Published on October 27, 2023, 9:48 pm

TLDR: Sitecore recently made three significant roadmap announcements, including the adoption of generative AI, the introduction of a new Accelerator service, and updates to their cloud offerings. Generative AI has the potential to revolutionize aspects of the digital customer experience, while the integration of ChatGPT or OpenAI's GPT Large Language Model allows marketing teams to leverage AI within their solutions. Sitecore's composable strategy focuses on evolving their platform and encouraging customers to transition to the cloud. The launch of Sitecore Accelerate provides support for on-premises customers migrating to the cloud, and XM Cloud Plus offers additional capabilities to entice organizations using Sitecore XP. These updates demonstrate Sitecore's commitment to meeting the needs of its customers in a highly competitive industry.

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Sitecore Symposium has been a long-standing tradition in the Sitecore calendar. It was an event that guaranteed headline product announcements every fall. However, starting recently, Symposium has transformed from a yearly in-person conference to a biennial event with a series of one-day gatherings. Despite this change, Sitecore has not let go of its commitment to unveiling major product updates during the fall season.

In this article, we will delve into three significant roadmap announcements made by Sitecore: generative AI, a new Accelerator service, and their implications for Sitecore.

Generative AI has gained extensive media attention since the release of ChatGPT in November 2022. Businesses are captivated by its potential to enhance productivity. While generative AI comes with inherent risks, there are numerous opportunities to revolutionize aspects of the digital customer experience through content generation, advanced marketing automation, chatbot improvements, and more.

Recognizing that marketing teams are keen on innovation using ChatGPT and some may already be leveraging it, Digital Experience Platform (DXP) and Content Management System (CMS) vendors have been working on integrating ChatGPT or OpenAI’s GPT Large Language Model. This integration allows teams to harness generative AI within their solutions while providing vendors with more AI-powered features to offer customers. Other products like Adobe Photoshop have also started incorporating generative AI into their offerings independently of OpenAI.

Although artificial intelligence (AI) is not new to Sitecore, they have now joined other vendors in adopting generative AI with a “complete OpenAI chat integration” across their range of solutions as part of their existing composable strategy. During a speech in Melbourne, CEO Steve Tzikakis mentioned specific examples of how this integration will materialize. It remains uncertain whether organizations will need their own independent subscription to OpenAI for these new features.

These initial integrations may mark the beginning of a deeper integration with generative AI at Sitecore. In an interesting interview, Sitecore’s Chief Product Officer, Dave Flanagan, highlighted the transformative power of generative AI in content generation, content production, personalization, and search delivery. These integrations are expected to be iterative and responsive to market demands as Sitecore competes in the highly competitive DXP field.

Sitecore’s composable strategy has driven it from being a monolithic platform to offering a range of cloud-native products that fit into a composable DXP model. While significant progress has been made in evolving the platform, there is still a considerable number of customers who have yet to fully transition to the new cloud model. To encourage this transition, Sitecore recently made two product announcements at an event in Minneapolis.

The first announcement was the launch of Sitecore Accelerate—a guided program designed to help on-premises customers migrate to XM Cloud, XM Cloud Plus, or potentially OrderCloud for those with e-commerce setups based on Sitecore. Sitecore Accelerate entails a package of knowledge resources, access to consultants and experts, and guidance that supports customers throughout their cloud migration journey.

The second announcement introduced XM Cloud Plus—an extension of the existing XM Cloud product that brings additional capabilities such as Forms Builder, omnichannel content management across different channels, AI-powered search functionality, content recommendations, and more. This expansion aims to entice organizations using Sitecore XP or relying on a broader feature set to make the move to the cloud.

These new updates contribute to Sitecore’s ongoing journey toward a platform that fully supports composable DXPs while providing enticing features like AI for marketing teams. More details about Sitecore Accelerate are expected soon along with potential future announcements. As always, Sitecore continues to evolve and expand its offerings to meet the needs of its customers.

Ryan Bennett, co-founder of Cylogy, Inc., a San Francisco-based digital experience agency, is an expert in next-generation digital experience platforms and public-facing digital customer experience solutions.

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