Bayshore recommended Progress Sitefinity™ CMS, in conjunction with Kendo UI® by Progress. The combination of Sitefinity CMS and Kendo UI provides a one-two punch with the most flexible and expandable solution, and the ability to satisfy all of Reeves’s requirements and leveraging structured data to maximize SEO. The combination would also enable fast creation of UI components to set the site apart aesthetically.
Single Solution, Separate Identities
DriveReeves.com took roughly four months to build, once the consulting and creative development was complete.
The new site features separate areas for each automotive brand, some of which require individual styling, based on branding guidelines. Through the integration of Sitefinity and Kendo UI, Reeves can use some key components cross-functionally—for example, the vehicle search feature on each page is updated with new inventory daily. Filter criteria such as year, make, model, body style, price, color and condition are dynamic, based on the vehicles currently in inventory.
“We used Kendo UI to develop two Sitefinity MVC widgets—one to handle the vehicle search and filter criteria, and another to display the search results,” said Hourigan. “Because the core search functionality is the same across all brands, we were able to reuse the same widgets on multiple pages.”
Moreover, applying different Kendo UI stylesheets to the Sitefinity page templates gives the pages a custom look and feel, without having to create individual assets.
“Leveraging Kendo UI was the best use of our customer’s dollar and enabled us to provide the most aesthetically pleasing user interface possible,” said Hourigan. “In fact, our developers have standardized on using Kendo UI for our customers, because it saves development time while providing the best result. In the case of Reeves, we were able to save months of development time and tens of thousands of dollars in development costs.”
According to Rich Read, Director of Programming and certified Sitefinity Solutions Developer at Bayshore Solutions, Kendo UI integrates nicely with the Sitefinity backend, enabling administrators to populate and change data and content. “For the customer, Kendo UI controls enables a professional-looking frontend to data served up from Sitefinity CMS. For developers, they’re easy to learn and pleasant to work with. They make developers look good, because the final product the customer sees is polished and professional-looking.”
Dynamic and Responsive
Responsiveness was another key requirement for the new website. “In the auto industry, there is a direct correlation of the time of a visit to lead conversion, so building a site that’s responsive to various resolutions was critical to increasing sales for Reeves,” said Hourigan. “The old CMS required us to administer two separate websites, one for desktop and one for smartphones, but we found most people were using a tablet to search inventories. Thanks to the responsive design capabilities of Sitefinity CMS, the new site is equally beautiful and easy to navigate on all screen sizes.”
The new site also uses the Sitefinity CMS ecommerce engine to add new inventory dynamically on individual pages. These pages are SEO-optimized to improve position and frequency on Internet search results. Thanks to the ecommerce module, the number of indexed pages on DriveReeves.com increased from a few hundred to more than 10,000, making the dealer’s inventory much easier to find online, ultimately leading to more lead conversions. In addition, integration with the company’s CRM enable timelier follow-up on user-submitted forms, boosting conversions even more.
“We were optimistic as we moved forward with Bayshore Solutions and Progress. This was a huge undertaking that could dramatically affect our bottom line,” said Rogers. “The end result exceeded expectations, met all of our needs and more, and delivered almost immediate ROI.”