Kana Communications and IBM this week announced the integration of IBM's WebSphere Commerce Suite with Kana's Web-based CRM (customer relationship management) products, with the intention of helping businesses increase customer service, interaction, and personalisation.
The companies will enable users to link WebSphere Commerce Suite to Kana Response, which processes incoming e-mails; Kana Connect, an e-mail application for functions such as direct marketing; and Kana Service, a contact center product. Kana Analytics will be integrated with the commerce suite eventually as well. The integration will use Java and custom coding.
"What this [arrangement] really does now is it provides more robust solutions [for] the commerce suite engine so that it now is wrapping around communications management and servicing e-customers," said Kana's Meg Shea-Chiles, vice president of strategic alliances.
Kana's backing of the Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE) makes it easier for its products to work with IBM's WebSphere, said analyst Erin Kinikin, vice president of Giga Information Group.
"Kana is one of the first CRM vendors to come with an eCRM product based on J2EE," Kinikin said.
The effort involving WebSphere Commerce Suite is the latest collaboration between Kana and IBM, which announced a partnership in August 2000. Also as part of the partnership, Kana has embraced IBM's middleware technology, including MQSeries, the DB2 database, and WebSphere Application Server.