Thinking of Selling Online in 2016 – read how you can run a successful online operation.

Thinking of Selling Online in 2016 – read how you can run a successful online operation.


Stef F author


Author: Stephanie Fiteni
Co-Founder / Online Marketing Specialist & Coach at Defined Branding.



Hansa Wines & Spirits offers a unique and wide selection of premium wine, spirits and tobacco brands
at wholesale prices. Coupled with great offline customer service, the online Hansa Wines & Spirits shop
facilitates the process of searching for and ordering your wines and spirits (and more…)

ecommerce website design malta

ecommerce website design malta


Hansa Wines & Spirits contacted Defined Branding to help increase their sales by improving their online branding and redesigning their website and improving their website usability. The first website had been designer by Defined Branding too and had been selling online without glitches for almost 7 years. However as the traffic to the site indicated, it was time to go mobile.

What our client said about this Project:

“The new eCommerce tools that changed my Sage accounting system into the back-end of my site
saved me a lot of time which I am invested in growing sales. “

“The technical features of the site really helped us become more efficient – everything goes in the
accounting system so our employees didn’t have to learn how to use a new system.”

The client brief included the following objecives:

  • Develop a visually stimulating, responsive and modern eCommerce platform to sell their
    products to customers.
  • Create an innovative way for customers to view products as well as a way for products to be
    moved between Wishlists and Shopping Carts.
  • Connect the website to the accounting inventory so stock is updated live
  • Ensure customer and processing security.
  • Create an easy-to-use Customer Account area to make purchasing and following up orders simple
  • Offer multiple payment options
  • Have a simple checkout process and query search.
  • Log data to help improve website’s performance over time

How we created the Solution:

  • We redesigned the customer journey:
    Due to the extensive redesign, customers are now able to easily find and browse through an
    extensive catalogue of wines, spirits and other beverages, tobacco and bar supplies. The
    cross-browser is now responsive, transitioning seamlessly on desktops, as well as on handheld
    devices. The design is user-friendly and extremely easy to utilize, allowing customers to
    find what they are looking for and make a purchase in minimal time and with no complications.


  • We improved the usability:
    With regards to the ways in which products are viewed, the shop-owner requested that they
    could be viewed as either a grid or a list, and that customers would be able to move products
    to cart or to a Wishlist. It was also crucial that all products have a photo, as well as a
    description and that there would be a collapsing product category side-menu.


  • We replaced human processes with automation:
    Initially, products were taken directly from the accounting system and then placed onto the
    website itself. This complicated matters greatly as it required the manual insertion of orders
    and printing. In order to cater for this issue, the following was done: products are now inserted
    directly into the system, thus eliminating the need for manual printing and the entering of
    invoices into the accounting system. This two-way system solves the problem of human error
    and greatly increases efficiency.


  • We integrated with existing accounting system:
    A Sage stock system is directly connected to the online MySQL database, keeping all
    categories, product prices and stock up-to-date. Orders, which are made through the website,
    go directly to Hansa’s ordering system. This immediately alerts them of a new order. The
    online back-end allows administrators full control to edit the text, as well as the images of the
    site. They can also view all the orders and analyse product searches and customer login
    patterns. Also, search engine optimisation has been carefully included. PHP script throughout
    the website has also been checked to make certain that no MySQL injections can occur. No
    system is foolproof but all measures have been taken to make sure that data on the server is
    regularly backed up to another server. The online MySQL database and in-store Sage system
    synchronise every 5 minutes, or on demand. This updates stock items, accounts and online
    orders real-time.


  • We helped with the logistics to ensure top customer service:
    We created back-end processes that help staff serve the customer faster and contact them directly. We did this by integrating with the POS system currently in use so no internal training was required – there was no need to learn new software.The Customer Account area allows customers to have a separate delivery and billing address,
    as well as view and print their online orders. The addition of the upgraded Wishlist also aids
    this process as it includes unlimited lists. This gives the option of moving products from the
    Wishlist directly into the shopping cart.


  • We improved the registration process to increase conversions:
    The process of customer registration has been altered. Now, the registration is confirmed, via
    an auto-response, which is sent directly to their email address. Once this is confirmed, through
    a randomly generated access code, the customer logs in with their chosen email address and
    an encrypted password. A new access code is generated each time they login and, when
    browsing, it is checked against the database for security. This allows for only one logged in
    session per user, which is a great security feature that serves to protect customers. In addition,
    registered customers benefit from maintaining products in Wishlists, which can be moved to
    the Shopping Cart at one’s own convenience.The checkout process is simplified and improved. Customers now have the option of paying via
    bank transfer on delivery. The query search, on the other hand, is improved as product results
    appear as you type, thus making it easier and faster for customers to find just what they are
    looking for.


  • We also provided the copy for the products and pages. We optimised all the content the content of the website for Search Engines (SEO) in its entirety.


  • We also provided all the photography for the products and the commercial required for the online launch campaigneCommerce Photography Malta



  • The redesign of the site and the option of moving items to the Shopping Cart has not only
    aided consumers, but also couples who are preparing their wedding drink lists and bar and
    restaurant owners. This has resulted in an increased number of return visitors and orders.
  • In addition, the redesign has also prompted customers to spend more time browsing on the
    website. There has been a substantial increase in traffic, product viewing, sales and efficiency since the redesign, on both desktop and mobile devices.


  • Customers also seem to be spending a greater amount of time on the website, primarily on the
    home page and on the products page. A large percentage of clicks were focused on the
    product category side menu.


  • Reduced bounce rate from digital devices by 50%. In terms of the registration page, it has been found that a minimal percentage of customers (around 15%) left the page without interacting with the form. The remainder all interacted with the form, with a vast majority registering for Hansa’s services.


  • Frequency of orders has increased and orders from Mobile and Tablets have also increased as a percentage of all orders…


Thinking of selling online? Call us on 21 375 016 for a free consultation or email for a consultative meeting or proposal.




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