Beecher's Handmade Cheese

A Move to Shopify

Meet Beecher's Handmade Cheese

A favorite of locals and an exciting discovery for visitors to Seattle, Beecher’s Handmade Cheese is known for its artisanal quality.

Unified Ecommerce Operations

Part of the Sugar Mountain family of brands, their team wanted to elevate the Beecher’s Handmade Cheese online presence and engaged with our team to rebuild their website to feature more robust ecommerce options and a modernized content strategy. 

We previously worked with the Sugar Mountain team to develop and launch a website for their brand, Mishima Reserve. The original Beecher’s store mirrored this existing design and theme, while utilizing the same backend Magento technology stack as a multi-store. 

As Mishima Reserve grew and Crowd Cow took over their ecommerce operations, the original value proposition for a unified tech stack started to fade and the Sugar Mountain team began to look at other options, especially Shopify.

Enter Shopify

Sugar Mountain is part of our Run State ongoing support program, so when they came to us with the idea of migrating the Beecher’s Handmade Cheese website to Shopify we put together a game plan and got to work.

The existing website was built with Drupal CMS handling all of the primary content pages (blogs, recipes, store locators) and Magento handling the catalog/checkout as the transaction engine. 

The goals of this project was to move them to Shopify standard edition to help lower their monthly infrastructure costs, get to a single system, maintain the design, maintain some of the unique checkout features, and not lose any capabilities from a CMS perspective. And get it done quickly.

Shogun Browser

Enhancing Shopify's CMS

The built-in Shopify CMS is rather limited at the moment (they are working on this), but fortunately there are some vendor solutions that can help. We used an application called Shogun that works as a “page builder” external to Shopify, where marketers can build more complex layouts, and then is integrated to drop usable HTML into the Shopify standard CMS pages. 

We migrated all content, including pages from their Cheese Education and Recipes sections, as well as Cafe pages and other general content. All pages underwent a thorough QA that checked for formatting.

Theme Matching

They wanted to keep the existing website design / theme during this transition. Oftentimes when moving systems you are also changing technology bases, and in this case theme paradigms. We were able to customize their new Shopify website to Beecher’s Handmade Cheeses brand standards, creating a look and feel unique to their brand with their typography, website colors, buttons, CTA lengths, and logos throughout. Our front-end development team did an incredible job keeping the experience consistent.

Beechers Checkout Page

Key Features

  • Custom Delivery Date Selection
    Beecher’s Handmade Cheeses are perishable, so delivery date specifics are vital. To allow their customers to have more control over when they could anticipate the delivery of their purchases, we re-created the delivery date calendar that allows customers to choose exactly when their package will be delivered. This was moved ahead into the buying process in the cart (since Shopify limits customization ability on checkout).

    Store Finder
    We implemented the Destini service for location lookup and store finder. 

    Unified Search
    By leveraging the single platform, we were able to remove some of the search complexity from the Magento/Drupal hybrid system. Search results not only pull up product pages, but also any recipes, articles, or blog posts that mention their search term as well. 

    Wholesale Inquiry Page
    Beecher’s has a unique approach to how they sell their products wholesale. Customers on their site can find more information on purchasing wholesale on their Wholesale Inquiries page, which features downloadable catalogues and unique pricing guides.

    Many of Beecher’s products are purchased as gifts. To accommodate users searching for gift ideas, we added a Gift option directly to the overhead navigation. From there, customers can shop different Gift Collections products, access Cheese Education pages to find the perfect gift, and research side dishes and pairing options.

Post Launch Success

The new Beecher’s Handmade Cheese website launched in summer 2021. It’s fully optimized for both ecommerce and content marketing on a Shopify standard platform to accomplish their goals of lowering their ecommerce platform total cost of ownership (TCO) and ongoing support costs without sacrificing key functionality. The new truly reflects the artisanal quality of their product.