• project name:

    Vinotèque eCommerce

  • client name:


  • sector:


  • services:

    design_corporate identity

    design_website design

    development_website development


Vinotèque eCommerce

The Brief

In 2013, Distell Vineyards and Estates approached us to discuss their Vinotèque vinoteque.co.za website. At the time, the site offered a selection of some of South Africa’s most distinctive wines and recognised spirits, but our client had far bigger plans for the platform.

The brief had us excited from the start – create an eCommerce offering that would provide a single integrated solution; one through which all direct to consumer marketing and sales would be conducted. In addition, our target audience of wine enthusiasts across South Africa should be able to browse and purchase from an even wider selection of premium wines and award-winning local and international cognacs, whiskies and brandies, as well as cellar their purchases, where appropriate, at the Vinotèque’s Wine Bank. And, they should be able to do all of this in no more than eight steps from start to finish.

With the brief in, the challenge set, and us in control of the existing Vinotèque site, it was time for the part we really love – taking the thoughts, ideas, and objectives and bringing them to life in a way that captivates audiences and keeps them coming back for more.

Vinoteque Logo

Our Solution

A website inspired by the exquisite beauty of the Cape Winelands, which gave visitors all the features they were looking for, and then some. The user journey was designed in-house and delivered a slick, easy-to-navigate experience. On arrival at the site, a carousel introduced the Vinotèque concept – convenience, quality, and variety – as well as the current promotion(s). Visitors were then able to link directly to each area of the site via graphical cues. Visitors were accompanied throughout their journey by a gold shopping cart that enabled them to click directly through to their shopping basket once their purchases were complete.

The site’s other highlights included a wine comparison feature that enabled consumers to compare the characteristics of several wines at once according to their personal preference (vintage, cultivar, area of origin, alcohol etc.), as well as concise tasting notes and food pairing suggestions to help facilitate the right decision.

During the site build, it became clear to both us and our client that the time was ripe to redesign the Vinotèque CI and give the brand an exciting new look.

Vinoteque eCommerce pages

Technical Requirements

The technical brief from client was extensive and required a solution that was quick loading, scalable, fully updatable and easily expandable to cater for additional eCommerce content and use by other Distell business areas. It had to integrate with SAP, the software that merges each of Distell’s business divisions, as well as with a logistic function to ensure the speedy dispatch of purchases. And of course, it needed to be fully responsive to ensure a seamless experience across all digital devices – from desktops to tablets to mobile phones. It’s the way all websites should be designed. And it’s certainly the way we design ours. But above all, it needed to offer safe, secure transacting in order to keep consumers coming back.

Vinoteque mobile page view

Our Response

We immediately flagged the SAP integration as our greatest technical challenge and quickly proposed an agile approach, which included developing a Messaging Interface that would update price and stock from SAP and send orders through to it. We also set up a Hetzner Custom Hosting Environment for this interface. During the build, a decision was taken to move over to Shopify and we redeveloped the site for this platform, launching the first Shopify Plus account in South Africa. We also helped integrate ARAMEX as the fulfilment partner on Shopify, and facilitated the payment gateway integration, helping PayGate write the integration code.

Vinoteque tablet page view
Vinoteque page close up
Vinoteque packaging box view

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