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Editorial

Have You Recognized the Potential of the Composable Digital Experience Stack?

8 minute read
Nav Thethi avatar
Composable digital experience platforms aim to bridge the gap between digital technology experiences.

As competition between businesses rises, personalized digital experience is the answer to the rising expectations of the customers today. In order to optimize customer experience, companies aim to adopt a digital strategy that is customizable to specific demands and implemented across multiple touch points of the customer journey through a composable digital experience (DX). Composable digital experience platforms (DXPs) aim to bridge the gap between the digital technology experiences of different datasets in an organization like the customer, users and employees.

What Is Composable DX?

When it comes to enriching user experience, the one-size-fits-all approach can only deliver a fragmented and disconnected experience and fails to meet the specific needs of the customer. Digital experience needs to be composable in nature to adapt to changing business structures with ever-changing trends, customer behavior and technologies.

Composable DX is a new concept that provides integrated, consistent solutions that are modular and tailored to microservices and yet connect the gaps of digital experience. This is a unified and seamless approach that eliminates siloed user experiences and all-in-one solutions.

According to Gartner “A DXP is an integrated set of core technologies that support the composition, management, delivery and optimization of contextualized digital experiences.”

Hopes: Can Composable DX Meet Customer Expectations?

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the power of unprecedented times and a shift in customer sentiment. With more and more companies moving toward a hybrid working model, digital consumption is now a priority for customers. Whether it is for ordering groceries or shopping or online streaming, customers are seeking a “digital-first” experience rather than in-store experiences. Truly relevant content for the user and decisiveness comes along with expectations which are difficult for online companies to cater to at scale.

Customer experience and user engagement act as a catalyst for improving business performance and a differentiator between competitors. However, there is an inherent gap between the hypothesis and the reality of marketing strategies.

Existing DXPs are monolithic and unable to adapt quickly to changing business structures. Hence, it is not a sustainable way to deliver a high-impact digital experience. The flexibility of composable DXPs allows for businesses to take decisions and revise strategies depending on the market scenario. These applications are built-in small units that can be deployed independently and are function oriented. This allows businesses to respond quickly to changing customer behavior and meet business demands.

"By 2023, organizations that have adopted an intelligent composable approach will outpace the competition by 80% in the speed of new feature implementation," Gartner, Inc.

Related Article: Why Monolithic Digital Experience Platforms Still Trump Composable

Promises: What Composable DXP Companies Desire

Companies investing in headless content management systems (CMSes) and ecommerce technologies are still struggling to manage digital experiences. They rely heavily on their marketers to get daily tasks done.

The synergy in the MACH-based (Microservices, API-first, Cloud-native and Headless) architecture is crucial to deliver truly composable DXPs. However, headless tools lack visual elements on which marketers are dependent. Hence, developers are brought in to manage these systems and at the same time handle digital experience implementation and marketing campaigns.

Learning Opportunities

Again, creating digital experiences requires direct control over building, measuring and revising strategies by the business heads and user experience (UX) experts. Headless architecture does not provide them the trait to pivot swiftly. All these challenges are addressed by composable DXPs that are built for driving performance and scalability. These are frictionless, integrated platforms that allow companies the power of choice to adopt best-of-breed technologies, omnichannel orchestration and personalization.

"Gartner estimates that by 2023, 60% of mainstream organizations will list composable business as a strategic objective and will use an increasing number of packaged business capabilities (PBCs)."

Composable DXP Promises

Let’s look at the promises that Composable DXPs aim to deliver:

  • Tailored to specific requirements: All-in-one solutions to user experience have become a point of resistance for companies looking to scale and deliver seamless digital experiences. The composable DXPs approach helps include only the best-of-breed tools that the company wants to use and is easily customizable. You can easily add new tools that are best supported by your business strategy. This helps in modernizing your tech stack at your own pace and market requirements.
  • Flexibility to integrate: Composable DXPs allow you to integrate different and new tools into your existing marketing stack. These tools can be easily and independently deployed and are purpose-built. Since no single vendor can offer all features that are required to meet today’s business standards and customer expectations, flexibility is important to scale businesses.
  • Adaptability to customer behavior: In an evolving market, the only way to cater to changing customer behavior is by acting swiftly. Composable DXPs are quick to pivot as per market demands owing to their flexible architecture. It is agile and scalable and helps prioritize customer requirements. The journey of collecting data and responding to the shift in trends of customer behavior helps provide a seamless and personalized experience to the customers.
  • Omnichannel strategy: With new technologies emerging every day, the omnichannel approach helps provide an effortless and high-quality customer experience across multiple mediums. For example, customers shopping from an app or website, or physical store get to enjoy a seamless experience. Such integration and accessibility enhance the overall buying experience of the customer. “If your channels aren’t in sync — if the customer’s interactions with your contact center, your mobile app, and your website aren’t in sync — the customer won’t have patience for that. They’ll move on,” said R “Ray” Wang, founder, CEO, chairman, and principal analyst at Constellation Research.
  • Future-proof technology: Owning the flexible nature of composable DXPs, it is easier to pivot quickly and provide better preparedness for any eventuality. The traditional monolithic approach involves heavy commitments and larger investments, but in a composable model, you can pivot your strategy based on customer data and recoup the investment. This makes it a sustainable platform for future-ready businesses.

Related Article: What Is a Composable DXP?

Realities: Composable DXP Features

Recent examples of composable DXPs are Storyblok, Contentful, ContentStack and GraphCMS. These are used for delivering user-friendly and powerful content experiences on any digital platforms. Headless CMS is the foundation of composable DXPs, but each platform has its own unique features. At its core, composable DXPs have the following features:

  • Microservices based architecture: Composable DXPs leverage a microservices-based platform acting as the point of contact for marketers to use new technologies and create possibilities as per business requirements. Some existing monolithic CMSes are being promoted as composable. However, composable DXPs are a whole new system of headless architecture to design seamless and personalized experiences.
  • Experience over cost: Recent statistics show that 86% of customers are ready to pay more for a gratifying customer experience. Investing in CX has the potential to double business revenue in 36 months. Hence, businesses cannot shy away from investing in providing unified and seamless experiences across multiple digital devices and channels. Composability provides a huge advantage toward innovating a variety of experience implementations when blended with agility and incremental fashion, and companies can pay attention to features in isolations but still be plugged into a composable DXP.
  • Answer to risk management: Composable DXPs are developed as small units which are independently deployable. These can be mixed and matched meaningfully to respond quickly to changing market conditions.
  • Faster time-to-market: According to Gartner, customers who adopt a composable DXP approach deliver new features 80% faster than customers using suites. This is because there are no heavy commitments with vendors like in a monolithic architecture. Composable DXPs can integrate new features and tools with existing applications. Hence, they have faster time-to-market modern technologies.

Composable DXPs: The Future of CX

Gartner suggests the digital experience strategy to be focused on total experience (TX) that creates superior shared experiences by interlinking the four disciplines; that is, customer experience (CX), user experience (UX), employee experience (EX) and multiexperience (MX).

Synchronized customer communication, content management systems, data analytics, personalization, ecommerce capabilities and customer engagement tools are some of the ways that help achieve a composable digital experience for the user. These tools help in automating tasks performed by traditional salespeople.

The use of marketing automation and AI tools have been geared to reduce the involvement of humans in the sales process.Customer experiences are ultimately determined by how users feel when they observe and interact with the business or products. This leads to participation, engagement and finally customer satisfaction and loyalty.

The different parts of the process should not lack insight into each other's objectives thus providing a disjointed and siloed experience. Rather they must be able to deliver frictionless, personalized, flexible and cohesive digital experiences. Hence, Composable DXPs are the way to meet customer aspirations and expectations for a personalized experience.

About the author

Nav Thethi

Nav Thethi, Senior Manager, Web and Digital Experience at Hitachi Vantara, is an accomplished, customer obsessed, and marketing acumen for creating and designing unified digital experience for large enterprises to engage with technology and business leaders by providing them with information for the purpose to advance their adoption of specific products and solutions offerings.