Backcountry.com is an online retailer dedicated to providing the highest quality gear including backpacking, camping, skiing, snowboarding, rock climbing, kayaking, mountaineering gear, and more. With over 400 brands and nearly 50,000 products, outdoor enthusiasts can find and purchase their products online and through smart devices.
Rapid growth in on-device shopping, as well as the desire to optimize the mobile shopping experience, led Backcountry.com to Credera. Credera was engaged to conduct a technical rearchitecture assessment and support responsive mobile development. Credera implemented the mobile development roadmap, made responsive recommendations that were implemented, and provided project leadership and IT expertise.
Credera began the rearchitecture initiative by first understanding Backcountry.com’s business, internal processes, infrastructure, and competitive landscape. Key business stakeholders were interviewed and key competitive metrics were researched. This information was leveraged for responsive recommendations. Credera advised Backcountry.com to implement a responsive design with server-side components (RESS), to optimize the website for all smart devices.
The RESS approach gave Backcountry.com the opportunity to utilize their existing grid-based page templates across multiple breakpoints and leverage server-side optimizations to improve performance on low bandwidth devices. Based on weekly releases, Credera seamlessly incorporated pushes into Backcountry’s continuous delivery model for production releases, including structure for design, development, and reviews.
Credera led the development efforts and participated in the agile development processes of Backcountry.com’s responsive team. Credera’s User Experience team contributed significantly to the design process making recommendations as well as developing comps for several screens. In fact, Credera collaborated between design, development, and product ownership to determine how the responsive pages should behave, along with prioritizing the order of their development. Page development was prioritized based on visibility and flow (i.e., cart, checkout, confirmation) to provide an optimized user experience.
Credera’s project leadership team met regularly with Backcountry.com executives to discuss the project’s progress, evaluate and reprioritize mobile priorities, and ensure resources were allocated to meet needs. Additionally, Credera provided a week long hands-on training to Backcountry.com’s mobile development team, teaching how to carry on the established implementation patterns and design language. Best practices, standards, development methodologies, and processes were documented and provided to the client.
Examples of Backcountry.com’s mobile responsive design:
As a result of this project, customers now have a better online shopping experience. Initial findings showed Backcountry.com’s shopping conversion rate was significantly higher than with their previous solution. With the new responsive website, Backcountry.com also provides better promotion and redemption opportunities, which allow customized campaigns for mobile shoppers.
Other improvements include:
- Migrated Backcountry.com’s mobile storefront to the same platform as their existing eCommerce solution: ATG
- Increased efficiency through responsive design with server-side components (RESS) approach
- Reduced the migration effort for sister brands (i.e., Competitive Cyclist, Dogfunk, and MotoSport) by providing the foundation for Backcountry.com to use the same responsive templates in the future
- Positioned Backcountry to eliminate service fees to an outsourced mobile hosting provider by equipping Backcountry.com with an internally hosted mobile solution
- Created WordPress engine to assist marketing team with content creation and customer engagement