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Bloomreach Discovery Serves Up Significant Impact for Sur La Table

Sur La Table offers an extensive range of private label and third-party products, from cookware and cutlery to small electrics and glassware. Not only has the brand been dedicated to providing high-quality kitchenware for every home chef's needs, but Sur La Table also goes beyond its extensive product offerings with cooking classes and culinary-based events hosted by professional chefs on staff. 

As a standalone brand, Sur La Table wanted to keep evolving and innovating its business, taking the experiential piece of the company and extending it into the digital space. However, the ecommerce search and merchandising tool that the brand utilized was too cumbersome to get them to where they needed to be. Because of the recommendation of VP and GM, Ecommerce, Rachel Frederick, who had previously worked with Bloomreach, the Sur La Table team could quickly see the value of switching to Bloomreach Discovery

boost in category AOV
increase in search average order value (AOV)
lift in search add-to-cart (ATC) rate

The Challenge

Sur La Table wanted to upgrade its product discovery solution to one that was tightly integrated with Salesforce Commerce Cloud, yet the brand wanted to be strategic about the move — it hoped to avoid getting overwhelmed by numerous point solutions that were difficult to piece together. 

Already recognizing the challenge customers faced in finding exactly what they were looking for, Sur La Table knew that it could proactively tackle this issue by implementing a more mature site search bar. Additionally, the team wanted to take this initiative a step further by offering relevant product recommendations. Having used out-of-the-box recommendations from its previous solution, the ecommerce team quickly discovered that these recommendations were expensive, disconnected from the rest of its tech stack, and not providing the customer experience its brand is known for. 

Even worse, they couldn’t piece together where certain recommendations were coming from, further bogging down their daily workflows. This strategic switch to a new tool would be the driving force behind Sur La Table’s new merchandising strategy, helping the brand achieve even more impactful business results online. 

The Solution

As Sur La Table’s new VP and GM, Ecommerce, Rachel Frederick knew of the perfect solution to overcome its product discovery and merchandising obstacles: Bloomreach Discovery. A veteran of the ecommerce industry, Frederick had already experienced success using this powerful tool and knew of its ability to effectively showcase the right products at the right time — boosting visibility, AOV, and revenue per visitor (RPV) across search and category pages. 

Her team started with search and merchandising in Bloomreach Discovery to address the low-hanging fruit with Bloomreach’s AI, Loomi — improving search for customers shopping with clear intent. Thanks to the massive dataset that Bloomreach has built over the last decade, the search engine knows how to adapt to customers’ behavior across multiple industries in ecommerce. As a result, Sur La Table didn’t have to wait for a pixel to learn and immediately saw an impact on search relevance and revenue.

The switch to Bloomreach also helped the team improve merchandising processes and free themselves from unnecessary manual work. Sur La Table now leverages Loomi to merchandise for its seasonal promotions, create redirects for sale-related searches, and implement global facets to improve its site experience. The brand also uses collections reporting and has found it very helpful for tracking specific product and category collections to make its merchandising decisions even more meaningful. 

Then, to help customers looking for recommendations to increase their basket size, Sur La Table added Bloomreach’s recommendations and pathways to build more tailored experiences for both purposeful shoppers and casual browsers. All in all, Bloomreach Discovery, embedded with Loomi, empowered Sur La Table to enhance both the searching and browsing experiences on its ecommerce website, streamline its operations, and ultimately drive increased AOV, RPV, and return on investment.

The Results

After the initial implementation of Bloomreach Discovery, Sur La Table saw immediate results. Thanks to Loomi — the artificial intelligence and machine learning powering Bloomreach’s solution — the team experienced a boost in both search AOV (up 7.6%) and ATC rate (up 6.6%). The kitchenware brand continued to see impressive results, like another 6.9% jump in search ATC rate and an 13.2% lift in category AOV.

Once implementing recommendations and pathways, the team clocked 1.4 million visits to its “Similar Items” widget and another 1.6 million visits to its “You May Also Like” widget. This traffic has also resulted in substantial revenue for the brand, leading Frederick to confess, “This is never a tool that comes up for discussion or debate on: ‘Do we want to move forward with it next year?’” 

Even though improving the customer experience and driving results for the business was a major goal for Sur La Table’s ecommerce team, the positive sentiment around Bloomreach Discovery internally is one of the many wins for Frederick. It demonstrates that Bloomreach Discovery’s benefits are double-sided: It isn’t reduced to just making the customer’s experience better, but it will also improve internal processes and help practitioners be more impactful within their roles — making Bloomreach truly limitless for data-driven optimizers.