There are no shortcuts in life, and that’s especially true when it comes to your digital commerce website. But there are times when you have to do something in three days that should take two weeks. Maybe your company needed an edge on the competition, maybe you were trying to capitalize on a trend, maybe you just needed something to go right. So, you cut some corners and got the job done, but in the process left behind some code that’s baffled your engineers ever since. Whatever the circumstances, there comes a point when you can no longer put off paying your technical debt. If your digital commerce platform is struggling just to function, consider using Episerver for technical debt relief. Living Spaces and Umpqua Bank already have.
Technical debt can be defined in a number of different ways, but it boils down to shortcomings in your code that result from prioritizing speed in the development process. As a result, making updates to your website down the line involves overwhelming IT with simple requests that require complicated solutions. Some code may become so entangled that changing it would cause more problems than leaving it alone. Web pages become static, search capabilities are stunted, and more technical debt is regularly accrued–and your customers have probably noticed.
All of this contributes to rising maintenance costs and fewer results. What’s left for the customer is a site that merely functions instead of providing them with an immersive, personalized experience from start to finish. And the problem compounds itself. As more people are required to work around technical debt, fewer people are able to work on improving the site. The longer it goes unaddressed, the more onerous it becomes.
Taking the plunge
Like any large amount of debt, getting rid of technical debt could require significant short-term sacrifices. Temporary workarounds may have gotten you this far, but they risk becoming unsustainable. This debt will have to be paid off at some point, and there will need to be a plan in place. Simply pumping more money into IT is an exercise in diminishing returns.
The question is whether you want to fight tooth-and-nail just to keep pace or be at the forefront of the market. The advantage of Episerver’s platform is that it both addresses the immediate issues of technical debt and mitigates against future debt. With Luminos Labs’ help, the platform can be fully customized to meet your business needs.
A clean slate
There’s a reason technical debt is compared to credit card debt: the challenges it presents are often similar. Perhaps the biggest roadblock is that addressing technical debt is itself a full-time job. Trying to do that while running a business–which is itself hampered by this debt–is almost impossible. Think of Episerver as technical debt relief.
Episerver’s platform is based around centralization, automation, and accessibility. For that to be possible, it first has to simplify your code. Not only does this help in the short term, but it also gets rid of complex–and possibly unusable–legacy code that new team members must spend time learning. It also ends your reliance on IT to do mundane tasks. They can instead work on actually improving the website, which helps reduce maintenance costs and improve results.
This new-found freedom from technical debt allows your business to focus on maximizing its potential. Update websites within minutes thanks to easy-to-use CMS and project management tools–without the help of IT. Create and customize campaigns to manage your brand across multiple channels. Adapt to a world that’s changing faster than ever.
A key part of this adaptation is a personalized customer experience, and Episerver provides a series of automated services to that end. From data aggregation to built-in A/B testing to enhanced product search, there’s a lot that can be done–even if you don’t have to do any of it yourself. Furthermore, Episerver’s automated systems continually fine-tune themselves through machine learning. Technical debt can make personalization feel like an unrealistic luxury, but it is a crucial part of modern business. It’s time to give it the priority it deserves.
Protecting the future
Technical debt is an exercise in constant management. Getting rid of it once won’t keep it away forever, which is why Episerver provides safeguards against being overwhelmed again in the future.
Built-in communication tools, such as an intranet and a customizable dashboard, allow for communication between teams. Miscommunication can be a significant factor in accruing technical debt. Having several tools to maintain contact between team members can help prevent small problems from snowballing.
As your business grows, scaling brings a new set of challenges. Systems grow and get more complex, causing storage costs to rise and increasing the risk of incurring more technical debt. Cloud storage is an effective way of mitigating these problems. In conjunction with automation, Episerver’s main benefit is reducing the burden of handling everything by yourself. With less to manage, you can take fewer shortcuts, avoiding the pitfalls that led to unmanageable technical debt in the first place.
Enjoy Technical Debt Relief
While scary and sometimes onerous, technical debt isn’t always bad. There are times when a shortcut can give your business the boost it needs. And when you don’t have to rely on it just to get by, the short-term benefit won’t create unmanageable complications in the future.
Making the jump to a new platform can be hard, but it’s the only way to get a leg up in the digital landscape. If you’d like to know more about how Episerver can help provide technical debt relief, please contact us.