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Headless E-commerce Architecture

Welcome to the first in a series of posts I will be publishing on the theme of “What is Headless E-commerce?”. I will start here with some basic definitions. As the series develops, I plan to elaborate on particular use cases and flavors of headless e-commerce. And to help shed some light on how the term is being used commercially in different circles.

I’m going to start at the very beginning and define e-commerce, to give us a solid foundation to build upon.


noun, often attributive

: commerce conducted via the Internet

You might notice that this definition, from…

Headless architecture will democratize the talent pool for front-end e-commerce developers. That is my prediction. I was inspired to write this post and to put down in writing some of my reasoning for this prediction after I saw this tweet from Phillip Jackson and inserted myself into the conversation:

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PWA / Headless E-commerce Tweet

For many years front-end e-commerce developers have worked in silos. The e-commerce developer world itself is siloed from the larger world of web development. And e-commerce developers are further siloed by platform. A front-end developer who has 4 years experience coding Shopify sites starts from scratch when their client requests a…

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Pilon’s listing of e-commerce sites with PWA, headless architecture and / or modern JavaScript frameworks

Over the past months, I’ve had more conversations than I can count with business owners, marketers, developers, and others about headless e-commerce architecture and the major paradigm shift I see happening.

One of the most common questions I’ve fielded is “I’d like to see an example of a headless e-commerce site, can you share a link?”. So I’ve been collecting examples. Actively seeking them out even. With some strong encouragement from a certain e-commerce dev and podcaster, I decided this would be a valuable resource for others.

Thus was born. Pilon will be doing our best to keep the site updated as we discover new sites. If you’ve worked on a headless or PWA implementation on an e-commerce, please let us know and we’ll feature it on

What is PWA (Progressive Web Application) and how does it apply to e-commerce?

There has been a lot of talk about implementing PWA (Progressive Web Application) features in e-commerce for several years now, but adoption has been slow. I’m seeing some signs though, that today, at the beginning of 2019, real-world adoption is starting to accelerate and we may be at a tipping point.

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Google Developers illustrates PWA is all about bringing great UX to low bandwidth situations

What is PWA?

Simply stated, PWA is a set of guidelines and technologies for making websites more app-like. The term originated in 2015 when “…designer Frances Berriman and Google Chrome engineer Alex Russell coined the term…to describe apps taking advantage of new features supported by modern browsers…”

According to Wikipedia:

“Progressive web…

Garth Brantley

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