Creating a Single Order Processing System: ECP sold auto parts through various marketplaces (e.g., eBay, Amazon), and orders were increasing. Since they were using a manual system to place those orders once they received them, they were losing countless hours of productivity trying to manage the system, and the task was becoming more and more tedious.
To streamline the ordering process for external marketplaces, Net Solutions developed a single order processing system that kept track of sales, orders, inventory, and fulfillment for purchases across all business-to-consumer websites and marketplaces. They did this by setting up a centralized system that integrated APIs from each marketplace.
This not only greatly simplified order management, it meant that the central hub could now provide an overview of consolidated sales figures.
Eliminating Order Delays: As sales grew, order processing slowed because the system wasn’t designed for such a large volume of transactions. Customer support teams manually processed every order individually, and this had a cascading effect on delivery time.
To solve this problem, Net Solutions implemented the following changes:
- The new system used business rules to validate each order for accuracy and completeness. Those detected to be “OK” were marked for auto-processing
- Autoprocessing was implemented using macros on a dedicated system
- Orders with issues were flagged and queued for manual processing. This further helped ECP staff to identify possible areas for improvement and reduce errors in ordering.
These changes resulted in faster deliveries and increased customer satisfaction.
Third-party API Uptime Monitoring: Since ECP’s website is a complex system that relies heavily on third-party APIs, any API downtime would directly impact sales. For example, the order placement journey was hampered whenever the stock level API went down.
To address this problem, Net Solutions developed a system to monitor third-party API uptime. The system notified key stakeholders any time an API stopped working, setting the stage for a quick response.
After a successful rollout, Net Solutions further enhanced the system by allowing it to switch to a functioning API when a given API went down. It would then revert to the original API as soon it became available again. This resulted in minimal downtown, reducing revenue losses by a large factor.
Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO): While the traffic on the website had been increasing, conversion rates were not keeping pace. To address issues that might impact conversion rates, such as back-and-forth navigation, high bounce rates from key landing pages, low dwell time, and others, Net Solutions began running A/B tests where experiments could be performed on sample traffic, which was filtered from real traffic. Net Solutions used what they learned to increase conversions and roll out changes to the entire site.
Revamping the Code: Net Solutions’ engagement with ECP stretched more than a decade and continues to this day. As the company continued to expand and strengthen its position throughout the UK and mainland Europe, the existing code began to show its age. After all, it was more than 15 years old.
Each time ECP introduced a new feature, Net Solutions pushed for the serious code overhaul they’d recommended in the beginning. Eventually, ECP saw the value and decided to greenlight the project.
Net Solutions came up with a future-proof plan based on where ECP was and where they wanted to be in the years to come. The new CMS would be a highly dynamic, configurable, bespoke platform that could run all ECP’s online properties, not just now, but well into the future.
The new platform supported a highly dynamic configuration engine, which meant that ECP could launch a new site in less than 30 minutes, simply by selecting the desired features, products, etc.
Finally, because the sites were on a single platform, business units could receive reports and data relevant to them, with the headquarters receiving clean, high-level summaries.
Net Solutions delivered the new system incredibly fast—in just under three business quarters—while continuing to support and maintain existing properties. After the launch, they migrated all of ECP’s properties, along with completely refreshed designs, within 6 months.