How Facebook Launched a Secure, Custom WooCommerce Experience in Under 30 Days

Facebook recently partnered with WordPress VIP to power an ecommerce campaign called the Gift of Giving. With a tight turnaround time and stringent data privacy requirements, WordPress VIP gave Facebook’s Global Marketing Solutions team the freedom and flexibility they needed to spin up this campaign in under a month—protected by the enterprise security standards Facebook’s InfoSec team required.

Business challenge

Facebook’s marketing teams face the same fundamental problem that all enterprise marketing teams do: launching campaigns quickly, while staying within the bounds of corporate governance and security regulations.

For Gift of Giving, Facebook wanted to present physical gifts to their top sales partners, alongside a preloaded digital gift card the receivers could use to donate to a cause of their choice.

Facebook needed two important technology components to create the digital experience they envisioned: a content management system and a commerce platform. The Gift of Giving landing page would serve not only as a virtual storefront, but also be customized on the back-end to display products, process orders, and track global shipments. And it needed to launch in less than a month.

We recently spoke with Taylor McGarvah, who led a small team to execute the Gift of Giving. Here’s what she said about launching a commerce campaign of this size and complexity in such a short timeline.

“I was concerned the website might not be able to handle our high volume of orders, but we had zero problems. Everything worked great.”

Taylor McGarvah

Solution and impact

Facebook started using WordPress VIP in 2014 as a secure platform for its marketing sites. Today, several business units rely on the content platform and have come to love its ease of use and reliable performance. For Gift of Giving, Facebook also adopted WooCommerce, a highly customizable open source commerce solution that integrates natively with WordPress VIP. Together, WordPress VIP and WooCommerce helped Facebook take all the guesswork out of building a flexible, scalable ecommerce experience.

Blazing from concept to launch in less than 30 days

The native integration between WordPress VIP and WooCommerce brought mission-critical agility to this time-sensitive project. Together, the technologies created a seamless digital experience stack, with one backend to manage the entire campaign. The simplicity of this setup enabled the marketing, development, and product contributors to focus on the task at hand, without spending additional time or resources on system integrations.

And because the platform is so easy to use, Taylor got everything up and running quickly–despite never using WordPress before. “The back end of WooCommerce is much easier to learn” than other commerce solutions, she said. “Managing stock is completely different and way easier on WordPress.”

Best-in-class security safeguards user data

The nature of Facebook’s business requires every vendor they work with to pass stringent privacy and security standards. For Gift of Giving, strong data security protections were an absolute must, because sending gifts required capturing people’s home addresses. Facebook needed a partner they could trust to safely store, track, and protect that information.

They were in good hands with WordPress VIP, the only enterprise WordPress platform compliant with FedRAMP, SOC I, and SOC II regulations. WordPress VIP and WooCommerce provided a secure checkout process, strict user management controls, and world-class data protection. These proactive threat mitigations meant Facebook’s security team could sleep well, knowing a dedicated team was safeguarding their campaign.

A plug-and-play ecosystem to meet every need

The Gift of Giving team loved the flexibility of WooCommerce’s Marketplace. WordPress VIP and WooCommerce are both part of the enterprise WordPress ecosystem, a network of global agencies, technology integrations, plugins, and technical talent that provides the building blocks to create custom digital experiences.

When Taylor needed to process 30,000 unique coupon codes, she discovered WooCommerce had a plugin for that. When she needed to validate addresses, WooCommerce had a plugin for that, too. All these solutions at the ready simplified the complex task of creating a commerce experience on a global scale.

Lightning-fast performance from a proprietary CDN

Even a one-second delay in a site’s load time can have a negative 20% impact on conversion rates. Unfamiliar with WordPress VIP’s vetted history of performance during high-traffic events, Taylor was nervous in the days leading up to the campaign launch. “I was concerned the website might not be able to handle our high volume of orders,” she said, “but we had zero problems. Everything worked great.”

WordPress VIP’s proprietary global CDN ensured the Gift of Giving landing page always loaded quickly. Behind the scenes, the platform’s scaling algorithms constantly monitored traffic patterns and throttled up performance when necessary. On launch day, “I was checking [the reporting dashboard] like a kid on Christmas morning, I was so excited,” Taylor said.

“The back end of WooCommerce is much easier to learn than other commerce solutions. Managing stock is way easier on WordPress.”

Taylor McGarvah

Agile ecommerce with enterprise protections

The biggest driver for Facebook to adopt WooCommerce was its customizability. Built on open source software, WooCommerce is customizable down to the very code itself. This is a unique benefit. Other ecommerce providers adopt a cumbersome one-size-fits-all approach. However, this level of customization can create significant technical overhead— especially for a small project team.

Working with WordPress VIP meant Facebook could build a custom commerce experience with just a single developer assigned to the campaign. WordPress VIP’s support team brought deep expertise in content management, WooCommerce, and solutions design—giving Facebook the flexibility and confidence to build exactly what they needed, with the resources they had at hand.

Commerce and content are the new power couple

A major success, the Gift of Giving campaign helped Facebook provide gifts to partners and 30,000 communities in need. “I had a very great experience,” Taylor said. “There was nothing I didn’t like,” about working with WordPress VIP and WooCommerce to bring the Gift of Giving to life.