When choosing an eCommerce solution for his up coming project, Umbraco + Vendr was the natural choice for seasoned web developer Ryan Helmn. We asked Ryan to put together his thoughts on why Vendr has worked for him and his exciting new client, Cannabrew.
I'm Ryan Helmn, a passionate full stack .NET developer and mobile app developer. I've been working with Umbraco since landing my first full time role as a software engineer back in 2014. Since then, I've worked on 100+ different Umbraco projects, ranging from small brochure sites to huge attraction sites.
Cannabrew was crafted back in 2019 with one mission in mind, brewing with a purpose. Cannabrew's ale & cider are infused with broad-spectrum organic Cannabidiol (CBD) oil. As of today, they have planted over 15,637 trees in their forest and removing approximately 16 tonnes of CO2.
Cannabrew's previous site was built on top of WooCommerce, so having the big move to Umbraco meant everything had to be written from scratch, no references to existing code etc. However, with the help of the extensiveness from both Umbraco and Vendr, we had no limits when it came to piecing everything together.
With that in mind, we wanted to make sure that the front end and back end user experience was as streamlined as possible. Which is why Umbraco was the best choice. Having that ability to have full control over what the content editors see meant that the change to Umbraco + Vendr was night and day with how clear the experience was.
We were looking for a robust and clean eCommerce solution, which is why Vendr was the best of choice. Vendr has all of the core components we needed to get up and running without any issues and with the in depth documentation, it meant we could start planning out the functional implementation before even starting any work. From a developer point of view, this was most appealing, having that knowledge prior to starting the work meant that when the time came, we already knew what to do.
Cannabrew wanted to make returning customer experience as streamlined as possible. To do this we developed an account area for them, utilising Umbraco's members. In this area the customer can manage multiple delivery addresses to speed up checkout process, view past orders and more.
We also wanted to keep customers up to date with their order status, so hooking into the necessary events Vendr had exposed meant we could send out emails to the customer as their order gets updated with ease.
From day one we had page speed in mind, the previous site hitting around 40 points on Google Page speed. The new site now hits 95+ on mobile & desktop, a vast improvement which the client is thrilled with. When looking at the site's analytics we saw in increase in returning visitors and an increase in the average visitor time, all good news for converting sales.
Working with Vendr has definitely cleared any doubts I've had about using large third party packages. As with most eCommerce solutions, there's always the fun job with payment providers. Vendr has a number of payment providers ready to use, unfortunately the client's current payment provider wasn't available with Vendr as yet, so this needed to be written from scratch. But with Vendr's friendly API and payment provider documentation I was able to create one myself. There were some complications due to how the payment provider validates the payment endpoints, however, after getting in touch with Vendr's support team we had a solution up and running in no time!
In short, Vendr is awesome. If you're like me and are conscious about using third party packages, because of support, longevity and optimisation, then don't be!