May 25 2017

Recapping Salesforce XChange 2017

What a conference! I successfully navigated my first Salesforce XChange experience. After many hours of standing and sitting through keynotes, talking with other partners and retailers, and exploring Las Vegas, I am back in reality in Charleston with all sorts of ideas, new memories, and a lighter wallet.

The Community at Xchange

As a front-end engineer for Blue Acorn, I’ve spent countless hours learning and developing within the Salesforce Commerce Cloud (SFCC) space and talking with other partners and developers through the XChange space, on the phone or via slack, but never really could put a face to the person. I’d never had the opportunity to be surrounded by the community that makes this platform so great. Attending XChange gave me that chance. It gave me the ability to speak with and learn from people who see the platform from a different perspective of my own. It allowed me to see and experience first hand why Salesforce is truly leading the path.

Trailblazing A Path

Since the purchase of Demandware in June 2016, the Salesforce team has been running full-steam ahead. Their team has worked tirelessly toward getting the ecommerce platform up to Salesforce standards, releasing features that increase security and performance (embedded CDN, for example), and integrating the full suite of options that Salesforce provides to their customers.

SFCC has made a push toward an omnichannel customer journey. If a customer is browsing the interwebs or shopping the old fashioned way by going to the store, they offer solutions that can help the customer across the board. They are truly trailblazing a path for ecommerce. As someone who has invested so many hours mastering the ins and outs of the platform, it’s incredibly encouraging.

Keynotes: Einstein

Both days of the conference offered rich content. From the guitarist opener on the first day, to a final Q&A session with Marc Benioff and Sir Richard Branson, XChange didn’t fall short of my expectations. Salesforce offers many products, but the one that stood out to me was the use of artificial intelligence, or what they are labeling as Einstein (AI as a service). If you want product recommendations based on a customer’s buying habits or intelligent sorting of products throughout the SFCC experience, Einstein offers all of that out of the box, with much more in the pipeline.

If you ever want to talk Commerce Cloud

I got to meet new potential partners, talked with retailers about why they love Salesforce, and grew my knowledge of the platform during the breakout sessions. I even hit golf balls with some members of the Salesforce team! It was a good time, and I can’t wait to go back. But I didn’t get to meet everybody! If you were at the show and we didn’t get a chance to connect, you can contact me at jamie@blueacorn.com or just connect with me on LinkedIn. If you didn’t make it out to Vegas but want to talk to someone about the platform, please feel free to reach out. Otherwise, I hope to see you next year!

Jamie Smith

Front-end Architect

Jamie is a front-end engineer on our Salesforce Commerce Cloud team, and has worked for Blue Acorn for almost three years, and holds both Demandware and Magento certifications. His work includes theming for Rebecca Minkoff, Vietri, Mitchell Gold and Bob Williams, and the Blue Acorn site. He is currently working on both Hoover and Dirt Devil ecommerce sites.

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