On July 24th, 2021, we unveiled the future of the Spree Commerce ecosystem by sharing our vision and the development roadmap for 2021/2022 at our online community event, SpreeConf. We see a headless and omnichannel future ahead, so we want Spree to empower all ecommerce developers with a single, headless Spree Commerce backend. Below you’ll find a brief overview of the Spree roadmap and a link to the video of the talk given by Damian Legawiec and Matthew Kennedy – the Spree tech lead and a Spree open-source developer, respectively.
What’s happened so far in 2021?
With over 1.4 million total downloads and tens of thousands of successful online businesses using Spree, we decided to shift our open-source development efforts into a higher gear.
So far, the first half of 2021 has seen more contributions than the entirety of 2020, with 27 of the Spark Solutions team – the ecommerce consulting agency, and the main driving force behind Spree open source – contributing to the cause. Not to mention the countless community contributors whose efforts we’re incredibly grateful for.
The subsequent big releases will include both architectural changes and a number of brand new, exciting features that are all intended to empower the developer community with better tools for building ecommerce solutions!
What’s next for Developers?
In the next week, Spree is going to become a truly modular, headless, API-first ecommerce ecosystem in order to empower developers of any programming language and using any tech stack to create:
- decoupled web storefronts, e.g., using Next.js, Vue Storefront, any custom JS storefront
- in-app ecommerce, e.g., native mobile apps, Smart TV apps, SaaS apps
- chatbot, voice, and smart home apps, e.g., Google Home
Here’s a brief overview of what’s to come:
- New modular architecture – API-first headless design with optional storefront, admin panel, and transactional emails. Available in early Q3 with Spree 4.3
- Pick the storefront you like – Next.js Commerce (Q3), Vue Storefront 2 (Q4), or build your own with our TypeSciprt SDK or GraphQL.
- Platform API – 3rd party application platform with different permission sets to manage any Spree resources. Available with Spree 4.3
- Webhooks – capture any events for any Spree resource, integrate with 3rd party applications using any tech stack. Available with Spree 4.4 in Q3
- Built-in Page CMS and Navigation CMS – kindly demonstrated by Matthew in this recording. Available in Spree 4.3
Omnichannel Ecommerce, including but not limited to a modern, decoupled JS-storefront, starts with a reliable ecommerce backend engine and a source of truth for all systems of record (ERP, WMS, CRM) and sales channels. Spree is going to be that headless commerce backend – the last one you’ll ever need.
What’s next for Store Owners?
There will be a handful of new features and existing Spree extensions being pulled into Spree Core in the not-so-distant future. These additions will give store owners the means to manage their businesses more simply and effectively, as well as reducing development costs.
Come early 2022, expect to see:
- The multi-vendor marketplace extension being moved into Spree out-of-the-box
- Suppliers will be able to update stock/product catalog via Platform API or CSV uploads
- Improved B2B support with shared baskets, dynamic pricing, and management of organization permissions and buying limits
- Subscription support including a universal platform for recurring and installment payments with a Stripe billing integration out of the box
Spree as a Service: a cloud-based ecommerce backend
Following the noloco trend (no code, low code) has led us to launch a cloud Spree platform for developers looking for a low-effort, secure, scalable, and flexible backend ecommerce toolset.
This Spree as a Service platform will allow developers to focus on building and improving their storefront UX using the tech stack of their choice. At the same time, they will be able to integrate their Spree backend with any 3rd party solution (ERP, PIM, CRM, WMS) or using platforms such as Zapier or Segment. These integrations could be accomplished either by using Spree Platform API, webhooks, or pre-built integrations.
Spree as a Service empowers developers to focus on their UX and core business without the need to worry about:
- DevOps and hosting
- backend upgrade path headaches
- scaling, traffic spikes, backups, or security issues
While this may be music to the ears of many, some of those who are beneficiaries of the open-source Spree solution may have their doubts. However, rest assured that we will continue developing both Spree open-source and Spree as a Service, side-by-side, to provide you with a top-of-the-line ecommerce solution suitable for your needs and your business, whether it be self-hosted or cloud-based.
Watch Damian and Matthews’ Presentation
Watch the video of the full talk given by Damian about our headless Spree Commerce backend plans, and a demonstration of the new, built-in CMS feature by Matthew.
Watch all the presentations given at SpreeConf on YouTube.