Craft News

Cooking Up a Mouthwatering Commerce Experience

Dec 20, 2016 in Case Studies

Ina’s “Barefoot in Paris” cookbook

Ina Garten’s website needed an update. Her brand, Barefoot Contessa, had expanded to include a collection of books and a Food Network show. Her website, however, had not, and was no longer an accurate representation of her brand. In addition, her team knew they needed to upgrade the UX/UI for mobile and deliver a better e-commerce experience. Given these requirements, they were in search of a CMS that would meet their mobile needs, provide robust e-commerce capabilities, and be easy to update, allowing the Barefoot Contessa team to upload new recipes, blog posts, TV schedules and more on a daily basis.

Ina tapped creative agency Apartment One for the job, who brought on their technology partner Jonathan Melville for the development of the website. Jonathan has a vast portfolio of work including Jon Bon Jovi’s non-profit community restaurant Soul Kitchen, and was the perfect developer for the new Barefoot Contessa site.

After Apartment One shared with Jonathan the wireframes for the Barefoot Contessa site, he knew Craft would be the best CMS for the job. Craft allowed Jonathan to build exactly what Apartment One and Ina Garten had envisioned: a site that renders and navigates beautifully on mobile, can handle high-traffic e-commerce, and can be easily updated with new content, all while maintaining the brand’s specific look and feel.

Creating a custom e-commerce experience

To create a shopping experience worthy of the Barefoot Contessa brand, Jonathan turned to the newly-released Craft Commerce solution. Craft Commerce allows developers to build custom-tailored shopping experiences for their clients, ultimately maximizing conversions and sales.

“We had very specific needs for not just the UI, but also the customer’s overall experience during the payment process. With Craft Commerce, we are able to easily create the shopping experience that our clients had in mind.”

Jonathan Melville, Developer

The backend Live Preview editor for Ina’s “Cooking for Jeffrey” cookbook.

The backend Live Preview editor for Ina’s “Cooking for Jeffrey” cookbook.

Craft Commerce is the only platform available that allows developers and designers to build the shopping cart they want from scratch. Developers don’t have to piece together existing software or systems to create their desired experience.

“As we were going through the process of building the shopping cart, it was easy to see how this could have been a huge pain point if we’d gone with another system.”

Stopping dead ends with Retour

Another benefit of Craft is the ease of which clients can learn the backend. Jonathan’s team put a lot of thought into how they set up the CMS for the Barefoot Contessa team to ensure a seamless transition between the old site and the new site. One specific need was a way to maintain the legacy content of her old website–specifically her recipes–as to not have 404 error pages popping up everywhere. To make the redirect process smooth, Jonathan utilized the Retour plugin.

“Retour was a great way for the client to be able to manage all of the redirects and take care of it as content was being input into the system.”

Jonathan Melville, Developer

With Retour, Jonathan was able to create a custom identification field for the legacy recipes. Then, all Ina’s team had to do was put in the number that corresponded with the recipe on the old site; now when someone visits one of the old URLs, they’re automatically redirected to the updated content. Since 404 errors negatively affect both user experience and search rankings, the Retour plugin was both invaluable in saving time and quantifiable in maintaining search rankings from day one.

The Retour plugin in action on BarefootContessa.com.

The Retour plugin in action on BarefootContessa.com.

Since the launch of the new website, traffic to BarefootContessa.com has increased exponentially - as have e-commerce sales. With Craft CMS and Craft Commerce Jonathan and Apartment One were able to deliver exactly what the Barefoot Contessa team needed to grow their brand, without compromising on design or functionality. Cheers to a job well done! Whiskey sour, anyone?