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Planning for the Cloud: Transitioning to Oracle CX Commerce

During Insight 20, CX Commerce Strategist Brenna Johnson walked through how to transition from ATG or Oracle Commerce to Oracle CX Commerce.

Businesses chose Oracle Commerce/ATG for its stability, flexibility, and extensibility, as well as its powerful features and tools. But for all its benefits, customers found a new set of challenges that took many forms. Implementations and upgrades took time. Java and ATG expertise costs money, and a lack of separation between front-end experience and back-end capabilities topped the list of obstacles for enterprise clients. Other issues include limited architectural guardrails and continuous infrastructure maintenance conducted either on-premise or through a third-party hosting provider.

Oracle designed CX Commerce to serve as an antidote to eCommerce development and deployment struggles. During a session at Insight 20 called “Planning for the Cloud: Transitioning from ATG or Oracle Commerce to CX Commerce,” CX Commerce Strategist Brenna Johnson reports that clients who switched to CX Commerce saw tangible results. Among them: a 60 percent cost reduction, 40 percent faster development cycles and a 10 percent increase in sales revenue.

CX Commerce embeds the core value of simplicity – “Make hard things easy” – in its design. The platform builds in end-to-end features, keeps models that work, and discards ones that don’t while deploying extensibility everywhere and eliminating barriers to adoption.

“CX Commerce is modular, so you can leverage what you want, and customize for your business without the penalty of losing functionality or running into issues with backward compatibility.”

 

-Brenna Johnson, CX Commerce Strategist

Transitioning to Oracle CX Commerce

High-Level Features

A cloud-native solution, CX Commerce uses a SaaS delivery model to push new releases automatically every six to eight weeks. Predictable subscription costs make budgeting easier, with no upgrade projects or versioning. Oracle manages all infrastructure, compliance, and uptime in the Oracle Cloud.

Clients can think in weeks or months, not years, leveraging tools from a curated, out of the box storefront. They can cut down on required integrations with a unified experience, search, content, multisite and A/B testing, and take advantage of adapters and low-code integrations to Oracle and third-party applications.

CX enables clients to run multiple business models on a single platform, supporting direct-to-consumer and B2B experiences in a single UI, leveraging existing integrations, assets, and product information across business models, with connected sales channels, and offer insights to optimize sales across channels.

Visual tools empower businesses by way of drag-and-drop experience management for all channels, supporting central command of mobile (responsive/adaptive), call center, and new sites/touchpoints. Designers can choose from more than 80 extensible widgets to create and reuse custom components.

CX improves upon ATG in many critical areas, not the least of which is customer engagement.

Rich, native shopper, and account-based personalization delivers personalized, dynamic pricing, recommendations, messaging to known anonymous users, as well as tailored search and guided navigation. “This is an area where the project management and development teams were able to simplify how things are delivered from ATG to CX Commerce,” Johnson said.

CX fosters an environment of low-risk experimentation. Businesses can quickly launch new sites across geographies using existing investments and assets, explore new sales models, such as direct-to-consumer and B2B2C, test subscriptions models, and put new commerce experiences in the hands of customer service and sales reps.

Using CX Commerce means businesses can “develop at the speed of your customer,” Johnson said. Its API-first architecture supports headless and microservices, while server-side extensibility prioritizes customization and extends the application using the power of Node.js. With no proprietary programming, developers build experiences with standards-based languages of HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript.

Oracle’s ecosystem of applications includes CX Commerce, CX Marketing, CX Sales, and CX Service. Using this ecosystem led to material increases in key performance indicators for Vermont Country Store – 10-percent increase in sales, a 10 percent increase in revenue, and 70,000 new registrations in 60 days.

Migration 101

Transitioning to the cloud carries substantial consequences for any customer-facing enterprise. Approached in a methodical, intentional way, the migration can supercharge revenues and transform experiences for B2B and B2C businesses.

Migration assessments remove the guesswork for businesses wanting to create new customer journeys, redesign their storefronts, and react to unexpected sales demand. Sarah Naasko, Senior Manager of Commerce Consulting at Oracle, said the assessment consists of four phases:

  1. Extensions analysis
  2. Storefront analysis
  3. Data analysis
  4. A questionnaire

During the extension analysis, Oracle evaluates pricing engines and calculators, promotion extensions, pipeline manager and processor chains, as well as segmentation, scenarios, and targeters.

The storefront analysis explores each page’s UI functionality, integrations, and logic, map to CX Commerce out of the box, as well as extension and gap analysis.

The data analysis will examine catalog, profile, repository functions as well as commerce data objects – orders, items; data relationships and properties, and insight into CX Commerce data model mapping.

Finally, the questionnaire will ask about integrations, customer service, and configuration details.

To facilitate adoption, Oracle’s migration tool kit contains a specific plan for ATG migration, “so we can see how long this might take, and what the different dependencies are,” Naasko said. Oracle also created storefront specifications unique to its consulting customers, integration specifications, and pre-built integrations for tools customers already use. B2B and B2C accelerators and interactive prototypes show what’s possible within CX Commerce, addressing edge cases and capabilities.

Naasko recommends each business complete the following action items to complete a successful migration to the cloud:

  • Decide on simplification target areas
  • Take inventory of customizations and extensions
  • Identify features/customizations that are no longer in use
  • Review out of the box features in CX Commerce
  • Audit and prune content
  • Examine any and all existing third-party relationships

Separation Is Key

To customers running ATG 11.3.X who are building out a headless architecture and preparing for a CX Commerce migration: Oracle recommends customers create a service layer within their headless application to separate what the storefront is expecting and the application server is providing.

To learn more, check out the session recording from Insight 20 below.