Last week, 54 Vaimoers from across our global offices were in Amsterdam for the biggest event in the European commerce calendar: MagentoLive Europe 2019.
MagentoLive Europe recap
And what a few days it was! From inspiring keynotes to partner meet-ups and industry insights to new connections, MagentoLive Europe 2019 truly had it all. Plus, we had the perfect location. After all, as Brian Green noted in his opening presentation, Amsterdam was home to the first-ever multi-channel, multi-national company, the first Stock Exchange and is arguably the most orange city in Europe!
To cover every moment from the event would be too big a task for one blog post. So today, we’ll be reflecting on some of the key themes from MLEU19. And dotted throughout will be some quotes from the Vaimo team on their experience in Amsterdam.
Let’s get stuck in:
Customer Experience (and the impact of millennials)
Right from the off, a significant amount of discussion at MLEU revolved around the evolution of the customer conversation. Due to changing technologies and increased consumer demands, the pressure on business owners to know how to organise, plan and invest in technology has never been higher. And as Paul Robson (President, International Adobe) said, customers are rating your digital offering not against other similar companies to yours, but to the best they’ve ever experienced—no matter the product or service.
“I particularly enjoyed the breakout session about Mobile Conversion and the Mobile Optimisation Initiative. It gave me clear and practical takeaways that I can apply in my daily work when defining and designing mobile experiences.”
As was echoed in a number of other sessions at MLEU, the experience now needs to be flawless (to put it bluntly). Because a less than flawless experience will simply give customers a reason to walk away. And there’s also the increased influence of millennials. This demographic are digital natives. They’ve grown up with a mobile in their pocket and don’t know a world without social. Plus, they’re not just interested in your product, but also what your brand stands for and your values. They want a meaningful relationship with you, not just a transactional interaction.
The above changes are creating huge challenges for businesses of all sizes. It’s up to merchants to own the full customer journey from start to finish, which—though daunting—also creates a number of opportunities for them to do so. And now that Magento is truly integrated into the Adobe Experience Cloud portfolio, businesses are better positioned than ever to address the full customer conversation on the Magento platform.
“One of the most useful and practical discussions was with the Google team regarding website performance. With the results of this discussion, we’ll be looking at ways our team can improve our clients' website speed.”
If you were to ask anyone that attended keynotes by Dame Stephanie Shirley and Joost Rigter if they found them inspiring, then I guarantee it would be a big yes! In very different ways, both sessions demonstrated how adversity can be channelled as a positive for future growth and success—leaving attendees wide-mouthed (and in some cases teary-eyed) in the process.
“I also found the guest keynotes with Dame Stephanie Shirley and Joost Rigter very inspirational and valuable for my own personal growth.”
Dame Stephanie Shirley arrived in the UK from Germany in 1939 as a child refugee—where she stayed for the rest of her life. She grew up to become Founder Director of FI Group Plc, an innovative business venture and one of Britain’s leading Information Technology Groups (and the first female-led technology startup in the UK!). Dame Shirley is a born storyteller and so it was an inspiration to hear her document her life's challenges and successes.
Photo by Magento
And then it was the turn of Joost Rigter who at the age of 26 lost virtually all his sight due to a rare eye condition. Members of the audience all donned sleeping-style masks and were taken on a journey by Joost as he spoke openly about his blindness and then later opening a restaurant (his ultimate ambition). This talk truly brought into focus the power of a positive mindset, having courage to make changes and the importance of vulnerability in connecting with others.
A true inspiration and plenty of lessons to be taken away from both of these talks.
“A highlight for me was Joost Rigter who shared an inspirational story on how he made living with a disability a positive thing and how with the right mindset, you can do anything!”
B2B commerce has been growing rapidly over the last 3-5 years and it’s no wonder that it was a hot topic at MLEU19. Throughout the event, there were many examples of B2B businesses that have undergone digital transformations, which have ultimately led to greater long-term success.
“Presentations were the perfect combination of sharing challenges, insights into solutions, preview of actual shop features and lessons learned.”
But what was also apparent is that bringing a B2B company fully online can represent a huge hurdle for many. And this was backed up with statistics which indicated that the majority of B2B merchants still don't have an eCommerce site, but that 75% expect to launch one within the next two years. So this area is likely to undergo even more rapid change!
To see B2B transformation in practice, Vaimo client Lecot’s Raf Maesen (ICT Manager pictured above) presented on how the business has revolutionised its B2B offering and the role of Magento Commerce in making it happen. To learn more about Lecot’s journey with Vaimo, see the case study here!
A thriving Magento community
Overall, this event really demonstrated the strength and ambition of the Magento community. To see partners, merchants, developers and more all in one location to discuss ideas and advance knowledge was an extremely valuable experience and one we won’t forget for a long time.
“It was really nice to meet people from Magento (Adobe) and the community face to face, and to discuss common challenges and build bridges.”
“Loved the Commerce Sneaks with Vaimoer Guido Jansen—it was great to see and hear what the future will bring in commerce.”
It makes us proud to be helping our clients to drive success in digital commerce on a world-leading platform. A platform that won’t settle for less in delivering the ultimate end-to-end customer experience for modern-day audiences. Thank you, Magento, for having us and for putting on such a great and well-organised event!
Photo by Magento
Well, that’s all for MLEU19. If you didn't get the chance to talk to our team at MLEU19 then you can get in touch with us directly here! And you can now view all presentations simply by clicking on 'View Presentation' for your chosen session in the agenda here.
We look forward to seeing you at Imagine part of Adobe Summit 2020 and Adobe Summit EMEA!
“A fantastic event and the level of organisation was awesome.”