Connected CommerceAugust 6, 2021

For Real Progress To Be Made, Companies Must Focus On C-Commerce

By PAMELA BEILER | STAFF WRITER‍

With consumer expectations at an all-time high, collaborative commerce (c-commerce) is emerging as a must-have business imperative.

C-commerce occurs when organizations use technology, such as the cloud, to coordinate with each other to optimize supply and distribution channels to maximize profitability and efficiency.

VTEX, the fastest growing e-commerce platform in the world describes it as “digital collaboration to fuel growth, power innovation, and build relationships online.”

VTEX’s Director of Marketing Kristin Schepeci coins it “a digital ecosystem” and the company’s CMO, Jared Blank explains that there is a “push and pull between the needs of data and the needs of privacy—and having companies work together to share data in some way is a really interesting conversation.”

A fully integrated order management system that allows for effective collaboration with other enterprises increases the ability to deliver on customer expectations with efficiency, accuracy and reliability. An effective c-commerce union helps boost key performance metrics, optimize available-to-promise functions and, ultimately, build consumer trust.

 

How does a business get c-commerce ready?

Of course, in today’s high-tech world, c-commerce can’t work without collaborative technology, and for businesses with systems that have not yet been taken to the cloud, there is more than one way to bring them up to snuff and ready to make a foray into c-commerce.

Two cloud migration approaches that should be considered are rehosting and replatforming.

 

Rehosting

Rehosting, sometimes called “lift and shift,” involves simply moving applications from a local data center and rehosting them to the cloud.

Some of the benefits of this approach are:

  • Costly development and testing are eliminated.
  • Migration is quick, so there is minimal disruption to core business activities.
  • For the end-user, most things look the same.

Potential drawbacks to this approach include:

  • If there are already problems with the application, there may be increased risks after migration.
  • Since the application will still function how it was originally designed to on a single physical server, it doesn’t take advantage of all the benefits of cloud functionality.
  • There may be increased costs to operating in a cloud.

If the infrastructure is already working well, rehosting is an excellent choice for cloud migration.  There is little disruption on all fronts, and because it is a quick process, downtime is minimized.

 

Replatforming

Replatforming involves changing and updating particular components of an application to allow it to take advantage of the improved functionality that the cloud platform provides.

Replatforming can be done while transitioning to the cloud or after the application has already been rehosted.

Some of the benefits of this approach are:

  • Businesses can tackle one area of the application at a time without having to commit to a large migration all at once.
  • The system is more likely to work in a sustainable, long-term fashion.
  • The application can usually leverage all the functions of cloud capability.

Potential drawbacks to this approach include:

  • The project can balloon in scope, so it’s crucial that businesses stay focused and on-task.
  • There will be some minor changes for the end-user and staff training will probably be required.

 

Replatforming is a good option for organizations wishing to start small and scale up with their cloud-migrating efforts.  But, if unchecked, the project can grow and change more quickly than originally planned.

Rehosting and replatforming are both cost-effective approaches to cloud migration, as they do not require the fees that would accompany a major development project. Neither option is better or worse than the other.

The first step in this transition should be to execute an in-depth assessment of technical capabilities, which will reveal how many changes need to be made to the existing application infrastructure before moving to the cloud.  Once this assessment has been completed, the business can move confidently into a collaborative commerce ecosystem.

 

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