What we did
A digital storefront to complement a new company brand
Ashley Stewart is a retail clothing brand dedicated to empowering plus-size women to feel strong, beautiful, and ready to take on the world. It offers bold and unapologetic styles in more than 80 stores across 22 states, an ecommerce platform, and a dynamic social media presence.
The company began to plan for a digital transformation in mid-2021 to make the online shopping experience easier and more enjoyable for its customers. This would require upgrading its aging infrastructure, so the brand hired Slalom to help it migrate onto the latest versions of Salesforce Commerce Cloud and Salesforce Order Management. The go-live date was timed with a company-wide rebranding initiative in June 2022.
Identifying customer interaction pain points
In an increasingly digital shopping industry, a convenient and consistent customer experience is table stakes. Slalom conducted website performance testing and an assessment of Ashley Stewart’s legacy systems to help the company identify customer touchpoints that were clunky and inefficient.
“We knew our digital storefront was not keeping pace with consumer expectations,” says Liz White, chief customer officer at Ashley Stewart, Inc. “We needed to make changes that were significant on the back end, yet would appear subtle to the everyday shopper, yielding greater performance overall.”
For example, the website was not optimized for some of the most popular purchase methods—mobile and buy-online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS).
The website also offered limited functionality due to a cumbersome merchandise database. The filter feature was weak, making it difficult for shoppers to sort products by categories like size, color, and season. The database also made it challenging for the Ashley Stewart team to implement sales and promotions, and third-party integrations did not function efficiently.
“All the upgrades we made were through a lens of the customer experience,” says Shivani Majewski, senior director, Slalom. “Our goal was to help Ashley Stewart make significant back-end performance gains while presenting its customers with a fresh and convenient experience that would lead to more conversions.”
Creating an inspiring experience
The new website launched in June 2022 and is running faster and more smoothly than the previous version, even during high-traffic times.
Slalom leveraged native features and functionality of the upgraded Salesforce Commerce Cloud and Salesforce Order Management platforms to deliver best-practice customer interactions.
Improvements to the customer experience include:
A platform that automatically optimizes the website interface for users navigating the site on mobile devices
A BOPIS journey that creates a simple order and pickup process
More intuitive product searching and filter functionality
A number of seamless third-party integrations for order tracking, customer service, promotions, and security
A rating and review system to give customers an easy feedback channel and create insights for management to optimize quality
The Slalom team also implemented technical back-end improvements that make Ashley Stewart’s website more streamlined and agile. A formal and standardized site monitoring system means that employees don’t have to manually check site performance each hour during peak traffic times. And with Salesforce Page Designer, the web team can quickly and easily make small, tactical changes and optimizations that promote brand consistency, a smooth UX, and page load times.
“We had a smooth transition and go-live,” says Majewski. “The Ashley Stewart team has expanded its skill set across the functionality within Salesforce Commerce Cloud so it can nimbly scale, incorporate brand-level changes, and introduce new customer-facing features moving forward.”
Modernizing the brand
Ashley Stewart continues to update the website photography and overall feel of the brand.
“The website beautifully reflects our new brand and gives us a framework to house our new customer experience,” says White. “We’re confident we have the functionality and skill to seamlessly weave in updates.”