WebSphere Commerce Composer is a very powerful addition to the tool set. It allows marketing and HTML developers to pretty much design a web site to their heart’s content.
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The taxonomy, or often called navigation, of a site is probably one of the most important pieces of an online commerce system. Being able to narrow down to a product through search and a faceted navigation system is very important to the site visitor. One example of this is being able to describe a product through facets (or attributes in some systems). Many times eCommerce systems provide attributes that can be tied to a product and these attributes ultimately drive the faceted navigation system. A brand would use these attributes to aid the shopper in finding the right product. Sometimes a brand may want to have a hierarchy of facets like colors. You may want to promote your colors through high level categories and then drill down to specific colors so your faceted navigation might look like this:
The facets to the left could be a single facet in the system named “Color”. But because we could assign multiple values to a single product, the product could potentially show up under “Blues” and possibly “Periwinkle, Powder Blue, or Baby Blue”. This lets the shopper navigate to a single product in multiple ways. You might want to consider offering multiple options for your products to make finding them easier. I mean, who doesn’t want to click on Periwinkle?
In Feature Pack 7, the advanced configuration allows you to federate and cluster WebSphere Commerce search. This means you can now scale your servers more inline with your sites demand – separating transactional operations and search operations independently.
Marco Fabbri outlined this in an excellent blog post back in June this year.
As shown on the pictures I got from IBM Knowledge Center it’s possible to create two different clusters, one for transactional and the other dedicated to no transactional traffic and using CBR (Content Based Routing) functions of a dispatcher to distribute REST calls to the different servers depending on their content (or better on his URL pattern).
– Marco Fabbri
Photo From the IBM InfoCenter