Gartner just released its 2019 Magic Quadrant (MQ) for Web Content Management1 (WCM) and we’re happy to see we’re a Leader — again. In fact, this marks our 10th consecutive year as a Magic Quadrant Leader in one of the most influential and widely referenced reviews of the vendors in our market. 

According to Gartner, “Leaders should drive market transformation.” The report goes on, “They have the highest combined scores for Ability to Execute and Completeness of Vision. They are doing well and are prepared for the future with a clear vision and a thorough appreciation of the broader context of digital business. They have strong channel partners, a presence in multiple regions, consistent financial performance, broad platform support and good customer support. In addition, they dominate in one or more technologies or vertical markets. Leaders are aware of the ecosystem in which their offerings need to fit.”

Our goal has always been to set a vision for the market and deliver solutions that meet and extend that vision, and we believe this report confirms we’re doing just that. 

WCM was always just the start

Sitecore began as a WCM system and it’s extremely gratifying to have been recognized for the last decade as a Gartner Magic Quadrant for WCM Leader. But as Michael Seifert, a co-founder and our first CEO, said in 2006, our ambitions always exceeded making a “typewriter for the web.”

WCM systems are an essential element of the martech stack for every organization, often taking center stage in effective customer experience and digital transformation initiatives. However, what differentiates WCM systems — and conveys their value — increasingly comes from the integration of adjacent digital marketing technologies such as customer data management, analytics, personalization, marketing automation, and machine learning. This expansion of capability has given rise to the Digital Experience Platform (DXP).

In Sitecore’s case, these adjacent capabilities are all native to Sitecore® Experience Platform™, which is central to our strategy to provide the most versatile digital experience platform on the market. We believe that strategy — along with our long-term position as a Magic Quadrant Leader in the WCM market — is a big part of why we’re also a Leader in Gartner’s 2019 Magic Quadrant for Digital Experience Platforms2. Like many industry watchers, we’re convinced this is where the market is headed and why we’re the company our competitors strive to be.

We believe Leadership requires resilience

In our estimation, a vendor doesn’t last a full decade in the Leader's Quadrant without adapting and evolving no matter the challenge. One growth area we’ve been particularly focused on lately is the way we support our partners and customers.

Over the past several months, we’ve been hard at work improving the consistency, clarity, and completeness of our customer success and partner enablement capabilities. The overhaul we’re making in this area isn’t a quick fix, but the tremendous strides we’ve made in four key strategic areas reveal our commitment:

1. Scaling our Value Realization Services team: In May, we announced new leadership and expanded resources to help our customers align their digital technologies and strategic business objectives. We’ve amplified our focus on Sitecore Business Optimization Strategies™ (SBOS) strategic consulting services, which is expanding our customers’ and partners’ access to industry-specific best practices curated from years of experience in Sitecore-powered digital experience transformations. As Brenda Tharp, senior business relationship manager for Digital at McCormick and Company, noted:

“We were very pleased with our interactions with SBOS, as the process allowed our business units to engage and improve our understanding of the inherent value of Sitecore’s platform. This ultimately pushed our personalization project through the finish line, while empowering McCormick to own our unique connected consumer transformation.”

2. Our acquisition of Hedgehog: On June 7, we officially closed our acquisition of Hedgehog Development, a customer and partner-focused digital consultancy that has helped Sitecore customers get the most out of the platform. Hedgehog’s co-founder and CEO Dan Galvez is now leading Sitecore’s Professional Services organization and, as he’s stated:

“I’m confident we will soon speed up the customer and partner feedback loop significantly, while also gathering deeper insights. This will allow us to build better products and solutions, as well as provide customers with more value in less time and with less effort.”

Of course, elevating our customer success capabilities will be done with and through the deep relationships we enjoy with our Solution Provider Partners, which brings me to …

3. Revamped Solution Partner Program: Last year, we made significant changes to our Solution Provider Partner Program to ensure our partners have the support they need to successfully deliver Sitecore projects, as well as provide our customers with the clarity they need to select a partner with demonstrated competency and performance. Far beyond a simple re-tiering of our partners, we substantially increased our commitments to partner support and enablement, including learning and training programs, Sitecore technical resources, and project delivery support packages. Collectively, we’re doing more than ever to help both customers and partners get the most out of every Sitecore implementation.

4. Expanded our end-to-end customer support and success capabilities: In December 2018, we brought on Beth Broderson as our Chief Customer Officer to aggressively, constructively, and collaboratively drive a fanatical focus on customer success and delight. She immediately got to work driving big investments in our customer engagement processes so that we remain committed and engaged post-sale to ensure our customers achieve their goals with Sitecore. Beth’s organization is also driving a major upgrade in the training and development resources that help Sitecore users and developers increase their proficiency with the Sitecore platform. This July, we started seeing the returns, with 22 new dynamic eCourse learning solutions and four completely redesigned instructor-led training courses. These allow our customers, partners, and employees to customize their on-demand training experience and choose the method that helps them learn best, whether reading, watching, doing, or playing. I invite you to learn more about our courses and access the full catalog.

Proud of our past, excited about our future

Being told you’re doing something well is great. But the biggest opportunity for growth comes when someone reveals where you can improve. 

The analyst community is just one place we look to for feedback to ensure we’re ahead of the market and supporting our customers as they strive to achieve digital success.

We’ve been a Gartner WCM Magic Quadrant Leader for a decade. That feels great. But here’s one thing we believe about our position as a Leader: It requires owning up to hard truths and making a commitment to improve.

When it comes to customer success, this is doubly true — our solutions are made to support our customers in their own customer success, so we better ensure our customers are successful in implementing them. We’re committed to learning from the past, especially the areas where we can improve. But we’re also committed to not dwelling on it. Because we’ve learned something else about leadership: it requires always looking toward and striving for the future.

Feedback, reflection, learning, growth — focused on the future, mindful of our history. That’s the path we’ve always been on. We still are. If you haven’t already, come join us.

 

Paige O'Neill is Chief Marketing Officer at Sitecore. Find her on LinkedIn.

 

1 Gartner, Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management, Irina Guseva, Mick MacComascaigh, 30 July 2019.

2 Gartner, Magic Quadrant for Digital Experience Platforms, Irina Guseva, Gene Phifer, Mike Lowndes, Gavin Tay, 11 February 2019.

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