Gartner has released its latest report on Digital Experience Platforms (DXP), highlighting the growing need for modular and composable software solutions in the face of the pandemic and the digitalization explosion caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest news from the research firm Magic Quadrant for Digital Experience Platforms 2021 lists five vendors in the upper quadrant for leadership and vision completeness: Adobe, Acquia, Episerver (now Optimizely), Sitecore and Liferay. Key capabilities that each vendor needed to adhere to in order to be featured include content management, account services, analytics and optimization, customer journey mapping, personalization and context awareness, customer data management, cloud capabilities, security and access control, and multi-experience support.
The increasingly sophisticated DXP marketplace also had a host of optional features including digital asset management, content services, low-code application development platforms, digital commerce, marketing resource management. , product information management, CRM, customer communications management and payment gateways.
In the leadership ranks of Gartner, Adobe Cloud Experience was just ahead of the pack, highlighted for its large scale adoption globally and its user and partner ecosystem, differentiating customer data management capabilities for profile and identity management, segmentation real-time and data enrichment for enhanced personalization.
In contrast, Gartner noted that Adobe’s offering was the most expensive on the market in terms of total cost of ownership, and that the complexity of implementing and using the platform remains considerably difficult for the users.
AcquiaThe open digital experience platform of, which includes Drupal Cloud and Marketing Cloud, was highlighted for its precise understanding and strategic roadmap around the DXP market, its vibrant open source community, and its more comprehensive approach to digital experience management. This was motivated by the acquisitions of Mautic, AgilOne and Cohension, which introduced digital marketing, customer data platform (CDP) and low-code site builder functionality, respectively. The report, however, cautioned about the strength of Acquia’s customization capabilities, which it said were less advanced than others in the market.
Episerver’s DXP, which has just been renamed under the Optimizely brand, has been recognized as a leader and visionary for its understanding of the market, its product vision and acquisitions, its modular and transparent pricing and packaging, its advanced customization and its sophisticated testing and optimization tools. Gartner’s caveats included a lack of B2B use cases, multiple ownership changes in recent years, and a lack of support between companies and employees.
Sitecore was also recognized as a leader and visionary by Gartner for its broad array of digital experience capabilities for customer experience and B2C centric use cases, and its consistency across the market. Its growing use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning for features like self-personalization, automated optimization, and content tagging has also been noted. On the list of Sitecore drawbacks are “monolithic” pricing propositions that lack transparency, a lack of differentiation in the marketplace and messaging, and certain product complexities that create challenges in realizing the software’s full potential.
The fifth and final vendor in the upper right quadrant was Liferay. Benefits included a large user base for authenticated customer and partner portal use cases, a strong offering in terms of extensibility and application integration, a headless presentation and an open source base, providing a good value for money and a relatively low total cost of ownership. Negatives included too much emphasis on on-site capacity, complex pricing and packaging, and a lack of B2C use cases.
Throughout the remainder of Gartner’s DXP Magic Quadrant, the research group rated Bloomreach as a visionary supplier but below the scale in terms of ability to execute. Those listed as challengers with a strong ability to execute but less visionary credentials included Salesforce, Oracle, OpenText, and HCL Software.
On the list of niche DXP players in the lower left corner of Gartner’s latest report are Crownpeak, Magnolia, Squiz, CoreMedia, Kentico, and e-Spirit.
According to Gartner, DXPs act as “centers of gravity” within complex and interconnected technology stacks to increase an organization’s digital presence. In 2020, a notable trend influencing their adoption and use has been the global COVID-19 pandemic, which has seen many organizations scramble to build digital commerce and experiences to meet changing consumer behaviors and needs. .
“The application leaders in charge of digital experiences have found themselves struggling with the usability, scalability and availability of their DXP systems, given the spikes in traffic and growing demand for the digital channel,” commented Gartner in his report.
As a result, Gartner said providers of this space will need to move away from “monolithic technologies” that cannot meet market demands and embrace composable DXP as a means of delivering composable user experiences and content. Additionally, the research firm cited growing pressure against the sequel’s approach in favor of more incremental, cutting-edge, and easily integrated offerings.
“Many of the technology stacks currently in place were built by organizations from a set of heavy monolithic applications covering a wide range of business needs, with low rates of change. Gartner expects the pressure from purchasing behavior in this market to force suppliers to increase the modularity of their offerings and the corresponding pricing, based on consumption-based models, ”the report said.
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