The twelfth Meet Magento DE. A Review.

On June 18 & 19 the twelfth edition of Meet Magento DE took place! Two Magento days and months of planning and organization are behind us. Now, some weeks after #MM18DE, we’re still overwhelmed.

Meet Magento DE 2018 in Numbers

Last year’s event (MM17DE) exceeded all our expectations as we welcomed more attendees than ever before. For this reason we decided to go for another venue in 2018. We’re very happy that Meet Magento Germany 2018 became even bigger than last year. So many people wanted to visit the event to stay updated about the latest Magento and e-commerce trends.
As usual the event was visited by merchants, manufacturers, developers, agencies, service providers, system integrators, big names of the Magento community, the Magento Team and many more – in short: everybody who is in any kind interested in Magento e-commerce participated. Meet Magento is the place to meet all relevant persons and the whole Magento ecosystem.

What means the event to our team?

We’re very grateful that everybody loved the new venue KONGRESSHALLE am Zoo Leipzig and that everything worked so well there (you can imagine: organizing an event in a new venue for the first time is always a challenge), about all the attendees showing us that they’re happy to be a part of the event, about the community always having new ideas to help and support us organizing Meet Magento Germany and of course about all the passionate speakers and sponsors. As community event, that is organized by the non-profit organization Meet Magento Association, Meet Magento DE finance itself with ticket sales and sponsorship income. The speakers are sharing their knowledge for free. Thank you very very much! You all make the event possible!

Because of more people interested in attending the event which also implies new target groups, the event format is subject to a constant change and advancement. But the most important for us is to create a place where people with different nationalities, background and characters all united because of their interest in Magento can meet, share their knowledge and make new contacts. We’re grateful for everybody who is supporting us to make this happen.

Let’s Try to Wrap up Three Magento Days

Partner Meeting of Meet Magento Association (MMA)

On Sunday before Meet Magento the second annual Meet Magento Association partner meeting took place in pentahotel Leipzig. From all over Germany, partner agencies of the MMA set out to network and learn from each other as well as get to know the latest insights into the Magento world. On the agenda we had talks from several Magento agencies, Magento insights by the Meet Magento Association together with Ben Marks (Magento Evangelist, Magento Commerce) as well as different workshops to exchange – in particular topics like the acquisition of Magento by Adobe and the consequences for agencies as well as the founding and role of the new Magento Association and the effects for the Magento ecosystem. In the workshops we worked out strategies and recommendations for the founding of the new Association, talked about Magento in comparison to other shop platforms and dicsussed the concept of Community Engineering for better code quality.

Around 5 p.m. we finished all the discussions, workshops and talks and decided to watch the soccer game Germany vs. Mexico on the terrace at pentahotel Leipzig. In the evening also the official annualy Speaker & Sponsor Get Together took place there. During a comfy barbecue we’ve got in the right mood for the upcoming days and seized the time for the first conversations.

Event Format

A lot of thoughts and developments during the last year have effected the format of this year’s Meet Magento DE event. At MM17DE we noticed that the interest in taking part in the event is huge. It wasn’t the easiest challenge to find a suitable new venue in Leipzig. But finally we visited the KONGRESSHALLE am Zoo Leipzig – a new perfect home for Meet Magento Germany that offers everything a Meet Magento heart desires: the newest technology, plenty of room for exhibitors, four session rooms as well as a big hall where the keynote speeches were held and attendees had the chance to network between the sessions.

To offer everyone the opportunity to learn from top-class speakers and to extend their knowledge, we created a program for #MM18DE that contains more than 40 talks and workshops allocated to the four main tracks Business Strategies, Technology, Business to Business and Best Practices.
In “Business Strategies” the attendees had the opportunity to visit talks about the latest strategies for success and growth in e-commerce and Magento business to optimize their business, to grow and to overcome challenges. The Technology track addressed developers and Magento agencies and imparted a wide range of technical Magento skills. In B2B track people learned all about current business-to-business trends and B2B with Magento. The last track “Best Practices” offered how-to’s, guides and use cases to expand knowledge in a clear and simple way and to illustrate the most successful business strategies.

As usual people had the possibility to send us talk proposals within a call for papers procedure. To create a program that is interesting for all of the target groups, we worked together with experts helping us to choose the best talks. Besides that we had surveys to find out which topics the people want to get placed on the agenda and asked attendees of previous events to give us feedback. Based on this we reached out to several speakers if they would be interested to talk at Meet Magento DE 2018.

The First Day

The first day surprisingly started with a delay. A huge number of Magento enthusiasts have spontaneously decided to attend the event. Registering all those people needed a lot time and we had to change the timetable. Thank you all for understanding and for your patience. For the next year we will definetly adapt this procedure.

Around 10:30 a.m. Meet Magento DE 2018 got opened by Anna-Maria Müller who gave insights into the development and the current status of Meet Magento. Besides that she mentioned the slogan for the event: There’s no We without Community! What Magento makes special is the community. Only with community Magento as well as Meet Magento works. With this slogan we wanted to remind the people of openness and teamwork and to take the chance to learn from others but to also share their own knowledge with others.

For all those people who were visiting the event for the first time, Sonja and Andreas from our partner agency integer_net organized a “Welcome Wagon” on first conference day. The aim was to give “first-timers” a meeting point to get to know other people and to connect with them in the breaks or visit talks. Thank you for your support!

After the opening the keynote talk by Mark Lenhard (Senior Vice President Strategy & Growth, Magento Commerce) was held. In an interactive session Mark answered to multiple questions from the auditorium about the Adobe/Magento merge. People were interested to learn about the acquisitoin process, underlying strategies, future products, how Magento fits into the Adobe world and how the future of the Magento community in Adobe’s Enterprise focused cloud world will look like.

After that Thomas Goletz (President, Meet Magento Association) presented the MMA’s work of the last years as well as the tranisition to the Magento Association. For all of you who are interested in the new Association: Use your chance to be part of the development of the new Magento Association. In the Magento forums you can learn more about the process.

Another focus Thomas laid on was the Meet Magento Association’s work in China. In the beginning of 2018 we’ve opened an office there to build a Magento community in and around China. For just those reasons more than 30 Chinese companies and associations registered for Meet Magento Germany. We wanted to give them the chance to shortly introduce theirselves to the audience. Dennis Chen (CEO, Pangoo) showed his experience in leading an e-commerce company in the road between China and Europe. The following presence of Hao Jianqiang, that was planned only as a short welcoming speech, became much longer as it was planned or intended. As learning for next events we noticed: Also 2 minutes welcoming speeches need a rehearsal! 🙂

Before the talks in the single session rooms started, our sponsors and exhibitors had the possibility to introduce their company, services and products within 1-3 minutes pitches to the audience. Last year we implemented the new format “Merchant to Merchant” to the agenda. Because this was such a big success, we decided to also add this format to this year’s program. The merchants Amla Natur GmbH, and Prediger Lichtberater gave insights into projects, ideas and challenges. Thank you for sharing your experience with us! Other topics of the first day were Code quality with Magento 2, Magento Commerce Cloud, Content Commerce, Emotionalizing in e-commerce, SEO for online shops, Composer, Multi Source Inventory, Public Cloud and many more. The talk by Aron Stanic (Inchoo) about tips and tricks for merchants on how to take advantage of the Magento ecosystem as well as Andreas von Studnitz’ talk about the “State of Magento” were particularly interesting.

In the evening of the first event day the Meet Magento after-show party traditionally took place in the Moritzbastei Leipzig – but this time with more space for the huge number of attendees. This year we’ve added a room with games consoles and one of the inner yards where we had a barbecue. Sounds like a new tradition, huh? Thanks to maxcluster for supporting us again! The people rocked the dance floor and celebrated until the morning came.

The Seond Day

Before the keynote about the German shoe manufacturer Gabor Shoes AG started, we’ve traditionally awarded the best Magento shop in the German speaking area in the Meet Magento DE Award 2018 cerenomy. Just like in 2017, a lot of B2C and B2B Magento shops registered to become the winner. A jury of different experts evaluated every single shop regarding the criteria Idea, Targeting, Product Presentation, Design, Usability and Performance. We invited the top ten of the registered shops to Meet Magento Germany that eagerly waited for our moderators Lars Einsle and Rico Neitzel to announce the winners.

The Meet Magento DE Award 2018 goes to AIGNER – a famous German manufacturer for exclusive leatherware – as well as to the Munich Magento agency Mothership. AIGNER got ahead in the categories Usability, Design, Performance and Targeting. Congratulations to everybody who was envolved in this great job!

Second winner was frooggies and the agency TEAM23. Frooggies are selling natural fruit powder and are well known from the German TV shop “Die Höhe der Löwen”.

Third lead got won by frank juice – a vendor for juice and soup cleanse – and again to the agency TEAM23.

Also in this year we awarded again the Meet Magento People Award. Every year we spotlight a person who plays an important role for Meet Magento. At last year’s Meet Magento DE Rico Neitzel, one of the founders of Meet Magento, received the first People Award ever. This year we’ve chosen two people who should be appreciated. The first People Award of 2018 goes to Annemarie Hache. Since the beginnings she was part of the Meet Magento team and helped shaping and developing the event with all her ideas, emotions and persistence. Thank you, without you the event wouldn’t be as it is today! The second People Award certificate was given to Robert Windisch. Every year Robert and his wife are helping the team with the preparations and the setup on Sunday before the event. Thank you, Robert! Without your help, the setup days of the last years haven’t been that well-structured but also not that funny and hearty.

Also on the second event day the talks in the single rooms startet right after the keynote talks. Conversational Commerce with Magento, Personalization, Migration usign the example Hallhuber, Progressive Web Apps, System integration in wholesale, AWS, B2B, GDPR, Bluefoot CMS and China were only one of the main topics of this day.

Right after the second keynote talk on Tuesday presented by DHL, a special announcement by Ben Marks (Magento Evangelist, Magento Commerce) ensued. He and Matt Asay (Head of Developer Ecosystem, Adobe) announced that the acquisition of Magento by Adobe is officially finished now. Matt highlighted the relevance and importance of the Magento community for Adobe and that criticism and suggestions will be taken serious.

Around 5 p.m. the Meet Magento DE 2018 ended. It was a wrap and we’re really looking forward to the 13th edition of the event.

We dearly want to thank all of you – especially our sponsors, exhibitors, attendees, partners and speakers, who made the event the biggest Magento event in Germany!

See you again next year!

Photos: Meet Magento Association e.V., Photos by: Büro 71a, Neitzel und Klose GbR

Addition: The event photos are published now! Check our Facebook Page and get in the Meet Magento mood again!