Zenith, the well-known Swiss watchmaker, whose roots reach the 19th century, for years operated mainly in traditional selling channels as the majority of other luxury brands. Recently, however, it decided to fully embrace the potential of online shopping, and - as befits the high-end household name - the customer experience it provides must have been impeccable.
eCommerce industry, even though it was clear its potential is undeniable, for years was not the first place-to-go for the luxury segment. The companies selling luxury masterpieces remain cautious about "dehumanizing" their business as neither short social media video nor even the most sophisticated copy was not the most efficient way of painting the value of the best craftsmanship or materials. Not to mention, a one-click transaction kind of kills the boutique-like vibe.
Still, as shoppers were moving online, luxury companies have no other choice than followed, and COVID-19 was another push to speed it up. The non-essential brands were hit hard first by lockdown and later by the general decline of consumer optimism, and so many prestige-located stores were forced to shut. The companies had to reprioritize their business to be where the clients are.
Zenith’s site was previously powered by Magento 1 but it didn't offer a purchase capability. Given that the official support of Magento was coming to an end, the company was - one way or another - forced to change the system. Yet, taking advantage of the opportunity, it decided not only to proceed with the migration but also to expand the business. And so - apart from migrating to Magento 2 - the company decided to provide its customers with innovative shopping capabilities.
The agency designated to get the job done was WIDE, and the task was not easy. Zenith’s online image must have been matched the real-life one, and so it was not about putting basic sales features on the website. WIDE was due to deliver a future-proof platform suited to the international brand’s needs in terms of presenting rich content, connecting with the 3rd party services and open to further innovations.
With all that in mind, the direction was obvious. Decoupled architecture seemed to be the only way to fulfill this concept, guaranteeing quality and performance for the exchange of data between the e-commerce backend and visitors, and also being the only way to secure the future development. With an API-oriented system, adding further business-focused services or reimplementing the existing ones was not going to compromise the stability of the system at any time.
Vue Storefront - even though not the only one - was one of the most important elements of the desired platform, as a body-less front-end that "glued" all of the others. That was one of its most important advantages, though not the only one. It provides PWA features, functional coverage for Magento2 natively managed server-side rendering (SSR), and a mobile-first approach with no limits to customization.
Vue Storefront thus offers us a pertinent response to the problems related to frontend solutions. By offering both client-side and server-side (via VueSSR) rendering, it enables us to focus our efforts on the overall performance of the site.