Magento Imagine 2019 — Constant evolution and the Magento Association
Snowdog’s solution specialist Amber and CEO Kuba recently attended Magento Imagine 2019. Read about their experiences.
Amber Averbukh — Solution Specialist
Overall, this was one of the most exciting, uplifting, thought-provoking and inspiring events, on a personal and professional level.
I couldn’t have been more excited to attend this conference, and am very grateful to have had the opportunity to explore Magento’s #1 event of the year. I was surrounded by professionals and high-level entrepreneurs from all backgrounds and parts of the globe; everyone was ecstatic and happy to be there, and the atmosphere was electric and full of smiles.
Some of the keynote speakers drove us all into a spiral of interesting conversations; Jules Pieri held a book signing event that had people lined from the marketplace area all the way down the hall with everyone eagerly awaiting their turn with the well-known author of “How We Make Stuff Now: Turn Ideas into Products That Build Successful Businesses”. Gary Vaynerchuk gave a talk that basically hit everyone on the head with a baseball bat urging merchants to go in other directions than the familiar SEO and marketing standard strategies. Like utilizing social media, content writing and analytics insights in more than one way.
Overall the vibe in conversations and talks was:
- DARE! Think out of the box.
- Know your audience better, they may be in channels you’d never thought to play in, even in Snapchat and Instagram!
- Produce content and lots of it. Write articles, post on LinkedIn, populate websites with quality content.
- Dare to think innovatively, and find solutions that are well suited for your site
- and last but not least — Think BIG! and be creative
With so many inspiring conversations, we were exposed to some beautiful new features Magento 2.3 already has to offer, like PWA, which had some extensive demonstrations showing the simplicity of installation and work with the feature. The BI feature which gives some beautiful insights to a store’s performance, shows some beautiful and very visual advanced reports to EE (Commerce) users (It does come with the cloud for no additional fees).
We were also exposed to some interesting new upcoming features like the Catalog AI, which will be working powered by Adobe Sensei, and will have visual search, advanced AI de-duplication of content, auto gallery organization and categorization, quality control, AI feature extraction from images (they demonstrated on color, but when I asked they said it would work on any visual attribute), OCR for commerce, sentiment analysis for customer information and reviews. This feature along with other more conceptual ones had the crowd, and yours truly, over-excited about the new upcoming possibilities.
Product recommendations is about to get bigger and better powered by AI to personalize it per customer usage and behavior, as well as AB testing tools, will be integrated along with some powerful analytics to help merchants make decisions. Magento also announced the launch of its long-coming Amazon integration which will probably be starting with Commerce and Cloud editions.
On the last day, Magento held a live session calling all attendees to vote on the upcoming features which were each more exciting than the previous ones. We received a live demonstration of augmented reality tools (mind-blowing, really!), visual product builder and visual product search tools. The votes were tallied up via Twitter hashtags and it was all very engaging as well as exciting to be a part of, I actually gasped with suspense a couple of times.
There were partnerships discussed left and right, and I even joined the Magento Association and helped Kuba recruit more volunteers. Overall, this was one of the most exciting, uplifting, thought-provoking and inspiring events, on a personal and professional level.
Kuba Zwoliński (CEO, Magento Association Board Director & Magento Master Alumni)
Kuba has been in the Magento community for over 10 years, and his contributions have been further solidified in his new position as a Board Director and Vice-Chair of the Magento Association.
One of my aims at this year’s Magento Imagine was to therefore inform and engage people about the new association, what it will do for members and encourage the Magento community to join and have their voice be heard.
We were really pleased to see our robot Pepper getting featured in the Magento Innovations Lab this year. It’s rewarding to be recognized for this work, and we are excited about the the future of Pepper, and playing a big role in how robotics and AI can change the landscape of retail commerce.
Once again, the Snowdog developer team prepared the Magento Imagine schedule, timetable and speaker lists on the Meet Magento conference app. It allowed people to join the association, as well as rate talks, connect with people and create conference schedules. You can still download it and use it at future Meet Magento events, and stay connected with the community.
On Monday Magento Association Board organized a town hall meeting to discuss and answer questions surrounding the Magento Association, and those meetings continued through all conference days at the association booth. We got a lot of great questions about Association role and future, and some of them were a great hint about best direction for the community. Magento’s strongest part was always people and our role as the Association is to keep it this way, no matter where the commercial product is heading. It was an interesting experience to be at Imagine with completely different role, most of the time having a duty at Association booth but looks like it was worth it; over 3 days of the conference, we managed to get over 500 sign ups.
Now, the future is in our hands and hopefully we will do something great for the community.
Magento Imagine has been evolving in the last couple years, but it always reflected what’s happening in the ecosystem. Now, knowing that Imagine will become part of the Adobe Summit next year I’m a little bit sad to lose that unique event specialization but also excited about new adventure in the united Magento, Marketo & Adobe ecosystem. Let the #digitalexperience era begin!