NMJ – Norsk Modelljernbane AS

A train models online store

NMJ is Scandinavia's leading producer and shop for model railways and suiting equipment, which needed an efficient and stable online store. NMJ has 20.000 items in stock on average. As the model-making niche is very demanding, the stock has to be updated as often as possible, and the store has to endure high traffic daily. To support such a big project, we went for migration from Magento 1 to Magento 2.

NMJ-UI migration to Magento 2

NMJ is Scandinavia's leading producer and shop for model railways and suiting equipment, which needed an efficient and stable online store. NMJ has 20.000 items in stock on average. As the model-making niche is very demanding, the stock has to be updated as often as possible, and the store has to endure high traffic daily. To support such a big project, we went for migration from Magento 1 to Magento 2.

The mission of NMJ

How it began – project scope and Migration to Magento 2

We started our cooperation in 2015 with a redesign. NMJ's website needed a grand design update and some styling changes. The common understanding was that their website, however familiar to devoted users, would benefit from a touch of modern web design. Redesign and overall refreshing not only leveled up the aesthetics but also the quality of use. We helped speed up processes so the user flow could be seamless. Since day one we have worked for NMJ on both web and UX design. We made sure the look and feel are always up to date and the online store is intuitive, welcoming, and bug-free. Thanks to migration to Magento 2 we ensure store stability and smooth management.

Our initial scope was to: 

  • Redesign the website but keep the overall look and feel. 
  • Make navigation easier and more intuitive.
  • Fix all issues that were slowing down the performance of the store.
  • Improve security.
  • Integrate with ERP software Bold by Dacsa.

The release of the new store began a beautiful, long-term cooperation between NMJ and Kiwee. That is to say our partnership continues for years now, we started from basic improvements to get to huge migration to Magento 2. We owe our client's trust to our hard work and personal approach.

NMJ_iphone

Development and migration to Magento 2

Along with refreshing the look and making the UX impeccable, we also made sure that everything functions properly on the back end. The digital user experience of model train collectors was our biggest concern and goal. 

As time went by, NMJ online store was growing. We put a lot of effort into maintenance. We nurse and cherish NMJ on its way. Finally, we met one of the biggest challenges in eCommerce – platform migration to Magento 2.

Migration to Magento 2

Starting with a fresh Magento 2 installation we have re-built the whole website.

The goal has been to replicate all functionality, the look and feel of the old Magento 1 site and lots of small improvements along the way.

One challenge was the data migration. Catalog data was coming from the ERP and sales data was to be migrated from Magento 1. We had to ensure data integrity, as well as to make sure non-standard data and configuration was properly migrated.

We decided to build a custom theme from the ground up. The result is a light-weight layout and fast page loading. We reviewed all custom functionality. Our developers re-implemented using either Magento 2 versions of 3rd-party modules, different vendors or custom code. We also removed any unused custom features along the way.

Shortly before the launch date we deployed the code to a pre-production environment. We run a standard software stack for Magento 2 - with Elasticsearch, Redis, and Varnish behind a HAProxy load balancer for optimal performance. After production customer and sales data migration. The pre-production site was running in the background with delta migration in place to pull incoming orders from the old to the new site.

Finally, having confirmed that everything works as expected, we performed the switch-over, opening the new website to the public. Within minutes orders started flowing in as we were monitoring closely for any issues.

Additionally, we took the opportunity to revise our development process and automation to make better use of the tools Magento provides:

  • implemented strict dependency control,
  • code quality checks,
  • automated tests,
  • more sophisticated deployment pipelines.

Migration from Magento 1 to Magento 2

20.000 items in stock on average

Local integration solutions for order management

Integration with Klarna and Norwegian Post

Migration to Magento 2 goals

  • Build a versatile and stable platform for further expansion.
  • Focus on improving conversion rate by increasing performance and optimizing UX.
  • Implement multi-source inventory management.
  • Capable infrastructure setup which can handle big seasonal sales and high traffic - such as fair trades, Black Friday, pre-Christmas sale.

Integrations endorse eCommerce 

While cooperating with NMJ, we have had a chance to work hand in hand with a Swedish company Dacsa who delivered our client's ERP software. We built local integration solutions for better communication with warehouses and managing clients’ orders. After all, those technical aspects, unseen to the customers are crucial to the convenience of their shopping experience. 

Technologies

Elasticsearch

Being the standard engine for Magento-based shops, Elasticsearch is in charge of making sure NMJ's customers find what they're looking for.

Redis+Varnish

The project uses Magento's capability for caching to its fullest, with combined potentials of Redis and Varnish for short server response times, especially under high traffic.

Build-test-deploy pipeline

Following the Trunk-Based Development philosophy, we rely heavily on automation and a streamlined workflow for a perfect balance of rapid change delivery and project stability.

Each new feature, bug fix or update is first built and packed into a container image and then inspected and tested: from coding standards and dependency checks, through unit tests to automated in-browser acceptance tests.

Having passed the automated tests, the change is then deployed to a development server for manual testing while another developer does the code review. It's then transferred to the staging server for the final check.

Finally, the new version is tagged and passed to the automated deployment pipeline which takes it safely to the production servers.

If you're interested in migration, check our services!

Knut Moe
Norsk Modelljernbane AS, Oslo, Norway
For NMJ the cooperation with Kiwee is and has been a success story from the beginning. Kiwee rescued a Magento project that was minutes away from compete disaster and in record time turned it into gold. Kiwee have proven to us how a developer to customer relation should be in the ideal world. Their superior technical knowledge, work ethic, cooperation skills, “customer first” mindset and well-documented service level have proven to be utmost essential to NMJ’s current online success. Kiwee’s team saved us, and on top they have paved a fast, solid and secure foundation for us to scale and grow in the years to come. Their full featured service has my warmest recommendations.
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