AWS for Industries

L’Oréal elevates the D2C experience with Valtech and VTEX on AWS

For the past 110 years, an in-person retail experience has reigned as the queen of sales strategy at L’Oréal. Customers shopping for any of the company’s sub-brands—including Lancôme, La Roche-Posay, and Kérastase—most likely went to their closest beauty counter, salon, or pharmacy and made their purchase. Those looking for luxury hair-care products from Kérastase expected nothing less than a luxurious buying experience, which often included the assistance of a trained expert. When the COVID-19 pandemic began, customers who were once able to touch and try different products were now forced to use screens, and the team at Kérastase wanted to translate their high-end buying journey to ecommerce.

As a global label, Kérastase runs different ecommerce sites for different geographies. In Brazil, L’Oréal had already set up VTEX Commerce Platform on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to run its ecommerce operations for other sub-brands and took the opportunity to extend it to Kérastase. The trick was to create a seamless user experience when navigating between front-end and backend services. Where AWS Partner VTEX handled the backend ecommerce side of things—including pricing, inventory, and promotions—Sitecore managed all the front-end site content—including photos, descriptions, and navigation.

No head, great hair: headless ecommerce for flawless hair-care shopping

After AWS Partner Valtech created an integration between VTEX and Sitecore, Kérastase customers enjoyed a seamless online experience from browsing to buying. As a headless engine, VTEX Commerce Platform operates as a bundle of independent services, contouring an API-based solution so that Kérastase can more easily extend software and tailor it to its needs. “For L’Oréal, headless is one of the main pillars to sustain ecommerce growth,” says Mauricio Henao, head of digital IT innovation Americas at L’Oréal. “During the decentralization of ecommerce operations, we’ve seen customers exploring new ways to interact with brands, such as live streaming, social media, e-tailers, and marketplaces. We have to be prepared for this shift.”

Now, when a customer navigates through the Kérastase site, they cannot distinguish between the parts powered by VTEX and those powered by Sitecore. Instead, the customer sees prices, reads descriptions, discovers benefits from promotions, and clicks the buy button on the product page. Under the hood, a front-end layer pulls information from both Sitecore and VTEX to deliver this uniquely composed experience. The new integration gives customers an immersive luxury experience while reducing the number of Kérastase products swapped for others at the point of checkout.

The VTEX Commerce Platform uses AWS services such as AWS Elastic Beanstalk, which is a simple-to-use service for deploying and scaling web applications and services, for its cloud-based application and tool management. To create a reliably smooth and efficient buyer journey, it uses Amazon CloudFront, a content delivery network service built for high performance, security, and developer convenience. For its machine-learning-based automation and to keep overhead costs low, it uses Amazon OpenSearch Service to securely unlock near-real-time search, monitoring, and analysis of business and operational data.

Rinse and repeat: replicating the ecommerce site in other geographies

Using out-of-the-box functionality from VTEX, combined with AWS digital commerce solutions, Valtech deployed the Kérastase ecommerce site in just 10 weeks. And the best part is that the elegant and scalable solution can be picked up by any other Kérastase branch around the world to elevate their ecommerce game—that’s just one more way to tell L’Oréal consumers: they’re worth it.

For a more in-depth look at how Kérastase worked with Valtech to deploy VTEX Commerce Platform on AWS, check out this case study.

AWS Partner spotlight

AWS Partner VTEX provides a software-as-a-service digital commerce platform for enterprise brands and retailers. Customers can use this solution to improve their commerce strategy, including building online stores, integrating and managing orders across channels, and creating marketplaces to sell products from third-party vendors. Founded in Brazil, VTEX is a leader in accelerating the digital commerce transformation in Latin America and is expanding globally. Its platform is engineered to enterprise-level standards and features, and it has more than 2,000 customers with over 2,500 active online stores across 32 countries.

Ali Kole

Ali Kole

Ali Kole leads AWS’s Health & Beauty business worldwide, focusing on thought leadership, strategy, and partnering with customers across the segment to embrace and capitalize on the capabilities and advantages of digital transformation. Ali comes to AWS with 2 decades of experience helping create, acquire, evolve and grow consumer brands across CPG, retail and media, as a CEO, advisor and investor. Her experience includes 8 years at LVMH running strategy & business development for Sephora, co-founding beauty brand incubator Kendo, and leading multiple beauty brands as CEO and board member. Before pivoting into beauty, Ali spent 10 years at Microsoft in digital media and ecommerce, and was a consultant with McKinsey and with Bain. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.