Either way, a retailer must manage the information effectively to maximize impact.
To achieve the desired result, catalog-based product content must be incorporated into the promotion material displayed on the site. Mercury provides you with effective building blocks to facilitate this. I'll explain below the approach
we used for one of our clients.
Managing content ‘the old way’
To promote product catalog items, our client was using static content. But this was very cumbersome and prone to error. The information needed to be adjusted regularly when, for example, prices changed and content (images) that displayed the old prices had to be updated. It was also very difficult to maintain promotional content in a responsive design format.
Managing content ‘the new way’
Our client decided to move away from the static version and began using the Mercury E-commerce solution. We had to ensure that the old issues would not persist when creating and managing promotional content.
Mercury provides building blocks which allow clients to integrate their product catalog information with promotional banners. These blocks comprise a typical banner data model that can be customized and that possesses the functionality to query for banner data. As Mercury only provides the basic content structure, any additional features need to be implemented specifically for each client project.
Banners are typically Sitecore based content. They contain all the information needed to display the different types of banners required by the content editors. These banners are displayed using Sitecore rendering components that are client-specific
and which can be used as a data source for various types of renderings.
Banners are persisted using a simple model, which by default comprise the following properties.
- A display style that can be configured to contain a CSS classname and/or custom CSS style
- A banner image comprising a custom piece of Sitecore functionality to contain a response image which can be placed in the media library in Sitecore. Depending on the viewport available, this will output the correct image
- A price block: an optional property that can be used to display the corresponding price for the underlying banner type. There are various types of price blocks available tailored for different scenarios. These scenarios will be explained later
- Call-to-action link. The link to navigate to when a customer clicks a banner
This model is customizable. Please note when a customized banner model is used, the related data service also needs to be extended.
Banner data service
By default, Mercury provides a service to query for banner data. Querying this service is straightforward and will return all data persisted in the banner model.
Supported pricing display functionality
Each banner can display a price block containing price information. This can be displayed on the banner item. The following functionality is provided by default.
- Product pricing. Using this setting, Mercury will look up the actual price of the product that has been set on the specific banner item
- Product variant pricing. Using this setting, Mercury will look up the actual price of the product variant that has been set on the specific banner item
- Product selection. Using this setting, Mercury will look up the lowest price available for the product selection that has been set on the specific banner item
- Custom. Using this setting, a static price will be displayed that has been set on the specific banner item
Since the banner components are Sitecore based renderings, personalization of the banners is easy to implement. If required, Sitecore’s extensive personalization functionality can be used to personalize banners by using the customizable rules engine.
By using the procedures set out above, we successfully implemented banner functionality for one of our Mercury client projects in multiple parts of their site. Having created the necessary basic components, content editors can now add new banners containing pricing information on the fly and with great ease.
We provide a simple yet robust system for delivering banner data and related product catalog pricing information supporting multiple scenarios. With Mercury, it’s easy and straightforward to create your own product-based banners without having to worry about product catalog changes.