On this episode of EY Access, John Lawson from ColderICE visits the studio. He and Eric Yonge talk about Amazon: what they’re doing, and how merchants can beat or join them.
Jackson Galaxy first came to EYStudios in need of a new, custom site to showcase their unique product offerings. This new site needed to not only feature their brand’s look and feel, but also create a resource center for animal lovers to come together and have fun.
The goal in moving Jackson Galaxy to BigCommerce was to give their team an easy to manage site on a user-friendly platform. “We built the site in such a way as to create easily editable pages for the Jackson Galaxy team,” said Ali Hyduke, eCommerce Consultant on the project.
Jackson Galaxy is passionate about pet guardians and giving them the same immersive experience on the website as they get when watching the show, “My Cat from Hell”
Jackson Galaxy is the host of Animal Planet’s My Cat from hell and two time New York Times best-selling author with 20+ years of experience helping humans understand cats and helping cats find their mojo. To learn more about the new Jackson Galaxy site, check out their amazing before and after here.
Last night, EYStudios and BigCommerce came together to host the first Atlanta-based BigCommerce meet up. Revision: Changing the Way You Look at eCommerce was a huge success and we look forward to hosting many more events of it’s kind.
Check out the video below of our panel of eCommerce experts who came together to answer some hot topic questions.
Huge thanks to our friends at Brightpearl for the amazing food from The Royal Pig BBQ, and to the folks at Monday Night Brewing for the great space!
Arizona Custom Knives has been in business for over 25 years, offering one of the largest selections of custom handmade and production knives on the internet.
ACK came to EYStudios in need of a website and platform that could easily grow and scale with their business, offered easier content management, and that was stable and reliable. The obvious solution was to build them a new site on Magento 2 that could be custom fit to their unique business model.
“Given Arizona Custom Knives’ unique business model, we needed to utilize a platform that could handle endless customization without the fear that changing one small thing would cause a chain reaction in the rest of the site’s development,” said Kate Wicker, Solutions Engineer and Certified Magento Solution Specialist at EYStudios. “That’s exactly what Magento Cloud offers.”
EYStudios helped ACK in a full redesign of their user experience while migrating to Magento 2. We took the core of ACK’s branding, earth tones and a rustic aesthetic, and transformed their site into a knife community destination. The new streamlined navigation helps customers to quickly locate a specific knife based on maker or category. Visitors are shown a countdown to the addition of new knives and users can easily browse through any recently added knives.
A unique challenge that the Arizona Custom Knives team faced, is managing such a unique business model on an eCommerce platform. Their team trusted EYStudios to build custom functionality for the consignment model work flow. From knife intake to paying out the consignor, our team of Magento Certified developers built tools designed to make each day at ACK easier.
Elliott Dunson, developer on the Arizona Custom Knives team, stated that “nailing down the workflow of how new knives would come in, get listed, and be presented on the site, was the first crucial step in making the project successful.”
With a goal of improving ACK’s experience in interacting with the admin panel of the site, our team looked for different ways to customize the Magento interface. Between custom tailoring the admin to ACK’s needs and custom building a unique front end to appeal to their customer base, Arizona Custom Knives new site is truly one of a kind.
In a 2015 study by Forrester, it was predicted that by 2019, the B2B eCommerce market will be worth $1.1 trillion, while the B2C market will be worth just $480 billion. With the B2B eCommerce space growing so rapidly, B2B merchants face a unique set of challenges that most B2C merchants don’t. We’ve pinpointed 5 of the biggest concerns, and some ideas for addressing them, here.
1. Customizable Offerings– Businesses are unique, and often they require a very specific set of products or items. Rather than sending a customer to your entire site’s catalog to search for what they need, wouldn’t you rather be able to create a custom catalog for the company that shows them just what they’re looking for? With Magento’s release of 2.2, they’ve rolled out the ability to create custom catalogs that you can then apply to specific customers. By creating the catalog first, you can use the same one for multiple companies without reinventing the wheel for each customer.*
2. Partial Payments and Purchase Orders- For B2B customers, even more than B2C customers, flexible payment options are crucial. B2B customers are often placing large orders with high quantities of product. Customers will expect your website to offer the same amount of flexibility that they’re used to receiving from a salesperson or supplier. Integrating a system (whether an app or extension to your eCommerce platform) that allows for partial payments, will give shoppers the options they’re accustomed to. Look for a tool that gives you some flexibility to send out reminders when the next payment is due as well. Another payment option that B2B customers utilize more than B2C are purchase orders. With Magento 2.2, customers have the ability to enter PO numbers at checkout out of the box.
3. Unique Pricing- If you’re a B2B merchant, chances are you have a lot of customers with a lot of different pricing structures. Some eCommerce platforms, like Magento, have the functionality to accommodate this built into their software. With tiered pricing, you can assign a different set of pricing to each customer group. And with Magento 2.2, they’re taking it a step further to introduce Companies. Within each company you can set up multiple users with different roles and permissions. So if only the Supply Manager for Company X has permission to purchase supplies, only they will be able to add items to cart and checkout.
4. Maintaining Relationships- As a B2B company in an eCommerce space, you have the unique challenge of both making it easy for your customers to order efficiently, and maintaining that client relationship. Oftentimes this relationship is fostered by direct communication with a member of your team that closely monitors the client’s account. Your online customers can and should still benefit from a unique personal interaction that sets your customer service apart. A great way to keep track of account activity, delinquent accounts, or inactive accounts is to implement a CRM software with your eCommerce platform. This will allow your internal team to keep track of client interactions and communications. By integrating the two systems, you’ll know when an account is due for a reorder, and can make that personal touch point proactively.
5. Large Orders of Varying Items- B2C customers aren’t concerned with getting mass quantities of items into their cart and checking out quickly. B2B customers on the other hand, are looking for exactly that user experience. They want the ability to add multiple products, in varying sizes and quantities, without going to several item pages, into the cart, and back again. To address this, Magento 2.2 has introduced quick order functionality that allows customers to directly type in SKU’s for efficiency. To take it a step further, you can also upload a CSV of the SKU’s you need and the quantities needed to order in bulk fast.
By taking the time to give your B2B customers special consideration, you’ll ensure that they enjoy an eCommerce experience tailored for their unique set of needs.
*Available to Magento Enterprise
When new client ACE Universe came to EYStudios needing a website as soon as possible to promote their upcoming events, the team had to get creative while still providing a quality solution.
“We knew we had to get them a solution in the short term that would meet all their immediate needs and then complete any additional features and functionality at a later date,” explained Project Manager, Caitlin Burge. “To accomplish that, we created a phased approach with our production team that would allow us to build incrementally instead of scrapping the first iteration of the site and starting over.” Phase 1 of the site launched on September 19th, just in time to promote their Long Island Comic Con. Phase 2 is expected to launch by the end of 2017.
Fortunately, ACE Universe had experience with the Magento platform and knew it would provide the ability to edit and update the site on their own, as well as the ability to scale the site for future needs.
Not only does ACE Universe love the way their new site functions, but they love the branding EY created for them. So much so, that they’ve enlisted the help of the agency to provide graphics for LED screens at the shows as well as other “offline” marketing materials.
Visit ACEUniverse.com for tickets and upcoming event information.
Magento 2.2 is now closed to new as they prepare it for release. The Release Candidate [or beta version] is open for community and partner feedback and is rapidly approaching production quality. As soon as the full version of Magento 2.2 is available (expected in the next few weeks), you’ll have a wide array of new features and functionality to look forward to.
“The most anticipated set of features that Magento Commerce 2.2 will bring revolve around B2B functionality,” said Kornchai, a Senior Magento Developer at EYStudios. “2.2 will allow the ability to create and manage companies, generate shared catalogs, and create unique company pricing.”
Customers will have the ability to request a quote directly from the shopping cart. This feature submits the contents of the customers cart to the merchant for a quote in one step. Order comments and a field for file uploads are also supported by this functionality. There will be an additional feature that allows for negotiation between the customer and merchant for pricing on both products and shipping.
The Quick Order Tool that 2.2 offers will allow customers to enter product SKUs or bulk upload a CSV of SKUs to quickly purchase large quantities of product. Similarly, 2.2’s Requisition List will keep track of quantity of products ordered and remembers commonly purchased items.
Magento Commerce 2.2’s Payment on Account feature lets merchants extend a credit limit to customers. These limits can be set per website, per customer, or per company. All credit information can be tracked in the customer’s account dashboard or in the Magento admin panel. This feature also allows for the entering of PO numbers as payment.
Custom Catalogs can restrict which customers can see which products and categories. Products can be restricted from view in both search and regular site navigation. Catalogs are created for the store and then can be applied to companies. This gives the merchant the ability to have multiple companies sharing the same catalog. Price lists are also offered as an alternative to tiered pricing and are more granular in nature.
In addition to the new B2B offerings, Magento has made some remarkable improvements to their reporting by introducing Magento Business Intelligence. The improved reporting applies to products, orders, and customers. Magento BI will allow you to track store conversions, product conversions, traffic, and abandoned carts.
Magento 2.2 will offer Signifyd fully integrated, out of the box. Signifyd offers chargeback protection and fraud screening for merchants and supports all payment methods and many countries. Merchants will still need the Signifyd service which is run through a separate admin.
Charles Estes, Lead Developer at EYStudios, explained that the developer updates released with Magento 2.2 will be “game changing.”
“The APIs released will make for faster upgrades, the mass asynchronous operations will allow for easier development of long running processes, and the pipeline deployment will significantly reduce downtime while deploying static content .”
This means you’ll get updates to your site more efficiently and your admin panel will not be affected by these processes.
EYStudios is excited for the release of Magento 2.2 and looks forward to upgrading merchants’ stores.
For even more information on Magento 2.2 please visit:
- Magento 2.2 Developer Documentation: Here you’ll find everything you need to know about the release, usage, quickstart guide, etc.
- Magento 1 to Magento 2: This page will provide you with the benefits of Magento 2 over Magento 1, and what you can look forward to about Magento 2.2.
- Magento 2.2 Release Candidate Testing: To go through a testing environment of the Beta of Magento 2.2.
This week EYStudios launched Mahogany Smoked Meats’ new website on the BigCommerce platform.
The goal of this project was to move Mahogany Smoked Meats off their current platform and onto BigCommerce.
“They needed a platform that offered more updates, and is ultimately more scalable for their business,” said Ali Hyduke, the eCommerce Consultant on the project.
During the migration, the EY team worked to give the site an updated, timeless design, while keeping the original feel of the brand. “We wanted something that would grow with their business but that was true to who their company is,” Ali explained. “They loved our designs and trusted us to create a unique user experience.”
“Something that really took the aesthetic of the site to the next level was the updated product photography,” said Caitlin Burge, EYStudios’ Project Manager. “We referred the Mahogany Smoked Meats team to an Atlanta- based food photographer, and their shots made all the difference.”
“I can’t believe how good that [the site] turned out,” Brandon Mojarro, VP of MSM stated.
The main priority of the EYStudios team was to give MSM a backend that was more user friendly, and a site they actually enjoyed working on. “The BigCommerce backend was a huge improvement from how they were managing their store previously,” Ali said.
Caitlin said, “Brandon was a joy to work with, and we’re excited to see how well the new site performs.”
To check out their new and improved site for yourself, click here. While you’re there, order some of their famous smoked meats.
CEO and Creative Director, Eric Yonge, talks Social Media and eCommerce with John Lawson of ColderICE.
Boston Sword & Tuna has been in the fishing industry for years in one of America’s major seafood hubs.
The Sales & Marketing Director of Boston Sword & Tuna, Michael Scola, came to EYStudios after seeing Wholey.com’s site that EY built on the BigCommerce platform. This inspired Michael to start an eCommerce presence to grow their business further.
Michael’s goal was to make their company the “Omaha Steaks of seafood,” and to get there, he knew he would need a team of expert designers, developers, and consultants.
Ali Hyduke, Boston Sword & Tuna’s eCommerce Consultant at EYStudios, kicked off the project by overhauling their branding. “Boston’s previous aesthetic did not portray the kind of company that they are, and that they are ultimately trying to become,” Ali said. “The new site speaks to the level of quality and customer service that they have come to be known for.”
After the redesign of the brand, the next step was for EYStudios to enlist a well-known Atlanta based food photographer to capture the mouthwatering seafood. Ali explained that “the high-quality photos of their delicious offerings made all the difference in the merchandising of this site.”
“I am so fired up and will never forget the impact you had in making my dream and vision a reality,” Michael said, of working with Ali and the EYStudios team.
EYStudios is looking forward to an ongoing relationship with Boston Sword & Tuna as they enter the Runway Program, which offers ongoing design, development, and consultation.
To learn more about Boston Sword & Tuna and check out their newly launched BigCommerce site, head over to Shop.BSTSeafood.com.
View the Before & After.