Tuesday Apr 08, 2014

How Do You Deliver High-Value Moments of Engagement?

Webcast: Delivering Moments of Engagement Across the Enterprise
Oracle Corporation
Webcast: Delivering Moments of Engagement Across the Enterprise

How Do You Deliver High-Value Moments of Engagement?

The web and mobile have become primary channels for engaging with customers today. To compete effectively, companies need to deliver multiple digital experiences that are contextually relevant to customers and valuable for the business—across various channels and on a global scale. But doing so is a great challenge without the right strategies and architectures in place.

As the kickoff of the new Digital Business Thought Leadership Series, noted industry analyst Geoffrey Bock investigated what some of Oracle’s customers are already doing, and how they are rapidly mobilizing the capabilities of their enterprise ecosystems.

Join us for a conversation about building your digital roadmap for the engaging enterprise. In this webcast you’ll have an opportunity to learn:

  • How leading organizations are extending and mobilizing digital experiences for their customers, partners, and employees
  • The key best practices for powering the high-value moments of engagement that deliver business value
  • Business opportunities and challenges that exist for enterprise wide mobility to fuel multichannel experiences

Register now to attend the webcast.

Register Now

Attend the webcast.

Thurs, April 17, 2014
10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET





Presented by:

Geoffrey Bock

Geoffrey Bock

Principal, Bock & Company


Michael Snow

Michael Snow

Senior Product Marketing Director, Oracle WebCenter




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Monday Feb 10, 2014

Future-Proof Mobile SEO with WebCenter Sites

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Guest Blog post by: 

In 2013, Google announced updates to their algorithm that would cause “Changes in Rankings of Smartphone Results”.  This update can be attributed to the explosion of smartphone usage over the last five years.

One of the major questions surrounding this update was Google’s preference on mobile web content delivery.  Web content can be delivered to mobile devices in three ways:

Separate Mobile Site

Future Proof Your Mobile Sites This method of mobile content delivery redirects users to a separate mobile URL using bidirectional annotations such as rel=“alternate” and rel=“canonical”.  The mobile website will consist of completely separate HTML and CSS files and the URL is typically identified by a letter “m” subdomain. (m.yoururl.com)

Dynamic Serving

Similar to the separate mobile site method, dynamic serving renders different HTML and CSS files for users but unlike the first example this is done on one URL using the Vary HTTP Header. (Section 14.44)  

Responsive Web Design

The final method of delivering web content to mobile devices is responsive web design. Unlike the first two methods, responsive web design uses the same HTML files.  These files are then rendered on one URL using CSS media queries to determine how the content is to be rendered on the specific device.  By using this method, users are free from redirects and possible user-agent detection errors will be avoided.

Responsive web design is Google’s official recommendation for delivery of web content to mobile devices. This recommendation was released later on developers.google.com

6% of Fortune 100 companies comply with Google’s Mobile Requirements

Fortune 100 Mobile and Responsive Site Breakdown Pure Oxygen Labs performed a mobile risk assessment of the Fortune 100 companies and found that only 6% of the companies have websites that are compliant with Google’s mobile requirements. Other report findings included:

  • 66% of companies are at risk of their site ranking being downgraded
  • 11% of companies target smartphone users with responsive web design
  • 56% of companies served mobile-formatted content to smartphone searches


As Google looks towards the future of mobile search, so should the rest of us.

What Are My Options?

Mobile Authoring As scary as the findings in the mobile risk assessment are for all companies, deciding what’s next and the impending change is just as scary. Choosing the right web experience management tool and partner to implement the technology are the first and arguably the toughest decisions to be made when a multi-channel web presence becomes a top priority.

Choosing the Right Web Experience Management Tool  

When deciding what web experience management solution to implement, it is important to future-proof the investment by thinking long-term.  Listed below are questions that can assist in determining the right web experience management solution.

  • Does the solution provide multi-channel functionality?
    • Oracle WebCenter Sites’ mobile functionality empowers companies to effortlessly extend their desktop web experience to mobile devices.  Companies can effectively reduce costs by reusing existing web content, wire frames and navigation to eliminate the time and effort associated with the creation and management of mobile sites.
  • Is the software capable of rendering localized content to users?
    • Oracle WebCenter Sites excels at delivering localized content to users by rendering content in their native language through implicit and explicit information gathered by the system.
  • Does the software allow for the integration of social media?
    • Oracle WebCenter Sites allows users to log-in using social authentication enabling them to share, comment, rate, review and moderate content.
  • Will the company offer long-term support?
    • Oracle has been around for more than 35 years, employs 125,000 people and is valued at just over $80B. Oracle offers 24/7 support, employs 18,000 support staff which are located in 145 countries offering 24/7 support. 
  • Is the solution one that the manufacturer will continue to invest in?
    • Oracle employs over 35,000 product development engineers and invests an estimated $5B per year in research and development to advance Oracle products. (Source)

Choosing the Right Implementation Partner

Redstone Content Solutions has recently become the first Oracle WebCenter Sites Specialized Partner  See press release here

We invite you to review our “What to look for in your Oracle WebCenter Partner ” blog which details seven key topics to consider when choosing your WebCenter implementation specialist.

If you would like to learn more about web experience management, Oracle WebCenter Sites or Redstone Content Solutions, please contact us and we will be in touch soon. 

Other WebCenter Sites Blogs:

WebCenter Sites Gets Personal – With Customers

WebCenter Sites Reporting for Duty & Ready for Localization

Are You Struggling To Create Engaging On-line Customer Experiences?



Friday Jan 17, 2014

Looking Back at our Thought Leaders


Good thought leadership usually stands the test of time and our past series of big thinkers are still relevant today. As you watch and listen to these conversations - it will be certainly be interesting to note the changes to technology and culture that have taken place over the past years following many of the trends spoken about during these conversations. How much have you changed the way you work over the past couple of years? Are you more social, mobile and cloud-focused now?

Top 10 Technology Trends Driving Business InnovationOrganic Business Networks: Doing Business in a Hyper-Connected WorldSocial Business and Innovation

Race Against the MachineMobile is the New Face of EngagementManaging Social Relationships for the Enterprise

5 Critical Descisions Made by Beloved CompaniesEmployee Engagement Benchmark Study


Thursday Jan 16, 2014

Evolution to the Strategic Technology Trends for 2014

This time of year is always a reflective time as we look back and look forward to the new year. As I've been thinking about thought leadership and some of the interesting webcasts we've hosted over the past couple of years (look to next post for a review of these), I was thinking about those trend predictions that emerge every year. I just recently watched Gartner's most recent webcast they offer each year on the "Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends" that enterprises should be planning for over the next 3 years.

Its interesting to note the evolution of not only the language used to describe the trends, but the consolidation of many of them into single trends in the comparison chart I created below from the past 3 years. As technologies have emerged from the Hype cycle's "Peak of Inflated Expectations" and start sliding down into the "Trough of Disillusionment" there seems to be some strategic consolidation and commodification as expected.

Gartner’s Futurist, David Cearley said: "We have identified the top 10 technologies that companies should factor into their strategic planning processes. This does not necessarily mean adoption and investment in all of the listed technologies, but companies should look to make deliberate decisions about them during the next two years.” 

He also added that the "Nexus of Forces – Social, Mobile, Cloud and Information – are driving these changes in technology." Take a look at this informative short video on the "Nexus of Forces" for a better understanding. We also have a previous blog post on this topic here.


Gartner's Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends 2012-2014
2012 2013 2014 
1. Media Tablets and Beyond
1. Mobile Devices Battles
1. Mobile Device Diversity & Management
2. Mobile-centric Applications and Interfaces
2. Mobile Apps and HTML5
2. Mobile Apps & Applications
3. Contextual and Social User Experience
3. Personal Cloud
3. The Internet of Everything
4. The Internet of Things
4. The Internet Of Things
4. Hybrid Cloud & IT as Service Broker
5. App Stores and Marketplaces
5. Hybrid IT and Cloud Computing
5. Cloud/Client Architecture
6. Next-generation Analytics
6. Strategic Big Data
6. The Era of Personal Cloud
7. Big Data
7. Actionable Analytics
7. Software Defined Anything
8. In-memory Computing
8. Mainstream In-Memory Computing (IMC)
8. Web Scale IT
9. Extreme Low-energy Servers
9. Integrated Ecosystems
9. Smart Machines
10.Cloud Computing
10. Enterprise App Stores
10. 3-D Printing

Gartner's Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2014:

  1. Mobile Device Diversity and Management: Through 2018, the growing variety of devices, computing styles, user contexts and interaction paradigms will make "everything everywhere" strategies unachievable. The unexpected consequence of bring your own device (BYOD) programs is a doubling or even tripling of the size of the mobile workforce. This is placing tremendous strain on IT and Finance organizations. Enterprise policies on employee-owned hardware usage need to be thoroughly reviewed and, where necessary, updated and extended. 
  2. Mobile Apps and Applications: Gartner predicts that through 2014, improved JavaScript performance will begin to push HTML5 and the browser as a mainstream enterprise application development environment. The market for tools to create consumer and enterprise facing apps is complex with well over 100 potential tools vendors. For the next few years no single tool will be optimal for all types of mobile application so expect to employ several. The next evolution in user experience will be to leverage intent, inferred from emotion and actions, to motivate changes in end-user behavior.
  3. The Internet of Everything: The internet is expanding beyond PCs and mobile devices into enterprise assets such as field equipment, and consumer items such as cars and televisions. The problem is that most enterprises and technology vendors have yet to explore the possibilities of an expanded internet and are not operationally or organizationally ready. 
  4. Hybrid Cloud and IT as Service Broker: Bringing together personal clouds and external private cloud services is an imperative. Enterprises should design private cloud services with a hybrid future in mind and make sure future integration/interoperability is possible. Hybrid cloud services can be composed in many ways, varying from relatively static to very dynamic. Managing this composition will often be the responsibility of something filling the role of cloud service broker (CSB), which handles aggregation, integration and customization of services. 
  5. Cloud/Client Architecture: The cloud is the control point and system or record and applications can span multiple client devices. The client environment may be a native application or browser-based; the increasing power of the browser is available to many client devices, mobile and desktop alike. Robust capabilities in many mobile devices, the increased demand on networks, the cost of networks and the need to manage bandwidth use creates incentives, in some cases, to minimize the cloud application computing and storage footprint, and to exploit the intelligence and storage of the client device. However, the increasingly complex demands of mobile users will drive apps to demand increasing amounts of server-side computing and storage capacity.
  6. The Era of Personal Cloud: The personal cloud era will mark a power shift away from devices toward services. In this new world, the specifics of devices will become less important for the organization to worry about, although the devices will still be necessary. Users will use a collection of devices, with the PC remaining one of many options, but no one device will be the primary hub. Rather, the personal cloud will take on that role. Access to the cloud and the content stored or shared from the cloud will be managed and secured, rather than solely focusing on the device itself.
  7. Software Defined Anything: Software-defined anything (SDx) is a collective term that encapsulates the growing market momentum for improved standards for infrastructure programmability and data center interoperability driven by automation inherent to cloud computing, DevOps and fast infrastructure provisioning. As individual SDx technology silos evolve and consortiums arise, look for emerging standards and bridging capabilities to benefit portfolios, but challenge individual technology suppliers to demonstrate their commitment to true interoperability standards within their specific domains. 
  8. Web-Scale IT: Web-scale IT is a pattern of global-class computing that delivers the capabilities of large cloud service providers within an enterprise IT setting by rethinking positions across several dimensions. Large cloud services providers such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, etc., are re-inventing the way in which IT services can be delivered.  Their capabilities go beyond scale in terms of sheer size to also include scale as it pertains to speed and agility. If enterprises want to keep pace, then they need to emulate the architectures, processes and practices of these exemplary cloud providers
  9. Smart Machines: Through 2020, the smart machine era will blossom with a proliferation of contextually aware, intelligent personal assistants, smart advisors (such as IBM Watson), advanced global industrial systems and public availability of early examples of autonomous vehicles. The smart machine era will be the most disruptive in the history of IT. New systems that begin to fulfill some of the earliest visions for what information technologies might accomplish — doing what we thought only people could do and machines could not —are now finally emerging. 
  10. 3D Printing: Worldwide shipments of 3D printers are expected to grow 75% in 2014 followed by a near doubling of unit shipments in 2015. While very expensive “additive manufacturing” devices have been around for 20 years, the market for devices ranging from $50,000 to $500, and with commensurate material and build capabilities, is nascent yet growing rapidly. The consumer market hype has made organizations aware of the fact 3D printing is a real, viable and cost-effective means to reduce costs through improved designs, streamlined prototyping and short-run manufacturing.



Thursday Oct 31, 2013

Web Experience Management: Segmentation & Targeting - Chalk Talk with John

Today's post comes from our WebCenter friend, John Brunswick. 

Having trouble getting your arms around the differences between Web Content Management (WCM) and Web Experience Management (WEM)?  Told through story, the video below outlines the differences in an easy to understand manner.

By following the journey of Mr. and Mrs. Smith on their adventure to find the best amusement park in two neighboring towns, we can clearly see what an impact context and relevancy play in our decision making within online channels.  Just as when we search to connect with the best products and services for our needs, the Smiths have their grandchildren coming to visit next week and finding the best park is essential to guarantee a great family vacation.  One town effectively Segments and Targets visitors to enhance their experience, reducing the effort needed to learn about their park.

Have a look below to join the Smiths in their search.

 

 Learn MORE about how you might measure up:

Deliver Engaging Digital Experiences

Drive Digital Marketing Success
Access Free Assessment Tool


Wednesday Oct 30, 2013

Multichannel Digital Engagement: Find Out How Your Organization Measures Up

This article was originally published in the September 2013 Edition of the
Oracle Information InDepth Newsletter ORACLE WEBCENTER EDITION

Thanks to mobile and social technologies, interactive online experiences are now commonplace. Not only that, they give consumers more choices, influence, and control than ever before. So how can you make your organization stand out?

The key building blocks for delivering exceptional cross-channel digital experiences are outlined below. Also, a new assessment tool is available to help you measure your organization's ability to deliver such experiences.

  • A clearly defined digital strategy. The customer journey is growing increasingly complex, encompassing multiple touchpoints and channels. It used to be easy to map marketing efforts to specific offline channels; for example, a direct mail piece with an offer to visit a store for a discounted purchase. Now it is more difficult to cultivate and track such clear cause-and-effect relationships.

    To deliver an integrated digital experience in this more complex world, organizations need a clearly defined and comprehensive digital marketing strategy that is backed up by an integrated set of software, middleware, and hardware solutions.

  • Strong support for business agility and speed-to-market. As both IT and marketing executives know, speed-to-market and business agility are key to competitive advantage. That means marketers need solutions to support the rapid implementation of online marketing initiatives—plus the flexibility to adapt quickly to a changing marketplace. And IT needs tools with the performance, scalability, and ease of integration to support marketing efforts. Both teams benefit when business users are empowered to implement marketing initiatives on their own, with minimal IT intervention.

  • The ability to deliver relevant, personalized content. Delivering a one-size-fits-all online customer experience is no longer acceptable. Customers expect you to know who they are, including their preferences and past relationship with your brand. That means delivering the most relevant content from the moment a visitor enters your site.

    To make that happen, you need a powerful rules engine so that marketers and business users can easily define site visitor segments and deliver content accordingly. That includes both implicit targeting that is based on the user’s behavior, and explicit targeting that takes a user’s profile information into account. Ideally, the rules engine can also intelligently weight recommendations when multiple segments apply to a specific customer.

  • Support for social interactivity. With the advent of Facebook and LinkedIn, visitors expect to participate in and contribute to your web presence—and share their experience on their own social networks. That requires easy incorporation of user-generated content such as comments, ratings, reviews, polls, and blogs; seamless integration with third-party social networking sites; and support for social login, which helps to remove barriers to social participation.

  • The ability to deliver connected, multichannel experiences that include powerful, flexible mobile capabilities. By 2015, mobile usage is projected to surpass that of PCs and other wired devices. In other words, mobile is an essential element in delivering exceptional online customer experiences. This requires the creation and management of mobile experiences that are optimized for delivery to the thousands of different devices that are in use today. Just as important, organizations must be able to easily extend their traditional web presence to the mobile channel and deliver highly personalized and relevant multichannel marketing initiatives while also managing to minimize the time and effort required to manage mobile sites.

Are you curious to know how your organization measures up when it comes to delivering an engaging, multichannel digital experience? If so, take this brief, 15-question online assessment and see how your organization scores in the areas of digital strategy, digital agility, relevance and personalization, social interactivity, and multichannel experience.


Tuesday Sep 10, 2013

My Theory of Inverse Relationships: Technical Sophistication vs Compensating Customer Service

Statistics are everywhere – people that are engaged in life and work are generally happier people because their needs are met without excessive hassles.  Download Employee Engagement Report Free Today!
As we move towards a more self-service technology-enabled culture, I have a theory of inverse relationships that is starting to take shape. I have had a few more experiences over the past couple of weeks that lay credence to my nascent theory.

I believe that there is an inverse relationship between the technical sophistication of companies and their person-to-person relationships. You may remember a post I did right around this time of year a couple of years ago entitled “Mayberry RFD meets the WWW” that started to examine my perspective. I'm still a believer.

As many of our readers know from my previous posts, my family is now in the beginning of the college years and we’ve just delivered our daughter to a beautiful small liberal arts University in upstate NY. Wish her well as she focuses on Neuroscience to cure all of our imminent dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. I hope I remember to thank her someday.  Because of this – I’ve had a lot of drive time (5 hrs each way) to do some thinking about this subject and some experiences over the process.

I’ll start with a recent experience with my local spring water delivery service. This company has been around for eons and very service-focused. As I’ve been trying to do all my bill paying online and we hadn't ordered water for a couple of years, I took a look at their website to see if I could just pay my bill by credit card. Sure enough – they have a “Pay your bill online” button on their site. When clicked, I was presented with a form to fill out and a submit button. Easy, painless and fast. Yet I received no email confirmation of my payment that is usually the norm with online payments of this sort. Suspicious and concerned that I perhaps just distributed my credit card number to a phishing expedition – I emailed the company and had a response within a couple of hours that read something to the effect of (I’ll paraphrase) – “Oh ya – that’s never worked – give us a call and we can take care of it over the phone…”  So – here’s a small company trying to survive against its much larger competitors with a bigger regional footprint that hasn’t prioritized their online bill pay as worth the investment or PREFERS to have the traditional biller and payer relationship by mailed checks or phone. The nice thing about this in many ways – is that when I called and spoke with “Mary” – she was genuine, friendly, and truly apologetic that their online system has never worked. Technical sophistication level: LOW. Customer Service level: HIGH. Customer Loyalty because of the overall positive experience = HIGH.

Those of you that are dealing with College or University online systems for students, parents, faculty and vendors are probably used to a wide range of functionality. My wife is an academic at a major university and we’ve seen all sides of this. This is NOT the public-facing Admissions advertising and marketing site, but instead how the students and parents deal with payments, registrations, insurance, financial aid, etc.. Lately, we’ve had the Uber Portal experience at my daughter’s University that thus far seems to be the most awkward and poorly designed collection of services we’ve ever experienced. Where is that tuition going? Like many universities, this portal is an open source project and feels like a garage project done in an intern’s spare cycles. Yet – in following my inverse technology theory – when I call the University (ANY department) to ask about something that isn’t clear or working on their portal, I often get a confirming statement about the portal being down or other less than glowing statements, and then the BEST customer service experience on the phone with people bending over backwards to help assist you with whatever request they need to get the job done in spite of the poor system that should have taken care of the problem or question in the first place. Technical experience to solve your problem online = LOW. Customer Service experience to compensate for poor online system =- HIGH. Overall experience = HIGH despite the high tuition bills that we’ll be paying until we’re 90.

Many Universities aren’t in the same boat – and although I’m not shipping my daughter off to Australia, one of our great customers there talks about how Oracle WebCenter provides the enterprise platform for University of Melbourne’s Student Portal, allowing the aggregation of all services and applications that students need to manage their academic and social lives while enrolled at the university. Check out this link:University of Melbourne Empowers Student Portal with Oracle

Lastly – I had another great experience while I was helping my daughter move into her dorm. As expected, we forgot some items and needed a few things so I took a trip down to the local hardware/country store. There they had everything we needed along with the most incredible customer service I’ve experienced in a retail establishment for a long time. I had a short list of items to find, but I’m a sucker for a country store that claims to have everything and did some aisle roaming to see what they really had.  During my 45 minutes there (my wife says it was more like 1.5 hrs) I had more people offer to help me and actually do so than you usually would experience in a brand-recognized chain store which this definitely wasn’t. To test my theory when I returned home – I went looking for their website and sure enough – this is what I found:   “Our Website is Under Construction - Please stop Back!“

The sidebar on the site under construction did confirm both my experience and current theory. I've changed the names to avoid any free advertising.

Welcome to Small Town General Store!
Our slogan says it all...Experience a Modern Day General Store.
We welcome you to visit our family-owned general store in Smallville, USA where the experience will make you want to visit again and again.  At Small Town General Store - you will find a full selection of electronics, paint, hardware, housewares and office supplies.  We believe in offering a wide variety of product with exceptional customer service.  Our friendly staff will greet you upon entering the store and direct you towards whatever your project requires that day.  Need advice on the project?  No problem our staff is well versed in everything we sell and we offer DIY books as reference.  Don't see what you are looking for - we have the ability to special order almost anything you need.  Whether you are a contractor, local business owner, homeowner, student or just passing through our town, Small Town General Store has something for you.

So - what does this all mean? You might be saying that of course, small town local business has to compensate with great customer service to compete with the big box stores and larger franchised services and you might be right. What about the ideal combination? What if you had the ultimate self-service online experience AND the company was a pleasure to deal with day in and day out? Employees that are happier at their jobs because they have the tools to get the job done quickly, efficiently and accurately will also provide a much better customer experience because they aren't fighting with systems that make their job miserable. Food for thought.

Watch this newly released WebCenter Portal Demo that will change your expectations for portals in your organization.

To learn more about this, don't miss our upcoming webcast on the NEW Release of Oracle WebCenter on Sept. 12th - see banner below. This will also be available On-Demand (AKA Self-Service!!) after this date, so register today and you 'll get the On-Demand link sent to you automatically after the event.

Register today - Watch this Week!



Wednesday Aug 28, 2013

How the New Release of Oracle WebCenter Sites Keeps Marketers in Step with Digital Experience Trends

Today's guest post was contributed by Joshua Duhl, Senior Principal Product Manager for Oracle WebCenter Sites.

Over the past few years, Digital Experience has tended to be a fast moving market. Driven by changing online consumer behavior, and fueled by key trends which include the demand for engaging mobile experiences that maximize efficiencies, simplification of multi-channel content management that support the reemergence of the brand site, and the personalization of individual digital experiences, it presents a challenge to marketers attempting to keep pace.

Web Experience Management or WEM, the product category focused on the creation and management of digital experiences, is rapidly changing as well. WEM has grown out of simple web site management or web content management, to include personalization, social engagement, mobile engagement and support for multi-channel marketing experiences. Now more than ever before, marketers are increasingly and actively seeking WEM solutions that enable them to keep pace with the rapid evolution of digital marketing, and the relentless demand for engaging, and cross-channel digital experiences.

Oracle’s WebCenter Sites has long been a market leading WEM solution. With the release of WebCenter Sites 11.1.1.8, Oracle continues to expand the power and impact of WEM solutions, and keeps marketers in step with these key trends. Let’s take a look at how WebCenter Sites addresses them.

The ability to manage and deliver engaging mobile experiences is currently the most pressing need we hear from our customers. Mobile site management is now seen as an integral part of managing their overall online experience, yet it comes with a distinct set of requirements that may need to be met separately, depending upon specific objectives.

WebCenter Sites 11.1.1.8 new mobile site management option offers marketers the ability to manage their mobile sites with the same ease as managing their traditional online experience, while providing flexibility to deliver device-optimized sites as needed. By allowing content reuse, the utilization of the same tools and experience for site authoring and publishing processes across web and mobile, and by leveraging responsive design to reduce site development and speed time to market, marketing can maximize efficiencies for mobile site development, and deliver a consistent cross-device brand experience. In addition WebCenter Sites allows marketers to meet mobile-specific requirements when needed, providing mobile template and site plan customization, device management, and in-context preview and editing of mobile sites. It also enables full mobile content targeting, to drive personalized mobile experiences across any mobile device.

Mobile sites can be edited using drag-and-drop tools and previewed within the same business user interface as the traditional web presence. 

Over the past few years, consumers have turned the tables on brands, dictating how, when and where they want to experience the brand. As more online channels have emerged to meet this demand – from brand sites, to micro and multilingual sites, to email campaigns, through to mobile and social – the more complex content management has become for online marketers. What we’re seeing now is the reassertion of the importance of the brand site; the idea of the corporate .com as a center point of digital experience. The content that drives activity on other online touch points (email offers, social promotions, microsite landing pages) ultimately points back to the brand site, where all of these channels converge.

In response to this trend, WebCenter Sites now enables marketers to search and access content originating from other channels such as YouTube, Brightcove and other cloud-based stores, or from enterprise content management systems, like WebCenter Content – in other words regardless of where it is stored – from within the WebCenter Sites authoring environment, and incorporate it within brand sites to produce a more unified, cross-channel experience.

The Oracle WebCenter Sites visual contributor interface provides web marketers with an easy-to-use site authoring experience, aggregating content that can originate from a wide variety of sources .

The trend to drive personalized digital experiences has finally reached the tipping point, where every organization we engage with has some sort of personalization initiative on their short list of digital experience priorities. In this new release, WebCenter Sites addresses a broad range of personalization capabilities including:

  • Targeting content and experiences to different customer segments
  • Making online search more relevant and intuitive through incorporation of Endeca guided navigation
  • Providing tools that enable site visitors to tailor their own online experience
  • Targeting specific content to mobile sites and devices
  • Integration with a fully automated predictive system
  • Advanced vanity URL management to enable better SEO targeting and campaign landing page management

Of these, the latter two are of greatest interest to our customers. The ability to deliver engaging mobile experiences is in part dependent on delivering personalized, targeted content to specific mobile site visitors. Lastly, our customers are beginning to see the power of connecting WebCenter Sites native targeting engine to a predictive solution. It can offset the labor associated with managing segmenting and targeting through automation, while delivering higher success rates for metrics like click-throughs and conversions, or driving bottom line results like recommending higher margin items. We expect to see the most interest and growth in fully automated predictive system integrations in the coming year.

Lastly, this release also supports the broader trend of social interaction. Building on the prior 11gR1 release, WebCenter sites provides expanded social capabilities for faster and easier development of social pages, and customer login from social sites. These features include:

  • Drag and drop of social components (polls, ratings, rankings, comments) directly into pages, with no coding required
  • Expanded social login support enabling login to WebCenter Sites using credentials from over 30+ social sites
  • Support for Oracle Access Management (OAM) platform for web single sign-on and access management
  • Publishing directly to Google+ from WebCenter Sites

The demands of digital experience continue to deepen and expand. Marketers need WEM solutions, like Oracle WebCenter Sites, that enable them to address the changing needs of their visitors, keep up with the rapid evolution of digital marketing, and meet the relentless demand for engaging, and cross-channel digital experiences.

Wednesday Aug 14, 2013

Oracle Unveils New Release of Oracle WebCenter

There’s exciting news in the world of Oracle WebCenter today with the unveiling of our latest product release. We realize that in today’s economy, organizations are increasingly looking for ways to lower their costs, improve operational efficiencies and increase revenue. To address these challenges, we’ve made updates across our complete portfolio of portal, enterprise content management, Web experience management, and collaboration technologies. By providing enhanced multi-channel user experience capabilities and delivering a comprehensive set of tools that reduces the traditional business line reliance on IT, the new release helps businesses lower their costs, improve operational efficiency, and increase their bottom line revenue.

Webcast: The New Oracle WebCenter - Register Now

The new Oracle WebCenter release introduces a new Java-based cross-platform Enterprise Capture product to expand our imaging and enterprise content management solutions and a new Mobile Option to provide richer, optimized multi-channel user experiences out of the box. The new release also includes updates across the entire Oracle WebCenter portfolio to empower the mobile workforce with new mobile apps, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) support, and enhanced development tools for rapid deployment of mobile portals and websites. Also included are a range of tools designed to empower business users and remove the traditional line of business dependency on IT to shorten the time to market and reduce costs. Here’s a closer look at some of the enhancements to each product:

Oracle WebCenter Portal

The new release of Oracle WebCenter Portal makes it easier and faster for business users to create intuitive portals with integrated application content by:

  • Streamlining development with an integrated set of tools for web & mobile
  • Providing out of the box templates for common use cases
  • Expediting the portal creation experience with a WYSIWYG editing experience

Oracle WebCenter Content

The new release of Oracle WebCenter Content makes it easier to share information efficiently by:

  • Enabling users to access business documents “on the go” using their device of choice
  • Putting content to work in process-centric business application environments
  • Simplifying the management of the entire content lifecycle in the most scalable and comprehensive enterprise content management system

Oracle WebCenter Sites

In addition, by enhancing Oracle WebCenter Sites, the latest release helps marketers engage, guide, and convert customers online by:

  • Managing mobile sites with ease and marketing to mobile customers more effectively
  • Creating a media rich online customer experience using video and other digital marketing content from within the enterprise or from the cloud
  • Providing more relevant search results to guide and influence customers on their websites

"To make the best possible decisions for your business, it is important that everyone in an organization has access to the right information, in the right context, and within the right business process, no matter where they are," said Balaji Yelamanchili, senior vice president, Oracle Product Development. "The latest release of Oracle WebCenter supports this level of engagement at your desk, or on the road, by delivering enhancements across portal, Web experience management, content, and collaboration technologies. By intuitively connecting people, process and information across any device, the new release of Oracle WebCenter helps organizations improve decision making and enhance engagement with customers, partners and employees across every channel."

Stay tuned to the Oracle WebCenter blog over the next few days as we take a closer look at some of the new features in Oracle WebCenter’s new release and register for our in-depth webcast on the new Oracle WebCenter taking place on September 12.

Tuesday Aug 13, 2013

Four Drivers of Digital Customer Engagement

The web is a primary channel for conducting our businesses and even managing our own lives. More information is available to people online than ever before, and in an increasing variety of digital formats. The web has also evolved to include important new channels like mobile and social, and interactive and on-the-go online experiences are now part of our everyday lives.

These factors have come together to create customers who have more choices than ever before, more influence than ever before, and greater control over their relationships with brands than ever before. And while this so called customer experience revolution has been great for consumers, this new environment poses many challenges for businesses when it comes to engaging and connecting with their customers. To be successful in this dynamic market, it’s essential for businesses to focus on delivering engaging customer experiences that drive sales and long term loyalty.

So, what are the characteristics of a truly engaging digital customer experience?

An engaging digital experience is one that is contextually relevant. Delivering a one-size-fits-all digital customer experience is no longer acceptable or particularly effective. Instead, your customers expect you to know who they are and to understand their preferences, behavior and past relationship with your brand. And they expect you to demonstrate this by delivering an online experience that is relevant and personalized to their needs.

Social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn have also changed customers’ expectations in favor of more interactive online experiences. Visitors to your site expect to participate and contribute on your web presence and to also share aspects of that experience with their social networks. Whether through user-generated content like comments, reviews or ratings, the engaging digital customer experience now requires plenty of opportunities for social interaction.

The ubiquity of mobile devices means that an engaging digital customer experience is also an increasingly mobile experience. This requires mobile enablement of the web presence, ideally reusing existing web content and sites, reformatted and optimized for delivery to thousands of different mobile phones and tablets for anytime, anywhere engagement.  

And finally, the engaging digital customer experience is a connected and consistent experience.  Over the course of their relationship with your brand, your customers may go online to browse, search, make purchases, or service their accounts and a number of different technologies may be involved in supporting these different types of interaction. Your goal should be to create a connected, seamless and consistent customer journey, by integrating the different technologies involved in delivering the customer experience.


Wednesday Jul 10, 2013

Localization in Oracle WebCenter Sites

Web site visitors have high expectations for the sites they visit.  Increasingly, they expect to access your website and your content in their preferred language.  Whether you serve a diverse local community or you compete in markets around the globe, the ability to engage your customers in their preferred language can mean the difference between business success and failure.

Engaging customers in their preferred language often means translating content from one language to another.  Translation can be a complex and expensive process if not managed properly, so success implies having the tools to manage and deliver not only the various finished translated content, but also to manage the process of content translation.

With Oracle WebCenter Sites, organizations are empowered to translate and deliver their web presence into appropriate languages – as much or as little as needed.  Granular control enables marketing to manage translation costs: translate a single article, a page or an entire site, as well as control of when to translate, and who or what service to use for each translation.  The same business interface provided for content creation and contribution allows you to easily manage multilingual content as well as the translation processes.  Simple click-to-translate and seamless integration with third party automated, crowd-sourced, and expert translation services provide an easy-to-use but deep integration of the translation process into site management.  

Localization

You can now easily extend your web presence to new geographies, locales or demographics, and effectively deliver multilingual marketing and customer experience initiatives in customers’ preferred languages, while saving significant time, effort and cost in managing multilingual sites.  Furthermore, you can provide multichannel, multilingual online campaigns as the translated content works with WebCenter Sites full multichannel and multiple device delivery capabilities for multilingual experiences across thousands of devices – including smart phones and tablets. WebCenter Sites capabilities include:

  • Granular control: Provide articles, pages and sites in multiple languages
  • Manage multiple translations from the same business user interface
  • Easily select and manage what to translate, when and by who
  • Preview pages in any translated language
  • Deep, seamless integration with third-party automated, crowd-sourced, and expert translation services
  • Utilize Oracle WebCenter Sites’s multichannel and mobile capabilities to deliver multilingual experiences across thousands of devices – including smartphones & tablets

With Oracle WebCenter Sites, you can deliver a unified multichannel and multilingual brand experience at a lower cost.

Friday May 24, 2013

Empowering Marketers and Other Business Users with Oracle WebCenter Sites

In order to compete successfully in today’s market, you need to get to market faster, differentiate yourself from the competition, and deliver on your customers’ expectations for an engaging and consistent experiences across multiple online channels.  But you’ll never get there if your existing web experience management tools and processes keep marketers, editors and other non-technical business users from getting their jobs done effectively. That’s why it’s so important to select a web experience management platform that empowers marketers and other business users with intuitive site authoring tools that give them greater control over the digital customer experience. Learn how some of our customers have empowered their marketing and business teams using WebCenter Sites:

Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras
 “Oracle WebCenter Sites provides an easy-to-use platform that enables our marketing department to spend less time updating content and more time on innovative activities. Previously, it would take 48 hours to update content on our Web site; now it takes less than five minutes. We have shown the market that we are innovators, enabling customer convenience through an improved flight ticket purchase process.” – Kleber Linhares, Information Technology and E-Commerce Director

Read the full success story.

News Limited
“The flexibility of Oracle WebCenter Sites puts additional tools in the hands of our nontechnical editorial staff, enabling them to quickly create content and manage the look and feel of our Websites and the day-to-day production …. We can now meet internal service level agreements to publish content in less than 90 seconds and have increased the productivity of editorial staff by 200%.” – Jason Brock, Technology Manager

Read the full success story.

Textron Inc.
"Oracle WebCenter Sites enables our IT staff to get out of the way and allow marketing and communications professionals to leverage their knowledge of customer needs to independently update Website content. In addition, the solution provides a foundation that enables us to integrate our marketing campaigns with emerging communications channels, such as social media and mobile platforms." – Brad Hof, Manager, Advanced Business Solutions and Web Communications

Read the full success story.

*****

Calling all Oracle WebCenter Innovators
Submit your Nominations for the 2013 Oracle Excellence Awards: Oracle Fusion Middleware Innovation 

Is your organization using Oracle WebCenter to deliver unique business value? If so, let the world know and submit a nomination today for the 2013 Oracle Excellence Awards for Oracle Fusion Middleware Innovation. These highly coveted awards honor customers for their cutting-edge solutions using Oracle Fusion Middleware such as Oracle WebCenter. Winners are selected based on the uniqueness of their business case, business benefits, level of impact relative to the size of the organization, complexity and magnitude of implementation, and the originality of architecture. Winners receive a free pass to Oracle OpenWorld 2013 in San Francisco (September 22-26) and will be honored during a special event at OpenWorld.

To be considered for this award, complete the Oracle Fusion Middleware Innovation nomination form for the Oracle WebCenter category and send to Innovation-Middleware_us@oracle.com.  NOTE: The deadline to submit all nominations is 5pm Pacific on June 18, 2013.

Thursday May 23, 2013

So Much UGC, So Little Time: Options for Moderating User-Generated Content

We all know the value of incorporating social computing features such as comments, ratings, reviews, polls and blogs into the web presence. These kinds of interactive capabilities are essential for driving customer engagement and fostering community around your brand. Ratings and reviews can also play an important role in influencing the buying behavior of other site visitors. Checking out online ratings and reviews is something many of us commonly due before selecting a particular product or service. These social capabilities certainly help cultivate loyal and satisfied customers who in turn recommend your brand to others. But before enabling these kinds of features on your web presence, there are some things you need to consider.

Whether you want to enable product reviews or commenting on articles, you’ll want to assure that the dialogue on your website remains focused and relevant.  To accomplish this, you’ll need to consider how best to approach the moderation of the user-contributed content your site visitors will be generating.  



With an open community approach, there really is no moderation.  All can contribute to the conversation and all contributions are published on your website automatically.  While this approach eliminates barriers to participation, encourages a very free dialogue and requires little oversight, there are some serious drawbacks. Open communities can invite spam, trolling or other inappropriate behavior that can be damaging to your brand. For many enterprises, an open community is simply an inappropriate choice.

On the opposite side of the spectrum is a controlled community approach.  In this type of approach, all user-generated content is subject to moderation prior to publishing.  All contributed content needs to be reviewed and approved by a community manager prior to publication.  While this approach encourages contributors to be on their best behavior and provides the community manager with the most control, this approach can result in a considerable delay in the publishing of user-generated content and can discourage social interaction on your web presence.

Enterprises that wish to encourage social interactivity while safeguarding brand integrity may want to consider striking a balance between these two approaches.  If your web experience management platform permits it, this can be done by introducing some level of automated or community member triggered moderation. For example, you might employ user white-lists and blacklists to help determine which site visitors require moderation for their comments.  You could also use customizable keyword filters that will trigger the moderation of comments that contain specific key words such as profanity. Another option is to enlist members of the community in the moderation process, by enabling site visitors to flag content that they think is inappropriate.  When a comment is flagged for moderation by an automated filter or by site visitors, it can automatically be assigned to the appropriate community manager for review, editing, approval or deletion. In this way, low risk user-generated content can be published to your site quickly, while content that may be a cause for concern enters a moderation queue for further review.

See how simple is it to deploy user-generated content features and moderation using Oracle WebCenter Sites.

Wednesday May 22, 2013

WebCenter News, Best Practices & Resources: Check Out the Latest Oracle WebCenter Newsletter

Check out the latest edition of the Oracle Information InDepth Newsletter featuring the latest Oracle WebCenter news, best practices and resources.

In this issue, you’ll find:

  • Five best practices for embracing responsive design from Oracle expert, John Brunswick
  • The smartest journey to connected, multichannel customer experiences
  • The latest webcasts and events on how to engage your customers and empower your business with Oracle WebCenter

Want to get the newsletter delivered directly to your inbox? Subscribe here.

About

Oracle WebCenter is the center of engagement for business—powering exceptional experiences for customers, partners, and employees. It connects people, process, and information with the most complete portfolio of portal, Web experience management, content, imaging and collaboration technologies.

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