Continuous online business during the pandemic was imperative, which many larger retail chains (for example, Target) failed to achieve, so they were forced to shut down their web shops. Konzum’s shop worked without major problems, although there were cases of hacking and attempts to breach the system. For example, customers tried to secure their delivery appointments in a variety of ways, often using bots, which automatically booked delivery appointments as soon as they appeared.
Located on AWS – Amazon’s cloud platform
Konzum’s requirements included a highly customizable platform, which would give them the flexibility to position themselves as a pioneer in online food sales and as a long-term leader in the field. One of Ingemark’s main tasks was to integrate Konzum’s corporate web and Konzum Klik, the company’s web application for online sales.
In addition to the administration of the corporate part, numerous micro-sites for various campaigns (such as Zdravoljupci, loyalty club for Pampers and Mastercard, etc.), there is also a part related to recipes for meals, news section and all of this is managed by us. A special challenge for us was the migration of data from the old webshop to the new one, given that the new user accounts had an expanded set of data and that (at that time) there were approximately 60,000 users.
Over the years of cooperation, Konzum’s platform has undergone numerous redesigns, and several different technologies were used during its implementation. Since 2019, Konzum.hr is located on AWS, Amazon’s cloud platform, which includes a mix of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Packaged Software as a Service (SaaS) services. Ingemark has full management access to all these services, which greatly contributes to the reliability and scalability of the platform. The current application was created by using Ruby on Rails technology and is based on the Spree Commerce open-source solution. About 20 top Ingemark experts, working in multifunctional teams, were engaged in the project’s development and implementation. The use of the mentioned technology enabled flexibility, speed, and agile response to numerous changes and requests. The advantage of the technology used was most clearly displayed during the pandemic when in less than 3 months about 20 new functionalities were added to the application. The overall development of the current application lasted approximately one year, during which Ingemark’s experts successfully implemented all the changes without Konzum’s online shop shutting down even for a moment.
The innovative approach should also be emphasized, i.e. the possibility of simultaneous management of the mobile and web application from one place through the administrator interface. Another big challenge in the implementation was integrating online sales elements into the CMS, which in practice means that it enabled customers to directly add products to their shopping carts from the web’s front page which is perhaps the only such case in Croatia, even in the region.
We all remember the craze for certain items, such as toilet paper. Such large buying rushes meant extremely rapid changes in the buying conditions and availability of items, which consequently represented an additional great challenge for the Ingemark team, which had to solve all problematic situations in real-time.
This entire webshop is a kind of precedent because it was developed and refined in real-time, amid a pandemic and without the possibility of a testing or “pilot phase” during which we could check and polish various issues before the launch of the service.
Proactive approach and innovation
In addition to fulfilling the initial requirements of the client, we continue to proactively approach this assignment and often suggest certain innovations to the client. For example, we introduced a payment system with cryptocurrencies, which was quite challenging for retail products. Today, as many as 11 different cryptocurrencies can be used for payment in Konzum’s webshop via the PayCek platform. Together with Konzum, Ingemark also designed a solution for integrating the Uber service with the Konzum delivery service, thanks to which Uber drivers picked up and delivered the ordered goods to the customer’s address, which proved to be extremely efficient at times of overcrowded delivery appointments, a chronic shortage of delivery people and client’s delivery logistic issues.
Among the more demanding aspects of the cooperation with Konzum is e-Groceries section, where four different categories of products were, in terms of development, de facto each a separate project, while the Recipes segment is also continuously developing, for which a complete structure has been created where all ingredients (or some of those that are missing) for some of the numerous meal recipes offered can be ordered or placed in the shopping cart by the customer.