This site was running on a very old version of Sum Effect’s DigiSHOP ecommerce platform. The site was upgraded to DigiSHOP 5, and given a redesign. The content is now better organized, the site is less cluttered, and many items that were once static are now dynamic. The left hand navigation, based on the category structure, is now dynamic. Before, if categories were added, updated, or restructured, it was a manual process to update the navigation, but it now happens instantly. All of the static pages were integrated with DigisHOP’s CMS, as well as DigiSHOP’s templating system. Again, if changes to navigation were made before, all of these pages would need to be updated manually and individually. It now happens instantly.

A site map was added to the site to help with SEO. It lists the entire product and category tree. Because any category can have a arbitrary number of products and sub categories, it recursively walks through the top level of categories until it finds no more sub categories, and then lists the products. Since there are 1000s of products, this page can take a bit of time to build and be a bit of a resource hog. The page is cached daily to cut back on its high demand on resources. It uses a simple, custom file cache, saving the generated HTML to an external file and determining expiration based on the file time.

Lastly, with so many architectural changes, and moving the static pages to DigiSHOP’s CMS, a series of 301 redirects were written to maintain link continuity, and so as not to hinder any SEO efforts.

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