Take pride in what you drink with Caskers
M1 Commerce to M2 Open Source Migration
Caskers is a New York brand selling limited edition and rare whiskies and spirits. It is a unique place where customers can learn about hundreds of available drinks, get personal recommendations and purchase the spirit that suits their tastes best.
At the beginning of 2018, the Caskers team found BelVG because they wanted to migrate their online store based on Magento 1 Commerce to Magento 2 Open Source. Our team fully recreated the functionality of the old complex website with all its data on the new robust platform. Caskers also hired our designers and frontend developers to refresh the website look and they created a new custom Magento 2 theme following the overall brand’s style.
Since then, the BelVG team has been maintaining the Caskers website on a full-time basis. In this project, we developed several custom features. One of them is called Gift Concierge (former Digital Barmen). It allows customers to take a quiz, filling out the information about the tastes of a person they are looking for a gift for. Then, Gift Concierge generates personal recommendations on what spirit to purchase.
The Caskers website also has a Club subscription system. The subscription is flexible and can be easily canceled or paused. The payments are set up via Stripe to operate automatically. Another long-going task was a website integration with Caskers in-house order fulfillment system.
IndustryFood & drinks
Services & notable features
- Migration from Magento 1 Commerce to Magento 2 Open Source
- Custom Magento 2 theme
- Gift Concierge feature (former Digital Barmen)
- Club subscription system
- Website optimization
- Ongoing Magento 2 support
- Integration with in-house order fulfillment system
- Stripe integration for subscription payments
Magento 1 Commerce to Magento 2 Open Source Migration
Operating a webstore based on Magento 1 Commerce, Caskers looked for a way to improve the performance and cut down the monthly costs. That is why they decided to migrate to a more stable Magento 2 and go for the Open Source version.
The main goal was to perform the migration and ensure the website’s performance is bug-free as soon as possible. The Caskers team did not want a delay because it would affect their SEO strategy.
Our team completed the full migration within 7 month, including the testing. It allowed Caskers to renew their marketing operations before the Christmas ads started to come out.
Another key goal of this M2 migration was to save as much data as possible.
Caskers Magento 1 website included more than:
The Caskers team specifically wanted us to keep their structure of customers, products and categories. To keep data synchronized with the order fulfillment system, we made sure that the products’ and orders’ IDs remain the same.
The association of customers with orders and reviews also required transferring to the upgraded website to let customers view their order history. To keep the state of SEO, we migrated the URL rewrites.
Migration of Integrations & Extensions
Initially, there were more than 100 extensions installed on Caskers Magento 1 website. The list of those for migration was limited to fewer than 20. It allowed cutting down the migration costs by not transferring unnecessary modules.
Some of the extensions chosen for a new M2 store were already used in the M1 store. Our team searched for proper counterparts to these modules when it was possible. Some of them were not available on Magento 2 yet or required a lot of customization. The other modules were meant to cover the functionality of Magento Commerce missing in Magento Open Source.
Among the extensions that Caskers wanted to see in their new store were the ones with the following functionality:
- Slider visual editor
- Gift card accounts with balance
- Subscriptions with automatic payments via Stripe
- Product preview
- Referral program with reward points
- SailThru integration for handling all the transactional emails with
- Social login
- Address verification
- Google and Facebook shopping
- Generation and storing tracking codes
- Shipment tracking
Custom Magento 2 Theme & Frontend Improvement
The BelVG designers received Caskers’ request for refreshing their Magento 1 theme for the new Magento 2 webstore. The goal was to keep as close as possible to their existing design but add modern features. Special attention was paid to the improvement of the overall UX and website’s look on mobile devices.
Our team provided a UI/UX audit to define the weaknesses of the Caskers’ old design. Then, we listed the recommendations with detailed explanation. Once the ideas found approvement from the customer, our designer started working on a new Magento 2 theme. All the significant elements of the existing design remained unchanged to make sure the website does not lose its identity.
Club Subscription System
On this project, our developers built a custom club subscription system. There are two Сlubs in Caskers now: the American Whiskey Club and the World of Whiskey Club. The first one includes only the US-crafted products while the second one also offers Scotch, Irish, Japanese and others.
Both of them work as a subscription membership. Once signed up, a customer receives two bottles of whiskeys of the selected type every three months. The shipment also comes with a custom tasting note which provides instructions on the best way to taste the delivered whiskey. Joining the Club, the customers get access to the newest and rarest bottles.
We also added the functionality that allows memberships to be sent to someone else as a gift. The website users just need to do the following:
- They chose the type of Club and the membership duration.
- Customers can write a gift note.
- Then, they just need to send a gift code to someone.
- The receiver fills out this code on a website and joins the Club.
The subscription payments are processed via Stripe. This system automates plan renewal, switching or cancellation. Caskers also asked us to add the functionality that allows specifying a custom trial period when subscription was purchased. It would ensure that later on the customers are billed on a correct date every quarter. In Clubs’ customer accounts, they can directly manage their subscriptions. It includes changing the shipping address, canceling, pausing or renewing the subscription or switching to another Club.
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Alcohol Gift Concierge (Digital Barmen)
Gift Concierge is a custom feature built by BelVG for Magento 2. It allows Caskers’ customers to find a perfect whiskey for a gift. Customers would need to take a quiz that collects the following information:
- Name of the gift receiver
- Type of spirit that this person usually drinks (bourbon, scotch, tequila, rum etc)
- Favorite brand
- Particular flavor that the gift receiver does not like
- Price range
When every quiz step is taken, the Gift Concierge generates suggestions for spirits that this person might like. There is always an option to select “I don’t know” for almost all the questions if the gift giver is not aware of preferences. Then, the suggestions are based on popular choices, selected occasion and price range.
Order Fulfillment System Integration
When we took on a project, product availability tracking and order processing were already in some way handled by Caskers’ own order fulfillment system integrated with their Magento 1 store. There were more than 2600 products and 100 product categories.
Their team wanted to advance this integration, adding more functionality. Now, the system and Casker’s Magento 2 website exchange the following information automatically:
- Product updates and creation of new products
- Stock, pricing and availability updates
- Product availability verification at the checkout
- Tax rate updates at the checkout depending on entered shipping address
- New order placement
- Changes in order statuses
Caskers has an advanced SEO strategy which requires their new website to follow certain rules. First of all, the BelVG team took time to audit a website and analyse all the information provided during the migration to Magento 2.
Magento is a pretty heavy-weight platform by itself so we had to take measures to keep the website speed on a good level. The low speed could affect Caskers ranking in search results. Our developer resized all the images on the website to lighten the loading. All the content is optimized.