Sitecore® Content Management System (CMS) is one of the leading enterprise-level content management systems built on ASP.NET. Sitecore® is the choice for leading companies around the world, powering more than 32,000 websites and brands such as Toshiba, Canon, easyJet, and Microsoft. The typical customer for the Sitecore® platform is a large company, public institution or organisation.
A Quick Recap of Sitecore® 9
Sitecore® utilises machine learning technology to intelligently predict and provide optimised insights on user behaviour. This key feature gives marketers recommendations on how to provide content experiences to ensure the best user journey possible.
Sitecore® 9 also includes xConnect™ which allows developers to integrate Sitecore® with many third-party technologies including CRM, POS, ERP, mobile applications, wearables and more – allowing for complete integration fluidity.
All these technical terms sound great – but there is a clear message here – Sitecore® makes everything easier for all parties.
So why upgrade to Sitecore® 9?
There are many reasons why your business should upgrade to the latest version; including taking advantage of innovations, enhancements, and faster time to market. Follow us as we take a deeper look into the business benefits of adopting Sitecore® 9 to run your business.
Efficient Collaboration = Faster Time to Market
Arguably, one of the best features of Sitecore® is the ability to build end-to-end, personalised content experiences that can be sent out at the right time, on the right platform, to the right person. It’s essentially an integrated system that makes everything straightforward for marketers, developers and users and can speed up the achievement of business and digital goals.
Sitecore® works by separating structure from design. This is what makes the platform so powerful as pages are built up from building blocks and each piece can be personalised and customised for the current customer.
The Sitecore® Experience Accelerator™
One of the new features of Sitecore® 9 is The Sitecore® Experience Accelerator™ (SXA). This feature makes web development and production easier and allows for collaboration between for developers, designers, content authors and marketers making it easier to redesign your entire website. It’s worth considering for brochureware and marketing based sites, especially if you have the latest version of Sitecore® – 9.3.
Essentially, SXA is a framework that allows the content team to work parallel to design, build and deploy multiple designs, pages and sites. So whether you’re an in-house team or agency side; all parties are able to work simultaneously within the platform. Whether that’s on content entry or styles and themes. This intelligent feature allows for a timely, cost-efficient way to set up a new Sitecore® website – saving time and money!
Marketing Enhancements That Allow For Smart Working
Sitecore® 9 has everything you need to work smart. This latest upgrade includes several tools that make this release the most powerful yet.
As part of the upgrade, Sitecore® 9 features a new sleek login screen with a Federated Authentication service and uses Single Sign-On (SSO) which takes the user to Horizon UI.
Horizon UI gives a profound editing experience for content authors; providing visibility for different device layouts to preview content in various view-ports. Additionally, marketers can see projected improvements on conversions, giving actionable insights so they can adjust user journeys accordingly, maximising engagement and conversion rate. This interface allows marketers to have a holistic view of insights across the entire website so they can easily identify pages that need improvement and act quickly.
Another tool integrated into Sitecore® 9 is the extended marketing toolbox that makes creating campaigns a breeze for marketers. It allows for easy personalisation as well as the ability to assign goals to click actions – so impactful content can get out, fast. The calendar view also gives an overview of campaigns that are ‘live’ and ‘due to end’ so activity can be easily tracked.
Sitecore® is known for its headless approach using powerful innovation and version 9 only enhances this aspect.
We’ve covered the main business benefits that are evident when you use the latest version, but what else can you expect?
- Complete integration of email marketing, forms, and CRM that delivers a fully automated marketing programme
- Improved analytics and real-time data that give marketers greater insights in order to react accordingly to stay ahead of competitors
- Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) compliance; giving visitors unhindered access to your website from various devices
- Greater potential for scalability that could reduce long-term costs and future-proof your solution in the long run.
Want to know how you can get the most out of Sitecore®? Read up on our 5 top tips on getting the most out of your investment.
What happens when you don’t upgrade to Sitecore 9?
Probably the biggest issue you may face if you are using an older version of Sitecore® and fail to upgrade is that newer versions provide updates that can contain crucial security fixes. Running your website on an older version could leave your site vulnerable to security risks, something you want to avoid if your site if publicly facing. It’s worth reiterating that Sitecore® support is fixed to 3 and 6-year rate. So if you use the same version for too long, you risk missing out on updates and overall support. Not to mention, technology is constantly evolving, and these newest updates contain the newest features that make Sitecore® the powerful digital experience system is it meant to be. Falling behind on these updates means you won’t be able to take advantage of that, instead of gaining a competitive advantage.
How can we help?
If you’re ready to take the leap to Sitecore® 9 or just want some general advice, we’d be happy to talk you through how Sitecore® could benefit your business and help you reach your business goals faster. Get in touch with us and feel free to take a look at our Sitecore® projects to see how we’ve helped global businesses exceed their potential.