As a Magento Enterprise Partner, we regularly keep an eye on other ecommerce platforms and the wider ecommerce marketplace.

Over the next few weeks we are going to review the other major ecommerce platforms as identified in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Digital Ecommerce.

We’ll be discussing their pros and cons and we’ll use our extensive ecommerce experience to provide insights on the factors that can drive online success.

In our first blog of this series, we examined Demandware, the popular cloud based platform, coming to the conclusion that while it is a powerful platform for B2C businesses, for B2B businesses it holds its limitations.

Hybris

When looking at ecommerce platforms, it’s hard to ignore the SAP owned Hybris system. Built on Java Spring, making it a very accessible platform, Hybris is considered a ‘leader’ in the Digital Commerce Gartner Magic Quadrant. Founded in 1997 and acquired by German giants SAP in 2013, Hybris is well established, and now has a very strong backing.

Huge names have chosen Hybris, including Samsung, O2, Vodafone, Audi and many more internationally recognised businesses and brands, making Hybris one of the most well renowned systems available.

What are the benefits?

While Demandware had it’s B2B limitations, Hybris holds B2B businesses in mind, and recognise the increasing requirement of modern B2B ecommerce businesses to offer an experience that a B2C customer would expect, and boasts “Only Hybris delivers B2B user experiences on par with the best B2C websites”.

With this becoming a requirement of modem B2B ecommerce, it is no surprise that Gartner Magic Quadrant rates Hybris as a leading ecommerce solution platforms, citing growth as one of it’s main strengths, and reports a 75% revenue growth, and a 50% new client growth seen in 2013.

Hybris puts a large emphasis on “omnichannel”[i] commerce. This is the practice of ensuring that a customer’s experience is similar across all channels – Desktop, Mobiles and Tablets, in-store (or at a collection point) or any other transactional interaction. Furthermore, it does not limit a business to just one channel, broadening profit opportunities.

Hybris states that it consolidates “management of multiple business models, channels and markets” in one system, while reviews have given the system an above average rating for important factors to take into consideration, such as speed of upgrades, usability, integration and the creation and management of mobile applications, which is vital in the modern market.

The favourable usability is largely down to the fact that Hybris is built on Java Spring. Unlike other platforms that require further education, most developers with an IT background will have a solid understanding of Java already, thus requiring less training and resulting in a greater talent pool for businesses to delve into when hiring developers.

There are some drawbacks, however.

There have been reports that users struggle with the CMS Cockpit. Claims that it is slow and inefficient could be a big drawback, especially when content has become key to a websites SEO/Marketing success in recent years. When running a business, valuable time should not be lost due to a slow system.[ii]

For any business that has elements of ecommerce, not matter how big or small, analytics and reporting is vital to understanding the performance of a website. Hybris has received lower reviews regarding their analytics, reporting and order management capabilities, which have to be spot on when managing an ecommerce business.

Hybris charges a premium for support, which customers question due to reported delays in the time it takes to resolve issues, and the SAP acquisition, while bringing resources to Hybris, has led to concerns that Hybris will struggle to stay up to date in the market.

Conclusion:

Hybris is a well-established leader in the digital commerce market, and is still growing. With SAP backing the system, Hybris will have very few limitations going forward. With their emphasis on B2B Omni-channel experiences, they are taking steps to be ahead of the game in the ecommerce market, ensuring that their customers have the system in place to meet the modern B2B requirements.

However, limitations on reporting and analytics are a concern, with other ecommerce platforms offering better alternatives. Other platforms reportedly also offer faster response times to support requests. That being said, with the backing of SAP, it’s hard to see these issues continuing as Hybris improves.

If you’re in analysis paralysis trying to decide on an ecommerce platform, we can help provide some objective advice on a platform’s suitability according to your specific business requirements. The ecommerce platform must meet your needs according to features, functionality, cost, support, partners, ease of implementation and day-to-day management and more.

Need some help? Contact our ecommerce consultants at Williams Commerce today to discuss in more detail. Phone us on 0116 326 1116 or email us at [email protected]

[i] http://omnichannel.me/what-is-omnichannel/

[ii] http://handelframework.com/quick-review-top-3-e-commerce-platforms/

Further Sources:

http://www.itcentralstation.com/products/comparisons/hybris_vs_magento

https://www.hybris.com/en/commerce/b2b-commerce

http://handelframework.com/quick-review-top-3-e-commerce-platforms/

– Compares Hybris, Magento and Oracle ATG Web Commerce Pros and Cons

http://mkto-d0013.com/q3DD030pBq0fdF03X1EI00A

– Omni-Channel research from Hybris/SAP

http://mkto-d0013.com/s00Z0B10pXfZ0D0AdE3030D

– Hybris B2B Ecommerce PDF from Hybris