Aspire Systems is a global technology services firm serving as a trusted technology partner for customers. It works with some of the world’s most innovative enterprises and independent software vendors, helping them leverage technology and outsourcing in the specific areas of expertise.
Aspire recently became a consulting partner with Salesforce Commerce Cloud (SFCC), an e-commerce solution. SFCC provides tools, framework and infrastructure that you can leverage, to build an e-commerce website from the ground up.
Here, Finny Chellakumar, Head of Digital Commerce, Aspire Systems, tells us more. Excerpts from an interview:
DQ: What is the value that Aspire sees in becoming a consulting partner with SFCC?
Finny Chellakumar: While we started foraying into the e-commerce space, we were able to serve a lot of fashion retailers, who were already on the Salesforce Commerce Cloud. Our Quality Framework and Design Your Own Digital Commerce offerings helped us make inroads into some of the top retailers in the US. However, being just the technical partner was not enough for us to take these services to the next level, especially when we wanted to take implementation as one of the offerings.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud as a product is highly suitable for fashion retailers. We believe that this partnership will help us serve retailers by providing them with the right choice of solutions, while they evaluate technology for their e-commerce business. This will also help us in providing deep consulting by bringing the right set of tools and the methodologies while we implement SFCC for a customer.
DQ: Explain how you will go about helping retailers create seamless, personalized, and intelligent digital customer experiences with a mobile-first solution? Have you done any so far? (Also, in India).
Finny Chellakumar: In this digital world, the customer journey can begin from any channel. It could start from the social media advertisement and end up in buying the product on the e-commerce site. It is important that customers have a seamless journey between the channels, while they traverse across the brand. We understand this new emerging trend and also understand the complexity that comes along with this process.
While we consult with the retailers on building a seamless experience, we take into consideration these complex buyers’ journeys. We also make use of available data to personalize the journey, and provide seamless navigation for the customers, which will result in higher conversion and improved customer lifetime value.
The mobile-first solution is reversing the approach, which was followed a few years back where the design and the user journey was designed for a desktop, and then rendered on mobile. However, this trend is changing fast where the user journey and designs are made for mobile and rendered on desktop. Most customer-facing apps are designed this way now. In this context, the SFRA framework, in which the latest version of Salesforce Commerce Cloud is built, will help us in implementing the mobile-first strategy. The Einstein feature, which comes bundled with SFCC, will help in configuring and providing a highly personalized customer experience for the customers.
DQ: How are you enabling them to do unified digital commerce experience from discovery-to-delivery? Are there any examples?
Finny Chellakumar: We are a full-service partner. We engage with customers through our digital discovery program, go on to defining the digital roadmap, and then implement the channels, which are identified on the roadmap.
While we do the discovery, we also identify the various experiences the brand can provide to the customer, which could include – shopping experience in e-commerce platforms, mobile platforms, variables, or even voice-assisted channels like Alexa or Google Home. While we look at building experiences across these channels, we also design experiences to stitch journeys that begin beyond the boundaries of the brand – like a journey starting from an Instagram advertisement or a Facebook post.
We also recognize the importance of technology in providing a great experience to the customer. We understand that business success is defined by a combination of great customer experience on the platform, content strategy, marketing strategy, and efficient market operations.
DQ: How will automated monitoring help?
Finny Chellakumar: Automating monitoring is the key to making support and monitoring successful. Automating monitoring through robotic process automation (RPA) and other monitoring tools go a long way in preventing any process failures or downtime in the site. This is more important when it comes to customer-facing sites like e-commerce where any downtime or bugs could have a negative impact on the brand reputation and also the customer experience.
Automation of monitoring will help in identifying any issues before they occur, and we could quickly react with remedial measures to prevent it or fix it before it can spiral into something big.
Automation will also help in the reduction of support costs. For example, a bot can be trained to monitor multiple systems and identify possible issues, which could either be from a performance standpoint or a bug in the feature or even issues in the nightly job, which runs, or it could be an issue with the content that is being uploaded. This will go a long way in improving the customer experience on the site.
DQ: Elaborate on your current partnership with Salesforce and future roadmap.
Finny Chellakumar: Our current partnership with Salesforce opens doors for not only becoming a strong implementation partner for Salesforce Commerce Cloud, but also making a foray into becoming a consulting and implementation service provider for other Salesforce products like marketing cloud, sales cloud and service cloud. It will help us in widening our offerings from one product at this point of a time to multiple other product Salesforce offers.