Sound Harley-Davidson - Hitting the Road with the eZ Publish Platform

In Short 
  • Industry: Automotive
  • eZ Partner: Blend Interactive
  • Challenges: User Experience and Frequent Inventory Additions
  • eZ Publish Version and Extensions: eZ Publish 4.7
  • Results: Sales Increase and roughly 7,000 visitors per month
  • Project Duration: 3-4 Months

Bringing the Harley-Davidson Experience to Your Browser

Located just outside of Seattle, WA, Sound Harley-Davidson - one of North America’s leading Harley-Davidson dealerships - wanted to boost the functionality of their web presence while continuing to capture the essence of the Harley-Davidson brand. The dealership was looking for a dynamic experience for their motorcycle enthusiasts that would represent the brand’s culture - and set them apart from their competitors.

"Our goals and aspirations were to get our site to have the same feel as the Motor Company’s website (www.harley-davidson.com). We wanted that ‘BAM’ – ‘WOW’ factor the moment you logged into soundharley.com. We also wanted to add features to make the customers experience easier, cleaner and to the point."

Kari Korsgren, Marketing & Events Manager at Sound Harley-Davidson

Since Harley-Davidson restricts dealerships from selling vehicles or other products online, web development firm Blend Interactive was tasked with creating a site that could draw customers into the store for a closer look. By focusing on the motorcycles themselves, Blend and Sound Harley developed a bold visual experience, including a bike filtering system where customers can search extensively through the dealership's large inventory of bikes. Customers using the “Bike Finder” application are able to filter via multiple fields for a particular model, feature or price range.

The ease of setting up such features was a huge draw for Blend Interactive in choosing the eZ Publish Platform as Sound Harley’s Content Management System (CMS). “Using the basic features available in eZ’s templating system played a huge role,” Joe Kepley, Blend Interactive’s development lead, said, praising the platform. “And the ability to filter and query news, events, photo handling and galleries were available right out of the box with eZ Publish Platform.”

More importantly, the ease of using the eZ Publish Platform for Sound Harley-Davidson’s marketing and sales team was key. Blend Interactive provided the dealership with template training, and in a short amount of time the sales team was able to produce, maintain and update their promotions while maintaining the website’s look and feel - all with no developer or designer on staff.

On The Road Access

The responsive design capabilities of eZ Publish was another selling point for Blend Interactive in the CMS selection process.

“It sounds like a no brainer, but there are a lot of CMS’s where responsive design is hard to do, eZ is not one of them. There is a certain level at which the best thing a CMS can do is provide the right tools and stay out of the way and eZ definitely gives us the flexibility to build whatever our front-end designers come up with.

Joe Kepley, Lead Developer at Blend Interactive

The eZ Publish Platform allowed Sound Harley to have an excellent mobile experience while maintaining consistency with the theme of the desktop website.

“The ability to have a good mobile experience is extremely helpful for both Sound Harley and for their clients and riders who are on the road a lot.” Kepley stated.

Running on All Cylinders

Sound Harley-Davidson has seen an increase in web traffic since the website’s launch, now averaging 7,000 visitors per month. Sound Harley’s customers from the Washington and Oregon areas, as well as from British Columbia, have been very receptive to the website by keeping up-to-date with the dealership’s new inventory, leading to more in-store sales.