advantage [5 Reading Tips]

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Personalisation is essential to the successful creation of digital customer relationships and thus for long-term success. Addressing customers individually is far more than sending an e-mail with the correct name. 360-degree customer focus is required, which in turn covers all touchpoints of the customer journey. In order to master all these mammoth tasks, companies need a reliable and central source of supply, the so-called »Single Point of Truth« for customer relationship management.

Therefore, it is no surprise that the topic CRM has recently become more and more important for companies. Consequently, more and more money is invested in CRM projects as well. However, according to a study conducted by Uniserv, 62 per cent of companies are not satisfied with the management of their customer data. What does this tell us about the status quo of this important technology in digital business and which challenges do retailers, manufacturers and brands currently face in this regard?

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