Why rethink the digital experience architecture

Businesses are no longer digitizing operations just to reduce time to market. Providing seamless omnichannel experiences for consumers has become primary and pivotal, and so has the ability to learn from and react quickly to business and consumer insights. Three key reasons for an omnichannel experience delivery are :

  1. Customer centricity Delivering relevant content, commerce and service at every step of a customer’s omnichannel journey is key to delivering on this new reality of customer-centric businesses. The information and transactional capabilities delivered across this journey need to convince consumers to use these touch points in their next omnichannel journey. At the same time this information needs to be able to guide businesses towards building better products and services .
  2. Business Agility: As users interact with applications through the web, cloud and mobile, their expectations of usability and performance have risen. Businesses need to be agile and flexible to respond to these expectations using a continuous delivery model with continuous integrations and continuous deployments. This needs a collaborative approach that spans the entire value chain, from business requirements to deployment and an architecture that aids business analysis, application development and operations.
  3. Adaptability and Extensibility: Modern enterprises need to deliver outcomes within the broader ecosystem of customers, partners and service providers. But unlike the tightly coupled integrations of the decade past, modern ecosystems are built on adaptive exchanges from multiple providers, with the expectation that those providers change frequently. The disruptive nature of today’s digital experience landscape demands solutions that can be easily and quickly integrated with existing infrastructures and best of breed third party solutions.

With these in mind lets explore some of the key architectural considerations for delivering holistic digital experiences.

  1. Modularity : Separating content from presentation and authoring from delivery are key to reusability, agility and cross-channel consistency. This not only frees content and IT teams to focus on what each do best but also speeds up development of new digital outlets and allows the effective use of metadata to deliver a far more contextually relevant and personalized visitor experience.
  2. Extensibility: Whether it is content in silos and legacy systems or invaluable meta data from ecommerce and CRM, modern experience architectures should be able to span across repositories to enrich and present a single ubiquitous view of a customer in order to deliver relevant experiences. As the explosive proliferation of marketing and sales and service SaaS solutions shows no signs of abating, it is up to businesses to build an architecture that can accommodate and decouple such solutions and technologies at will.This will require a robust strategy to deal with the API economy.
  3. Agility — To deliver fast, relevant experiences and a secure online business, the digital experience ecosystem whether on-premise, in cloud or something in between needs to to scale and integrate at the appropriate levels without compromising on availability, performance and security. A modular, decoupled architecture where DevOps graduates into BizDevOps can enable ‘on the fly innovation’ by facilitating a continuous delivery model for integrations, testing and deployment. So when a campaign goes viral or a website experiences spikes in visitor traffic, companies are able to respond with automated or manual scaling of the right components in cloud or on premise.Besides with the rising popularity of new programming languages, and the proliferation of devices, channels and platforms, developers need to be ever ready for the next wave of technologies.

Final thoughts

Savvy consumers are reshaping when, how and why they engage with a brand. In order to stay relevant and agile, there needs to be greater collaboration and continuous synergies between business, development and operations. At the same time digital experience architectures need to separate content authoring from IT development and be appropriately decoupled for workflow efficiencies, multi-level scalability and fine grained security. Given the disruptive nature of the digital landscape it is becoming increasingly important to integrate capabilities and interconnect systems. Making data digestible and functionality accessible is key to achieving legacy compliant or future proof digital estates.

Marketer, Techie, Storyteller