From Template to Triumph: Revamping DiFranco Innovations’ Online Presence

Case Study - Learn how a team of skilled web developers defined a client's brand and built them a custom E-Commerce platform from the ground up.
DiFranco Innovations

Overview

DiFranco Innovations, LLC is a privately owned and operated business specializing in innovative solutions for the restaurant industry. Its NSF-certified pan liners save customers and employees hours of washing caked-on food pans while reducing the overhead costs of replacing damaged equipment and wasted resources. DiFranco Innovations, LLC had trusted an offshore web development firm to create his initial e-commerce site. Unfortunately, this website development firm preyed on DiFranco’s trustworthiness and overcharged and underdelivered. DiFranco Innovations struggled to keep a steady line of communication with this team, with the ending result being a basic free template that was only partially filled in. Stock images and videos that did not pertain to DiFranco Innovations or the restaurant industry scattered the site. To add insult to injury, the site’s home page was left insecure and infected with malware.

This left DiFranco Innovations with a website that fell short of the quality it deserved and failed to represent the company accurately. Potential first-time customers’ first impressions were redirected to spam from Malware. The offshore development team refused to provide DiFranco Innovations with control of their site nor correct any of the previously mentioned issues.

Problem

Gain access and control of an existing domain and redesign a website and e-commerce platform from the ground up to provide DiFranco Innovations control of their business.

Goal

Define a brand and create a website and e-commerce platform that reflects DiFranco Innovations, who they are, and what they stand for.

Table of Contents

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The Challenge

Websites and their digital presence are paramount to businesses of any size. The website must align with the business brand from start to finish to accurately reflect who they are. DiFranco Innovations’ current domain was under the control of an offshore company that did not respond to emails or phone calls. This domain was imperative to gain access to, not only to host the new website but also to remove the previous one. DiFranco Innovations partnered with Boost Transport, a 3PL out of Atlanta, Georgia, to handle their fulfillment needs. They wished to integrate the site to pass off order information to Boost via API integrations from Extensiv.

Restaurant Industry Product

Roles & Responsibilities

Development

• Payment Processing Integration and API Keys • 3rd Party 3PL and WMS Integration • Product Data Entry • Custom CSS/PHP/JavaScript

Design

• Responsive Website Design • Meta Data • Accessibility and Compliance Audits

Branding

• Brand Discovery • Branding Sheet • Personas • Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Audiences

Marketing

• Copy Content • SEO • Analytics and Market Research

Considerations

Scope

DiFranco Innovations required a website and e-commerce platform targeting the restaurant industry and opportunities in other verticals. It must reflect the professional accuracy, innovative approach, and care they put into their products and customers. To effortlessly handle and ship potentially large orders, the site needed to handle payments directly and integrate with DiFranco Innovations' 3PL.

Constraints

The ultimate goal of integrating with a 3PL required setting up the e-commerce platform so that the data passed to and from the 3PL would sync with the site, providing customers with valuable information regarding their orders and in stock. Furthermore, as DiFranco Innovations' products would be sold internationally, we must identify a flexible shipping structure for various costs.

More pressing was the situation of the current website and domain. The offshore company had collected fees without providing deliverables and was effectively holding the original website, domain, and subsequent information hostage. We had to negotiate on our client’s behalf to address exorbitant fees for the domain's release and handle delays on the offshore company's side as they avoided working with the Savage Innovation team to facilitate the transfer.

About DiFranco Innovations

Process

Our team listened to our client to fully understand their goals. We then conducted a SWOT analysis of the industry and its competitors while identifying their target audience.

While our management team gathered the original media content and products, our design team mapped out the future website. We completed a deep-dive audit of the existing website to understand its successes and failures and provide a clear roadmap for developing the new site.

Our design team followed this roadmap, laying out the new website and e-commerce platform page by page while incorporating the imagery and media the client provided. Categories were set up to organize the product data accurately, enabling the customer to discover what they were looking for effortlessly while providing the site with an SEO boost from custom URL plugs. For ease of access and to improve client/customer relations, a customer portal was created on the website so that customers can manage and track their orders and payment methods.

Once the design process was complete, our project manager worked directly with DiFranco Innovations’ owners to upload their initial line of products to the platform along with their images and data. Once the client chose a payment processor, in this case, Stripe, our development team implemented the payment API keys to allow customers to make purchases.

Our team then worked directly with Boost Transportation and their WMS provider, Extensiv, to integrate the website’s backend with the 3PL.

Once the website was complete and all the integrations were in place, we thoroughly tested every page on desktop and mobile, utilizing test cards to simulate purchases of various products and situations. This ensured the Stripe gateway and Extensiv integration worked seamlessly.

The final product provided DiFranco Innovations with a website they could be proud of showing off to their customers and helping market new opportunities. It offered a professional digital presence with a streamlined customer shopping experience and an easy-to-manage backend for the client. The 3rd party integrations ensured transparency of information and order statuses across the board while all being tied together in a scalable user interface. Their new online presence will help drive worldwide awareness and sales of their industry-changing products.

Shop Page
Cleveland, OH Business
DiFranco Innovations Quote

Outcome within the First Two Weeks

Initial Average Search Impressions
CTR
%
Increase in Organic Search Traffic
%
Average Engagement Time
min
Increased Engagement Rate
%

Conclusion

The final product provided DiFranco Innovations with a website they could be proud of and show off to their customers, existing and new. It offered its customers precise information on the existing product line and the means to acquire it for their business, while providing DiFranco Innovations with a centralized platform to handle their business operations and finances. The website’s presentation has allowed the expansion of DiFranco Innovations’ digital presence in order to drive organic traffic and sales. Their new online presence has provided them with increased visibility in their industry to showcase their innovative product line that improves not only their customers’ business operations but the lives of their employees.

DiFranco Innovations Quote

Client Spotlight

DiFranco Innovations is a Cleveland, OH-based LLC pioneering innovative ways to reshape the restaurant industry.

Alessio DiFranco’s lifelong career in the industry allowed him to personally identify its pain points and, through a bit of creativity and perseverance, was able to develop a solution that not only saves businesses thousands of dollars a year in resources and labor but also makes their employees live easier and their jobs more enjoyable.

His collaboration and diligence in running his business were invaluable in redesigning his website, and his passion for improving the lives of those around him fueled not only his e-commerce site’s success but also DiFranco Innovations.

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A key aspect commonly overlooked in e-commerce websites is that they are their own storefronts. This entails uploading and managing products, as well as processing and fulfilling orders.

The integration provided by Extensiv allowed these orders to be effortlessly passed on to DiFranco Innovations’ 3PL, Boost Transportation, and in turn, fulfilled with minimal effort on DiFranco Innovations’ part. This allowed them to focus on their customers and running their business.

For small businesses, budget is a key factor in developing their websites. Potential integrations run the risk of requiring custom development work, in turn dramatically inflating the project’s costs.

Extensiv’s integration utilizes WooCommerce’s REST APIs to pass information to and from the 3PL. Their approach allows for an incredibly quick and efficient integration that also provides the shop owners with a dashboard to manage these orders, keeping the development costs to a minimum.

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