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Upgrading to IBM WebSphere Commerce V9 – The Focal Points of a Complete Strategy

Almost all businesses that leverage IBM WebSphere Commerce are familiar with the development and operations (aka, “DevOps”) of a fully integrated and tailored digital commerce solution, including development, deployment, and operations. Today, some processes may be viewed as inhibitors to progress and agility. Platform updates often require planned outages, small features, and new enhancements. Upgrades often must wait until after peak season is over, and large implementation cycles prevent deployments that can enable small, tactical opportunities. This approach to updates can result in missed business opportunities and outright loss of revenue.

But not anymore…

The time has come! You can now deliver for your business an eCommerce solution that is based on continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD). You can now begin to build out new processes and procedures within your organization thanks to these features of IBM WebSphere Commerce V9:

  • New Docker-based environment
  • Microservices architecture
  • Componentized server framework
  • Headless commerce deployments
  • Zero downtime
  • Rapid and frequent enhancements
  • Greater business agility

All of these will enable you to seize new opportunities.

What will it take to get there?

1. Business and technical knowledge

It takes an understanding of their current business and technical environments, along with deep knowledge of the newest best practices, to establish the right approach to adopting WebSphere Commerce V9.

2. Business strategy and readiness

Often overlooked, but essential to the successful adoption of the new paradigms offered by IBM Commerce, is the ability and readiness of your business to adopt it. You must assess your capacity across marketing, merchandising, digital content, branding, and other critical aspects of a digital business. You’ll need to assess your company’s maturity in customer experience (CX), branding, digital marketing, content creation, and ability to react to change. Only then can you assemble the right team composition and digital transformation effort to drive greater digital agility.

3. Existing platform footprint and compatibility

Technology leaders within a business are tasked with determining how best to embrace the newest iteration of digital commerce platform. Often these leaders are responsible for an existing and mature platform that has served the business for many years. Some of these systems will have evolved along with the needs of the business and the digital commerce landscape. A significant number of retrofit migrations, outdated paradigms, obsolete code, and archaic processes (aka, “technical debt”) have often made these systems a burden to the business and its budgets. Other system implementations that have seen little or no updates since their original implementation suffer similar (and even greater) challenges.
WebSphere Commerce V9 is an opportunity for you to assess your technical debt and build plans to eliminate such debt while embracing more modern and agile solutions. You’ll need to assess your current environments, and experts will need to assess an existing solution and then recommend which portions to retain and which portions are a technical debt to re-engineer. For companies running an earlier version of IBM Commerce, only after this type of assessment will you understand the costs (both immediate and long-term) associated with a “lift-and-shift” migration versus a more opportunistic migration that embraces changes that align with a greater strategy.
Learn more about upgrading to IBM WebSphere Commerce V9 in our guide, A Commerce Experience as Unique as Your Business – Upgrade to WebSphere Commerce V9.
Or, if you’re ready to make the move to V9, contact us for a personalized assessment.

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Mike Rabbior

With 10 years at Perficient, Mike possesses deep expertise in nearly every business vertical and technical domain.

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