Salesforce announced some new developer tools today, designed to make it easier for programmers to build applications on top of Commerce Cloud in what is known in industry parlance as a “headless” system.
What that means is that developers can separate the content from the design and management of the site, allowing companies to change either component independently.
To help with this goal, Salesforce announced some new and enhanced APIs that enable developers to take advantage of features built into the Commerce Cloud platform without having to build them from scratch. For instance, they could take advantage of Einstein, Salesforce’s artificial intelligence platform, to add elements like next-best actions to the site, the kind of intelligent functionality that would typically be out of reach of most developers.
Developers also often need to connect to other enterprise systems from their e-commerce site to share data with these tools. To fill that need, Salesforce is taking advantage of MuleSoft, the company it purchased almost two years ago for $6.5 billion. Using MuleSoft’s integration technology, Salesforce can help connect to other systems like ERP financial systems or product management tools and exchange information between the two systems.
Brent Leary, founder at CRM Essentials, whose experience with Salesforce goes back to its earliest days, says this about helping give developers the tools they need to create the same kind of integrated shopping experiences consumers have grown to expect from Amazon.
“These tools give developers real-time insights delivered at the ‘moment of truth’ to optimize conversion opportunities, and automate processes to improve ordering and fulfillment efficiencies. This should give developers in the Salesforce ecosystem what they need to deliver Amazon-like experiences while having to compete with them,” he said.
To help get customers comfortable with these tools, the company also announced a new Commerce Cloud Development Center to access a community of developers who can discuss and share solutions with one another, an SDK with code samples and Trailhead education resources.
Salesforce made these announcement as part of the National Retail Foundation (NRF) Conference taking place in New York City this week.