SheerID

Developing a BigCommerce app and integration for an international identity marketing platform.

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Project Overview

SheerID is an international identity marketing platform. They enable retailers to offer exclusive, personalised discounts to specific consumer sectors, such as medical professionals, teachers, first responders, and the military. They do this by providing a safe and authoritative identity verification service, with a strong focus on data transparency and privacy. As part of their ongoing growth plan, they have been expanding their service into platform specific integrations.

© SheerID

SheerID approached the team at GPMD with a twofold mission. One, to take-over and maintain their existing Shopify app; and two, to develop and build a new app specifically for the BigCommerce marketplace.

The Process

The delivery team consisted of me as the lead front end UI/UX Designer and React engineer, the GPMD backend lead and GoLang engineer, the Project Architect/Manager, and the SheerID Product Owner and engineering team.

We worked collaboratively with SheerID to define the business requirements, what the user journey would look like, and where it would need to deviate from the established Shopify app user journey. We held regular weekly and daily stand-ups to make sure the project stayed on-track.

1. Discovery and Prototyping

We audited the existing Shopify app codebase to establish where we could achieve parity in the BigCommerce app, and what would need to be approached differently. We also worked with SheerID to define those features that would be custom to BigCommerce, such as the creation of Page Builder Widgets. We workshopped app flow wireframes with SheerID, and they produced a low-fidelity prototype. They also gave us access to the Shopify app screen designs in Zeplin.

BigCommerce Page Builder widget flow

2. Front End Design and Build

It was decided that we would not produce static designs for the BigCommerce app, but develop the UI designs directly in code using a staging environment and Continous Integration (CI) for rapid deployment. Using the Shopify app screen designs as reference, SheerID trusted me to interpret the spirit of them, whilst maintaining consistency with the BigCommerce design language system and React component library - BigDesign. Many of the app's features were implemented using this component library and, where feature parity was not possible, we engineered custom solutions.

SheerID BigCommerce app, using the BigDesign React component library
Screens from the SheerID BigCommerce app

Summary

Over the course of the project we developed a strong working relationship with the SheerID team. They were organised and clear about their requirements, but also gave us autonomy to suggest and implement solutions that would work well within the BigCommerce ecosystem.

The main challenge we had to overcome was the difference in time zones, SheerID being based in the US and GPMD in the UK. This meant we often had to be responsive at irregular hours in order to make sure the project progressed in a timely manner and wasn't held-up by long feedback loops. This flexible and collaborative approach delivered a project that met all of SheerID's targets - on-time, on-budget, and to a high standard.