Netcomm Forum 2024
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Innovation at Shopware – why we set trends rather than following them

Innovation at Shopware – why we set trends rather than following them

Now that 2024 has begun to pick up speed, Shopware is launching itself confidently into a year full of innovations. This blog post gives in-depth insight into Shopware’s innovation strategy. It explains why innovations play such an important role at Shopware and why we always aim to provide our users and partners with a constant stream of sophisticated ecommerce solutions.

Here, you can find out what to expect in the near future from one of the leading ecommerce platforms – from new functions in key areas like AI and spatial commerce to experimental features that Shopware users can actively help to shape. Immerse yourself in a world of Shopware, where we pave the way for the future of ecommerce together and set trends rather than merely following them.

In this blog post, you will find out:

Shopware – the innovative ecommerce platform

We are well aware how crucial it is for ecommerce merchants to set themselves apart from the competition. Innovative solutions enable our partners and customers to offer their buyers that extra something and to create exceptional shopping experiences. In an ever-changing world, our aim is not just to keep pace with the market but rather to lead the way and set the standards for tomorrow.

As can be seen from the awards and accolades that we have received from German and international market research companies and expert analysts, we have been a pioneering force in many different ways. Take the following, for instance:

  • Gartner classifies us as “visionary” in the Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce 2023. We are very proud of having reached this milestone and attribute it to our innovative key functions in omnichannel commerce, AI tools, automation tools and our digital sales rooms.

  • IDC describes us as a “major player” in its recently published MarketScape report for B2B commerce platforms, laying particular emphasis on our commitment to coming up with innovative solutions.

  • Back in 2017, German business magazine Brandeins – together with statistics portal Statista – singled us out as Innovator of the Year. We see this as confirmation of our longstanding status as innovation leaders.

We attribute this kind of recognition to our ongoing commitment in this area. A substantial part of our revenue is invested in researching and developing new ideas and innovative solutions.

“Every year, we invest 20% of our revenue in research. We experiment with future technologies in our futuristic Shopware labs and interact with external experts at our regular think tanks. And our software and hardware hackathons are designed to let our team give free rein to their creativity and think outside the box.”

– Sebastian Hamann, Shopware co-founder and co-CEO

However, the last two years in particular have once again been a time of fundamental change for us. Thanks to significant investments by PayPal and Carlyle, we were able to revolutionize our product organization and boost innovation even further.

This in turn allowed us to launch important features last year and to continue to do so this year as well.

Innovative features from Shopware: 3 examples

1) Spatial commerce: Interactive AR and 3D features

Spatial Commerce Banner

In a world in which the lines between digital and physical realities are increasingly blurred, spatial commerce is a revolutionary way to make your brand stand out from the competition. We recognize the great potential of spatial commerce, where you can use the advantages of 3D, mixed reality and real-time product placements to integrate new dimensions of customer interaction on your website. With this in mind, we introduced the first 3D functions for Shopware online stores a month ago, attaining a further milestone in our innovation strategy.

How do Shopware’s new AR and 3D functions work?

The new functions allow merchants to upload 3D files for their products in GLB format. These 3D models are used for augmented reality experiences, which in turn enable online shoppers to place products – furniture, for example – virtually in their own surroundings and to view them from different angles. Users with a commercial Shopware version are not only able to place 3D objects on product detail pages, but also on landing pages, product pages or category pages.

Regardless of what page this function is actually used on, it is most effective on mobile devices, given that most smartphones and tablets are equipped with cameras. However, desktop users can also attain the 3D view easily by scanning a QR code on the screen and viewing the 3D model on their mobile device.


The 3D function is impressive on many different levels:

  • Wow effect: By using 3D renderings on your store pages – for example in the Shopping Experiences – you increase your interaction rate and visitors’ dwell time.

  • Eye-opening effect: Being able to present your products in a more realistic, three-dimensional way can also help to reduce your return rate significantly.

Other innovative spatial commerce features are already being implemented, for example a 3D scene editor, which makes it possible to adapt the backgrounds of product photos and to adjust light and shade. For instance, this will allow you to respond to festivals, holidays, and other seasonal events and to boost your conversions.

This blog post will also give you an extensive overview of what features are available now and will be in the near future: Spatial commerce 2024: Outlook and upcoming Shopware features.

2) Shopware AI Copilot – your virtual assistant with over 10 smart functions

AI Copilot overview

We took a huge stride forward in 2023 with the launch of the AI Copilot. This innovation – the first of its kind on the commerce platforms market – is a clear indication of our ongoing commitment to integrating AI in retailing. And, in turn, to revolutionizing the market in the coming years.

How does the Shopware AI Copilot work?

The AI Copilot opens up new ways for merchants to streamline the way they work and to significantly improve their customers’ shopping experience. Here are just a few things you can do with the Shopware AI Copilot:

  • Create, optimize or translate website copy into other languages, making writer’s block and spelling mistakes a thing of the past

  • Automatically add properties for filters and variants based on a product description – allowing you to save enormous amounts of time

  • Export specific data from the system by just typing one sentence, which greatly simplifies access to the required data sets

  • Create product review summaries and have these displayed directly on the product page, enabling online shoppers and merchants alike to view valuable product feedback quickly and easily

  • Give customers the opportunity to upload a photo to the online store so that the AI-powered search can find products that are similar to the uploaded image and fit the context of the search

  • And a whole lot more!

With more than ten of these advanced functions, the AI Copilot is raising the bar for efficiency, customer experience, and future viability in ecommerce. And there will be regular new additions – discover all the functions that have already been released in our blog post on the AI Copilot.

3) Insider Previews: Insight into the future of Shopware

insider previews-3d-viewer-beta-1720x800px

Innovation is a constant driving force here at Shopware. But what would innovation be without the community that uses and shapes it? We will be introducing Insider Previews very soon with a view to involving our community in the earliest stages of development and exploring new potential together.

What are Shopware’s Insider Previews?

Insider Previews enable us to step up our innovative capability by giving Shopware users an initial taste of features that are still in beta or blueprint status. Here, “blueprint status” means that it is not yet clear whether a feature will actually end up being included in the product.

The new beta and blueprint features are presented within the Shopware administration. Users can then decide for themselves whether to activate and test these. The clear objective of this preview is to get users to try out new functions and provide valuable feedback, which can be submitted directly to our feedback portal via a link. This process enables us to make innovative features available at an early stage and, at the same time, to ensure that they have been fine-tuned to user needs before the official release.

Even though these features are experimental in nature, we want them to be stable enough to be used in a store’s live operation. This is especially important when it comes to taking on board the reactions of end customers – i.e. online shoppers – as well.

The most valuable innovations are those that are actually used and that add real value. This is exactly what we are aiming for with the Insider Previews. As well as being technologically advanced, our new features need above all to be useful and practicable.

We are currently putting the finishing touches to the Insider Previews and plan to launch them with the release of Shopware 6.6 or the subsequent minor release. For a more in-depth look at our Insider Previews and to find out more about the ideas behind them, have a look at the following video interview with Aaron Schaarschmidt, Product Manager Innovation.

From store system provider to ecommerce pioneer: how we are redefining digital commerce

Ever since our earliest days, we have always had our sights firmly on the future and are constantly looking for cutting-edge solutions. Innovation at Shopware doesn’t just happen by chance. Rather, it stems from our vision for the future, from our keen observation of what our target group needs and from our ability to develop creative ideas for meeting these needs. This visionary aspect is an inherent part of our brand values, demonstrating that we are entirely devoted to the quest for innovation.

Logo values

Shopware’s brand values: open, authentic, and visionary

The future of ecommerce: Shopware’s vision and active role

At Shopware, we don’t just look ahead to the future of ecommerce – we play our part in actively shaping it. Our vision is to create a retail landscape that is not just dynamic and innovative but also offers a wealth of extraordinary possibilities for merchants and their customers. This vision is founded on our in-depth understanding of market needs and our relentless efforts to push the boundaries of possibility.

As our founder Stefan Hamann puts it:

“Shopware’s story is one of constant advancement, driven by our passion for innovation and our desire to help shape the commerce of tomorrow. In the face of new challenges and opportunities, we remain true to our promise of offering groundbreaking solutions that not only meet but actually exceed the expectations of our customers and partners.”

– Stefan Hamann, Shopware co-founder and co-CEO

Our contribution to the ecommerce of tomorrow

Our platform is more than just a technology solution – it is an ecosystem that is expanded through the constant stream of innovations such as the AI Copilot, spatial commerce and the Insider Previews. Each of these elements plays a key role in making our vision a reality:

  • The AI Copilot offers unprecedented opportunities for revolutionizing ecommerce through intelligent automation and personalized customer experiences.

  • Spatial commerce allows merchants to radically change the way customers experience products online by using 3D and augmented reality.

  • Insider Previews actively include our community in the innovation process and ensure that each new feature provides genuine added value.

In the future, we will continue to not only support digital commerce but to actively drive it forward and help shape it. After all, we firmly believe that ecommerce is a world of unlimited possibilities and that our job is to make these possibilities a reality.

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