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Performance metrics compare July 1, 2019-December 31, 2019 to July 1, 2020-December 31, 2020.
Some of the most successful companies are those that don’t just push the boundaries, but go beyond them. These companies are bold, innovative, risk takers and like to have fun. This describes world-class mountain bike company, Yeti Cycles, perfectly. Yeti Cycles is the premium bike manufacturer in the mountain bike space.
Headquartered in Golden, Colorado, Yeti Cycles operates on the philosophy, “We build bikes we want to ride.” That is no more evident than the company’s practice of having its racing team be the driving force behind all its research and development efforts.
Dealing with a Low-Performing Platform for a High-Performing Company
The best systems are those that operate seamlessly despite having different parts and pieces. The design is built so that all parts complement each other for improved speed, functionality and efficiency. This is true when building a dependable, high-performance mountain bike and it’s true when building a stable, high-performance ecommerce platform.
Yeti Cycles is known for its proprietary Switch Infinity suspension platform with ride characteristics unlike anything else in the space. This type of exceptionalism is one of many reasons for the company’s continued growth.
However, its ecommerce platform was holding them back. Prior to switching to BigCommerce, Yeti Cycles was collectively using an array of tools like Shopify, Magento 1 and Readymag, but the combination just wasn’t working. But, ZaneRay, the agency that designed Yeti Cycles' new website, changed all that.
ZaneRay noted the old site was very limited in what it could achieve in regards to product pages. Its ability to merchandise and cross-sell products was minimal. This made it difficult for the marketing team to launch new products because most of their time was spent on simply uploading new products to the site.
“The web and back-end systems were entirely pieced together making for a very complicated tech stack. It needed quite a bit of custom code and custom integrations for everything to work together,” said Kristi Jackson, Director of Marketing for Yeti Cycles. “Any change we wanted to make required development work. This extra step was costly and prevented the internal team from having control over our site updates.”
Putting the Pieces Together
Yeti Cycles researched Magento 2, Shopify, Salesforce Commerce Cloud and BigCommerce. It considered a move from Magento 1 to Magento 2, but based on price, API and high regards from their web consultant, ZaneRay, BigCommerce was selected as its new ecommerce platform.
With the website project, Yeti Cycles set out to create an immersive experience that struck the right balance between engagement and ecommerce performance. This required a solid back-end and a versatile front-end interface.
“For a mid-market enterprise level brand, BigCommerce was the first recommendation once the decision to go headless was made. This was primarily due to the API availability for the majority of BigCommerce catalog features. We knew we could achieve all of the front-end design functionality with BigCommerce's support of the headless infrastructure,” said Kirk Cornelius, Strategic Director at the ZaneRay Group.
Yeti Cycles desired to build its new site on a single back-end platform to improve usability and give more control to its internal team. Criteria included the ability to create and update pages that were on brand, yet also allowed for flexibility to determine how the pages came together for an engaging customer experience. The ability to access improved analytics and tracking were part of the criteria as well. The data would enable more ecommerce-centric initiatives and facilitate a better understanding of how customers use Yeti Cycles’ site to inform future business decisions.
“BigCommerce helped us move away from operating on multiple back-end systems that didn’t talk to each other well and, at times led to a less than ideal consumer experience. Being on just one platform creates a much more seamless experience for the consumer,” said Jackson.
Yeti Cycles will continue to sell bikes via a dealer-based mode. However, enhancements made on the bike pages now support a rich brand experience and help consumers identify their local brick and mortar stores or online retailers to purchase bikes.
The company does sell its line of technical and casual apparel and parts direct to consumers. And thanks to ShipperHQ, Yeti Cycles is able to meet all its requirements for shipping without having to use a custom solution.
“BigCommerce is very flexible and has a number of out of the box features that met our needs including an API that allows for critical integrations,” said Jackson. “Right now we are primarily using BigCommerce for its shopping cart and order processing. However, the headless content management system (CMS) and a product information management system (PIM) created the need for us to work with a flexible API and BigCommerce provides exactly what we need.”
“For a mid-market enterprise level brand, BigCommerce was the first recommendation once the decision to go headless was made.”
“However, the headless content management system (CMS) and a product information management system (PIM) created the need for us to work with a flexible API and BigCommerce provides exactly what we need.”
“BigCommerce helped us move away from operating on multiple back-end systems that didn’t talk to each other well and, at times led to a less than ideal consumer experience. Being on just one platform creates a much more seamless experience for the consumer.”
Stoked about the Outcome
By leveraging ZaneRay’s design system, reusable components, and BigCommerce product data, Yeti Cycles now has the flexibility to build new pages quickly and handle real-time content, which is critical as the company expands its digital-first marketing initiatives.
“Though an e-commerce site, the primary focus and purpose of the site is to introduce people into the experiences that these bikes provide and the culture of the brand first — and then sell products. To create these dynamic storytelling experiences, we needed to leverage the full spectrum of capabilities of a robust content management system coupled with detailed product data from the BigCommerce catalogue,” said Cornelius.
Today, because of the BigCommerce and ZaneRay collaboration, Yeti Cycles’ marketing team can build new pages within minutes, streamline product uploads in the back end, automate the launch of product releases and schedule it in advance to go live.
Case in point. Yeti cycles was able to launch its SB115 just four days after the site launched and BigCommerce provided the stability and functionality to make it a seamless experience. And, approximately one month after that the marketing team was able to launch its limited edition ARC 35th Anniversary model. This product page was a custom experience that was built using the existing component architecture and BigCommerce product data. The launch facilitated the most site traffic Yeti Cycles had seen in years. This single launch generated 85.5K page views and more than 38K sessions by 32.5K users. In addition to these record-breaking numbers, the bike sold out in less than 2 hours.
Increasing the Lead over the Competition
Yeti Cycles is one of the few mountain bike manufacturers that has its own apparel line. Heading into 2021, the company plans to focus on growing it’s apparel business by introducing three distinct collections — Range, Race and Turq.
The enhancements made to Yeti Cycles’ website via BigCommerce will undoubtedly allow the cycling company to be more precise in its marketing and explore new channels to support its apparel business.