Why It’s Time to Upgrade Your Version of Sitecore CMS—Yesterday

Topics: Content Management Systems (CMS), Sitecore

Recently, we discussed five great reasons why you should upgrade to the latest version of your CMS, but if you’re already a Sitecore-specific user, this post will tell you why it’s time to upgrade to 8.1.

If you’re unaware of the benefits of upgrading to the latest version and why now is the time to do it, consider the fact that content management systems are required to do more and more as technology changes. Your current CMS version won’t be able to keep up with the new features available, such as contextual marketing and omnichannel capabilities, which you’ll want in order to provide teams with the best content management possible.

That’s where Sitecore 8.1 comes into play.

The market is changing, and you do not want to be caught unaware as your marketing team demands more resources than ever before to create customer experiences, which today’s customer expects to be seamless across channels. But the amount of content required to meet those demands is growing at an overwhelming pace. Contextual marketing features in 8.1 were built to address those issues. Upgrading to Sitecore 8.1 can help you meet those demands and give customers the branded experiences they want.

Let’s briefly address some of those issues and why upgrading your version of Sitecore is the best solution to address your needs.

The Market Is Changing

Content management system demands are up as technology continues to shift to keep pace with an ever-changing market. What worked before is now outdated as consumers demand omnichannel digital experiences, requiring your marketing to be nothing short of ubiquitous. The Sitecore CMS has continued to keep up with those changes with each new version introduced.

Sitecore 6.0 helped you transition from web content management to web experience management, while Sitecore 7.0 shifted the experience to an omnichannel one. Now Sitecore 8.1 is focusing on empowering your business and marketing users. Released in October 2015, the latest version enables you to take contextual marketing and omnichannel digital experiences to the next level as it allows you to stay in constant contact with customers by automatically studying user history, trends, and building a personal profile to best serve them the content they want. With Sitecore 8.1, you are able to take action on evolving market changes because you’re already on the cutting edge of CMS technology.

Marketing Teams Require More Tools to Be Successful

With a continually changing market comes the requirement to furnish your marketing teams with the best tools and resources to be successful. Whether you opt for Sitecore Experience Management or Sitecore Experience Platform, both 8.1 additions provide a full suite of contextual marketing tools which are needed—even necessary—to keep your marketing teams maximizing efficiency and meeting customer demands. Some of the new 8.1 features include reusable content, which enables you to input content just once and apply it across multiple presentation layers or websites, and multilingual content, which allows you to create and maintain content in any number of languages. Additionally, there are several add-on functionality and deployment options available to fit your specific business and infrastructure needs.

An Easier Way to Do Business

Because consumer demands are up, you need to utilize the best tools at your disposal to ease the burden on marketing and IT teams. And since you have to be innovative to keep up with increasing business demands, a large part of that is finding ways to make things easier for everyone.

Sitecore 8.1 was designed to provide an easier way of doing business. Sitecore’s engineers and designers took into account what they heard from industry experts as well as you, their customers, to deliver two versions of the 8.1 platform. Sitecore Experience Management (XM) system allows you to start only with Sitecore’s top-rated web content management system and its in-session personalization. Sitecore Experience Platform (XP) provides a full array of contextually aware marketing tools. It furthermore helps your marketing team gain the ability to truly engage customers with personal experiences based on contextual marketing, without placing additional workloads on your IT team.

New Contextual Marketing Features

Today’s customers want more than to be marketed to—they want to be fully immersed in experiences that delight and help them easily make decisions. Sitecore 8.1 provides the tools that enable you to make that happen by building off of Sitecore 7.0. The newest version fully integrates the overall digital experience, with a consistent and unified interaction that improves commerce, drives revenue, and also offers Sitecore Detection Services and rules editors. The latter features enable you to customize your users’ experiences based on their location and optimize their load times and display based on the actual device(s) they’re using. For more information about the benefits of upgrading to Sitecore 8.1, click here.

Now Is the Time

Now is the time to maximize your CMS’s return on investment by upgrading to Sitecore 8.1 and having access to a full suite of contextual marketing tools that facilitate greater customer conversion. If not, you run the risk of losing potential customers as their omnichannel experiences fall short of seamless.

Look to Sitecore-certified partners and CMS experts, like Axis41, to help you upgrade to the latest version of Sitecore. Our experienced team of architects, developers, and designers have successfully completed 100+ enterprise-level and mid-market CMS implementations, and our in-depth knowledge allows us to transform complex, costly implementations into a streamlined experience where we deliver your CMS on time, on budget, no complications.

Contact us today for a free Sitecore CMS assessment and check out this case study on Utah Transit Authority’s transition to Sitecore.