1 Sauder Woodworking Company Industry Manufacturing / Furniture Partner BizStream 6101 Lake Michigan DR Suite 1600 Building A Allendale MI, USA Brian McKeiver Goals is North America s leading producer of ready-toassemble furniture and the nation s fifth largest residential furniture manufacturer. Sauder initially developed its own informational custom web site in 1998 and upgraded it in 2003/2004. The site contained current content of Sauder domestic products and had recently added import items from its Global Sourcing division. Content was refreshed and managed through the marketing department. It also provided a robust repair part ordering system for end consumers with contact center system integration to interface with Sauder customer support agents. In addition, the site provided dealer locator information for consumers to find where they could buy Sauder products. It was written predominately in Classic ASP, and had a SQL database backend. It was an on premise solution. While fully functional, the Sauder website was dated in its format and presentation and needed to be modernized and updated. Sauder also wanted to expand its presence in social media. In addition, Sauder had decided to offer consumers the option to buy Sauder products on-line. However, their key goal remained to entice consumers about their products, increasing their brand recognition, and to influence consumers to buy from their trusted retailers. Several development strategy sessions/events took place to review the current site toolsets/ infrastructure, to identify gaps, and to discuss technology goals of the new site. Rather than develop the new solution from scratch, Sauder evaluated CMS (Contact Management Systems) solutions available in the marketplace. These products come with many features/functions available out-of-the box. While open source solutions like WordPress and Drupal were gaining popularity, Sauder eventually decided to invest in an enterprise level CMS system based on the Microsoft ASP.NET platform. After that broad content management system selection process, they chose to utilize Kentico EMS to create an entirely new website. The main goal for the website redesign project was to create a fully functional e-commerce website that could feature their brands and products at the highest level while offering a better customer shopping experience for consumers. Sauder s website goals were primarily focused on providing a top notch e-commerce store. They were looking to provide a rich feature set of e-commerce abilities such as product collection landing pages, detailed product comparison, faceted product search, product quick looks, related products, and an advanced dealer locator.
2 I would highly recommend businesses include Kentico in their short list of CMS evaluations. Another key component of the website was the need for a fully customizable shopping cart system. Sauder needed to have all orders placed over the web integrate with their existing ERP system. They also needed the shopping cart to be able to integrate with third party systems to generate the correct sales tax amount and to estimate shipping and freight costs, all based on where the customer was buying from. A final point of integration was to utilize a payment tokenization service to stay within PCI compliance standards. The Kentico EMS platform proved to be flexible enough to meet all of these needs. Challenges s main challenges were: Deploy a fully functional e-commerce enabled website at within a few months from project kickoff. Ability to have a completely customizable Shopping Cart Checkout process. Ensure the entire Shopping Cart process was fully PCI compliant. Integrate all web orders with ERP system for order entry, order status updates, and tracking numbers. Create a multi-branded website that could share a global product repository and single Shopping Cart system, yet still preserve brand specific product page templates and themes. Create a website that has ability to integrate with social media networks such as Facebook, Pinterest, and Google Plus to allow for Product page engagement and social sharing. Provide a useful search experience to s entire line of products by product number, attribute, brand, and search term relevance. Create a site that could be used as a foundation to add additional features in the future.
3 Solution The Kentico EMS package has proven to be a solid solution framework that Sauder can utilize to grow its e-commerce footprint. BizStream was first engaged by to provide Kentico Certified Developer training as well as Kentico Certified Administrator training. The goal of the training was to install a base set of knowledge about how to setup, install, configure, design, and implement a website in Kentico EMS with best practices in mind. Once the project schedule for was determined, Sauder knew that they would need more developer resources to complete the project within their desired timeline. BizStream was brought in to be a part of the implementation team. From the first day of the engagement, BizStream resources augmented the internal IT staff s capabilities. BizStream filled the need for assistance with the overall solution design, Kentico object and structure creation, and most importantly of all, BizStream was charged with creating a customized version of the Kentico EMS Shopping Cart web parts and modules. This level of customization was needed to support a very specific set of business requirements. The business requirements for the customized Shopping Cart mainly stemmed from the need to integrate all of the Order and Customer data that Kentico generates into Sauder Woodworking s ERP system, SAP. The solution would handle that fact that every order on the website needed to show up in SAP just like it was an order on the normal Order Entry screen within the ERP. Then as the order progressed through the manufacturing process order statuses were saved and updated to go from the ERP back up to the Kentico EMS instance. This was all achieved through a set of integration SQL Server data tables that Sauder Woodworking previously had created or had to minimally modify.
4 Sauder I.T. partners with numerous firms for solution delivery. Our experience with BizStream was a true working partnership dedicated to common goals, while actually having fun in the process! I would place BizStream as one of our top vendors of choice. BizStream created a set of custom web parts to break apart functionality groups of the Kentico EMS Shopping Cart, rather than using the single built in web part. We used this strategy because it allowed us to integrate a few different third party systems into some or all of the checkout process steps. It also allowed BizStream the ability to seamlessly add a custom look and feel to the shopping cart pages as well. Placing a custom look and feel on the checkout process allowed Sauder Woodworking Company the ability to stay within their brand guidelines and create an easy to use system for its customers. The custom design also allowed for the placement of related items, or items a customer may be interested in, right alongside the items that they had chosen to buy on the cart entry page. BizStream was also able to integrate with the following systems into the Kentico EMS platform as a part of this project: Third party Sales Tax estimation, reporting, and filing service. Third party Payment Tokenization service. Custom Inventory and Shipping point logic to determine product availability. Google analytics e-commerce goals and funnel tracking. Custom Font Service to serve non web safe fonts consistently across browsers.
5 The Sauder Marketing department designed the new site look and feel and overall functionality. The Sauder I.S. team and BizStream turned their designs into a working solution. The talented team BizStream brought to the table helped Sauder reach its project goals. Working together, we combined efforts and allocated the right resources with the right talent to the various development components. These integrations allowed to implement full e-commerce inside of Kentico EMS without having to significantly modify any of their business processes or existing systems. The platform truly proved to be powerful and flexible enough to handle any and all of the business requirements. BizStream s assistance was not only requested for the custom Shopping Cart, but also for the Product pages, Collection pages, Brand Home pages, and many other page templates of the website. BizStream helped create content, custom page templates, document types, web parts, and modules for the new website. We leveraged our experience with the Kentico EMS platform to make almost all of the pages were highly dynamic and easily updatable by the content administrators at. BizStream extended the Kentico EMS platform to have a client side templating engine. This engine, built with jquery, Knockout JS, and WCF web services, allows for certain elements of the client side pages to load asynchronously. This allowed BizStream to implement features like Product Quick Looks and Recently Added modals, while still maintaining a high level of performance and providing a rich customer experience. This project was a large endeavor made up of BizStream staff and Sauder Woodworking Company resources from the Marketing, Business, and IT teams. The size of the project team turned out to be over twenty people. The project schedule was also fairly aggressive. However, at the end of the day, that team was able to deliver a fully functional B2C e-commerce website using Kentico EMS.
6 Key criteria for choosing Kentico EMS Prior to tackling the large sauder.com website development project, the Sauder I.S. technical team completed a website conversion exercise with using the Kentico CMS package. This conversion took place in a matter of weeks and the team was impressed with the product suite. Sauder s Kentico evaluation included three steps: Dive into the tool to see if we see any red flags. Consider platform compatibility, breadth of functionality, ease of use, etc. Do a deep drive into existing interface points that we have with our current site and determine how we might approach with this type of tool. See if we have any red flags. Brainstorm list of what we need to test / conduct final testing After that evaluation process was completed, the key criteria Sauder Woodworking Company used to choose Kentico EMS: Solid, proven foundation for ASP.NET development and platform extensibility. Advanced marketing features combined with best in class content management. Value of pricing point combined with out of the box feature set. Built in e-commerce ability for shopping cart, wish list, my account, product management, customer management, and order management. Social Media integration functionality. Key criteria for choosing BizStream Key criteria used to choose BizStream: Certified Kentico Gold Solutions Partner. Experience with the Kentico EMS platform. Experience with enterprise level integration projects. Experience with newest web technologies such as ASP.Net 4, CSS 3, jquery, Knockout JS, WCF web services. Ability to work as part of the solution team at all levels of engagement.
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