Macaron Parlour makes delicious, beautiful macaroons and sells them in its two retail locations. They needed a new site where visitors can buy macarons on line and pick them up at a store or have them shipped. We built a custom website solution that included a custom gallery to show the macarons and a ecommerce function that featured the first mobile-responsive macaron flavor selector on the internet.
The website is here.
Background/The Problem/Project Goals and Objectives
The owners of Macaron Parlour approached us to design and develop an commerce website for their new and growing macaron business. At the time, Macarons (the french spelling for macaroons) were quickly replacing cupcakes as the trendy snack in New York City. The new site needed to show how beautiful the macarons are and include the unique ingredients of each one and allow website visitors to easily buy macarons online for pickup or shipping.
The owners, Christina Ha (a pastry chef) and Simon Tung, had two retail stores and needed a website to complement the bricks and mortar facilities. The stores were on the upper west side and in the east village in New York City and had customers ranging from families looking for breakfast breads to millennials looking to get the latest in macaron flavors in their hands while out for the evening.
Our project kickoff process set out the things that were important for the new site:
- the site needed to be mobile-friendly, especially for young people looking for delicious macarons as they were out partying with their friends
- the site needed to have a mobile-friendly flavor selector that was easy to use so website visitors could place online orders
- the website back end admin process needed to be easy to use for Macaron Parlor staff so orders could be quickly and accurately filled
- the ecommerce function needed to allow order fulfillment options like multiple shipping choices or local pickup
- the growing business needed to support wholesale and custom macaron requests
- Macaron Parlour offers group baking classes on a regular basis and the website needed to allow online signups
Process and Insight
In face to face meetings, phone calls and emails, we established the desired look and feel for the site and the required ecommerce functionality. As we learned more about the business, we determined that we needed to create custom functions to complement the standard aspects of the website.
- the site needed a gallery of macaron flavors that allowed visitors to see the unique flavors available at Macaron Parlour
- the ecommerce function needed to allow visitors to select from the available flavors when placing orders for boxes of macarons
- the admin function for shipping needed to accommodate changes in weight, based on seasonal weather changes — macarons shipped in warm weather are shipped in dry ice to ensure freshness
We designed a modern, mobile-friendly website that is easy to use on a computer, tablet and mobile phone. Macaron Parlour provided beautiful photos of it’s macarons to make the products look inviting and delicious. We created a custom gallery that shows the wonderful macaron flavors along with their contents.
The website uses standard ecommerce functionality combined with a custom developed flavor selector. Macaron flavors can be easily added and removed from the site as necessary.
The ecommerce function offers the buyer to pick her own flavors or to have store pick the flavors. Buyers choose from boxes of 6, 12 or 24 macarons and the flavor selector ensures that the correct number of macarons are selected before allowing the transaction to continue. Macaron Parlour’s was the first mobile-friendly macaron flavor selector on the internet!
Visitors can sign up for Macaron Parlour classes on the site through integration with bookeo; gift vouchers can also be purchased on line.
To add to social engagement, the Macaron Parlour Instagram feed is displayed on the home page and its Facebook feed is shown in several places on the site. Macaron Parlour has almost 10K followers on each platform.
The Macaron Parlour site was well received as soon as it launched in the fall of 2014. Online ordering has been thoroughly embraced by Macaron Parlour’s customers and the flavor selector really works well. The majority of online orders occur on a mobile device.
The macaron gallery on the site shows the beautiful macarons along with their contents. It’s one of the pages with the highest traffic on the site.
During the December holiday season, we work closely with Macaron Parlour so they can participate in Black Friday and Cyber Monday with their online sales. For example, we’ve added free shipping discounts and include sitewide banners advising buyers of ordering deadlines to ensure timely deliveries.