Stockport digital agency, Platform81, have completed the design and build of a new B2B e-commerce website for Manchester based wholesalers, Shonn Brothers.
The agency received the commission for the new website after having a seven year relationship with the firm to provide SEO and PPC work. The new e-commerce site will help Shonn Brothers to continue their online growth.
Developers at Platform81 were keen to take on the work because of the complexity of the build and layers of functionality required.
With Magento1 coming to the end of life, the website was lacking in terms of both functionality and design. As an international wholesale business they needed to migrate their website over to a secure and reliable platform that could withstand the high amount of orders received from their multitude of customers: WordPress was the perfect solution.
WordPress could provide the reliability required by the business, as well as ensure the site was current, modern and made the best use of current technologies. The move from Magento 1 to WordPress would also ensure that the website had a clear upgrade path for the future, with no end-of-life risk.
Instead of completely redesigning the website, a design ‘refresh’ was decided upon. This was a tactful decision as many of the business’s customers are repeat users and understood the website’s design and frontend functionality. Therefore, it was essential that the user experience (UX) on site was the same. The new website holds some of the traditional elements of the previous site, but with the added use of the latest technologies on offer to create new graphics and bring the site into 2020.
With over 15,000 products and 25,000 customers, all of whom had account information and order history to transfer over to the new site: the build of this website was to be one of our biggest web projects our team have faced. The new website also needed to be linked to an in-house stock system so third parties, like Manchester based company Evo-Soft of whom we worked with on the project, were able to complete integrations.
With orders being made every few minutes, the current website had to remain live at all times. Careful preparation and planning was put into place to ensure new orders and customer account were seamlessly transferred over. The website regularly sees high levels of traffic at all points of the day, which is why Platform81 built the website on its own dedicated cloud server, with a stack specifically built to help manage the amount of users and orders.
Platform81’s Technical Director Gary Mawhinney commented on the project, saying:
“It’s been a pleasure working with the team at Shonn Brothers. The level of design and development involved within this project has allowed our team to really showcase what we can do with e-commerce and has stood us in good stead for future projects too. It’s great to work on these types of websites, that are completely business critical.”
The new website will also allow the wholesaler business to have greater exposure within Google, and Platform81’s SEO and PPC team are already working hard to heighten this exposure with keyword rich descriptions, internal links and a bidding strategy to target users of the website who don’t place an order within 30 days.
The Platform81 team is incredibly proud of their work on such a large-scale project: view the new Shonn Brothers site here.