Are you planning to build a new website or redesign your current one? Maybe your marketing technology stack deserves a revision, or you decided to polish your customer experience. We know that choosing a new digital experience platform (DXP) can’t be done overnight. From your budget to future needs, many things have to be considered.
We gathered five crucial things you should think of when selecting a DXP to help you find the one with the highest value for your company.
1. Watch out for hidden costs
When you’re choosing a DXP, you naturally think about your budget. But be careful. The initial price tag of the solution is not the only thing you should be weighing up. You need to look at the overall price from a return on investment (ROI) point of view, and there are more factors influencing it than the initial cost.
Before committing to a purchase, check that you’re paying for what you will really use. Can you leverage the tools offered for analytics, email marketing, or commerce to justify their price? Do you need them now, or do you think you might need them in the future?
Also, consider the cost of maintenance and upgrades, training, technical support, and other services. As Jake Kula, the DXP Lead at Australian digital agency Revium, says in his article, the range of DXP features is only one aspect affecting the ROI. Another one is the long-term cost of adapting your platform to your evolving business needs.
2. Be agile
The value your DXP brings depends on time to market and its ability to adapt to your needs. Businesses must be agile and react immediately to changing market demands. Be smart and get your project up and running as quickly as possible. Then, build on it as your needs evolve.
According to Dominik Pinter, the Managing Director of Kentico Xperience, “the biggest trap is trying to design an ultimate solution, spending millions and years on the implementation and then missing the mark as the needs have changed in the meantime.”
Imagine starting a project in 2019 and delivering it only now. How different are your needs compared to three years ago? Successful companies are the ones that can adapt quickly. Pick a scalable DXP with fast time to market, launch it in a couple of weeks, and build on top of its foundation.
3. Empower your digital marketers
Having to ask developers for help whenever they want to change something is extremely frustrating and stifles marketers’ creativity. Lengthy onboarding may discourage them from exploring and experimenting with new functionalities.
Find a DXP with a low-code/no-code approach, so marketers can independently set up campaigns, create landing pages, or automation flow (such as sending automatic emails when visitors click a CTA). As martech.org says, these platforms offer a sufficiently user-friendly environment to allow non-technical people to create digital experiences without the need for coding.
Look for a unified user interface across all the DXP’s capabilities to ensure a smooth learning curve and easy onboarding. In short, find a DXP that keeps its everyday users satisfied and productive.
4. Buy the functionalities that you need now
Consider what you need now and what’s your vision for the nearest future. Buying oversized software doesn’t make it future proof.
In the case of a composable DXP with headless CMS in its center, you get best-of-breed tools for all your digital needs. But this solution is suitable only for large enterprises that can’t go for anything smaller. Otherwise, the complexity of the solution requires much more time and resources for development and maintenance than necessary. “With the composable approach, you can pick and choose all the best-of-breed tools in the market. However, the problem is the money, the complexity and the overall effort,” says Dominik Pinter.
If you choose an integrated DXP, all tools are sold by one vendor but are often initially developed by different companies. According to CMS Wire, integrated DXPs are sophisticated platforms that can enrich marketing campaigns, but they aren’t for everyone, as they can be too expensive and not agile enough. Their complexity means that implementing and maintaining them may entail excessive costs and slow you down.
On the contrary, a unified DXP, such as Kentico Xperience, has a set of content management, digital marketing and commerce tools out-of-the-box, so you can start using them immediately. If you decide now or later to replace any of them, you can easily plug-in software of your choice through an API layer.
According to Lightburn, an American digital agency that implements Kentico Xperience and other DXPs, “it is an enterprise-grade solution with regular feature development, hotfixes, and quarterly releases which help mitigate against the fear of ‘outgrowing’ a platform provider.”
5. Anticipate your future needs correctly
A DXP is a significant investment and, naturally, you want to ensure it will serve you well for a long time. But how could you possibly know what you’ll need in a few years? Well, you can get a good idea if you evaluate your company’s digital experience maturity. If you learn where you are now on the journey to digital sophistication, you can anticipate your needs when your company grows. As you become more and more digitally mature, your DXP needs will gradually evolve.
To assess your company's digital maturity, you can use a Digital Experience Maturity Model. This model helps companies understand their current level of digital maturity, guides them on their next steps, and advises them on how to move forward towards successful growth. “Multiple customers used it and planned their internal roadmaps based on the model,” says Dominik Pinter.
Want more tips on how to find the best DXP for your company? Are you a digital hamlet or a metropolis? Download the Digital Experience Maturity Model ebook to find out.
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