This past year we completed a website redesign that included an online shop offering both subscriptions/memberships as well as hard copy items. The shop had to be linked up to a main site with 2 separate password protected member areas as well as 2 separately accessible admin areas.
Login, member permissions, password recovery, internal search functions, links, payment systems, memberships, and subscription management all had to communicate seamlessly.
Bring out the Knitting Needles
This kind of project calls for 'knitting'. The final product appears to be one system, but is in effect several systems carefully 'knit' together to function – and appear – as a cohesive whole.
It takes a lot of research, coordination, testing, programming, more testing, study, review, even more testing, proofing, checking and a whole lot of other tasks before a 'knit' system is up and running smoothly.
I would be lying if I said 'knitting' doesn't create a few headaches and sleepless nights – it does.
We researched and test-ran 5 different CMS's, 8 different shop systems and 4 different online payment solutions before putting this project together. And even after committing to the CMS, Shop and payment systems that 'won', there were hiccups.
And more knitting was required. But the end result was quite a lovely 'sweater'.