Todd Snyder uses XY API to develop an omnichannel customer experience.

Focused on “saving the sale” across its channels, Todd Snyder sought to develop a seamless shopping experience for its customers both in-store and online. To do so, Todd Snyder selected XY for it its digital capabilities and the omnichannel platform to help build direct and personalized relationships with its customers.

Providing a seamless customer experience.

Todd Snyder wanted to provide a consistent experience across channels in order to keep up with changing customer preferences. With the rise of mobile and social media, customers today interact with their brand across various touchpoints. For example, a customer can see a shirt on Instagram or visit Toddsnyder.com to learn more about the brand and other product offerings. But that customer might eventually choose to buy the shirt in a store nearby because they want to try the shirt on. Todd Snyder found that this type of multi-channel shopper has a higher conversion rate, particularly on mobile, and led to 40-50% more profitability.

However, Todd Snyder identified a major missed opportunity for its customers. Customers might want a particular item in a particular size, but when they check the website or the store, they discover that item is out of stock. This product might be available in a nearby store or warehouse, available to purchase but remaining unsold. This is a negative experience for the customer, and ultimately results in lower profits for the company.

Todd Snyder identified this gap in the customer journey and wanted to improve the customer experience so at any given time, the customer is able to buy the product they want. To solve for this, XY proposed a service called the “Global View of Inventory” (GVI). That way, if the customer is browsing the website or shopping at the store and wants to buy a shirt that may be unavailable at that channel, users can easily see what is available across their channels and have the option at their finger tips to ship to store or directly to the customer.

Like many global brands, Todd Snyder has built up a myriad of applications and processes to the point where it can become complex to create solutions quickly. These various systems needed to run a global retail business — retailing, wholesaling, business intelligence — are also compounded by the addition of external partners such as third-party retailers, suppliers, warehouses and logistics. This complexity brought various technologies and processes to the table, and resulted in different ways of working, inefficient organizational models and disorganized processes for running IT projects.

This approach unfortunately led to a lot of information silos throughout Todd Snyder. The brand wanted to establish more control across its application landscape while providing a seamless business and customer experience. And when it came to innovative new projects like the Buy Online, Pick Up In Store, BOPIS initiative, it was hard to make informed judgments about how long the project will be, and how much it would cost.

Connecting the complex to make it simple via APIs .

XY was able to connect all the applications via and by exposing the data through APIs, for Todd Snyder to be able to reuse assets across projects and make the data available in an entirely new channel, such as mobile or a new shop-in-shop.

“XY allowed us to build omnichannel relationships with our customers. If tomorrow we needed to add another sales channel, we could easily do it in a day.”, said Peter Silverman, COO, Todd Snyder.

To move quickly in a changing world across various markets, these omnichannel features needed to be implemented for Todd Snyder in a timely manner. By reusing assets, this product availability feature was rolled out across the brand more quickly then if Todd Snyder would have used traditional point-to-point Integration.

Todd Snyder believes that in the long term, customers will not always visit traditional retail outlets and look to engage with brands through new channels. Their customers will buy through channels like social media, and numerous other marketplaces, which will change and evolve through time. It is therefore necessary to open their inventory to custom XY’s Commerce Platform, and the innovation and efficiency made possible through the center for enablement, Todd Snyder is quite confident that they are building an omnichannel brand prepared for their rapid growth and the future.

Why Amazon Web Services

To meet the requirements of our customers such as Todd Snyder, XY released a SaaS solution that offers an end to end platform to serve their customer in global markets in US, Europe and APAC. Time is money and downtime is revenue loss. The requirement for a network of stores running globally while feeding the data to a centralized data lake in real time in order to provide valuable operational and analytical insights is no small task and hence AWS was the only logical choice. AWS has built a reputation of high availability (high 5 9s) and has presence globally to meet our needs. XY built an architecture on top of the following services:

MicroServices & EC2 (Elastic)

XY is built with micro service architecture from the ground up with support for multiple languages. All services are hosted in a JVM and deployment is automated through AWS Cloud Formation.

MicroServices & Lambda

Elasticity is critical for retail where demand patterns fluctuate with social media and content. In addition to EC2, XY has a micro-services layer that can be hosted in the JVMs as well as Lambda to cater to high latency workloads as well as handle demand spikes.

Data & Amazon DynamoDB

Elasticity is critical for retail where demand patterns fluctuate with social media and content. In addition to EC2, XY has a micro-services layer that can be hosted in the JVMs as well as Lambda to cater to high latency workloads as well as handle demand spikes.

MicroServices & Lambda

XY’s customers have their unique business processes and data models. For instance, a home decor retailer has completely different data elements than a fragrance retailer. Most solutions in the market are based on rigid relational models that don’t fit the needs for today’s knowledge workers. A highly scalable, DHT based database was the most critical decision for XY and Amazon DynamoDB was a perfect fit for the platform. The No SQL database is not just a database but data as a service where it takes ownership of all data related tasks such as replication, backup, caching. Another important consideration was availability of a No SQL database globally to cater to the privacy laws. XY cloud has provided 5 9’s of availability since launch with an ability to store data in multiple regions without changing application code. The power in the native API allowed XY to build strong data modeling layer on top of Dynamo which lent itself to providing an advanced version of GraphQL for developers to build mobile, web and partner applications.

Data & Amazon S3

Though DynamoDB is perfect for ‘data truth”, Amazon S3 offers a fast, scalable storage layer for unstructured data such as images, files, videos, HTML pages. All the data stored in XY is stored in DynamoDB with the contents of the structured data available in S3. The ease with which our customers can publish content in XY and be available globally in seconds is the agility they need. In this age of social media, any thing can go viral, the challenge is that our customers need to be ready to take advantage of this and turn them into opportunities. The legacy systems are a deterrent whereas XY with AWS welcomes the attention.

Data/Services & Amazon SQS

As a conscious decision XY decided to keep the query and the DHT separate in order to scale horizontally. Relational databases or some of the other No SQL databases offer a one size fits all storage and indexing solution. This was not the direction XY wanted to take as both these concerns are met by different architectures. XY needed a strong queueing layer to connect the DHT and Inverted Index (search) and Amazon SQS was the logical choice as it was well integrated into the APIs and offers a clean mechanism to decouple the two layers. This architecture also known as “eventual consistency model” is what allows XY to seamlessly scale with volume and the target is to minimize the latency between the two layers. That ie exactly where XY ended up with SQS.

Content & Amazon CloudFront

XY uses CloudFront as a Content Delivery Network for all content bar none. The reason for choosing CDN was again simple. Scale and ease of integration into existing services. The ability to use Lambda functions to provide smarter logic on the edges was a key to making this decision.

Services & ELB

All the requests are piped through Amazon CloudFront to Amazon ELB to provide a scalable access to all XY micro services. Scale and ease of integration were the key reasons. These services don’t need each other but fit really well when used together.

Streaming & Amazon Kineses

To turn operational data into insights, our customers needed a clean way to have the data be available in data warehouses such as Amazon Redshift. XY took advantage of Amazon Kinesis to achieve just that. With this architecture, our customers can create their own schemas and map the operational data and let the system handle the workfloads.