Following up on our last article on the MACH architecture, we thought it would be interesting to take stock of what is essential for any type of business: the customer experience portal, namely the CMS (Content Management System).
When we start from the business requirements, the customer experience is enriched by an aggregation of content coming more and more from multiple sources: DAM, PIM, CRM, Marketing content, public storage, XML data, networks social... This is where the CMS Enterprise brings all its flexibility building the brand portal to gather and distribute content in a personalized portal. Among the challenges, one is to track the customer journey along side the data stream, segmentation and personalisation in order to deliver the right content for the right channel.
WCM vs CMS
We often talk about WCM vs CMS, the latter offers a more Enterprise view to manage any type of digital content where WCM deals with web content. With the CMS we will talk about user organization, workflows, version management, editing... Even if statistics show us that nearly 90% of websites use Wordpress, the solution remains confined to news sites , or basic web sites when Drupal is more focus to environments where security is important (Bank, Government Organizations...). When Wordpress is constantly updated (security, compatibility of plugins, etc.), major changes to Drupal are only made every 4/5 years.
When we look at the customers use cases, we must have a platform capable of aggregating rich content, able to connect to a DAM system, providing business workflows to approve content, and get information from CRM (Sales Force, SAP..) and or a CDP (sales Force, Adobe...) in order to manage the automation and personalisation of the "customer journey".
In view of this architectural complexity and the data stream, the answer now lies in a headless approach to the CMS. Nevertheless, even headless CMS solutions often offer ready-to-use fronts or delegate this via a Drupal, Wordpress connection. In most cases, this front will need to be developed.
The headless CMS (literally, headless content management system) will separate content management from its display and, via APIs (Json / GraphQL), increase the ability to syndicate content. This is possible thanks to a separation between the content processing interfaces and those used by the end user when consulting the resources. The headless CMS makes it possible to no longer worry about the problem related to the display and use of content by users. APIs allow content to be continuously adapted with different end platforms.
Nevertheless, it also often involves special developments that should not be overlooked vs. CMS capabilities increasingly connected via API to various enterprise systems.
New solutions are emerging like ApostropheCMS, offering an extremely flexible framework based on open source technologies (Node.js, Express, MongoDB, Vue.js, npm). The license cost is very advantageous but you will require developments...
Another important point in the implementation of CMS : the optimization of content via dedicated image and video services for fluid, secure experiences and an effective SEO strategy
0.1s less load time = 8% more conversions. (Scaleflex)
Services like Scaleflex(DAM Headless & Cloudimage) , Cloudinary, Twicpics automate the transformation and optimization of videos and images on the fly to accelerate their distribution through the content delivery network (CDN).
SEO (Search engine optimization) is fundamental in setting up a CMS and comes with a set of rules to follow:
- Customization of canonical urls
- Style management (H1 / H2...)
- Metadata management
- Image optimization
DAM solution editors have also developed connectors to CMS or made content pickers available to link media content via urls.
In more complex customer cases, whth management of the entire value chain from the creation of the asset to its distribution and offering a personalized experience connected to all marketing automation (CRM / CDP / PCD), solutions such as Adobe Experience Manager and Adobe sites or Sitecore Content Hub provide a modular "ALL IN ONE" for an investment. These solutions are often used by retailers, brand luxury and hospitality. They allow a 360 view of your content environment:
- Management of web content (components, templates), to publish experiences on web pages.
- Cross-channel content to quickly reuse and adapt content according to your customers' preferences and their journeys.
- A personalised experience that feeds on live customer data.
- AI and machine learning to deliver predictive experiences.
- Leverage microservices and APIs to create high-performance app experiences for web, mobile channels.
You will find in the latest report of Digital Trends 2022 by Adobe:
“As today's work is driven by a digital-first mindset, there's an added urgency for a compelling experience at each step in a customer's journey ”
Susie Emmerling - Vice President of Marketing Operations, ServiceNow
Another major point in the implementation of a CMS, the analytics around the customer journey. Services like Contentsquare allow you to visualize customer journeys in detail and boost acquisitions. Thanks to the Customer Journey Analysis functionality, you can discover which pages visitors browse on the site, from the beginning to the end of their visit. You can thus associate customer journeys with certain behavioral segments and acquisition channels, to visualize the differences in behavior between new visitors and those who have already visited the site (Heatmap).
Google GA360 / GA4.
Analytics makes it easy to measure users' engagement of sites and apps with content, and therefore identify what's working and what's not. GA360 makes it possible to understand how visitors interact with sites and applications, and the role played by different channels, thanks to powerful reports and dashboards.
GA4 is a much more powerful analytics tool than previous versions of Google Analytics. Indeed, the "Analysis Hub" reports that were previously reserved for GA360 users are now available for free.
Year after year, the scope of solutions has been enriched by many publishers. Forester, in its latest report, offers this vision:
Here is our selection with regard to our committed projects:
Of course what is the future ? Web 3.0 itself is making its mark on aggregating all these technologies and making them available at your fingertips on your smartphone, as shown in this excellent report by Goldman Sachs "Framing the Future of Web 3.0"
Do not hesitate to contact us to start your CMS project at the heart of the customer experience.