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Gift Giving Taken to the Next Level

St.Louis based startup Greetabl is an online one-stop-shop for creatively-curated gifts and greetings that are personalized with Instagram photos, packaged and sent in just a few clicks.


The founders Joe and Zoë merged their respective backgrounds in business and design along with their entrepreneurial spirits to launch their gift platform. The venture turned out a success and soon it became clear and a more scalable and automated solution is necessary to ensure further development.


This project was a combined effort of digital brand and consulting firm B/C Designers who crafted the new Greetabl concept and the look, feel and UX of the platform, along with Spark Solutions Ruby on Rails Developers who jointly overhauled their digital platform with a complex ecommerce & fulfillment solution based on Spree Commerce

greetabl spree success story 1

The Challenge

greetabl spree commerce sucsess story

B/C and Greetabl worked together to develop a complete online gifting solution where the user, B/C coined “the Giver” could pick from a beautiful selection of boxes, add a gift from a curated collection of gifts, customize the package with a message and photos that would then be shipped to the receiver’s door.


The user could also send multiple Greetabls to different addresses in one quick and easy order! This new model required a complex customization of Spree Commerce to make this userflow possible.

The Search for a remote Development Team

B/C Designers sought a qualified technology partner to support the functional development of a Spree Commerce website.


Spark Solutions was one of several potential vendors to be shortlisted by the client, and they were approached and selected as the solution partner based on their demonstrated technical expertise and competitive pricing.


Once commissioned, Spark Solutions began to collaborate closely with B/C on the development of their Spree Commerce website, which required custom Ruby on Rails development, user interface / user experience (UI/UX) design (created by B/C), systems integration and configuration, and ongoing support.

spree commerce remote development team

The Process & The Solution

Spark Solution's workflow for Spree Commerce projects
  • Analysis & system architecture design
  • Coding & testing iterative process
  • Responsive Website Design and its implementation
  • Production deployment & configuration
  • End-product solution


As Spark Solutions works in an agile way the project was conducted in weekly iterations. The whole development process was a repetitive cycle of coders and testers working together with the client with the help of Spark Solutions project manager (PM).

It took 22 weeks to launch an MVP integrated with the external outsourced print on demand and shipping center. Features

  • personalized product builder and custom checkout process
    • single page React.js application as a responsive product builder ( desktop / tablet / mobile )
    • custom checkout process adapted to Greetabl workflow


  • great user experience
    • mobile-ready clean layout and greatly improved user experience
    • product sections pre-defining product builder elements for the user
      • Limited Editions
      • Holiday (seasonal products)


  • outsourced order fulfilment and shipping handled with a custom Spree extension using subcontractor’s API with order status feedback and shipment tracking


  • admin panel enabling
    • products management
    • promotion and promo messages management
    • CMS for content pages
    • general website configuration
greetabl spree commerce success story

Tech Stack

spree commerce tech stack
  • Ruby on Rails 4 with HTTP app caching & memcached for shorter page load times
  • Spree Commerce 3.0 – probably the biggest implementation of the latest version in the world
  • ElasticSearch for quickly searching and filtering millions of records
  • Twitter Bootstrap 3.3 – for mobile-ready easy-to-modify layout
  • ReactJS frontend with React-Bootstrap and Flux architecture pattern
  • Haml, Sass, CoffeeScript – front-end components
  • PostgreSQL, Redis – back-end engine
  • Heroku – cloud hosting optimized for increasing traffic loads with automatic scaling up and down


  • business was automated and streamlined with the right technology, user experience, brand platform and dev team
  • This enabled the startup to scale, fundraise and compete for larger market share as well as bigger ROI
  • New website was beta-tested and optimized for a few more weeks right on time for holiday season
  • With each weekly iteration of the development process – both pre- and post-launch – new requirements arise for UX or business improvement


Spark Solutions

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