By integrating WebSphere Commerce and Digital Experience, we are delivering consistent brand experiences across all channels. It engages customers with interactive experiences that tell brand and product stories. It delivers rich experience there by maximizes revenue and retain customer relationships. Content authors and marketers can rapidly roll out new online tools, programs and personalize offers based on customer preferences and analytics.
There are 3 patterns of integration :
1. Portal as Front end : Dedicated portlets are available in Portal for Commerce for this scenario.
2. Commerce as Front end : WCM Content is injected into Commerce using Remote services.
3. Side By Side : Users access either Portal or Commerce depending on which page they are looking at. Portal pages show web content, social data and data pulled from other data sources. Commerce shows product catalog, shopping cart data. Portal and Commerce can display each others data in their web page by using REST Services.
In this article, lets see the pattern : Portal as Front end. This pattern is more suitable for B2C websites. An example for this pattern is the news website. When you browse a news letter or any technical journal, the users are analyzed and based on their interest advertisements from e-commerce sites are displayed. When a user clicks on a specific advertisement, then it takes the user to e-commerce website. In our case, on clicking an advertisement, it takes the user to Site by Side pattern of Commerce website. The user may not know this transition. This is due to factors like branding and digital experience. The Digital Experience, Personalization component takes care of displaying personalized commerce content to users. In this pattern, the commerce data is displayed in Portal pages to attract customers and usually updates to Commerce data doesn't happen here.
Custom Portlets like Shopping cart, Product Catalog, Store locator, Add to cart, query cart are available to access the WebSphere Commerce services.
Web Application Bridge (WAB) is an option to pull Commerce Web UI and insert it into a Portal page.
This pattern uses Digital Data Connector(DDC) for integrating Commerce data in Portal pages. DDC consumes the external data source data like atom feed, xml or json and renders the data in Portal using DDC plugins. It doesn't store the external data in WCM and it uses the WCM presentation template to display the external data. DDC requires no java coding skill for integration. DDC uses Xpath to retrieve the data from data source. Configuration to map external data Xpath and rss/ xml/json xpath is defined in WebSphere Resource Environment providers. You can use the DDC API for accessing other data formats. A simple exercise to learn DDC is available here :
Also, check the sample Commerce storefront example here :
Screenshot of DDC Commerce Storefront example using Product Details portlet: