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Navigating an evolving eCommerce solution landscape

February 12, 2019
Sandy Skrovan
Written By
Sandy Skrovan

The eCommerce solution landscape continues to evolve at a brisk pace. New solutions are coming on board on what seems like a daily basis. By popular demand, we’ve updated our Developing Your Digital Toolkit guide to capture almost 50 new eCommerce solution providers since we last published in October 2018 — bringing you a total of nearly 250 solutions in this update.

This fresh view of the eComm solutions landscape will help you choose the right partners for your growing eCommerce business. Below is a sample snapshot of our latest Product Content solution landscape map:

eCommerce solution landscape product content

Shifts in the eCommerce solution landscape

There’s also been a substantial amount of consolidation activity in the eCommerce solution space in recent months. Some key developments worth noting:

  • Gladson rebranded as Syndigo, consolidating the 2018 acquisitions of Edgenet, ItemMaster and Webcollage to offer a suite of product content and data solutions.
  • Wunderman Commerce brought together several eCommerce agencies acquired by WPP — 2Sales, Marketplace Ignition, POSSIBLE and Salmon — under a single go-to-market brand.
  • Ascential introduced Edge by Ascential, merging together several recent acquisitions: Brand View, Clavis, OCR and PlanetretailRNG. It also acquired Flywheel Digital, which remains a separate entity under the Flywheel by Ascential banner, for now.
  • iServe rebranded as Pattern and, in October 2018, bought consultancy Practicology.
  • Numerator integrated the companies formerly known as Market Track and Infoscout, bringing together omnichannel marketing, merchandising and sales data.

We think that much of this consolidation is a reflection of growing fatigue with the fragmentation in the marketplace. But, there are also some burning questions on a lot of people’s minds.

What is the implication of all this change?

On one hand, consolidation could make it a lot easier for brands to buy what they need. On the other hand, it could raise some issues. Some questions we hear people asking:

  • “How do incentives and operating models change as companies change ownership or capital structure?”
  • “Do ‘merged’ solutions become easier or more effective to use overnight, or over years?”
  • “Are ‘merged’ solutions truly integrated or is it just packaging? At the end of the day, will I be spending more time navigating separate logins, disparate sets, and separate sales and client teams?”
  • “What best-of-breed capabilities/functions aren’t accessible in the ‘consolidated’ solutions, but might be from point-solution players?”
  • “What cost savings or other efficiencies resulting from the synergistic effects of consolidation will accrue to customers?”

Stay tuned. We’ll keep you posted on additional shake-up in the eCommerce solution landscape. Meanwhile, here are some resources for you to tap:

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