It offers room for experimentation as the infrastructure it provides is highly adaptable with changes made quickly
By Rajiv Kumar
E-commerce companies are always innovating and striving to offer their customers exceptional omni-channel experiences. To stay ahead and stay relevant, smart brands are constantly on the lookout for new strategies. In current times, as digitisation comes to the fore, most of the shopping occurs outside the website – over mobile, social media channels and so on. Thus, e-commerce platforms have to continually update themselves on these customer touchpoints.
Keeping up with the rising trends, online retailers and other companies are transitioning to ‘headless commerce’ solutions, which in turn helps enhance customer experience. In simple words, headless commerce refers to the separation of the backend and frontend of any e-commerce website or application. Such a design offers the flexibility to create a platform whichever way the company wishes to. Since both the elements work independently of each other, it enables providing stellar customer experience. The frontend comprises the social commerce, interface, IoT while the backend is made up of pricing, infrastructure, security run and checkout options of the e-commerce platform.
What makes headless commerce so popular?
To perform the best in their domain, adopting omnichannel capabilities has become the need of the hour for e-commerce companies. For this, they are doing everything from employing state-of-the-art technical solutions to enabling live chat as every business seeks to keep their customers happy, satisfied and engaged. As there is rising preference for online shopping, brands are thus moving towards headless commerce solutions.
Headless commerce is proving to be a refreshing change from the slow and long-drawn-out processes of the traditional e-commerce platforms. It doesn’t have any interdependent coding at play, and so updates can easily be made by different departments. Headless commerce also offers the option to market websites instantly, enabling companies to leverage the opportunities that they would miss out on otherwise.
How headless commerce is driving flexible customer service
With headless commerce, brands get numerous benefits and are also able to resolve operational, functional, technical and design-related issues. Ultimately, this translates into flexible and excellent user experience in the following ways:
- Swift implementation of new designs
Headless commerce offers room for experimentation as the infrastructure it provides is highly adaptable with changes made quickly. It becomes possible to update to the latest dynamics of the ever-changing e-commerce ecosystem. As a result, storefronts can easily be built, designed, done over and deployed without doing anything to the backend. Thus, APIs help save time and efforts put into executing changes.
- Offers more personalisation
E-commerce companies are able to control the elements which users interact with. Headless commerce enables brands to get more creative with the content they share on their website. They can now easily customise and personalise to a large extent their layouts and themes for the frontend without any glitches. This way they can engage and interact with different segments of audience, and nudge them gently towards a frictionless checkout mechanism.
- Cost-effective choice
E-commerce platforms that are designed using a decoupled backend and frontend infrastructure enjoy significant savings as these are more economical than the traditional platforms. Micro services can help brands scale immediately to meet the customer demands in peak season without having to disturb the configuration of the website altogether. This delivers flawless and uninterrupted service to the customers.
- Smooth and seamless integrations
A successful e-commerce platform has a mechanism with robust in-built capabilities that offer seamless integrations with efficient third-party tools to help businesses grow. Headless commerce allows brands the flexibility and agility to combine best-in-class tools for a business and also lets them replace these tools with an improved version without causing any disruption to the flow.
- Quick and easy optimisation
With headless commerce, it’s easier and convenient to make modifications to the system based on the changes in the tech landscape. The existing content can also be tweaked as per the evolving consumer behaviours and patterns. Headless commerce, therefore, allows agile marketing as campaigns can be quickly tested and new features can be loaded on the go, making them live in the market instantly.
- Consistent integrated experience
The API layer incorporated into a headless system takes the information from the commerce platform to every touchpoint. Consequently, adding a new frontend has minimal to no effect on the backend structure and consumers enjoy a superior experience across all the channels. Headless commerce delivers products and services to customers directly without being affected by previous limitations in design. This way e-commerce brands can tap into broader audiences to increase sales.
- Better geolocation techniques
When foraying into a new geographic location, headless commerce enables a new website to be set up in days, rather than taking months. Companies are required to theme the CMS once and all the publishing is taken care of. A headless commerce system allows businesses to personalise for different areas and regions accordingly. As the product value changes from region-to-region, brands need to alter the messaging of their products or services in a way that goes well with the prospective customers. By existing in the backend of a CMS powered by headless commerce, different and location-specific channels can design messaging for the appropriate audience. This enhances customer experience egging them on to make a purchase.
Present-day customers want greater convenience when they shop online. They want to navigate choices and accomplish tasks with a single click. This has led to businesses adopting headless commerce solutions. Headless commerce helps keep customer acquisition costs low. It enables companies to place valuable and engaging content on their online stores which attracts organic traffic. However, when it comes to structuring a site, designers and backend developers tend to have different mindsets. When adopting headless commerce, the creative team for the frontend focuses more on optimising user experience and the interface to drive engagement and conversions. While on the other hand, developers can prioritise making critical enhancements to the backend. Put together, headless commerce solutions empower brands to build a flexible, smooth and seamless customer experience.
The author is founder and CEO, StoreHippo