It’s no secret—today’s successful retailers must have a solid online presence with a reliable and scalable E-Commerce platform to deal with the growth. Online consumer spending in the US up 17% in the 1st quarter of this year and the European E-Commerce market is expected to grow 12% annually the coming years.* But as the business of E-Commerce moves at the speed of light and customers’ requirements constantly change, scalability and flexibility is the name of the game in online retail.
Publically traded on the NYSE Euronext, TIE operates globally with offices in the United States, Netherlands, France and Australia. Their stable and scalable E-Commerce solution enables leading global retailers including T-Mobile, KPN and Royal Ahold’s Albert Heijn to connect to the cloud without development complexity and internal resource constraints . TIE Kinetix relies on Progress® OpenEdge® and its underlying n-tier architecture application development platform to continuously evolve and adapt its E-Commerce solution to deliver a state-of-the-art SaaS-, Cloud-, Mobile- and Social Media-enabled solution that meets new market and customer demands.
TIE Kinetix’s first chose Progress OpenEdge for its E-Commerce solution because it offered an intuitive, easy-to-use environment that allowed developers to build complex business rules. Over a decade later, that ability to deliver state-of-the- art solutions with flexibility and ease remains one of their greatest assets. Since 2000, TIE Kinetix has delivered its E-Commerce Platform using Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). The company wanted to free its customers from the costs and constraints of an on premises solution that required constant maintenance.
Jan Sundelin, CEO of TIE Kinetix, says the benefits of SaaS are numerous and significant. “We have customers that want to be running 24x7x365 with very little downtime for maintenance. To do this on their own would require a tremendous investment in hardware and software, and the resources to keep that infrastructure up and running constantly. With SaaS, all they have to focus on is their business and we take care of the rest. That is a great value proposition.”
Smartphone, iPad, Social Media: It’s all About Time to Market
Today consumers want to place orders from devices such a Smartphones or iPads. And for retailers, social media is increasingly critical to finding and attracting online customers. For example, when a like on Facebook leads a friend to explore a product, retailers are increasingly awarding points or a referral bonus if it results with an online purchase.
Trends like these are tightly followed and acted on by TIE Kinetix. When it comes to E-Commerce, Sundelin says their customers and prospects are focused on performance and accuracy. “Customers want assurance that we can deliver new functionality on time and on budget. And we can do that with Progress. Projects that take some of our customers or competitors three to four months to complete can take us just one to two weeks. The ROI is unmistakable to our customers and it is directly attributable to our underlying Progress architecture.”
“With the Advanced Business Language (ABL) in OpenEdge you don’t have to worry about low level technology. If you can spell it out in English, it will work in Progress. That is very important because it greatly speeds up the development process. We estimate that we are able to deliver new functionality to the market about 10 times faster than our competition. That is why are able to attract marquee customers like T-Mobile and KPN.” Progress is also scalable and able to handle massive loads on the database which is critical to our larger customers.”
“We have looked at Oracle and MySQL, but concluded that only with OpenEdge we have the flexibility and agility to keep our offering competitive without getting bogged down in the technology.
To enable mobile platform support, TIE Kinetix used the WebSpeed component in the OpenEdge platform: “Progress WebSpeed makes it possible for us to support web applications without having to understand any of the very technical details behind it. Plus, it performs well, is scalable and it is very secure. Whether we are building an iPhone app or an HTML5-based interface, we don’t need to make any changes to the architecture. Our solution can support any kind of front-end code our customers want.” In support of Social Media, TIE Kinetix created plug-ins for Facebook and Hyves.
Today, TIE Kinetix is expanding throughout Europe and the U.S. “We are focusing more and more on integration and enhancing the application so that international partners can implement the solution themselves. And we know Progress will continue to offer us the support we need. As a partner they really do offer us the one-stop-shop we require to keep our business up and running.”