Quick Guide for Setting Salesforce Commerce Cloud Project

This is the first time you are working on a Salesforce Commerce Cloud (SFCC) project and you don’t know where to start? This short guide will provide you with information which I also needed when I started working on the project and when I needed to adapt and connect all the components. 

Why the SFCC Project?

Considering the fact that online shopping is becoming popular daily, most of the companies choose the SFCC platform. This platform offers various possibilities for customer services (B2C) as well as for services between companies (B2B):

  1. Managing catalogues, products, price lists. 
  2. Creating different kinds of content that can be published in certain periods (eg. Black Friday, Christmas, Easter …) 
  3. Creating campaigns, promotions, tokens.
  4. Localisation — website which is supported in different states (in many languages). 

In agreement with a team of programmers, we create clients’ requests and develop software with a goal to allow those who manage the website content have complete control over how the content is displayed. 

How to Change the Content on the SFCC Project?

Behind the e-shop, there is Business Manager — a tool for managing and using websites. It is used by:  

  1. E – sellers — they manage the content on the website.
  2. Administrators — they take care of data consistency and the regulation of access rights.
  3. Programmers — they develop software relying on the support of this tool. 
Business Manager platform

How to Set This Project?

For starters, you need to install the tools which are necessary for your work. Depending on the type of the project, you need to follow the documentation and with other programmer’s assistance on the same project, install the necessary tools. 

For SFCC project, you need to install: 

  1. Node.js — for execution of the programmer’s code 
  2. GIT — for managing the control over the version of the programming code 
  3. VS Code — editor for developing programming code 

When you start working on a project, you can get access from an administrator to the repository where you can find the project. After you get the access, clone this project on your computer where you will be able to work on it. 

VS Code editor is new and very simple to use. After installing it, upload the cloned project in the editor and, after that, you will be able to see the programming code. 

For the SFCC project, it is necessary to install the extension Prophet Debugger within the editor which updates SFCC programming code on Sandbox. Sandbox is an example of a Business Manager which you will use for coding and setting the environment. 

Installing of Prophet Debugger

My advice to you is to install the extension GitLens for VS Code editor. In that way, we can see the change that has happened in the programming code.

How it looks like in GitLens

How to Connect the Project With a Sandbox Instance? 

You must connect a programming code you develop with the Sandbox. To make this possible, it is necessary that you have an SFCC account whose credentials you will use for your further work. Within the project, there is a dw.json file where you can find all the data necessary for connection.

A file with credentials for connecting programming code and Sandbox

Set this dw.json file within the same project structure. Apart from that, it would be best if you could create launch.json file which represents the tool for the analysis (debugging) of the programming code.

dw.json and launch.json files

When you want to update changes on the project with the aim to make them visible in Sandbox, it is necessary for you to start Prophet Debugger which you installed.

Upload of the programming code on Sandbox

How to Start the IT Business Manager Website?

When you want to see the changes that you have generated, you can start the website from your own instance to be able to work with Sandbox.

Launching a website

The result is the website you are working on. (In my case, this is Rituals.com).

The example from the website which was developed via the SFCC platform

SFCC project offers you an opportunity to have a surrounding where you will be able to keep track of products, catalogues, promotions, orders, services, etc. much more easily.  

When compared to the rest of the project types, you can get accustomed to Business Manager very quickly, and non-technical persons can easily manage it. 

Various companies (3rd parties) offer support on SFCC projects which makes the development much easier and the scalability of the application. 

However, SFCC platform is prone to changes over the years because of the scalability. Either way, the mentioned advantages connect sales people, administrators, content editors, analysts and other roles to use the same platform for their work. 

In case you have some questions, or dilemmas related to the setting of the SFCC project, feel free to write to me at n.rebic@emakina.rs I would be happy to help you.

About the author

Nikola Rebić

Software Developer

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Emakina.RS is a software development center and a part of Emakina Group since 2018.

Emakina.RS is a team of engineering experts responsible for building, maintaining and operating applications on various platforms and frameworks. At the moment, our focus is on JavaScript, .NET, Kubernetes, Microservices, and PHP, and the following cloud platforms: Salesforce, Azure, AWS.

Besides development, our team works on business analytics, project management, web content editing, digital design, SEO, data analytics, and other aspects of marketing.

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