Agile with Shopify Development
Updated: Aug 19, 2021
We at TheGenieLab work within an Agile framework, and it's important for everyone involved to know what this defines - it is a method, a process, a way of approach that helps turn business requirements into software solutions aimed at your online store.
With shopify full stack developers or front end developers, most of the development community take some form of discipline, which gives them an approach to understanding the business requirements of a client. With programming languages ranging with Ruby on rails to frameworks like Node JS, you have libraries and structures to work within for any web application (web app). While it is generally understood that process is required to achieve success, the level of complexity of the tasks might see either more rigor or a more lax approach.
Agile is a software development approach that is combined with a continuous improvement methodology as it is expected that any system would require maintenance and upgrades in the future.
With Shopify, there are several levels of development that a shopkeeper can take. Anywhere from a store design adjustment, a new design, have a Shopify Custom App or Shopify Private App made for their store would require a certain level of process to achieve. Additionally, there are IOS/Android Private Apps that integrate with the store to communicate with clients on special deals and notifications of various actions required.
Shopify Developers use the Agile development process to interface with clients in gathering their needs, and bringing back the technical solutions in both time required to do it, as well as any other resources needed to achieve the goal.
Plan or Requirements for Shopify Projects
Business requirements which may come from the desired customer experience, back-office tools or processes needed, or just "reports" to view the business and its operations can be brought forward as the start of a Development Plan or set of requirements that will then translate into finding the right Shopify Developer to getting it accomplished.
Part of the planning phase is finding that skillset, or outfit that can help you refine your requirements further, help you define a budget, and timeline on completion of your project.
A requirement can be small such as bug fixing or can be a change order to an existing system or project. Thinking of the requirements as tasks helps in identifying the steps to accomplishing it.
This phase can take different forms wherein the context of a Theme, a Design would be prepared in Photoshop to illustrate what the requirements are looking to achieve – UI/UX reviews are performed for optimizing the design to ensure a smooth Development phase. A Custom Shopify App or Shopify Private App would take a similar path where the interface that addresses the requirements would give the Shopify Developer the visual understanding of the project with the addition of a specification if needed to cover the greater details of the database interactions, or algorithms to be performed.
From the requirements and planning, and the additional Design phase the determination of the resources and Shopify Developers kick-off and set out to create and formulate the project in hand. Most times this is done in a dummy-store for testing and development when a live store is being hosted, otherwise, if it is a new project, then the hosting would be a clone of what will end up to be live.
The development process is just as creative as the design process when it comes to writing code, working with API’s or different architectures to accomplish the task. However, there are expectations of quality, catch unexpected outcomes to have routines exit gracefully with messaging that can be understood. Writing code with a certain level of discipline is required to maintain a standard for anyone else reviewing and following what’s been created, such as intelligible comments within the code.
Test in Shopify
A lot of choices are available for testing when it comes to development. User testing, testing harnesses, memory testing, database integrity testing, security testing, PCI testing, and the list goes on. Validation of this phase is undertaken by both the storekeeper and the Shopify Development firm that has executed the requirements/design. Within Agile, there is a bug database that is used to record the various issues found, missing features, incorrect outcomes, down to minor adjustments. Different priorities and type of issue is associated with a defect so as to get the right level off attention by the right person.
Release or Deployment
When a project reaches the closure of the testing phase and the project is completed, there comes a time when the project is deployed live and live interactions, data, and interconnections are put in place with the security in place. This does take a small cycle since there are server considerations (when using some Shopify Apps), SSL’s, configurations, and domains being set to ensure that the project is then “Live”.
Feedback and Review
With the Shopify Development cycle almost at completion, there will inevitably be areas that will be identified as areas of improvement, immediate need to resolve, or nice-to-haves for the future releases. Ensuring that the project would see its goals being met, development going into sustaining mode transitions both the Shopify Development team and the Storekeeper into the next phase.
This is the phase that concludes the Shopify Development efforts reach the end, and the project usually reaches its maintenance phase. The project is live and running, with the objectives of its delivery will hopefully bring improvement for the business, its customers and staff.
Your Shopify Store has various components ranging from a Shopify Theme to a Shopify Custom App. Theme development by a Shopify Expert will improve the user experience through visuals and navigation, where web development can incorporate sales tools and integrate these into the web design. Custom designs delivered by a Shopify Web Designer can take your eCommerce store to new levels of brand differentiation and you will have your very own template files. You can find most best practice Apps in the Shopify App Store, however, if you need a Shopify partner to have Designers (beginning with Starter Themes or Free trial advanced themes) or Developers that can perform API calls using PHP Code - a Shopify Expert is what you need.
Shopify Development can take many forms, with minor projects accomplished in a small cycle, and larger projects taking more time to plan and develop. We at TheGenieLab work diligently to apply ourselves in achieving a high-quality delivery in a timely fashion through a good understanding of the business requirements and sharp execution. Feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to scope your next project.