APi Distribution

Quality Applications for an Enhanced Commerce Experience

What if... we could provide a consistent shopping experience for each customer?

APi Distribution is a market leader in procurement and supply chain services to specialty contractors across North America by leveraging its diverse product assortment in the specialty building products and MRO products.  

Struggling to Keep Up With Digital Expectations 

APi Distribution is a subsidiary company of APi Group. APi Group is a market-leading business services provider of safety, specialty, and industrial services in over 200 locations worldwide.

The company’s existing commerce platform was not built to scale and could not connect to other applications within the organization. APi Distribution needed to upgrade its commerce website to accommodate B2B and B2C customers according to their unique needs, jobs, and projects, and to keep up with overall evolving digital expectations.

We integrated Episerver B2B Commerce Cloud and Episerver Product Information Management (PIM) into back-end systems to provide an accurate, up-to-date view of order history, leverage the platform’s feature sets to improve the user journey, enrich product information, and give the APi Distribution marketing team control over branding and website data.

Choosing Platforms for a Complete Commerce Transformation 

We began by meeting with stakeholders to conduct current-state assessments of APi Distribution commerce and digital capabilities and develop a strategy to achieve the company’s vision of its future state.

APi Distribution had faced roadblocks with previous commerce solutions, and after evaluating the company’s needs and capabilities, we determined that a more digitally mature commerce platform would better position the company to control and manage product data, provide B2B and B2C customers a digitally enhanced commerce journey, and guide APi Distribution on its digital transformation journey.

We recommended Episerver B2B Commerce Cloud as the best fit for a commerce platform, and Episerver PIM to manage product data and content.

We differentiated between the commerce and PIM application integrations by creating two separate, in-depth timelines and roadmaps and tracked each for continuity to demonstrate to APi Distribution how the applications would work in tandem. We then moved on to the implementation.

Formulating a Commerce Plan of Action

We remained flexible in delivery, yet prioritized specific tasks within different phases of the implementation timeline. To accomplish this, we utilized our Agile-based product backlog-building methodology, which allowed us to prioritize certain tasks while remaining within the project’s budget and timeline.

The new commerce website added needed features and functionality and seamlessly integrated with other APi Distribution applications to provide an enhanced customer experience.

Perficient has been a great partner on our digital journey. They helped us choose our website platform, kept us on task during integration, and we continue to work closely on future projects. Without the help of Perficient’s team, we would not have seen a successful go-live. Marketing Specialist, APi Distribution

Understanding How to Maximize the Platform's Benefits

Because Episerver PIM is a relatively newer application, we led several Q&A and iteration sessions with the client and Episerver product team to strategize how to maximize the application to APi Distribution’s advantage. These conversations helped us understand the features and functionality of the platform, such as how to structure data and create data models, and also allowed APi Distribution to give feedback to the Episerver team on possible additional features and enhancements.

Results

A Site Thats Better for Customers and Smarter for the Business

Episerver PIM allows APi Distribution to group similar products and display on a single page. This provides streamlined experience for the users to view and explore complementary products. It centralized the product content and website data with a path for expanding the line of products.

APi Distribution has an improved commerce solution built for scale and growth and serves both its B2B and B2C customers. Stakeholders have full insight into website and product data, internal user administrators can interface with the website on the back end, and the marketing team has access to Google Analytics for data on buying patterns.

Users have multiple options to better navigate the website, including:

  • Enriched product content that helps users better research products and make more-informed purchasing decisions
  • Features to locate products by a specific manufacturer or product attribution to narrow search by category and product features
  • The ability to narrow products by featured and sale items

Customers can also utilize list management to save items for future purchases, guest checkout to purchase and checkout without creating an account, and quick order to search by item number, keyword, and add items directly to cart for faster checkout.

We became a trusted advisor to APi Distribution, providing leadership, strategy, and in-depth guidance on how to maximize use of its new technologies.

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