Retailer Web Services Cheers Success Of New “Socrates” Platform

“Socrates,” WebFronts’ 5th generation design platform, is creating a buzz over at Retailer Web Services (RWS). The software company announced the new platform at the MEGA show in August following the first successful retailer customer site migration. Since then, more than 50 retailer websites across the country have migrated to “Socrates.” The new platform, developed by RWS to deliver the industry’s best end-user experience, is receiving rave reviews by RWS retailer customers.

“I was told that we would be queued up and migrated within 48 hours and by the next morning, we were on the Socrates platform without a moment of noticeable downtime,” said Elizabeth Ingraldi of Hampton Major Appliances and Televisions in Garden City, N.Y. “The new site layout is more enjoyable to use and aesthetically pleasing while also, perhaps most importantly, more efficient to sell from and easier to visit. The change from mobile/desktop to responsive is brilliant and makes it much easier for our customers to search for, view and ultimately purchase our products from devices other than a PC.”

“Socrates” was developed around the most significant advances in technology and changes in consumer behavior, according to RWS COO Jennie Gilbert. The new design platform provides independent retailers with an ultra-modern look; better cross-device performance, including a “mobile-first” check out experience; and an end-user experience to not only delight customers, but also convert more of them. Features include:

  • Full Screen Design: An entire website—or just certain sections of it—can automatically expand to any screen size no matter how large.
  • Responsive Aesthetic: Rather than settle for an adaptive or a responsive mobile site, the new platform has the best of both with the popular responsive mobile look and the fine control of adaptive mobile technology.
  • Dynamic New Features: These include pop-up cart preview from any page, the ability to set future atypical store hours, product feature videos and more.
  • Advanced Flagging: Easily show specific products’ special features that are meaningful to prospects such as items that are on display in the showroom, available for immediate delivery, best sellers, on clearance and more.
  • Easy Migration: The new design supports current WebFronts App settings and choices set by retailers; retailers can preview their site’s new look in real time in a staging environment. No re-work is required and there is no downtown for retailers during the switch to the new platform. Also, retailers won’t lose any historical data, e.g., Change Log or Progressive Profiling information.

"The RWS team did a superb-excellent job on the new site for Schewels, completing the new site in record time,” said Scott Allen of Lynchburg, Va.-based Schewel Furniture Company with stores in Virginia, West Virginia and North Carolina. “I cannot believe how functional and beautiful the new Schewels site looks—RWS is the best.”

According to Sal Venuto of Vineland, N.J.-based Appliances Plus Video, serving South Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware, “The new platform provides customers with a pleasant shopping experience—it is definitely consumer friendly!”

Today’s 2,000 WebFronts are built on a 4th generation design platform. Beta testing for “Socrates” began in July with the first successful retailer customer site migration live on Aug. 1.

In keeping with RWS’ core value of Continuous Sustainable Improvement, the company will migrate all of its 2,000 retailer customers to the powerful new platform free of one-time or increased monthly fees. Level 4 retailers that signed up to secure their place in line at the recent trade shows will be migrated to the new design platform by the end of January 2018.

WebFronts Level 3 retailer customers can begin migrations to “Socrates” in early 2018. RWS will provide retailers with Levels 1 and 2 with conversion information during the first quarter of 2018.

For more information, please visit retailerwebservices.com.

About Retailer Web Services: Founded in 2006, Retailer Web Services (RWS) is a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based provider of proprietary e-commerce, web design and other high-performance software solutions to help independent retailers achieve success. A champion of independent retailers, RWS is an authoritative source on durable goods product data and consumer purchasing habits. RE:THiNK: 11 surprising things you should do now to win retail customers in the digital age (RWS, 2015) provides actionable advice grounded in the way consumers shop for durable goods. RWS serves more than 2,000 independent durable goods retailers across North America.