Today we will be taking a brief look at Demandware, a “cloud” based e-commerce solution, which retailers can exploit to develop online stores and to expand into international markets.
Demandware describes itself as “a global leader in digital commerce, enabling the world’s premier retailers to move faster and grow faster in the changing face of retail”
Some of the world’s largest brands have launched online stores on their platform, including Burton, Adidas, House of Fraser, Mothercare and L’Oreal with brands such as Kiehls. As you can see from those investing in Demandware, the solution is perfectly suited to those who require a site which is fully tailored to their brand identity and product range rather than a more generic e-commerce solution. With many online stores now looking increasingly “identikit”, it is evident that the underlying Demandware technology platform enables total customisation for these differing brands.
Demandware is a cloud-based e-commerce solution, meaning it provides both the hardware and software that enables customers to implement and operate their online store without the requirement to arrange dedicated hardware and hosting for their website. This also removes the effort and cost element that is often associated with solutions that are not cloud (or “Software as a Service”) based.
On the subject of cost, Demandware operates on a revenue share model meaning that up-front expenditure on software licenses is kept to a minimum and the cost of the platform remains in proportion to the revenue being generated.
Lastly, the technology offers full multi-site and multi-language functionality, which eases expansion into new markets and geographical areas.
Should you choose to proceed with a Demandware implementation it is key to identify your current level of software development expertise. If you have a highly skilled internal web application development team then it should be possible to cross-train them to undertake the development. However, should your company not possess this expertise then implementation partners, such as the team here at Priocept, can undertake this development on your behalf.
It is also worth taking into consideration that there are some areas that at the time of writing Demandware does not provide a full solution for out-of-the-box and would require a third party system integration. Such areas of functionality are around Order and Returns Management, Shipping Integration, Stock Control and Customer Relationship Management (CRM). It is also important to point out that e-commerce solutions such as Demandware are not as advanced as dedicated Web Content Management Systems (WCMS) when it comes to creating and managing digital marketing content, and an element of technical know-how is required to update the non-product related content on a Demandware based website.
Of course, the beauty of cloud based platforms like Demandware is that they are under continual development with new features being introduced in every release cycle which can be taken advantage of with little or no additional development effort required.
In conclusion, Demandware may be for you if you are looking for a cross-channel commerce engine that presents unlimited scalability for seasonal peaks and the utmost point of compliance to payment card industry regulations. However, companies should be mindful that an e-commerce solution such as Demandware may not provide every component required and may need to be supplemented with other systems to support a successful e-commerce operation.
Should you be unsure if Demandware is the right option for your business or if you would like some vendor neutral advice on technology platform selection, please get in touch with a member of our team.