Designing a commerce solution for Granger Hertzog

As you munch on your popcorn and watch the latest Hollywood Blockbuster, you may not spend much time considering the hours and skill that have gone into creating the breath-taking sets.

But with decades in the film industry designing and decorating sets, for Karen Granger and Careen Hertzog, it was their lifetime passion.

It was a natural step for them to launch Granger Hertzog back in 2004 – setting out to create an inspiring space to showcase and hire out high-quality and stylish furniture, props and lifestyle pieces.

From James Bond to The Crown, and used in the film, TV, interiors and fashion industries and more, they have become the go-to experts for set and event dressing and design.

"This is the second time we have collaborated with SQLI. Their understanding of our brand together with their knowledge of what can be achieved technically means that our new website has taken us to levels that our competitors can only dream of"

Karen Granger, Founder

Why Adobe and SQLI?

Granger Hertzog had happily operated on Magento, now Adobe Commerce, since 2014. But with the platform’s end-of-life date approaching, the company were concerned about security lapses. They also wanted more in-house control over their page design.

A relationship with SQLI, formerly Redbox Digital, that began six years previously on the original project build meant they were the obvious choice for the latest implementation. In fact, several of the same developers were still available to ensure continuity and brand and ethos familiarity.

How did SQLI meet the brief?

The new omnichannel experience is built on Adobe Commerce. Granger Hertzog opted for a low-cost project without heavy customisation. The key objective was to retain a similar design and functionality to that of the original platform.

Unlike most Adobe Commerce  implementations, the site is non-transactional, with customers placing enquiries, rather than orders, which are followed-up by the sales teams.

The team used the Accelerator theme to keep costs down and implemented Page Builder and Visual Merchandiser as part of the upgrade.

Page Builder allows them to have more control over their pages, while Visual Merchandiser gives them more flexibility over positioning products.

Keith Fyfe, Granger Hertzog’s General Manager said: “Page Builder is a big thing for us. It will give us more creative freedom over how the pages will look going forward.

“The upgrade will give us much faster speeds, better security and better mobile ability. More of our clients are using mobile now and Magento 1 was a bit clunky on mobiles, but Adobe Commerce is a lot more responsive.”

Challenges along the way

The biggest challenge came during the build, as the Covid-19 pandemic hit, causing disruption across the world.

While having staff on furlough contributed to delays with launch dates, the teams from both sides kept working through lockdown and beyond to get the implementation finished.

Keith said: “As with any project like this there are teething problems. We had originally wanted to launch when we re-opened after the first Lockdown, but there were a few different delays that caused us to put this back several times.

“But we had an M1 site that was working well, so the delays didn’t make a massive difference and SQLI resolved the issues as quickly as they could.”

"The migration was very smooth and painless; we are very happy with the results."

Keith Fyfe, Granger Hertzog's General Manager

Results

The site was launched in August 2020 and feedback from customers has been excellent. “Customers could hit the ground running and easily navigate the site as they had before. Customers have been placing enquiries and orders again without any issues, which is great.

“We wanted the new site to be as close to the old site as possible in terms of function and design and this was even more important with the launch after the Lockdown. We wanted a better experience, but something familiar to our customers so it wasn’t a shock.

“There was one problem with a third-party plugin that was fixed quickly by SQLI, but other than that it was a very easy transition for our customers.

“Support from the SQLI project managers and front and back-end developers has been very good, and the relationship worked very well.”

The future

Granger Hertzog has drawn-up a future wishlist including further improvements to the customer journey and enquiry process. These will take place in 2022.

SQLI’s client service manager, Adam Skinner, commented: “Both teams have really enjoyed working together and Granger Hertzog were very happy we engaged with them during such a difficult time due to the pandemic.

“They now have much more control over the site thanks to Page Builder and Visual Merchandiser and appreciated the training we provided. They have a good insight into what they have to do to maintain the site themselves going forward.

“From our point of view, it was a really successful migration to Adobe Commerce and we have worked hard to make improvements around communication when needed.

“We look forward to working with them again on the other improvements soon.”

Profile

  • Industry: Furniture and prop hire
  • Location: London, UK
  • Background: With decades in the film industry designing and decorating sets, it was a natural step for Karen Granger and Careen Hertzog to set up Granger Hertzog back in 2004. The company’s collection of modern and mid-century furniture and items are hired by clients in the film, television, fashion, interiors and events industries. The carefully-selected pieces are brought together by an expert buying team from all over the world and constantly updated to stay ahead of trends. They have featured in hit TV shows such as Killing Eve, films including Judy and Harry Potter, events such as the Cannes Film Festival and much more.

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