eCommerce Shopping Trends

With the future of retail going through the biggest shift it's faced in years, it's only right that you're as prepared as possible to continue to be a success.

Whether you've got a successful eCommerce business or you're in the process of building one, understanding consumers shopping habits and the trends that affect them is vital. These insights validate what you're doing or offer up suggestions you might want to implement to stay ahead of the curve.

The team at Magento did some research and put together this handy infographic which offer the results from an 8 country consumer preferences survey spanning Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

It's packed with incredibly useful information that you can use as part of your business strategy that you're no doubt in the process of realigning for the remainder of 2020.

And, we're here to help you make the most of them. Both our Experience team and Magento team can help you out. The Experience team can start with a quick audit which within 2 weeks will have delivered a report outlining your users’ frustrations, your website performance and have the first solution live, and our Magento team can talk to you about accelerating your business growth. We’ve tailored a solution for everyone, no matter where the start point in the market is. Take a look at what we have on offer and reach out so we can help you launch your new digital shop front.


Want a version in pdf? Consumer_Research_EMEA_Overall_Infographic_V1


The ROI of UX & why not investing in it is a huge problem for you.

Good user experience (UX) is the difference between being part of the best and worst online. That’s why Facebook, Apple, Google and other world-class companies invest heavily in UX. They know UX is the secret weapon for growth. While they are exceptional examples, the vast majority of companies today do not invest enough in UX. As a result, CareerFoundry found a trillion dollar UX problem in the making- and this is looking at e-commerce alone. Their discovery called for a thorough investigation of the true impact of user experience design on the world. They interviewed more than 60 of the world’s leading UX experts to get their insights into the return on investment (ROI) of UX design.

Our report compiles highlights from these insights that make the case for investing in UX design. We’ve taken all our experience in the world of UX and done some reading of the Comprehensive Guide to the ROI of UX, by the team at CAREERFOUNDRY, to bring to you a high level overview of why you need to be paying it a more attention and how we’ll be able to help you achieve that.

Click on the image below to take a look at the report.


Is Magento a good choice to launch your first online store?

Consumers shopping habits have been changing for years, moving toward shopping online and our recent period of lockdown has driven this trend at record speeds and rates of adoption.

The need to have an online presence that offers a truly exceptional experience to both your existing and new customers is no longer an optional extra for a business, it is a must.

Picking the right digital commerce platform to do this can dramatically transform how you do business both online and offline. A fast, flexible, cloud-based solution delivers memorable customer experiences, streamlines your operational efficiency, and creates phenomenal growth opportunities.

One such platform that does this is Magento Commerce Cloud, and that’s the platform we’ll be exploring in a little more depth to see if it’ll truly work for any business wanting to create their first online store.

The things you want to consider with any commerce platform are:

• What kind of experience are you able to offer to your customers?
• How capable is the platform for the future growth of your business?
• How easy is the platform to manage?
• How reliable is it? and
• How easy is it to get help when you need it?

Let’s see how Magento Commerce Cloud stacks up against those questions.

 

What kind of experience are you able to offer to your customers?

When customers venture online to do a little shopping, they aren’t just looking to buy products, they want to experience engaging, immersive shopping environments. To help satisfy the consumer demands of today, whichever platform you choose, it must be flexible enough to continually offer amazing brand interactions.

How does Magento Commerce Cloud do this? Here’s how:

• Magento Commerce Cloud is equipped with a drag-and-drop Page Builder and a Content Staging and Preview function that allows you to create unique experiences for your products and customers. So, once you’ve had your new site built and released to the world, by your solutions partner, you’ll be able to continue to keep it fresh and offer something new and immersive.

• Magento Commerce Cloud allows you to sell complex, configurable products whilst enabling shopping experiences like buying online and pick up in-store, pre-ordering, as well as ship from a store; offering a truly omnichannel experience and allowing more opportunities for immersive brand experiences.

• Magento Commerce Cloud integrates with 3rd party digital tools like marketing automation systems, so you can drive loyalty through VIP offers and catch unsure customers with cart abandonment emails, Augmented and Virtual reality tools, like Ares by Eclipse, to offer the very latest in experiential shopping allowing your customers to visualise your products in their homes before they buy as well as with CRMs and ERPs.

• Magento Commerce Cloud is mobile commerce native so you can offer a consistent experience to your customers all the time. Customers now expect to be able to shop wherever and whenever they decide is right for them and having the ability to control that experience for your brand is vital. Magento Commerce Cloud gives you that control.

 

How capable is the platform for the future growth of your business?

You don’t want to get stuck with a rigid commerce platform that will dictate your version of a winning eCommerce experience. You want to make sure you choose a scalable solution with out-of-the-box features and functionality which will always deliver for the needs of your growing business from day one.

How does Magento Commerce Cloud do this? Here’s how:

• Magento Commerce Cloud is a platform that is designed for endless customisation and optimisation without forcing limitations on the features and functionality you can add to your growing site in the future.

• As mentioned before, Magento Commerce Cloud integrates with 3rd party digital tools like marketing automation systems, Augmented and Virtual reality tools, like Ares by Eclipse, as well as with CRMs and ERPs. This allows you to truly scale up what you can offer and how your business functions for the future.

• Magento Commerce Cloud is designed to enable rapid expansion for your business – whether you’re focused on B2B, B2C, or both. Create dedicated stores for your brands which can be managed centrally without thinking about having to re-platform or creating additional niche offerings, sites or landing pages on other commerce platforms.

• Magento Commerce Cloud will easily enable you to plan and execute cross-border expansion with full out-of-the-box localisation offering multi-language, multi-site and multi-brand support, as well as integrating with popular payment processors offering options like Apple Pay and Google Pay and shipping providers, all conveniently managed in a single location.

 

How easy is the platform to manage?

Making sure that you create and offer an unforgettable eCommerce experience is only one side of the coin but enhancing and maintaining it is another. All commerce platforms should have a strong, feature-rich backbone capable of effortlessly managing your daily operations while dynamically supporting your brand expansion goals.

How does Magento Commerce Cloud do this? Here’s how:

• Magento Commerce Cloud can help you manage and maintain multiple stores from one single admin panel, saving you a bunch of time and effort when managing your online sales. It also has multi-language and currency support, as well as international capabilities, shipping and order management.

• Magento Commerce Cloud has the total flexibility that enables you as the merchant to roll out your commerce experiences in phases and continually evolve your brand experiences over time.

• Magento Commerce Cloud is designed to easily integrate with tools such as Google Analytics, Google Base and Google Checkout, all of which helps you track all of your customers online and market to them effectively.

• Magento Commerce Cloud is supported by a well-stocked Marketplace, offering a wide range of high-quality extensions and optimisations tailored to whatever specific business goals you may have, from payment and fulfilment to customer support and marketing.

 

How reliable is it?

When heading into an all-new business territory, you’ll need a scalable eCommerce solution which offers reliability and resilience at both the local and global level. The last thing you want to do is end up tying your hands behind your back without even realising it.

How does Magento Commerce Cloud do this? Here’s how:

• Magento Commerce powers more than 315,000 sites globally with examples across a variety of industries including healthcare, beauty, home, fashion and apparel, electronics, sports, media, and more. With that many businesses putting their faith in the platform, reliability and resilience are evident.

• The platform powers 70 of the top 500 companies on the Internet Retailer Top B2C eCommerce 500 list and 40 of the top 300 B2B customers on the Internet Retailer B2B eCommerce 300 list.

• Magento Commerce Cloud provides exceptional performance monitoring tools, letting you as the merchant retain total control over your eCommerce environment with options to optimise and tailor your site to whatever specific business goals or deliver differentiated shopping experiences and be assured that your site will always be up and running at its best.

 

How easy is it to get help when you need it?

Implementing, maintaining, and expanding a successful eCommerce business is something few can accomplish on their own. For those times when you require support, it’s important to have the right talent readily available to offer assistance.

How does Magento Commerce Cloud do this? Here’s how:

• Magento Commerce Cloud is supported by the people resources of more than 260,000 developers across the globe who are continually generating innovations and functionality and are available to help merchants create compelling, differentiated digital commerce experiences

• Magento Commerce Cloud has a global community of Solution Partners, Technology Partners, and Community Insiders, just like us, that are available to address a wide variety of use cases and offer expertise in a range of services from site design, implementation, support, and merchandising to leveraging today’s most innovative business technologies.

 

The long & short of it...

If we look back over what we’ve learnt it’s pretty easy to see that Magento is packed with benefits and features that are ideal for a business looking to start online. It’s the ability to scale with the growth of your business, give you everything you need to create an exceptional customer experience and assure that you’ll always have a reliable offering that makes Magento Commerce Cloud a great choice.

The next step is finding someone to help you build it. That’s where Eclipse comes in. We’ve got a team of dedicated developers who will work in collaboration with you to develop, create and deploy an exceptional Magento Commerce Cloud site.

We’ve tailored a solution for everyone, no matter where the start point in the market is. Take a look at what we have on offer and reach out so we can help you launch your new digital shop front.


Covid-19 has driven the world digital and not everyone was ready for it, but they could have been.

As the world started to shift into a lockdown state following the continued spread of Covid-19, the needs of every consumer on the planet changed. No longer was it possible to just head to the nearest store to grab what you needed.

The sudden demand for everyday basics exploded into the ecommerce space, mixing in with the already usual traffic. There has been a steady growth of demand through online across almost all categories but the lockdown and the spike that followed took everybody by surprise, even those who thought they were ready.

We saw major retailers, who had been offering an online service, watch as their websites fell over through huge numbers of people attempting to visit at the same time. Their solution was to introduce queuing systems that left some people waiting over 6 hours just to get onto the site or to simply stop allowing new customers from registering.

Some of this will have been to do with their ability to fulfil the orders but most of it was to do with their sites inability to scale to demand.

Think of it like this, the entrance to a website is no different to the entrance to a regular store and it’s ability to deal with customers is limited by its capacity, no different to the four walls of regular bricks and mortar. However, unlike traditional retail, digital allows you to move those four walls out and make the entrance bigger, assuming that you’ve got the capability to do so on the backend. However, just like a regular store there can be a requirements to 'shut-up shop' whilst this is taking place.

What a lot of those retailers had not done was plan for the future. Scaling on a regular growth schedule is fine when the demand can be plotted against history but when something like lockdown comes out of the blue, their systems and process come under huge strain. They don’t have a magic button that just increases their scale to fit the demand. But here’s the thing - they absolutely should have, and it’s not magic they needed, it was a scalable cloud solution.

Here is where the Eclipse Cloud comes in

Our strong heritage in hosting led to us develop our own bespoke cloud platform. Created solely with our clients’ needs in mind, the Eclipse Cloud gives its users all the scalable and elastic benefits of cloud hosting. Our tech experts will tell you that our cloud is built on AWS, with Kubernetes and Docker to leverage all the benefits that containerisation offers users. Put simply, Eclipse Cloud offers a viable cloud alternative.

So now go back to the idea of the store but this time all the walls are glass and the entrance is an entire sliding wall. As the entrance gets bigger, the walls shift out all whilst the people in the store have no idea it is happening. They’re just enjoying an entirely seamless experience.

As our MD Steve Liddle puts it “Our clients and partners have seen an extraordinary channel shift to online in recent weeks. Eclipse has been there every step of the way to ensure scaling was easy and clients were supported with value added in all aspects of the challenges they were facing.”

Eclipse Cloud works where integrations, enterprise and supply chain can allow online scale to succeed but we have provided value there through our consulting in supporting clients with integration improvements, stock awareness, order handling techniques post purchase and other efficiencies in last mile.

“In some cases, up to 20 times growth in online with no service disruption and many clients benefiting from the auto scaling and automation in the eclipse cloud” he added.

This all meant that the businesses using the Eclipse Cloud saw no degradation of service, their customers experienced no drop-in service levels and they continued to trade as normal.

The key takeaway here is to always be prepared, even for situations that can’t be predicated and have a partner that is able to fully support your business.

If you’re a business that needs that kind of support, you should get in touch and we may be in a position to help you. There isn’t going to be a downshift in demand anytime soon and who knows what the ‘new normal’ is going to look like on the other side of lockdown and Covid-19.

And if you’re a provider that needs a little help to support your own clients, come talk to us too. We’re pretty sure there is something we can do together.

 

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COVID-19 : How Eclipse is staying prepared.

 Latest Updates:

March 17th 2020

  • As of 17th March, our Hurley office has closed until further notice and all employees have been moved to ‘Work from Home’ Status. This is an extension of our previous action and was prepared for. This decision, as with all others, will continue to be reviewed daily and updates published as they occur.
  • We don’t foresee this decision altering our level of support for any of our clients.

March 16th 2020

  • As of 16th March, our offices in Poland, London & Manchester have closed until further notice and all employees have been moved to ‘Work from Home’ status. This was expected and prepared for as highlighted in our previous plans. This decision will continue to be reviewed daily and updates published as they occur.
  • Our Offices in Hurley & Ashford are unaffected currently and will continue to operate as usual.
  • All previous protocols remain in full effect (see below for full details)
  • We don’t foresee any of these decisions altering our level of support for any of our clients.

The world is grappling with an issue of enormous scale and human impact. Our thoughts go out to all who have been affected by the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19).

At Eclipse we believe it is our role and responsibility during this time to prioritise two things: the health and well-being of all of those that work for and with us by playing a constructive role in supporting local health officials and government leaders as they work to contain the virus as well as taking all steps possible to ensure that this outbreak has a minimal effect on our business continuity and that of our clients.

That being said, we’ll continue to make decisions with vigilance and courage informed by the latest science-based information, updates from the World Health Organisation, Centres for Disease Control, the UK & Polish Government and the UK Department of Health & Social Care whilst being guided by our Values.

At Eclipse we take business contingency planning very seriously, and our business is fully equipped for this challenge. Following our latest assessments, we are confident that none of our employees have been infected or are currently at high risk of infection through travel to COVID-19 infected areas.

As of today, we’re pleased to also reassure you that there is no change to our service or delivery to customers and we continue to provide you with full support.

What have we put into effect:

This month, a Coronavirus Management Team has been put into place with high level senior management representation from all of our offices, including those in international locations. Their mission is to gather information, update the business and make decisions that will safeguard our people and our clients whilst ensuring we’re able to continue to support all businesses we work alongside.

As well as establishing a set of Coronavirus protocols for the business, the following actions have been taken:

  • Our offices have been stocked with supplies of hand sanitisers, tissues and additional cleaning supplies to ensure we maintain as clean and safe working locations as possible,
  • All business travel has been restricted with immediate effect covering:
  • Travel between Eclipse Offices (locally and internationally)
  • Travel to and from any training or conferences
  • Travel to and from client office locations
  • Travel of clients and visitors to our office locations have also been restricted and should it take place, travel and visitor logs have been elaborated upon to gather more information to ensure that we have a tracible line should an infection occur.
  • Personal travel by employees is being logged and advice & guidance given as well as risks assessed. Where possible, all employees are discouraged from travelling to or near any of high-risk location. If any employee is to travel to or through a high-risk location, a mandatory isolation period is enacted, following guidelines set out by the Government and the WHO.
  • We’ve prepared a full ‘work from home’ strategy should it become a mandated requirement in any or all of our locations. We pride ourselves in being experts in flexible and remote working practises and as such can ensure that we will do everything we can to continue to offer our usual high standard of business support.
  • All employees have been reminded of our Business Contingency Plan & Laptop Usage Policy covering our remote working practises and security protocols.

As this is an evolving situation, we will remain vigilant taking action where required to continue to reduce risk of exposure and spread. As and when new steps are taken, we will continue to communicate to clients, employees and visitors of Eclipse. We want to thank everyone for their patience and understanding as we do all we can to minimise effect and reduce the spread of the outbreak.


Eclipse becomes an Official Magento Solutions Partner and takes a trip to MLEU19.

It brings us great pleasure to be able to announce that Eclipse is now an official Magento Solutions Partner. This accolade recognises the great work we have already done with Magento and cements our commitment to being a market-leading omnichannel commerce solutions provider.

To celebrate, we attended the MLEU19 Magento Live event in Amsterdam. It was an opportunity for the team to get fully immersed in the world of Magento and meet like-minded individuals and share ideas.

This partnership provides Eclipse with the ability to offer our clients a full suite of Magento strategy, design, development, implementation and managed services.

Why Magento?

As one of the most popular commerce platforms in the world, Magento powers more than 250,000 brands around the globe and was recognised as the #1 digital eCommerce platform for the last four years on the Internet Retailer Top 1000 list.

Perm Ghattaura, Eclipses’ Sales and Marketing Director, said of the new partnership “Eclipse is excited to become an official partner of Magento. The business views this strategic partnership as an exciting opportunity for our clients and Eclipse itself. We’ll be able to continue to help online retailers get, keep and continually excite their omnichannel customers with even more choice than before.”

The Future is bright for Eclipse

Eclipse is already an established SAP PartnerEdge – Sell Partner and has been delivering a full range of SAP solutions and services for over 10 years. This new partnership takes all the experience gained from delivering large scale projects to ongoing commerce operations, hosting, optimisation and consultancy and puts it into the practice of Magento.

“Eclipse has a tried and tested methodology that is perfectly delivered by a team of true experts” Perm added, “and this sets us apart in the world of commerce. We pride ourselves in taking the time to appreciate the challenges a business might face, and we continually tackle the issues that keep them awake at night. To us, a commerce project is only the beginning of a relationship.”

If you’re currently re-platforming, updating or simply need to inject some zing into your site, we’ve got the tools, the skills and most importantly, the team to transform your trading. Reach out and talk to our team of Passionate People to see how we create Brilliant Commerce tailored to your business.

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Eclipse team takes part in Run for IT in Wrocław

Earlier this month, some of our team from the Wrocław office took part in Run For IT – Bieg IT – Wrocław. The event is a 10 km run aimed at IT Industry employees who are interested in spending their time actively.

This year it took place on Sunday 13th of October and nearly 500 participants took part. Along with the main event, there are several accompanying events for people to take part in including the Bajtel Run, a run for kids in two categories. Under 7’s take part in a 100m run and over 7’s take part in a 400m run. There is also a PC throw, where participants take turns throwing a Desktop PC tower as far as their able to.

Danuta Twaróg, one of our Scrum Masters took part in the PC throw contest and won the women’s competition!  A big congratulations goes out to her and the rest of the team who all took part in this year’s competition.

Check out some of the pictures from this years event below, and if you’d like to learn a little more about it, you can head over to the events main page, http://runforit.pl/, or you can have a look at the events Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/biegit/, which has a gallery of pictures from the day.


Eclipse Expands into Manchester with a New Office Location

Manchester’s world class reputation as a city to do great business in has been growing rapidly, and the UK’s second city has been attracting an increasing number of businesses. Eclipse will be joining companies like Google, Amazon, Freshfields, and Microsoft who have all opened offices in Manchester.

The exciting new location is supported by the facts. The high and increasing volume of technology and digital firms based in Manchester shows a direct comparison with other cities in The United Kingdom and just how well it is performing. Huge population growth, and some of the highest job’s growth in the country, Manchester seems to be an obvious choice for any growing business.

 

 

The new location based out of WeWork Dalton Place follows the opening of the incredibly successful Eclipse Wroclaw office, based in Poland’s ‘SILICON VALLEY’.

The Manchester office gives Eclipse a great base in the North West and expands the businesses services around Conversion Rate Optimisation and UI/UX Optimisation services being offered.

By tapping into the pool of incredibly talented people who have chosen to make Manchester home, it’ll be little time before we’re announcing the expansion of the Manchester office.

If you’re looking for support with CRO, UX, UI or would like to discuss how to offer the best commerce experience to your customers, Eclipse can help. We’ve got a team of passionate experts who’d be happy to work with you in finding a tailored solution.

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UK Group moves into Poland’s “SILICON VALLEY” with New Campus Office and Recruitment Venture

We are excited to announce that we have opened spacious new offices in Wroclaw, Poland.

The new campus office demonstrates Eclipse’s dedication to the high-tech region and supports the rapid expansion of the e-commerce and recruitment company.

It is part of a growth strategy that focuses on talent, training and staying at the forefront of digital commerce, tapping into the deep pool of talent and technology graduates in the Wroclaw area.

The stylish contemporary workspace is home to more than 75 specialists, with capacity to almost double the workforce over the next few years.

The new cutting-edge campus enables the company to establish smart-working practices for the benefit of Polish and UK-based colleagues and clients.

At the same time, HR GO Recruitment has opened its first branch in Poland to recruit UK-based Polish workers wishing to return home, as well as well-qualified people in Poland looking for high-quality roles in the UK. It will initially specialise in technology.

Jack Parkinson, HR GO plc executive chairman, celebrated his birthday by cutting the ceremonial red ribbon to formally open the Wroclaw campus.

“I’m very impressed by the new campus and pleased that we are at the heart of Wroclaw’s burgeoning high-tech district,” he said. “This really is Poland’s Silicon Valley.”

Roddy Barrow, HR GO plc Group Managing Director said: “Our significant investment in the Wroclaw campus and Eclipse Academy, shows our confidence in the huge talent pool that exists in Poland.

“We expect more sales growth from expanding our operations in Poland, including the new recruitment office, with the aim of Brexit-proofing our business. We are looking to other countries where we can also add value.”

Steve Liddle, Eclipse Managing Director, said: “This exciting event represents much more than a great new workspace for our Polish team. For us, it’s the first step on a new strategy that shows our commitment to talent, training and offering our customers the best possible service. It also underlines our commitment to international expansion.”