Web Desires - Web Development Cannock, West Midlands
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Cartistick first came to us with an existing OpenCart eCommerce store that was having trouble with payment gateways, at the time they were running two stores, one for UK and one for France. The problem was that the developer had duplicated the OpenCart install but also mashed some parts of the system together, in short it was a total mess, didn’t use OpenCarts multi-store functionality leading to duplicate systems to manage, hooked various systems together in a non logical chaotic manner making it hard for third-party developers to manage easily and had many bugs and issues.

Most of the main issues were confusion around the separate admin panels, features and plug-ins working in one site but not the other and etc.

We fixed up the main issues crippling the function of the site from an admin perspective but urged the owner of the site to consider a rebuild at the earliest opportunity due to the escalating issues and hard to manage code bases, the very poor quality of code, old OpenCart version usage and non-existent SEO practices, after some months we were green-lit to commence a rebuild.


New Site

We completely rebuild Cartistick from the ground up, built our own import tools to transfer over the product catalogue and clean it up in one swoop as this was also a mess, some features from the old store had added much complex SQL which was also successfully transferred and features replicated as needed. One of the biggest parts of the project was that the old site was using a plugin which changes the product image depending on what colors you choose, this was a nightmare for the store admins as every single possible color had to be uploaded as an image for all the options, this meant about 20 images per product of all color examples and etc.

To simplify this we made a bold promise; you simply upload one BLACK image of the product, and the system will do the rest. Everything paid off and it works exceptionally well, the site takes one image per product, and all color options are hard-coded across the site and the images are re-colored using PHP GD.

This feature lead to a more important feature, the store owner wanted an option to allow custom images, the only drawback is that their printers can only print certain block colors (no shading etc). using the GD recoloring features built for the above purpose were a surprising fit for customer uploaded images too, now the customer is locked into the color options available and can see what their image will look like printed in real time!


SEO – Multi-Lang

One of the other most important improvements we wanted to make a reality was SEO, the old site had NO FEATURES AT ALL. We have implemented a full SEO suite specially developed by us which includes all the basic tools such as meta descriptions, nofollow and canonical tags, and also more advanced features such as JSON+LD, Twitter Cards and OpenGraph for Social Media.

A specialist piece of SEO was implemented for the countries, technically each country has it’s own website, on it’s own domain. Previously this was confusing to us and I assume to Google as the French site was on .com and the UK site on .net, we made sure to put each country specific site on it’s correct domain, ie. UK is on .co.uk, French is on .fr etc. Whats more we implemented tags to tell Google what Locale each site was meant for, over a few months Google started ranking the sites separately for each country which was perfect.

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Project Details:

  • Cartistick
  • June 26, 2017


  • Opencart, Opencart 2.x, Custom Development, PHP, MySQL, Server Management, jQuery, Bootstrap 2, multi-site


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