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By priyankap sharma | 06 Oct 2015

Introducing Liferay and Magento into your e-commerce strategy needs very little convincing. The two technologies have proven to be successful in multiple industry verticals in recent years. They have provided immense RoI to adopting organizations and its value spans across multiple benefits. At CIGNEX, we have helped many clients establish a formidable competitive edge with e-commerce portals designed using this stack of technologies. Let’s look at two such noteworthy cases.

1. Global E-commerce platform built on the prowess of Liferay and Magento

 A Reputation Identity Management leader needed to do a complete overhaul of its IT infrastructure after being spun off from its parent company. The company needed to focus on extracting better performance from its legacy systems. These systems were staggered in terms of technologies used, backend integration and middleware. With multiple touchpoints, the existing systems couldn’t achieve its full potential. After a thorough asessment, it was decided to go for a complete revamp rather than fine tuning individual elements from within the existing systems. This move needed to focuso n these outcomes -

  • Reduce order fulfilment turnaround for one geo from 70 hours to real-time
  • Implement scalability to support emerging business lines (e.g. Body shops with online payments)
  •  Eliminate application maintenance difficulties due fragmented ownership of the solution
  •  Reduce cost of ownership
  •  Boost customer engagement with surveys, polls and feedback mechanisms

1a. Solution architecture

           Both external and internal users see Liferay as the interface that was in turn driven by

  • ForgeRock as Identity & Access Management
  • Magento e-commerce store
  • SAP for all core processes and systems of record
  • LDAP for authentication
  • Adobe CQ5 Web Content Management System

Liferay enabled some critical user interface functions such as IDM access web plugin, CMS, collaboration, and live chat, presented as external application. Magento enabled comprehensive e-commerce functionalities including product catalogue, shopping cart, order placement, order management, invoicing, reporting, and user profiles.

1b. Features of the new portal

Visible service enhancements were brought about by these strong feature sets-
1b1. Truly international outlook – The single platform supported multiple currency and languages, yet was localised to each region for product catalogue
1b2. Enhanced order fulfilment – It reduced both order entry time and order processing for 500,000+ orders per month by a staggering 90%
1b3. Scalability – The secure middleware removed all probable issues when demands scale up
1b4. Open Source – Dramatic cut in TCO by eliminating proprietary vendor dependency and a ‘build one, deploy many times’ philosophy

1c. Business advantages

These features resulted in –

1c1. Easy to use at quick-fire speed – 110,000 transactions/minute vs. per year with order processing speeds of 3 seconds vs. 7 hours
1c2. Dramatic sales improvement – 4x increase in order volume within a month after the launch
1c3. TCO Reduction of $5 million over a 3 year period

2. All round authorized access using single sign on

The client also needed a single sign on secure approach to access its wide range of platforms, solutions and tools. The four core areas to look into were –

Security and Scalability

• Entry/exit/access to applications at all levels without re-prompting
• Federated access
• Password reset service

User Management

  • Mapping of user credentials to applications
  • User data download facility
  • User registration service – Individual & Bulk

Helpdesk Dashboard

• Enable administrators & customer service representatives to activate new user accounts
• New user verification as per business logic

Multi lingual support - for user authorization and validation

2a. Solution architecture

Liferay and Magento were used to build custom Java application. The application was scalable, modular and easy to deploy. It used features such as Adaptive Authentication, SSO, Authorization, Federation, Entitlements, and Web services security. The LDAP server with its SDK, supported REST APIs leading to high performance highly available database.
These features resulted in an ultra-lightweight yet powerful access management system (Open AM) and Directory Services (Open DJ).

2b. Features

2b1. Secure authentication – Every user – internal and external were provided with unique credentials that helped them access the B2B and B2C applications
2b2. Access provisioning – It facilitated easy administration and management of new users and associated access rights
2b3. Helpdesk Dashboard – This facilitated the single sign on functionality after verifying user credentials
2b4. Federated Identity – The service acted as Federated Identity provider across the different types of users accessing the platform
2b5. Availability – The service had tremendous load management capabilities and ensured round the clock availability without downtime
2b6. Password Reset – Easy and secure password reset service notified end user whenever the password was changed

2c. Benefits

2c1. No licensing overheads – Open Source architecture made it possible to eliminate expensive proprietary vendor overheads
2c2. Improved Security – The SSO functionality offered a more secure environment across the organization
2c3. Lower TCO – Implementation of the service into the e-commerce system helped bring down costs of administration and management of user credentials
Learn more about our truly open source competencies here.