Medistore - a marketplace with medical services for Medicover
Implementation of an e-commerce platform in the healthcare industry
Medicover is a leading international company offering medical and diagnostic services, headquartered in Stockholm and listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange (Nasdaq Stockholm). The company was founded in 1995 in response to the growing demand for high-quality medical services in Poland, and subsequently expanded into other countries. Currently, the company's largest markets are: Poland, Germany, Romania, and India. Medicover provides a wide range of healthcare services through outpatient and specialist care, a network of hospitals, laboratories, and blood collection points within two areas – Healthcare Services and Diagnostic Services.
We have partnered with Medicover to develop the Medistore platform, an advanced marketplace offering medical products and services.
- Migration to the new platform.
- Simplification of the purchasing path.
- Integration with the PIM system.
- Automation of the invoicing process.
- Development of the offering through integration of related companies.
- Many separate purchase paths.
- Separate requirements of each company.
- Extensive product range information.
- Hundreds of thousands of product variants.
- Dynamically changing schedules of specialists.
"Migrating such an advanced E-commerce platform as Medistore is a huge technological and business challenge. In the service industry, and medical services in particular, it is difficult to find benchmarks on which to base decisions. Each element of the process and system requires an individual approach and has to be designed from start to finish, taking into account the specifics of the product, the provider and the customers' needs. Thanks to our collaboration with Strix, we were able to launch a platform that is a solid pillar of our digital strategy." Miłosz Sokół, Global E-commerce Manager at Medicover
Case study Medistore
Medistore is an e-commerce platform operating in the marketplace model; however, it’s not a typical medical shop where you can only buy OTC drugs and accessories. Medistore is a unique solution on the Polish market, as it offers customers medical appointments, medical packages, sets of examinations, and health check-ups that can be purchased in the e-commerce model. In this way, instead of calling or coming to the facility, customers can select and pay for a package of services directly from the website, just as they would with classic online shopping. The product range categories have been designed to meet the specific needs of customers.
The Medistore platform offers the possibility of making a medical appointment at an available facility in the selected city or ordering a home visit. Customers can also use telemedicine services to make an appointment with a specialist by phone or online.
Medistore customers can easily purchase the tests they need, either individually or as a package. The platform offers tests for food allergies and intolerances, genetics, infertility, diabetes, radiology, blood tests, cultures, swabs, and much more.
Medistore offers service packages tailored to the specific types and needs of its clients. For example, a set of examinations for immunocompromised people, people with diabetes, a health review for athletes, dental packages of different levels, or sessions with a physiotherapist.
Migration from Magento 1 to Magento 2
The first challenge in the implementation of the project for Medicover was the migration from the Magento 1 platform to Magento 2. Medistore is a huge, advanced marketplace with nearly 600,000 product variants offered by more than a dozen separate companies. Migrating the shop to Magento 2, which differs significantly from the previous version of the platform, practically required building the entire system from scratch and developing new custom solutions.
During the project for Medicover, we worked with the Composable Commerce approach, which allows for flexible and agile application design. This model is based on technologies such as Headless, APIs, and microservices that are standard in state-of-the-art sales platforms.
The greatest strengths of the Composable Commerce approach
- high responsiveness to market changes,
- speed of implementation of new solutions,
- increased platform efficiency,
- optimisation of maintenance costs,
- supporting omnichannel development,
- improved user experience.
The headless model of software development is based on the separation of the frontend (i.e. what the viewer sees) from the backend (i.e. the entire technical background responsible for the operation of the application). Such a solution allows changes to be made to the visual layer of the application, without interfering with the source code, which results in greater stability and flexibility of the system and allows changes and extensions to be made more quickly and easily.
In the case of Medicover, the introduction of headless solutions was key to meeting the project's objectives, as the platform operates in a marketplace model and enables sales to multiple related companies. Using headless technology, we designed a separate frontend layer for each company, but they are all connected to a shared backend built on the Magento engine. As a result, we can easily add more companies and markets and make modifications to the platform's appearance without interfering with the code, and each company can handle its orders independently. This solution guarantees Medicover faster and more efficient operation of the system, even with increased traffic, and ensures better scalability of the business as it continues to grow.
The separate frontend layers also comply with the regulations and legal requirements for each company, e.g. data protection regulations, drug advertising restrictions, etc. so that the system can be optimised to the requirements of each separate group entity while remaining a consistent, manageable application.
The backend and frontend in the Medicover platform are connected via a GraphQL API. An API is a technology that allows information to be exchanged between multiple software components, services, and applications. Such a solution significantly saves time and easily connects different systems together. Over the past decade, APIs have become a standard in many industries, including e-commerce. In the case of the Medicover platform, the introduction of API technology has given us the opportunity to achieve greater platform efficiency and reduce maintenance costs.
In addition, the API gives the system the readiness to connect to more applications in the future, including the mobile app, partner company websites, services from third-party providers (e.g. search, payment processing), and smart devices like the Smart Watch, etc. The solution will also give Medicover partners and companies the ability to add a Medistore widget to their websites. The API technology is the basis for achieving high business scalability and implementing an omnichannel strategy.
Implementation of multiple shopping paths
Medistore is not a typical online shop, as it offers a wide range of specialised services in addition to physical products. There are 11 product types in the platform, such as dietary supplements, medical appointments, examination packages, etc. Each of these types required the design of a separate purchase path, tailored to its nature. When shopping for vitamins or supplements, the purchase path resembles that of a classic online shop – the customer adds items to the basket, enters address details, makes payment, and that’s it. From an implementation perspective, however, the process is much more challenging for the system when purchasing a medical package or arranging a medical consultation. When the customer has to select the facility where he or she wants the service, the system has to immediately update information about the availability of the specialist in question at the selected time. The purchase of different types of products also requires a different set of data when placing an order. We have therefore implemented a separate, intuitive purchase path for each product type, which is triggered automatically based on the products in the shopping cart.
For marketplaces offering services from multiple vendors, it’s crucial to implement an advanced invoicing system. Medistore has more than a dozen companies, each with its own procedures and requirements for the billing process. Moreover, the individual product types also differ in this respect, if only in terms of the data visible on the invoice. At Medistore, we have implemented an external invoicing system, integrated with the internal tools and databases of all the companies. In this way, a single system allows billing to be processed from all vendors in Medistore.
Integration with the PIM system
The product pages of Medistore's product range are extensive; they contain a detailed description of the scope of each package, numerous links, additional materials and documents, such as applications and regulations, and multimedia like photos, videos, or interactive maps of medical facilities. With 11 types and close to 600,000 product variants, managing this amount of data would be impossible without sufficient technological support. That’s why we hooked the Medistore range up to an advanced PIM tool.
Procedures for implementing new companies
The number of members of the Medicover Group is constantly growing. The client was keen to ensure that the launch of sales opportunities in Medistore for new exhibitors was as fast as possible, so as part of our collaboration we developed procedures to facilitate the addition of further companies.
Improving the user experience
Medistore is a complex and sophisticated marketplace, but this doesn’t mean that the purchasing path has to be complicated. During our collaboration, we made every effort to simplify the customer ordering process as much as possible and designed a clear, intuitive interface in line with UX requirements.
Medistore – a groundbreaking solution for the medical services market
The Medicover shop has taken the medical customer experience to a whole new level and set the bar extremely high. The e-commerce platform, which allows customers to buy not only physical health products, but also service packages and test sets for patients, is an important step towards the digitalisation of the medical market.
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