Reserve and collect

Dixons Travel

A redevelopment to allow customers to browse and reserve products and prices before they arrive at the airport.

Dixons Travel
The client

Part of the DixonsCarphone group, Dixons Travel is the “tax-free” retail operation with stores in all the major UK airports.

The brief

Use existing data to provide a comprehensive product catalogue, allowing users to find and reserve products based on their flight details.

The outcome

When operational, the site has proved extremely successful with the number of reservations vastly increased.

What we did

The main idea behind this site was to allow travellers to reserve products from Dixons Travel in advance and then collect them from the airport. This meant they could be sure that the product they wanted would be in stock when they were at the airport.

Fitting together all the pieces
As with many projects of this size, there were several pieces of data which needed to be pulled together to make the site:

  • The product data came from Dixons Carphone as a dedicated Dixons Travel feed - due to the developing requirements of data this feed changed over time
  • The per-store, stock data was a separate much more dynamic feed which was “pushed” to the site
  • The flight data was sourced from an external supplier to make it easier for site users to select the date and time of their flight
  • Integration with the DixonsCarphone Active Directory system was required to allow Dixons Travel staff to administer the site’s reservations and content

Despite the site not being transactional, it had to adhere to a strict security policy, which meant regular audits. Additionally features such as the site’s content security policy were tightened to minimise the chance of cross site scripting attacks etc.

As traffic to the site increased after the end of the first Covid-19 lockdown, various modifications were made to enhance the user experience and improve the site’s search engine rankings. This meant redeveloping a lot of the site's Javascript, using more modern image formats to reduce page weight and frequent checks to ensure the page speed was good across multiple devices.

Allied to this, extensive use of Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics events allowed Dixons Travel staff to see how well the different pages performed and converted into reservations.

A victim of the pandemic
Unfortunately the Dixons Travel business has become an unwitting victim of the Covid-19 pandemic, with all its stores set to close before the end of 2021.

Tech stack
  • .NET Core 3.1
  • Azure Active directory
  • Various integrations with client and third party systems
  • SQL Azure
I’ve worked with the guys at MB since 2008 across all kind of projects and they’ve always provided great technical solutions and excellent levels of service - a real joy to work with

Robert Muir