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Shopware Community Day 2023: The CEOs interviewed about the new SCD concept

Shopware Community Day 2023: The CEOs interviewed about the new SCD concept

Shopware Community Day 2023 (SCD for short) is just around the corner, so this seemed like a great time to check in with the brains behind the original event and find out what we can expect this year and beyond. SCD has certainly demonstrated its great adaptability and versatility. Read the full interview with the Shopware co-CEOs and founders Stefan and Sebastian Hamann here.

Taking place for the first time in several years, Shopware Community Day 2023 will be a two-day event for developers and merchants. What was the thinking behind splitting the event up in terms of timings and locations?

Stefan: Generally speaking, the people in our active and vibrant community are incredibly important for the further development of Shopware. Since we made our solutions open source, our community has grown and become more diverse, just like our solutions themselves. With this diversity, however, the demands on communication formats have also changed; essentially, they have become more complex. This has also been reflected in the evolution of the Community Day.

How has the Shopware Community Day developed over the years? What milestones have there been along the way?

Stefan: The Shopware Community Day has always undergone constant transformation, just like Shopware itself. The external conditions have changed a great deal since 2019, as have our own requirements. The Community Day started out as a local in-house fair and grew into an ecommerce festival in 2019. After taking place under COVID-19 restrictions for three years, we are now about to take our next major evolutionary step, with much stronger and more target group-specific moderation of the content and elements of the event. This is also based on feedback from the community itself.

How is this expressed specifically at the Shopware Community Day 2023?

Sebastian: Splitting the event over two days allows us to focus our entire attention on the particular target group for each day. On May 24 we’ll be concentrating on developer-related topics, while on May 25 all the content will revolve around online merchants. We’re putting even more of an emphasis on networking within the respective subject areas and streamlining the stage program at the same time. There are a whole lot of formats taking place around the SCD, to the point that we’re actually talking about an entire ‘Community Week’ in Duisburg.

SCD networking

Could you go into more detail about what the Shopware Community Week will look like?

Sebastian: The week will start with the Shopware Community Hackathon on May 22 and 23, put together by FireGento e.V. On May 24, there will be the SCD for developers, a customer advisory event, and a C-level dinner prior to the SCD for merchants, which will follow on May 25. In other words, the power of the community will be concentrated over several days.

It sounds great! How can people sign up? Where can prospective attendees buy tickets for the Shopware Community Day?

Stefan: This year, we want to configure the individual formats in such a way that each event generates the greatest possible added value for the participants. One way of doing this was to focus on the spaces and content of each event so that participants can organize their day as efficiently as possible in terms of getting from place to place and allocating their time. That’s why we’ve set up an application form for each event on the SCD website, scd.shopware.com. Participation itself is free of charge, but we cannot guarantee that there will be capacity for absolutely everyone to attend.

How else can people access the content if they’re unable to attend in person?

Stefan: Anyone who wants to follow the SCD live can do so online using the hashtag #SCD23 on the usual social media channels. And if you can’t attend the Shopware Community Day in person, that doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on the content. Those who are interested can register easily via scd.shopware.com for free access to all slots immediately after the event.

SCD impressions

Will the Shopware Community Day be like this every year from now on?

Sebastian: The Shopware Community Day is like its own organism – it’s constantly adapting to the new circumstances and requirements of our team and the wider community. So at the moment, we can’t say what SCD 2030 will look like. The community has clearly expressed its wish for formats that enable and encourage close mutual exchange both within the individual groups and outside them. As such, the Community Day is clearly moving towards a more diverse offering, in the form of target group- and topic-specific event formats for and by the community. We see the SCD as an umbrella brand under which various community formats – initiated by us and by third parties – will come together in future.

What does that mean in specific terms? Which formats are you using already? Are there any that you envisage for the future?

Sebastian: Our formats for interacting with the community have always been strongly influenced by the dynamics and activity of the community itself, and we’re very proud of that. There are already a large number of different formats devised by and in conjunction with the community, such as:

  • The Boostdays and Hackathons for developers

  • The Shopware Community Unconference, organized by FireGento e.V.

  • The various event formats, organized by Shopware United

  • The numerous Meetups, organized by our partners

  • Our own event series such as the Decision Maker Dinner with Marcus Diekmann or the Customer Advisory Events by and with our Product Targeting Managers

We’re bound to see further developments in future, as this is essentially about ensuring a thematic focus for a range of offerings, so that there’s an exchange format suitable for every single person in our community and those who’d like to join.

Now and in the near future, it’s about making the community formats much more visible and accessible, and bringing them all under one roof, so that they meet with even greater acceptance and approval. We believe that the successful Shopware Community Day brand is the perfect tool for making this happen, and we’ll be working hard to pull it off.

SCD impressions

Final question: Do you have any plans for partner-focused formats for future Shopware Community Day events?

Stefan: Even though there’s no specific day for partner agencies and technology partners at SCD 2023, they’re an integral part of the program and the networking that takes place on Developer Day and Merchant Day.

In general, our partner agencies and technology partners are essential to the growing ecosystem and the spread of Shopware, especially when it comes to our plans for international expansion. For that reason, we held a big Partner Day in Germany in the fall of 2022, and another in the Netherlands. We're planning a Partner Day for Italy in June 2023 and an international Partner Roadshow in the fall of 2023. These new formats will be run under the umbrella of the SCD.

Other formats like hackathons, meetups, decision-makers’ dinners, and the Shopware Community Day concept itself, which will be redesigned for the future, will feature completely new offerings for integration and technology partners, and thus new opportunities for taking part.

In other words, we can confirm the SCD is diversifying in terms of time and location, while at the same time becoming increasingly focused in terms of content and needs. This means that we’re no longer as tied to one day a year and can be more agile and flexible overall. Together with our fantastic community, we’ll see a wide range of events emerge and flourish under the umbrella of the SCD brand, in order to create synergies and grow the profile of all future community-oriented events.

Thank you very much for talking to us, Sebastian and Stefan.

Read all about the Shopware Community Day here:

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