In 2019, Midwest Technology Products celebrated a company milestone by marking 100 years of service! This family-run, majority women-owned, business has been committed to providing quality products and tools, paired with exceptional customer service, to educators around the world for over four generations.
As the economy changed throughout these years, there were new challenges and advancements in technology driving them to move from paper catalog sales to an ecommerce store. Through it all, Midwest Technology Products has continued to provide STEM, Industrial Arts, and additional supplies to educators worldwide.
The Problem: A Complicated Website
IntuitSolutions successfully launched a basic BigCommerce website for MidwestTechnology.com in early 2018 and thereafter continued to work with them to optimize their BigCommerce SEO. As our SEO team further optimized their store, it became clear that their website needed a more serious overhaul.
Our SEO’s recommended that we evaluate and restructure the categories and URL’s of the site. The previous category structure was based on their catalog, which had not been reviewed for nearly a decade. This was no simple task for our SEO team as there are over 350+ categories in the store. As our team began researching, planning, and restructuring, it became clear that the existing design and layout of the website was not ideal.
Although these were two long term and intensive projects, Midwest Technology was willing and excited to dive into them.
The Solution: A Custom BigCommerce Design
As our SEO team dove deeper into restructuring, and identifying other areas for UX improvement, there came a point where they recommended that a custom BigCommerce design would be the best course of action to improve many of the issues at hand.
Designing a custom BigCommerce site not only corrected many of these issues, but provided the opportunity to exhibit Midwest Technology as the historically successful business that it is. Being that our SEO team had been working with Midwest Technology for over a year, they were instrumental in helping support and inform our BigCommerce design team as they got to work.
Throughout the process, we collaborated with Midwest Technology in outlining a list of features to be incorporated with the site. After initial wireframing, the design team produced a well polished, complete design. The new site was then developed using the latest responsive coding practices. Phones, tablets, desktops, and laptop computers all displayed an optimized, scaled, and usable version of their site.
Improved User Experience
After reviewing their priority list of changes, our creative department designed the layout, styles and features to match their brand identity. They also emphasized user experience by ensuring easy access to information and adding more Call-To-Actions. Before and during the design process, our SEO team focused on overhauling the site for improved navigation and category structure.
New Site Structure
One of the roadblocks Midwest Technology faced was that they have a very wide range of products which, in-turn, leads to a long list of categories. Some of the original placements of subcategories made it difficult for customers to navigate to the products they really wanted. IntuitSolutions worked hand-in-hand with Midwest Technology to work out the kinks and layout a structure that would help customers navigate to categories and products more easily.
Apps and Add-Ons
In addition to a custom BigCommerce design, we also incorporate a few apps and add-ons developed by IntuitSolutions. Here are the top apps and add-ons used to improve the development process and website.
The development process of MidwestTechnology.com was streamlined by the use of the ThemeBridge™ App. This app allowed us to preview the design improvements, new custom functionalities and minor changes we made to the theme before launching any changes to the live storefront.
ThemeBridge™ helped our team debug against a preview with identical configuration to the live store. The app helped accelerate the development and testing processes, which saved this project significant time and expenses.
Improve B2B Shopping Experience with Cart Snapshot
Cart Snapshot has a variety of uses that can be leveraged to enhance the B2B shopping experience such as:
- Generate purchase orders
- Help sales reps build quotes
- Help B2B customers make shopping lists
- Keep records of past or regular purchases
- Generate more and better sales leads
Cart Snapshot appears as a button in the cart that enables a customer to email a PDF of their Shopping Cart’s contents to themselves or anyone they choose. Additionally, they can click a link on the PDF to return to the storefront with a fully restored cart.
Since Midwest Technology deals mainly with schools and educators, many of their sales need to be pre-approved by various councils before purchase. Cart Snapshot allows their customers to do just that without losing any information or items with the click of a button.
Quick Order Page
Finding items and adding them to cart couldn’t be simpler with the quick order tool. Perfect for customers with a shopping list or who regularly reorder items. This search page allows customers to find products by name or SKU. Then they can add them directly to the cart without navigating through the entire site.
Customers can add the exact color, size, and quantity of what they want in just a few seconds. It shortens the buying process and helps get customers through the purchase pipeline, decreasing cart abandonment and improving sales. As previously mentioned, Midwest Technology has an extensive inventory of products. This tool ensures that customers can get in and checkout in a timely manner especially when they know exactly what they are looking for.
Customer service is the foundation of Midwest Technology, so the Reorder Button add-on was the perfect fit for their website. This add-on helps returning customers easily reorder items they’ve purchased before with one convenient button.
When clicked, customers are prompted to log in through a popup window and then shown their previous orders. They can quickly add individual items or entire orders to the cart and proceed to checkout. This add-on makes it easy to turn returning customers into regulars. Midwest Technology loves this add-on because it decreases time to checkout, improves average order value, and easily resells products that need to be refilled or replaced.
Customized Mega Menu
As previously mentioned, the SEO team worked on restructuring the categories of their website. So displaying these categories and subcategories in a new way was necessary. Although Midwest Technology chose to keep it clean and simple, the new customized mega menu can include animations or transitions on hover and photos or banner advertisements.
Our developers worked collaboratively with Midwest Technology to design a mega menu to their specifications to go with the website’s new branding.
Midwest Technology Products’ custom BigCommerce website was launched on February 26, 2020. They stayed true to their mission of providing customers with an easy to use online experience and continued loyal customer service. After implementing our ecommerce strategies, IntuitSolutions believes the upgrade of Midwest Technology Products’ website will continue building trust with their already loyal customer base.
Once we designed and developed the new website on BigCommerce, Midwest Technology Products maintained their relationship with our BigCommerce SEO team. We’re excited and honored to continue working with a company like Midwest Technology who continues to grow and expand their ecommerce business with the support of IntuitSolutions.
Interested in getting a custom BigCommerce website? Contact us or give us a call at 1-866-901-4650 today!