Harcros Chemicals | ecommerce Case StudyFrom water treatment and mining to oil and gas production, Harcros Chemicals provides technical assistance in choosing the most effective chemical product. Through their industry specialists and R&D laboratories, they are able to develop innovative solutions for their customers' needs.
Discovery & Design
Harcros came to us with an aging, non-functional product ordering system for their established business partners. They needed a new e-commerce solution that would allow them to create products and groupings, but also give them the ability to restrict what each individual company is able to purchase. This ability was essential to ensure that companies could only buy the chemicals they were rated for.
Since the existing system was non-functional, we proposed rebuilding the ordering system from the ground up. We had previously designed the primary Harcros website, so we utilized the designs we created and applied them to the e-commerce site so branding was consistent. We also did extensive discovery on the checkout process, creating user stories and mapping out all functionality before buildout began.
When Code Koalas started planning the buildout, we internally mapped out every step and entity that would be utilized and confirmed them with the client. We then took that information and built the underlying structure of the site. The backend workflow was integrated into the site, forms and admin actions were created, and product views were generated. Once all backend functionality had been built, we focused on styling the front end to ensure an easy ordering process for the business clients. Utilizing VueJS, we were able to create a responsive and intuitive layout that admins and customers were able to easily utilize to find and order products. Finally, additional post-checkout workflows were built, including email receipts, order status, and nightly product imports
One of the biggest challenges we faced was creating a custom import process for the thousands of products that Harcros manages. To accomplish the import process, we created a custom cron job that ran nightly. The cron pulled a pipe delimited file (PSV) from an Amazon S3 bucket that Harcros updated regularly. The cron then compared the PSV to the current product database and updated/created content as needed. This ensured that the database would always be updated while reducing daily server workload.
Our developers worked in 2-week sprints on this project and regularly conducted internal QA with our product owners. Progress was communicated to the client regularly, and changes were made based on their feedback.
The new Harcros e-commerce solution delivers a reliable, future-proof user experience. Established business partners are able to log in, immediately see the supplies they can order and checkout. The Harcros order fulfillment department is easily able to import, create and manage new companies and their product associations. Download links for OSHA docs are also displayed on their ordering page, ensuring that each company has the information they need to keep their employees safe. The complexity of Harcros’s new B2B e-commerce site has been streamlined and simplified, leading to increased revenue and customer satisfaction among their multinational business partners.
Sites evolve, culture shifts and requirements change. That’s why we don’t just focus on delivering an excellent site - we also focus on maintaining an ongoing relationship with our clients. We continue to provide support for Harcros and work to ensure that any future needs or feature build outs are handled quickly and professionally.
- Rebuild the existing non-functional Business to Business product ordering system
- Manage companies and product groupings
- Easily associate product groupings with companies, restricting what each company is able to order
- Improved flexibility and filtering when viewing products online
- Integration of Amazon’s S3 bucket for online file hosting
- Functional designs that maintain consistent branding
- Created custom crons to compare and import new products on a nightly basis
- Reusable Twig components and improved stability with Drupal 8
- A fully responsive website across all screens.
- Utilizing VueJS to ensure easy and fluid page interactions
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