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04 Nov 2013

Tenth annual novomind conference: scope and momentum of change in e-commerce still being underestimated by many

- More than 180 customers, business partners and friends of novomind AG attended the annual novoinsight conference to discuss new e-communication and e-commerce solutions


- Keynote speeches by Sascha Lobo and Professor Dr. Gerrit Heinemann

Forward-looking e-commerce and e-communication solutions deliver decisive competitive advantages    
High-calibre speakers, concrete recommendations for practical changes and extensive talks - novomind’s 17 October anniversary event at Hamburg’s SIDE Hotel had a lot to offer. Interest primarily focused on the latest e-communication and e-commerce solutions developed by novomind to deliver decisive competitive advantages for enterprises in online trading as well as in the areas of customer service and customer communication. Another much discussed topic was the modern Product Information Management (PIM) solution which contributes to an enterprise’s success by taking into account customised workflow requirements for product data representation.

“Are we living in the year 1984?” was the question posed by novomind host Peter Samuelsen, who was recently voted “Entrepreneur of the Year”, in his opening address. Of course he was quoting this year’s motto of the annual novoinsight conference and George Orwell’s vision provided a starting point for a variety of views of the digital present and future. The first answers were offered by well-known author, blogger and strategic consultant Sascha Lobo. In his keynote address titled “What you need to know about the web in order to understand the world. The Internet between a blessing and a curse and how it changes the future” he pointed out his view of the World Wide Web. “The power of the future lies in the power of social networking. This, as well as society’s increasing data enthusiasm, will influence an ever increasing proportion of purchasing processes in future”, the keynote speaker emphasised. According to Lobo, the sharing of consumer decisions and indirect recommendations of products through social media play a key role in purchasing decisions already today. The second opening speech was delivered by Professor Dr. Gerrit Heinemann, head of the eWeb Research Center of Hochschule Niederrhein. He directed listener’s attention to the e-commerce sector and to customer behaviour, in particular. Professor Heinemann said that “although the age of the digital revolution started a long time ago, many specialist retailers and some of the trade associations are still underestimating the scope and momentum of the changes”. In his opinion, there is a lot to suggest that the share of mobile commerce in online trading is growing rapidly, with online stores increasingly assuming the role of flagship stores. Another trend outlined by Gerrit Heinemann was “ROPO” which is short for “research online, purchase offline, meaning that many customers look around and inform themselves in online shops before eventually visiting a bricks-and-mortar shop for the actual purchase. As a result, product availability has meanwhile become more important than the price of a product. In summing up his insights, the e-commerce expert said: “To survive in the marketplace over the medium term, it will become ever more important for enterprises to develop and fine-tune a multi-channel strategy”.

Attendees of the anniversary conference agreed that the trend from stationary to digital retailing was unstoppable. Another insight gained from the conference was that the ties between “old school” customer communication and modern online business are partly more significant than perhaps expected by many participants. For example,, Germany’s leading online retailer of street fashion, has resumed the production of printed catalogues. And last but not least, the integration of social media in the marketing mix is no longer an option but has long become a must. It remains to be seen what trends and developments will drive the debate at novomind’s next anniversary conference ten years from now.

novomind AG:
Since 1999 Hamburg-based novomind has been developing innovative eBusiness software solutions for the modern Internet world in four e-business segments: eCommerce (eShops and zoom server), PIM (Product Information Management), eMarketplace (marketplace integration) and eCommunication (solutions for contact and service centres). In each of these performance segments, novomind ranks among the technology leaders in Europe. The company covers the entire digital value chain of trade and electronic customer communications.

novomind currently serves more than 80 companies, including Targobank, Der Club Bertelsmann, C&A,  Deutsche Rentenversicherung Bund, Ernsting’s family, EnBW, OTTO, QVC and Sixt. In September 2013 the Management Board team of novomind was singled out as the “Entrepreneur of the Year” by the renowned auditing and consulting firm Ernst & Young whose annual award celebrates entrepreneurial achievements in the SME sector.