Case Studies

About the client
Client is one of the leading Japanese e-commerce and Internet Company based in Japan. They run one of the largest B2B and B2C e-commerce platform which is one of the largest platforms globally in terms of sales.

Business problem
Client was looking to strengthen its market position in Japan by creating a single, global e-commerce platform to accelerate expansion into new geographic markets across various geographical regions. To achieve this, client was looking for a partner who could provide technology solutions, value-addition by providing consulting services, and effective testing with good quality, which would help it to launch a new marketplace in minimum time and with high quality.

The ultimate goal of the client was the following: 

  • Launching a new marketplace and  confirming the requirements in minimum time and with high quality
  • Releasing country specific malls in a short duration including all new features and enhancements

Business solution
Cybage completed the following:

  • Implemented and enhanced the Application Programming Interface (API) architecture by following best practices 
  • Utilized API development expertise with specialization in the e-commerce domain to ensure that high quality delivery was achieved within the timeframe
  • Analyzed and implemented various development tools and methodologies that could enhance quality, shorten the development time, and help the customer to get best and accurate results in least possible time
  • Enhanced project processes and implemented Scrum, which provided high visibility and improved productivity with other benefits of Agile methodology

Business functions
In the B2B and B2C business model, merchants located in different regions can come together to form an online virtual shopping mall. The main profit sources are fixed fees from merchants and fees based on each transaction and other services.

Business impact
The e-commerce platform hosted around more than 20 APIs which enabled merchants and shoppers to interact with each other. Some of these served the following functionalities: 

  • Order management
  • Campaigns and promotions
  • Catalog management
  • Inventory management
  • Cross-border


API Orchestration:
APIs in the e-commerce platform were categorically divided into the following two parts: 

  • REST APIs
  • Open API

The REST APIs provided Representational State Transfer (REST) interfaces for manipulating the concepts used by the overall project. Its function was mainly to provide a global interface for business services. It was primarily used by the marketplace and back-end systems. The Open API was an integrated Web Service API platform for merchants to exchange product, order, inventory, and other information programmatically. The service was not designed specifically only to few marketplaces but was applicable for all the marketplaces. The Marketplace Web services covered the following items to ensure that the data exchange was highly efficient and highly secured:

  • Authentication and authorization
  • Throttling
  • Web Service APIs
  • Documentation
  • Software Development Kit (SDK)
  • Production environment

The Open API was also used for migration to import and export data back and forth between different platforms and to-be migrated platforms (or marketplaces).


API strategy:
Client aimed to integrate both its platforms into one. This was to bridge the gap between internal and external marketplaces by creating a set of interfaces that standardized requests to and from internal and external marketplaces.

Tools and technologies:
Java, REST full Web services, Test Rail, Hibernate, JUnits or SOAP, MySQL, SVN, Git, Ruby, and BDD.
 

The client is a leading online e-commerce store and also provides a marketplace for other sellers to sell their products.

Business requirements:

  • Client was looking for a generic solution to manage and process data feeds which is sent and/or received from various content providers, affiliates, and popular websites in the form of multiple file formats. Data feeds mainly consist of product information, image links and pricing.  The affiliates could consume this information from the feed and build individual pages for each product, or put multiple products on each page.
  • Current process to add a new data feed for a new vendor was a tedious process and required changes in multiple applications. Admin panel was provided to manage the fields required by different service providers and to configure the settings.


Following were the business objectives:

  • The client needed to provide data feeds to various affiliates and vendors with the product information from the local database.
  • The client required an application to create and manage workflow rules defined for various affiliates.
  • The developed application needed to define feed specifications and transfer mechanism for various affiliates.


Solution Highlights:

  • Cybage ensured that the feed structure conformed to the rules mentioned in the solution specification.
  • Once the full-fledged feed was generated and met all the requirements mentioned in the solution specifications, we generated the files at the appropriate location and then the affiliates consume the file.
  • We performed end-to-end testing of applications to meet the Quality Assurance needs of the client.


Technologies:
.NET 2.0, C#, Microsoft SQL Server 2005

The client is one of the leading online providers of auto parts and accessories in the US and offers a wide range of high-standard replacement parts, performance parts, and accessories.


Business Problem  
The key systems of the organization such as Order Management System, Inventory System, Catalog System, Warehouse Management System, E-commerce websites, and Customer Service Console were developed in heterogeneous platforms such as PHP and Java. 
However, the following problems existed:        

  • The data or information communication among various systems was becoming increasingly difficult. A lot of redundant functionalities existed for inter-data communications for a single purpose
  • No standard way of communication or interaction between any two systems was in place.
  • No single repository of services was in place.
  • Interfaces were not extensible, and scalability was an issue.
  • Any changes in one system had unknown effects on other systems and attracted complete system regression, thus increasing the go-to-market timeline.


Business Solution – SOA Service Layer:   
While we evaluated several technology model solutions, we zeroed down on developing a Service-oriented Architecture (SOA) model to address these problems while providing a scalable and extensible system to be consumed by the E-commerce ecosystem. The services in the SOA Service layer were available to systems across the organization with a well-defined access control mechanism and provided a common interface to get desired data from the required systems. For example, to get the Product information from the Catalog system, the SOA Service layer provided an interface that any other system could use. Hence, there was a single point of interface, and any changes made to the service were abstracted at the Service layer.   
The SOA-based Service layer had the following features:           

  • Orchestration: The SOA Service layer used orchestration to serve a business request and use the various available de-coupled service components to form a response as per the requestor’s need.
  • It was a technology platform that was language-agnostic. It used a standard way of communication over the web through web services with Representational State Transfer (REST)-based protocol and provided data in JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) objects format.
  • The Service layer architecture being service-oriented was highly extensible.
  • It offered a single repository for all the services. Any system could explore available services and use it. The scale-out option was possible and came out of the traditional scale-up model.
  • It provided a means for rapid development and quality check of the new services.



The following systems started consuming SOA services:

  • The E-commerce website used SOA services to:
    • Get product, brand, categories, attributes, assets, and pricing information. SOA services connected to the Catalog system to get the required information, message it, and send it.
    • Push orders to the downstream supply-chain system such as the Order Manager System.
    • Do My Account information management.
    • Get inventory information.
    • Introduce a content service that used NoSQL data such as MongoDB as the back-end storage and help in publishing contents on various sites.
    • Centralize the shipping calculation service.
    • Execute SEO services to manage various on-page SEO components.
    • Centralize the coupon system to allow publishing different coupons on a different web.
  • The Catalog system used SOA services to get inventory information and send it to the Warehouse Management System (WMS).
  • Mobile applications used SOA services to get all the product information and other Mobile Commerce-related information to manage the transaction life cycle and content syndication.


SOA SERVICE LAYER ENVIRONMENT:

  • The SOA Service layer instances were deployed on multiple servers to serve traffic using the load balancer.
  • This layer was hosted on a private network of the organization and exposed through the proxy layer.
  • Memcache was used for service cache. This cache reduced the load on hardware and expedited the response.
  • The MongoDB database was used for access and error log.
  • The Service signature made services secure from any external sources.
  • The Custom Alerts system helped to find out failure in any systems and downstream systems.
  • The Service Discovery tool helped to easily find out available versions of services and methods under it.
  • The Dashboard displayed status of various dependent systems and replication status and current deployed versions.


Tools and technologies:       

  • PHP 5, REST, JSON, JavaScript, SOAP, My SQL 5.0, Mongo, Web Services, XML, Memcache
  • Red Hat Linux 4.x, Apache 2.0.52 

The client is a Japanese E-commerce company, has a global marketplace platform with presence in more than 25 countries.


Business problem
The client needed to:

  • Support same-day delivery within a defined time interval in a city that is the busiest crossing in Tokyo.
  • Enable its customers to be able to see the expected delivery time interval before placing an order.
  • A separate order and inventory management system to prevent any changes to the current system.


Business solution
To facilitate same-day delivery, the solution landscape consisted of the following:

  • Mobile commerce platform (iOS or Android) application for the customers to browse the catalog and place orders
  • Mobile delivery a logistics platform or (VAN) app (iOS only) for the delivery personnel to track and deliver orders
  • Inventory management portal or depot tool: A web-based utility tool to track and monitor inventory and supply
  • Azure AD: Active Directory-based authentication portal


Mobile commerce or customer app:
Cybage developed a bespoke iOS or Android application to enable the customers to perform the following functions:

  • Select a delivery area within a defined range from a dynamic map to check delivery time estimate
  • Browse the mobile catalog and select products for purchase
  • Place an order and process payment
  • Receive reminders on the status of the order and estimated time of arrival (ETA) on successful completion of orders
  • View past orders and browse order history
  • Register on the client’s portal


Logistics and delivery or VAN app:
Cybage developed a bespoke iOS application to enable the delivery personnel to effectively track and deliver orders. The application had the following features:

  • An interface displaying the list of active and delivered orders
  • Automatic adjustment of delivery time (ETA), depending on traffic conditions
  • The application sent delivery acknowledgement message
  • It displayed current stock information of the delivery vehicle and alerted the delivery personnel to restock from the warehouse in case inventory was low


Inventory management or depot tool:
Cybage developed a web-based portal to facilitate the inventory management process. Using this portal, the depot or warehouse managers could:

  • Update and maintain product catalog to be used in the mobile commerce application
  • Manage inward stock, re-stock, and warehouse replenishment
  • Track and monitor orders (such as reallocate, cancel)
  • Manage generic upkeep of the service environment


Azure AD:
Cybage hosted the application on Azure Cloud. Using Azure’s in-built Active Directory services, we developed authorization and authentication protocols to cater to the users of Inventory or Logistics applications.
We used MS Azure BLOB Storage extensively to upload and maintain images and other product attributes.

Tools and technologies:
iOS, Android, Azure, .NET, Web API, SQL Server 2012, JIRA, Confluence, TFS, Git, Jenkins

The client is a leading online e-commerce store and also provides a marketplace for other sellers to sell their products.

Business Requirements:

  • The main objective was to develop an enterprise-level email solution to replace the existing legacy email application and enable users to create and send email-based campaigns independently.
  • This new application sends promotional emails to the target customers, based on various business rules which will be configured from the settings page by administrator. It also provides a flexibility to create and design custom email templates using rich text editor.
  • Integration of new solution with the existing e-commerce website for sending transactional emails.
  • This was also integrated with their existing ecommerce website to use the new application for emails and other third-party service providers.


Solution Highlights:
The main components of the application are as follows:

  • User interface: To enable sellers to manage the template, segment, and campaign through this web application
  • Segments: To define the target audience based on several business rules
  • Templates: To manage, create, and send emails
  • Campaign: To manage the scheduling and launching of a campaign
  • Scheduled jobs: Scheduler services that actually send out emails
  • Integration: Integration with third-party service providers and internal applications


Customer benefits:

  • This web-based application replaced the legacy, small email applications and reduced the maintenance efforts drastically
  • It introduced automation in the campaign launching process. Campaigns could be launched at any given time, providing flexibility to set up campaigns at any time.
  • Three-step or easy-to-go campaign creation process (Define Segment -> Define Template ->Set Campaign Launch date)


Technologies
NET 4.0, C#, SQL Server 2005, Telerik controls, third-party API for sending emails

The client is one of the leading ecommerce store specializing in high-quality cables, components, and accessories for computer and consumer electronics.

Business Requirements: 

  • The client needed to develop an e-commerce website for mobile browsers, specifically compatible with iPhone web browser (Safari).
  • The website had to be scalable and extendable for other browsers such as Chrome and Opera mini.
  • The client needed easy addition of new modules with minimal efforts.
  • For this new website, the client wanted to capitalize on the same core framework—developed in classic Active Server Pages (ASP)—that was used for the main e-commerce website and wanted to leverage the same for this mobile friendly website.
  • The solution had to capitalize on the latest Microsoft technologies such as .NET with MVC and this framework was also required to support the legacy backend tools used by the same Web services.


Business Solution:

  • Cybage set up and enhanced the existing customer base to include iPhone users, and improvised and aligned client requirements to their specific business needs and objectives.
  • We proposed a comprehensive ‘Entity-framework–driven MVC architecture’ and developed the solution as of date.
  • Cybage’s experience and expertise in the E-commerce domain helped the client to quickly refine the existing website requirements, despite the lack of adequate technical documentation.
  • Cybage’s expertise in catalog management solutions benefited the client, especially for enhancing the existing search functionality by recommending them to add auto complete and search suggestions.


Technologies

  • Operating systems: iOS 4, iOS 3,  Windows  Phone 7.5
  • Frameworks and technologies: .NET 4.0, MVC 3, Entity Framework 4.0, C#, LINQ, jQuery, Ajax
  • Database: SQL Server 2008 R2

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