Shelflife is a premier, high end footwear and apparel retailer in South Africa and has sole rights to a number of top brands and products. As such, when new, exclusive products drop, there is a tremendous demand from the public, with major online and in-store rushes not uncommon. Shelflife had recently undergone major in store revamps, confirming it’s brand as a high end retailer. The online store is hugely important to Shelflife, generating significant revenue for the company. The Lima Bean team was engaged to build a best in class, flexible (to deal with the nuances of launching exclusive products) and fast e-commerce site, that was to withstand major traffic bursts and be fully integrated with the Shelflife backend systems.
We based the solution off of our enterprise e-commerce platform that is scalable, fast and flexible, being able to deal with the many unique requirements of Shelflife. These include product countdown timers and hidden “raffle winner” products requiring a pin to be unlocked. The site was built and optimized for mobile first, with user journeys carefully mapped out to enable the least amount of friction. Payment methods include credit card, instant eft, manual eft, Paypal and Snapscan, with international orders allowed. The site is also fully manageable by the client, featuring complex blog functionality that lets content administrators create feature rich, image heavy blog posts that are displayed on a “dark theme” on the front end. The website is hosted on an autoscaling, Kubernetes cluster on Google Cloud, to account for the large increases of traffic that are expected on certain product launches.
Upon launch, the feedback from the very active Shelflife community was fantastic. Order volumes and traffic were up by a significant percentage. Conversion rates increased and bounce rates (attributed to the beautiful and fast site) decreased, as people spent more time on site.