Styberry: a Digital Fashion Publishing Platform

Node.js Based Online Solution for a Fashionista Hub

Styberry: a Digital Fashion Publishing Platform
  • Rich-functionality web publishing solution with monetization capabilities
  • Tracking system, notification module and stats for bloggers
  • Integration with 3rd party email automation engine and analytical processing tool
  • Customised solution for lightweight architecture and minimalist design

Context

Client

A Europe-based startup approached us about creating a fashion publishing platform.

The challenge

With the growth of internet, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find good quality information online as it takes tons of time to choose trustworthy sources. Why not take expert’s advice that you may find in one place – a fashion blogging platform – for fashion lovers big and small.

Uniting all fashionistas under one roof would give them a golden opportunity to read, like, share, search, tag, comment on articles, as well as follow, or even become bloggers. Integration with a third party would also allow fashion writers to monetize their work by utilizing affiliate links.

Solution

The specifications were sufficiently detailed from the start and the client (a UI/UX designer herself) came with a ready-made design. So the project planning stage didn’t take long, and we soon went into development.

Technology

The platform owes its rich functionality to the following technological stack.

Frontend

A combination of HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript enables a variety of content and general dynamics of the web application. The preprocessor Compass (SCSS) and Bootstrap (custom settings) helped to implement CSS in a modular way and customize it to the client’s needs. In order to improve the speed and bandwidth utilization, all the data transfer between the server and the browser’s client was Gzipped on a request level. It was agreed to have a server side rendering, so we used a web template system that can reduce the code repetition with a layout and reusable components implementation.

Backend

It was a fairly innovative solution to employ Node.js and Sails.js as a basis: this allowed for a smart combination of tools and languages to ensure faster development, more efficient (SEO-smart) solutions and forward compatibility. It also had other rationale: the product presupposed integration with a third party, a corporate user of Node.js.

The overall development process was version controlled on GitHub. The choice of a continuous integration development approach enabled smooth compilation and easy automatic deployment to the staging environment. For that purpose we created an infrastructure that included a CI server.

Database

We used MySQL as a database solution. In order to connect it to Styberry, we decided to opt for Sequelize.js ORM, which had better capabilities in comparison with the default option embedded in Sails.js framework. We also suggested a database schema.

Special features

The web application contains these special features:

  • Statistics available for the blogger.
  • Tracking system (JS tracker) to count views.
  • Notification module – to notify a blogger of likes, followers, and links hit.
  • REST API access point (for product lists’ attachment to a blog).
  • Integration with 3rd party systems (Mailgun email automation engine, Rakuten PopShops’ analytical processing tool and API).

Read also: How to MVC with node.js & sails.js

Results

We managed to accomplish the project on time and within budget. The client was satisfied with the results.