L’Oréal Elevates the D2C Experience with Valtech and VTEX on AWS

Executive Summary

L’Oréal Kérastase, a leader in luxury professional haircare, wanted to streamline the online shopping experience for its customers in Brazil so they wouldn’t have to leave the Kérastase site to place their orders. However, the parent company wanted to maintain its headless ecommerce architecture, which naturally redirects customers away from the Kérastase page for their final purchase. Amazon Web Services (AWS) Partner, Valtech, integrated the VTEX ecommerce platform with Sitecore to create a single, simplified experience for Kérastase customers. Valtech’s team completed the project in just 10 weeks using AWS digital commerce solutions and APIs from VTEX's composable solutions. The new integration gives customers an immersive luxury experience while reducing the number of Kérastase products swapped for others at the point of check out.

A Less-Than-Luxurious Online Shopping Experience

As part of its expansion into the Brazilian ecommerce market, Kérastase discovered that its existing online ecosystem lacked the seamlessness and efficiency that shoppers expect from a luxury brand. The parent company, L’Oréal, maintains a headless commerce architecture, which splits front-end customer experiences from backend commerce services—ensuring maximum flexibility in how the company supports different brands and sites around the world.

In Brazil, lack of integration between the Kérastase brand site and backend ecommerce functions meant customers were redirected to a different site to complete purchases. The different site exposed customers to lower average order value (AOV) products that they could swap out. Similarly, the move between sites sometimes caused cart items to go missing when customers refreshed a browser or switched to a different device.

“We implemented this at Kérastase in a way that any other L’Oréal brand can effortlessly integrate VTEX and add ecommerce functionalities to their brand site.”

- Floriano Oliveira, Head of Technology, Valtech

AWS-Backed Platform Delivers Full-Service Experience

The technical team at L’Oréal brought in Valtech, a systems integrator focused on business transformation, to stitch together the solutions and make the user interface more cohesive. Site navigation and browsing occur on Sitecore, which pulls commercial information from the VTEX Commerce Platform engine. As an AWS Partner, VTEX builds solutions that provide robust, highly customizable solutions that Valetch could quickly and easily attach through APIs. The VTEX solution utilizes technologies such as AWS Elastic Beanstalk for cloud-based application and tool management, Amazon CloudFront, for a reliably smooth and efficient buyer journey, and Amazon OpenSearch’s (formerly Elasticsearch) machine learning-based automation to keep overhead costs low. Separating the front-end branding of the site from the VTEX-powered purchasing technology on the backend allowed the luxury brand to provide customers with a full-service, uniquely Kérastase experience across channels.

Improved Branding and Smoother UX

When Brazilian customers who wanted to purchase Kérastase products were redirected away from the brand’s site it posed a major disruption to both the user experience and buyer journey. Now, thanks to Valtech, the Kérastase site integrates with headless ecommerce via the VTEX Commerce Platform on AWS, enabling customers to not only see products, prices, and inventory but immediately connect to the checkout process upon clicking buy. Redirection is eliminated, creating a truly seamless experience wrapped in the Kérastase branding customers know and love.

“We found out that it was possible to build a completely seamless experience for the customer using VTEX’s headless commerce capabilities.”

- Mauricio Henao, Head of Digital IT Innovation Americas, L’Oréal

Preserved Brand Loyalty and Sustainable Growth

As a luxury product, Kérastase has a higher AOV than other products in its category. When customers were redirected to a site that featured lower AOV products this went against the L’Oréal’s ethos of avoiding internal brand competition. It also increased the chances of a customer breaking with brand loyalty in favor of lower AOV products, potentially resulting in lost revenue. By integrating VTEX and Sitecore on AWS, Valtech created an experience where customers solely interact with Kérastase products from the moment they enter the site to the final confirmation page they see once a purchase is completed.

Persistent Cart Experience Across Devices and Channels

Buyer journeys are often non-linear. A customer may see a product that they want to buy while on their smartphone but then complete the purchase on their computer. The persistent cart capability inherent in the VTEX solution gives customers the power to not only switch between digital devices, but bring their cart with them throughout their buying journey. With each cart marked by a unique identifier, customers can now retrieve their cart items at any point in the navigation process. This allows customers to enjoy a seamless shopping experience across devices as well as channels. As Mauricio Henao, Head of Digital IT Innovations Americans at L’Oréal put it, “We’ve seen customers exploring new ways to interact with brands such as live-streaming, social media, e-retailers, and marketplaces. We have to be prepared for this shift.”


About Kérastase

Kérastase, founded in 1964 by scientists at L’Oreal Advanced Research, is a French luxury hair and scalp care line that distributes products internationally. Kérastase is part of the L’Oréal Professional Products Division.

About the Partners

VTEX is an ecommerce platform that unifies customer experiences across channels. With an auto-scaling cloud infrastructure, the platform accelerates complex operations into one powerful ecommerce solution.

Valtech is a global business transformation agency delivering innovation with a purpose. The company helps clients anticipate tomorrow’s trends and connect more directly with consumers.

Published July 2022