Arabian Oud’s ecommerce system was expensive, difficult to maintain, and lacked a mobile application. It needed to integrate its platform with its ERP system to support international expansion, but didn’t want to make a large investment. The company turned to AWS Partner SnapTec to develop a website and ecommerce system using a pay-per-transaction model made possible using serverless technology from Amazon Web Services (AWS).
Arabian Oud Turns to AWS and SnapTec for Innovative Ecommerce Solution
Arabian Oud is one of the world’s largest perfume manufacturers and retailers, with over 900 stores and 400 product lines. It operates in 35 countries and had built its own ecommerce site to help further international expansion.
But it had a problem—its ecommerce system was coming out of support and had to be replaced. Arabian Oud didn’t want to spend a lot of money on a replacement, especially because it had already spent time and money building up expertise in running its own system. It was also paying hosting and partner costs, which required outsourced developers to improve and update the site and make even basic changes. And despite all this expense, the site still went down during busy periods. In addition, the company lacked a mobile application.
SnapTec Builds Arabian Oud Ecommerce Using Novel Business Model
Arabian Oud found a way around this challenge by working with AWS Partner SnapTec to create a ‘pay-as-you-go’ ecommerce service built using its software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution on AWS. The solution is a SaaS, headless ecommerce service—that means the front and back ends are separate making it easier to update or change either without impacting on the other. SnapTec is an ecommerce and digital marketing specialist and built a complete web and ecommerce system that links into Arabian Oud’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. It also built a mobile application for the company.
Arabian Oud paid nothing for these services—instead it pays SnapTec a small fee for every transaction made through the website or the mobile app. Because the system is running on Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) and Amazon Aurora Serverless, which automatically starts up, shuts down, and scales capacity based on an application’s needs, there are no additional costs for SnapTec if the system has to deal with large peaks in demand.
The migration has reduced management and infrastructure overheads for Arabian Oud and allowed it to experiment with ecommerce at zero cost and risk. “Previously we had a huge management headache,” says Ibrahim Abdelmoty, ecommerce manager at Arabian Oud. “SnapTec and AWS have taken all this away and cut our costs by 90 percent. Now we just send a ticket for any changes or issues we have.”
Better Service for Customers, Lower Costs, and Faster Development
SnapTec has built an easy-to-use system to run the site and update inventory and prices. Arabian Oud staff use dashboards to make changes to prices and content on the website and to improve the user interface. Technology is no longer a barrier to opening in new territories. “The technology is not slowing our progress,” says Abdelmoty. “It takes far longer to deal with regulatory and licensing issues than it does to set up a new site for a new country. We can launch in a new country in 48 hours.”
The system provides an easy-to-use interface for customers who can use clickable maps to pinpoint a delivery address and the system fills in the relevant form. Once an order is placed, the headless ecommerce system finds the nearest store with the necessary products in stock and instructs that store to fulfill the order. Customers can also buy perfumes and other products using the mobile app.
Using the AWS Availability Zone in Bahrain provides Arabian Oud with quick response times for local customers. It has also seen improvements in reliability: the site has not suffered outages or downtime since launching on AWS.
Arabian Oud is growing its business outside the Middle East. With systems from SnapTec and AWS, it can now easily replicate its website anywhere in the world with minimal expenditure or delay. “Working with SnapTec and AWS means we can concentrate on the marketing and keeping our customers happy, not the technology—and that’s the real point of ecommerce,” says Abdelmoty. “And we can be ready to launch in a new territory really fast—the technology is never holding back the rest of the business.”