Since its site launch in 2010, the London-based furniture retailer Made.com had one business goal: to sell well-designed, top-quality, and affordable furniture directly from the makers to the customers online. By operating showrooms at specific locations in England, Made.com could bring the retail experience to their customers without the hassle of warehouses or physical stores.
Eventually, Made.com wanted to evolve their site and create a community section, called Made Unboxed, that allowed customers to gather and share photos, reviews, etc., of how they styled specific Made.com products. They had several goals, which included: connecting the London showroom with the online site in a better way, which would then improve the conversion rate for the online shop.
For a young company, it was essential to set up a team that would develop Made Unboxed in an efficient and accelerated way that also stayed within budget. Because Made.com didn’t require a full development team all-year round, flexibility was important for the furniture retail site to create a new site section.
Initially, the Social Engine (SE) framework was proposed for implementation, but the technology wasn’t helping enough to deliver a first version of the product in three months. Because of this, after two sprints, a new technical approach was proposed by the Pentalog team, keeping the initial commitment on the deadline for v0, and therefore accepted by Made.com.
To make the project a success, a dedicated team of four developers based in Iasi, Romania was selected, and the client product owner and designer provided all the information for the development and testing process. The Scrum methodology was also followed to create a product that was scalable and deployable on cloud infrastructures.
After the first sprint, the development team also changed direction by switching to the Symfony framework. This allowed the team to build a minimum viable product (MVP) to be delivered within deadlines and catch up on the lost time.
After v0 was created, v2 progressed with new features and enhancements while v3 included the implementation of a new design.
Made Unboxed was created to be responsive and to support all the latest versions of main browsers and platforms (Chrome, Firefox, Safari), plus desktop (Windows, Mac) and mobile devices (iPhone, Android, iPad).
Currently, Made.com has around:
The project continues with refinements and new functionalities.