Anita Andrews, Magento | Magento Imagine 2018

Anita Andrews, Magento | Magento Imagine 2018

September 6, 2019 0 By Bernardo Ryan


(upbeat music)>>Narrator: Live from the
Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas, it’s theCUBE, covering
Magento Imagine 2018. Brought to you by Magento.>>Welcome back to theCUBE’s
continuing coverage of Magento Imagine 2018 from Las Vegas. I’m Lisa Martin, joined by Anita Andrews, the director of analytical
services at Magento. Anita, welcome to theCUBE.>>Hi, Lisa. How are you? (laughs)>>Very good, excited to be here. This is a really
interesting topic, commerce. We talk a lot on theCUBE
about digital transformation in so many different contexts. But really, it seems
that commerce is becoming the center of gravity for
digital transformation. Data is everywhere. There’s so much opportunity
for B to B organizations, B to C organizations,
to leverage that data to drive new revenue streams, et cetera. Talk to us about what Magento
is doing with respect to BI and how you’re enabling your customers to use it to better their businesses.>>Yeah, so, I’m so glad that
you sort of asked this question because we’re doing a lot of
conversations at this Imagine as opposed to previous ones around BI, around analytics, the role of data. And it’s because I think
we have a conversation and a story to tell around this. It’s actually been long in the making. So, what we’ve learned after working with thousands of clients, from the
basics of KPIs and reporting all the way up to machine
learning, is that the approach to how do you launch this
aspect of the business, really, that powers the entire
business, is so important. Because otherwise, you end up
with a crazy Christmas tree of solutions and no one
really is moving the KPIs of the business forward using data. So, what we are doing is, we’ve created an infrastructure that
allows all kinds of data. Whatever data that you have. It could be in a spreadsheet or it could be an automated feed. To come together into the
platform to cleanse it, because everybody has dirty
data, cleanse it, sort of model it for your use, and then
be able to leverage it for, of course, KPIs reporting, but also run advanced data science on it, and then use that to power the commerce. And not just cross-sales
and up-sales on the website, that’s a story everybody
wants to do and many aren’t even doing yet, but also for things like email marketing,
for online advertising, for vendor management,
for inventory management. I mean, there’s so many use cases. So, it’s really about
bringing the data together into a single place and then using that all throughout the organization.>>So, this is the eighth Magento Imagine.>>Anita: It’s my first! (laughs)>>Mine too, ours too, at theCUBE! But you were saying that
this is, the topic of business intelligence, is relatively new. Tell us, the role of data,
you mentioned a number of use cases and multiple
lines of business in an organization that
can benefit from this. Why is this something that
you think now is becoming so critical when ‘big data’ as a term has been around for quite some time?>>For a long time, and data
has been around for a long term, right, everybody has
spreadsheets from years back. I don’t think it’s that the
role of data is becoming more important, per se, but I
think that a lot of businesses have tried a lot of things and
had sort of spotty successes, so online marketing is a
lot better now with data. Right, I mean, absolutely. But this notion that
there’s these silos across the organization and the
whole, I’m sure you guys have talked about this
either today or yesterday, the whole customer-centric
view that is becoming so vital to the business
>>It’s essential. online, offline, multi-channel. Well, the only way you do that
is if you don’t have silos. Right, and so this
question of how do we bring all of this together and create
the customer-centric view, and, by the way, you know,
apply AI to many aspects of the customer experience,
it can only happen if we sort of elevate the
usage, the consolidation, all of that, and so I think
that’s a bigger problem. It’s easy to kind of have a
team work with data on its own. It’s much more, it
requires a lot more thought to kind of bring it all together
and also get going, right? This isn’t a a four-year
plan to get there. You need to get going soon.>>Exactly, or you risk falling behind and not being able to catch up. So, let’s talk about this modern stack.>>Anita: Yeah.>>This modern technology
stack to capitalize on the e-commerce opportunities. Give us an example of
a B to B organization, what they have existing when Magento comes and how they’re able
to use your technology across that spectrum of BI.>>Sure, so, most B to B
organizations have data. Let’s list some common
sources of that data, right. So, first of all, they’re
going to have, most likely, Salesforce or some other
sort of CRM database. They’re going to have some
sort of vendor database, right, either using a third-party tool or something they’ve home-grown. So often, something they’ve home-grown. They certainly have online
marketing data, they’ve got transactional data, all
of these different things that need to come together. So, in that way, they can
leverage the MBI product, Magento Business Intelligence, to bring those data sources in together. Also, they can bring in their
spreadsheets or whatever. But you use MBI to bring
it together and then there’s a level within that
stack, the transformation layer, that allows you to sort
of edit that data, right. I mean, back to the point of dirty data, edit it so that it’s clean. So, you know that, well,
in March we were wrongly charging shipping or something like that. Whatever the issues were, cleansing. And then start to report
on that within MBI and create whatever sort
of analytics you need to. But then you can also
incorporate machine learning algorithms to start doing things
like predictive analytics. So, start doing this vendor
management, et cetera and then use that to,
actually, MBI comes with some pre-built B to B
dashboards, which is a thing that we just launched in the past year, which is also proving very useful. I mean, businesses have never
seen this sort of total view of their customers, their data. And then you take, sort
of, some of the learning and some of the information
that’s in the MBI and then use that to
configure personalization Magento 2 commerce or, again,
some of these other channels which might be email
marketing, which might be, you know, call center scripting. I mean, whatever it is, that’s kind of how it comes together. The MBI stack powering
Magento 2, whether it’s cloud or enterprise, and then
other third-party tools that make sense to the customer as well.>>So, the customer has
an existing POS system or an ERP system or a web store. Is it a simple integration process? How do they go about integrating
that with, especially with, an accent group
is coming on later today that has a hundred thousand skews and three thousand products.>>Yeah, so, the aim and
the aspiration of MBI is to be able to take
any data source, right. So, there’s a bunch of
data sources for which we have automated integrations. Literally, you put in your credentials and it starts flowing right away. Another option is that you
have an API that you can use to import data in, so, if
you’ve got the resources to leverage that, that’s an option. Sometimes, if we don’t have
an automated integration, a lot of third-party data
sources now will allow you to put them in a MySQL database
or something like that. You can just just connect
that directly to MBI, as well. And finally, we’re very much looking at, from a product standpoint,
how do we leverage the incredible community
we have around Magento to develop more integrations, right. Because we cannot keep
pace with the thousands and thousands of data sources
that are launching every day. So, this community can and
they are so close to what customers need to be able to bring in from a data perspective, so,
we’re also exploring that possibility as well, which would
completely change the game.>>Yeah, you’ve got a very
active developer community of, what, three hundred
thousand developers?>>Yeah, it’s something
phenomenal like that.>>Lisa: That is phenomenal.>>Yes.>>When we look at the
spectrum of analytics and we get towards the, whichever
end it is, the right side, the left side, looking
at advanced analytics.>>Anita: Yes.>>Artificial intelligence,
for example, can you give us an example of a
Magento customer that’s being able to utilize
artificial intelligence to drive new revenue streams or reduce attrition. Anything that comes to
mind that’s a really strong hallmark of your capabilities?>>Yeah, so, one of the
ones that I love the most is around inventory management. And that applies to B
to B and B to C, right. So, one of the things that
we’re starting to see a lot of traction and results
around is advanced analytics and machine learning that’s predicting how much inventory you have. So, inventory is money. You don’t have enough, you’re
going to lose your customers. If you have too much, that’s dollars sitting on the shelf,
right, or accounts payable to your vendors, I mean, whatever it is. So, it is so, traditionally,
it’s been very hard to predict what you’re going to need and
when you’re going to need it. So, there is now capability
within MBI that you can feed into your vendor management
or other sorts of merchandising management
systems wherein you can sort of say, if you have
a two week lead time to be able to get new inventory,
then it can predict which of your skews, which of
your products, are going to be running out before that two weeks end. And what we’ve seen with
customers that are leveraging that is incredible increase in
customer satisfaction rates because that sort of mismatch
of, I thought I was going to get this but no, I’m not
getting this, is going down. But they’re also able to not
even have to say it’s out of stock on the site, which is a
such a disappointing factor. So, improvement in
conversion rates and customer satisfaction rates and on the flip side, there’s another aspect of
that functionality that says, well, do you have more
inventory than, let’s say, you know, two months’ worth? And that two months piece is
configurable per business, because if you’re an outdoor
goods store, two months in March for winter
stuff is too late, right? You need to get rid of that now. But at the start of winter,
four months might be great. So, all of that is totally configurable to be customized to
that business, who knows the particulars of their business so well. And so, what we’re seeing
there is the, sort of, cost of goods that are being sent into after-market channels or
sale or discount channels, is going down dramatically. And that’s just a great
case that I love because it’s applicable, like I
said, to B to B and B to C.>>So, on a B to B front,
we have a lot of businesses behind us here.>>Anita: Yeah.>>As consumers, we
expect to be able to get whatever we want whenever we want. Amazon just announced a
hundred million Amazon Prime subscribers
>>That’s a lot of people. And people will not buy
something if it’s not available on Amazon Prime. We just think, what? We have to wait a week?
>>Must not be a thing. (laughs)>>Exactly, exactly. But also something that the
gentleman that was on main stage this morning from Amazon said,
that about half of what’s purchased on Amazon isn’t sold by Amazon.>>Anita: Yeah.>>So, in the consumer space, we have this bar set very, very high. As business buyers, business
buyers are consumers in their daily lives, as well.>>Anita: Yeah. I wonder, what are some of
the trends that you’re seeing on the B to B side that
are maybe spilling over or being influenced by the
consumer side and how is Magento helping businesses to
be able to create these seamless experiences for
businesses to transact in a high-velocity, low-touch model?>>Yeah, that’s a really good question. You and I were talking before
we got started here about how the buyers in a B to B environment, they’re not a corporation. They’re individuals. They’re humans that actually
are bringing their B to C personal experiences and
expectations into their workplace. I mean, they don’t turn
into another person, right. They’re maybe harder for
procurement, you know, channels and all of that, but they’re bringing the same expectations into it. So, frankly, you know, while
Magento has sort of a B to B focused technology
commerce platform, as well, that we’ve launched and
is growing, as does MBI, you know, that will be a growing aspect, a particularization of
the Magento platform. On the flip side, what
we’re also doing is saying they’re not different and
we’re setting high standards for our B to B customers to
say, it may be more challenging for you to act like a B to C
customer, but that doesn’t mean you get to, it may be
hard for you to act like a B to C business, but that
doesn’t mean you get to not act like one, right, because
the expectations are there. So, things like, whether it’s as simple as what is order management,
right, what is order tracking, what are ship and delivery
timelines look like? Do I have various payment
mechanisms, right? Consumers expect that, right, and those are often geographically dictated. Well, in the business
environment, there may be other sort of procurement things
to be thoughtful of. So, the conversation we’re
having, whether it’s from a services standpoint or
from a technology and product standpoint is
have the same standards. And that is, frankly, in the
conversations that I have day to day, I get a lot of but buts. You know, but, that’s hard for us. Yeah, but so? Right, so let’s figure this out. And, of course, you have to
prioritize and all of that, you’re not going to sort of
turn from one end to the other overnight, but really, the
message that we are seeing successful B to B
customers hear and act upon is meet those consumer expectations and you’ll knock it out of the park.>>Lisa: And who doesn’t want to do that?>>Right.>>So, let’s kind of turn the tides here. Let’s look at Magento and how you’re using your own technologies. How are you using analytics
across that spectrum to really change the entire model? For example, you know, we talked about before we went on, as well, marketing. I’m a marketer. Marketing is a science now
because marketers and every line of business has the
ability to leverage data to drive many new opportunities. Talk to us about, internally,
how you guys are using this spectrum of analytics
>>Yeah. to continue to expand
in B to B and B to C.>>Yeah, so, I’m going to
give you a couple of different use cases, but this will be
interesting because we’re sort of opening up the kimono
here about what goes on, you know, in our offices. So, yesterday, I actually
heard our head of development, Ramadass, talk about a use case for using Magento BI within his organization. All of his different many
development teams were tracking their tickets and numbers and all of that in various different ways and
he sort of came in and said, well, this isn’t going to work. I can’t measure my organization. And he decided to deploy Magento
BI across the whole thing. That wasn’t easy, he said it
wasn’t smooth, but he started with one group who sort of
took to it, and then once the benefit started to be
seen, started to deploy across all the organization and
he said, you know, he had the foresight and
patience to stick with it and now he’s got, you
know, consistent view of what’s going on there in the organization. Another angle that we use
it from is, for example, with Mangento BI, there’s
certainly, it’s different than implementing Magento
Commerce, where, well, maybe it’s not that different,
but one aspect that I think is different is you do a lot of work to launch Magento Commerce
and then, yes, you can expand your use a bit. MBI is pretty quick to get
going, but how much you’re using it throughout your
organization or even within the product takes time. So, we’ve leveraged our predictive
analytics to understand, to track those customer
behaviors, and understand, well, when might be a good time
to talk to them about, you know, machine learning? When might be a good time to
talk to them about, you know, inventory management,
whatever those topics are. But we’re looking at
those customer attributes, how far along are they in MBI,
to run our online marketing campaigns, but even our
personal marketing campaigns. We’re not so big that we
can’t call up in our own customer success experiences
and say, we think you’re in a good place where you
might want to think about doing this, as well. And then a third place is
around customer support, so, a couple years ago, we used
the product to figure out how much time were we spending
on our customers, right? And there’s a notion of a rate per hour. Are we allocating our time properly? It’s very easy for the
squeaky wheel to get the most attention. Is that the right thing for the business? So, these are the ways that
we’ve used it internally. We’re B to B, right? (laughs)>>Right! Would it be fair to say that
you’re democratizing data within Magento?>>Yes, everybody, I can at
least speak to it on the MBI side and I know this is true
in development, et cetera, everybody has access to the data. And that’s kind of where,
watching, you know, an individual contributor take that and
run with it and sometimes it’s a little bit too eager
for me, and then I have to kind of dial it back, and we
can’t make all those changes today, but it is so impressive
to see what they think about asking, what questions
they think about asking of the business and that
they feel like will solve an actual problem.>>So, kind of allowing innovation. Well, Anita, thank you so much for taking some time
>>Yeah, thank you. to stop by theCUBE. We wish you the best of
luck in your general session presentation this afternoon
and we look forward to hearing from some of your
customers and some of your leaders on the program later today.>>Great, thank you, Lisa.>>We want to thank you
for watching theCUBE. We are live in Las Vegas
at Magento Imagine 2018. Stick around, I’m Lisa Martin. We’ll be back with our next
guest after a short break. (upbeat music)