What is most valuable?
The promotion engine is definitively one of the highlights. It facilitates precision marketing and dynamic segmentation (based on the shopper’s insights and behavior). Business user can set up promotion and segmentation rules simply by dragging and dropping the component icons.
All the B2C and B2B components are comprised in a single starter store template, which is great for customers with B2B2C aspirations. The template was recently enhanced with new functions that facilitate development as well as integrations with third party systems.
How has it helped my organization?
I can give you an example of ExtraLux, a Slovenian office supplier. They carved out an interesting business model. The core of this model was the decentralized stock - they moved the stock to the customers’ locations so they can never run out of supplies. The results was so impressive that the management decided to move the majority of sales operations online.
What needs improvement?
The Product information Management is very basic, and the template for front-end coding could be improved.
For how long have I used the solution?
I've used it for five years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
How are customer service and technical support?
First level technical support is conducted via IBM partners (Creatim being one of them). The IBM partners are backed up with an excellent second and third level support provided by IBM technical service.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We use various solutions, including Presta shop, and Symfony2. We leverage IBM Websphere for the most complex and demanding solutions.
How was the initial setup?
Although quite complex, deployment is a very predictable process, if you follow the rules. The only issues you can expect are form the custom developed components.
What about the implementation team?
I don’t think it is reasonable to preform the implementation without an experienced Websphere development team.
What was our ROI?
It can vary, but normally ROI is seen between two to four years depending on the specifics of every business case.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
IBM is very flexible in this area. Various products can be covered by a single license, there are plenty hosting possibilities. From IBM Cloud Managed Service (managed entirely by IBM) and IBM Softlayer hosting, to partner hosting solutions.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
We chose Websphere in response to the market demands. We are a hybris partner as well but we haven’t implemented any hybris solutions so far.
What other advice do I have?
Prepare ahead. Extensive planning is needed, and try to leverage the out of the box components (there are many) to avoid unnecessary custom development costs. Find a reliable Websphere partner who can help you accomplish the recommendations mentioned above.
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Creatim is an IBM partner for e-commerce.
Oct 06 2015