Enterprise hits and misses - Cyber Monday rocks (kind of), Salesforce shakes it up, and enterprise blockchain stumbles

Jon Reed Profile picture for user jreed December 5, 2022
This week - Cyber Monday brings decent numbers, but not globally. Salesforce has a quarter to remember, with Bret Taylor out. AWS re:Invent is in the books, but I'm waiting on good analysis. Enterprise blockchain hits snags, and I go off - on that and the Metaverse.


Lead story - Cyber Monday rocks the US, the rest of the world - not so much

How would retailers fare, after a surprisingly perky Black Friday? As Stuart reports in Cyber Monday online retail soars - more number crunching from Adobe and Salesforce, it's a globally mixed bag:

The global total came in at $46.2 billion for Cyber Monday, up four percent year-on-year. Individual countries totals varied according to their own economic situations. For example, the UK saw online sales decline by 10% year-on-year on Monday, with order volume down by the same percentage, while Japan reported negative sales growth of -33% and online volume decline of 17%.

Adobe's numbers found that 'Buy now, pay later' was up 85%, yet another sign of the cash-strapped, but still-spending holiday consumer. So what are we to make of this? Yes, online sales are up - but most retailers are compelled into the discount game. Stuart quotes Salesforce's Rob Garf:

After lackluster discounts earlier in the season, retailers stepped up their game throughout Cyber Week, and shoppers answered in kind. Our data shows an incredibly strong correlation between discount rates and digital sales as consumers held out for the biggest and best deals.

Retailers will only going to come out sunny if they have their automation/efficiency act together. Garf continues:

As we enter the home stretch of the Holiday season, retailers must preserve margins by emphasizing automation to balance operational efficiency and customer loyalty. We anticipate that the retailers who lean into store fulfillment, personalize service, and streamline returns will be winners and find more success now.

But as Garf alludes to, it's not just efficiency - it's the balance of cost control and omni-effectiveness. Example: BOPIS (Buy online, pickup in store). Salesforce found: US, retailers with BOPIS capabilities saw online revenue grow by 38% more than those that did not. So it's still an omni-game - but discount pressures raise the stakes even higher.

Diginomica picks 

Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my three top choices from our vendor coverage:

UKISUG - SAP user conference, annual event coverage - Derek was on the ground, filing some noteworthy RISE with SAP stories. I did a big picture piece from across the pond:

A few more vendor picks, without the quotables:

Jon's grab bag - Martin penned Data Fabric - great idea. Now, make it work! - because "data lakes don't cut the mustard." Neil continued his practical takes on applying AI to food scarcity with Can AI change agriculture? Examining the use cases.

Finally, Barb pressed by buttons with Marketing, meet the Metaverse - have fun! Re: "It's not impossible that we could see mass adoption in less than ten years, said Ho (which is about the length of time it took for mobile to become mainstream)." Sure, but the mobile phone is an augmented reality device on easily affordable equipment, whereas the Metaverse is a virtual reality immersion platform on much more expensive equipment, with much more demanding bandwidth and accessories - gear that makes plenty of people dizzy or just downright eager to get outside. Not everything emerges from the trough of disillusionment - or smaller niche audiences. I would tell marketers to fix your first party data shortcomings, and get over your third party cookie practices, before you start playing around with goggles.

Best of the enterprise web

Waiter suggesting a bottle of wine to a customer

My top seven

Overworked businessman


Gotta love the ethical field of influencer marketing:

This was odd:

And this was a tad scary:

I got into it again with blockchain peeps on Twitter:

Meanwhile, another "celebrated" blockchain project got canned: the Australian Exchange project. Accenture's independent review is revealing, citing the compromises made due to technical limitations, including batch processing attempts(!), concurrency and latency problems. And this is the technology that's going to drive the entire web in Web3? C'mon - blockchain has use cases worth exploring but the hype machine needs to take a long turn in the pit. Catch me on video later today on LinkedIn talking more on this...

Oh, and yeah, this is dropping Tuesday:

If you find an #ensw piece that qualifies for hits and misses - in a good or bad way - let me know in the comments as Clive (almost) always does. Most Enterprise hits and misses articles are selected from my curated @jonerpnewsfeed.

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