Lead story - Online commerce in the Vaccine Economy - is B2B purchasing changing?
I know - an increase is digital commerce is hardly a pandemic surprise. But the B2B side of this is getting interesting. Stuart parsed numbers in Commerce in the Vaccine Economy - more complex, more channels, according to Salesforce global study.
Stuart notes jumps in B2C and B2B:
For B2C organizations, respondents currently report that some 45% of their revenue comes from digital channels, up from 32% two years ago and with an expectation that this figure will rise of 56% in two years time. For B2B organizations, comparable numbers come in at 40%, up from 28% and looking to 52%.
B2B sales of small ticket items have already migrated online - no surprise there. But now, more complex purchases are starting to happen:
90% of B2B commerce respondents predicting large and more complex orders being placed online by business buyers online over the next two years.
Benefits of online sales? For the sellers:
Benefits for business sellers from digital channels include improved customer satisfaction (cited by 46% of B2B respondents), expansion into new regions, customer base growth and reduced time to deal close, all three coming in at 44%.
The report has data on increased cryptocurrency adoption/acceptance, but what caught my eye was the "headless commerce" bit. Stuart:
Meanwhile headless commerce is found to be gaining momentum as a means of enabling organizations to move into or adapt to new digital channels more easily, cited as a benefit by over two-thirds of respondents (69%). The decoupling of the digital front end from the back end frees up organizations to build digital experiences with more flexibility - cited by 76% of respondents - and increased agility to make changes faster (72%).
Tableau drill-downs add to the info you can derive from the report. As for the biggest takeaway, I'll go with a variation on Stuart's: digital commerce is at the core of things now. Get on top of it or fall behind really does apply here - much moreso than, say, chasing metaverse monetization fantasies. I'll be interested to see how (and when) complex B2B purchases start happening this way. This report indicates we aren't far off.
Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my three top choices from our vendor coverage:
- DocuSign misses earnings estimate - but is confident on future Agreement Cloud growth - ""The day to day market reaction to earnings updates isn’t always the best gauge of how a company is performing - and DocuSign is in the middle of a transitional period, as it lays the foundation for growth under its ‘Agreement Cloud’ proposition." (Derek)
- Epicor maps a customer-centric path to the cloud - interview with Lisa Pope, President - "Over half the customer base have now taken the decision to move to the cloud, she says, and SaaS bookings have been growing "in the high 80s" in percentage terms." (Phil)
- MongoDB expands its developer data platform to a wider variety of use cases - "In recent years we’ve already seen how Mongo has expanded to be multi-cloud, has launched a database-as-a-service (Atlas), has built mobile visualization tools and has pushed its services closer to the front-end with Stitch. This context is important as we take a look at announcements out this week that take MongoDB’s developer data platform further." (Derek)
A few more vendor picks, without the quotables:
- ServiceNow to acquire Hitch Works as it seeks to ease skills pain for customers - Derek
- Frontify builds a self-service, data-driven culture with ThoughtSpot - Derek
- The theory and practice of customer success at Zuora, as shaped by SaaS expert Amy Konary - Phil
Jon's grab bag - Neil explained why sustainability reporting isn't getting it done in What constitutes a successful sustainability program - and why is it so hard? - Meanwhile, I dissected another way to make events great (or stumble) in How to ensure your customer panel is a world-class yawn festival.
Finally, Chris sparked a bigtime kerfluffle with his intrepid reporting in UK Roadmap for a Digital Future - what lies beneath the fold? I won't spoil the story for you here, as he's updated the text with the fallout - and why it matters.
Best of the enterprise web
My top six
- Tesla Autopilot safety faces bigger questions as US upgrades crash probe - The significance of this is less about Tesla and more about the significant hurdles the entire "autonomous vehicle" industry is reckoning with.
- US robot orders surge 40% as labor shortages, inflation persist - Another robots-in-demand story, which is really a story about our problematic economy: "Across North America, over 11,500 robots collectively worth approximately $646 million were sold in the three-month period from January through March, the most ever purchased in a single quarter."
- DBMS Market Transformation 2021: OSDBMS Advances - Gartner's Merv Adrian continues his informative DBMS market series, this time focusing on open source databases.
- The five mindsets needed for a successful modern CFO - I like the reality check of #4: "Increase efficiency with the same headcount."
- Worst Practices in SAP SuccessFactors Projects - One of the best enterprise podcasters out there, Steve Bogner rallies his gang to get some fruitful takeaways from hard project lessons.
- Google engineer put on leave after saying AI chatbot has become sentient - Not exactly an enterprise story, but this is likely the trending tech story on social channels. I read the chat transcript; I don't see a sentient chatbot, but I do see a more advanced one than I've
seen on vendor web sitesinteracted with - including Alexa. One Redditor noted: sentient is a sexy topic, but the more pressing issue is AI ethics for systems in production.
Ever heard of the 'ol rope-a-dope? Well, I think I am an easy mark for this kind of piece:
The Future of the Web Is Marketing Copy Generated by Algorithms https://t.co/czjYRa358M
-> "I've seen worse" is not going to be good enough to win the content/attention game, sorry. Yes, some sites will try to game search with machine copy - think search engines won't respond?
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) June 12, 2022
Pretty sure it's the second time I'm called a whiff on that same piece... Meanwhile, the supposed "sentient AI chatbot" garnered all the tech buzz this week. I recommend you have a look at the transcript and decide for yourself:
Google engineer put on leave after saying AI chatbot has become sentient https://t.co/3BT8siSpb7
-> no word yet if the chatbot is protesting the decision :)
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) June 12, 2022
This is a streamlined "Jon has the covid blues" version of hits and misses. Hopefully we'll be back to tasty strikethroughs and bonus rants by next time. 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.