Monica realized this straightaway, noting, “Firstly we needed an intuitive search. We would see customers struggling to find what they were looking for, trying out multiple search terms or worse they’d abandon their search completely.”
The biggest problem was that the merchandisers had no control over it. “Customers were seeing these irrelevant results and we couldn’t do anything about it. We’d make changes to our backend rules and a new problem would be created - it was just a terrible customer experience.” she remembers.
Customers Find Products Fast
Since implementing Bloomreach Search, “from a customer standpoint it’s a huge improvement - even before you hit Enter,” remarks Monica. “When you start typing on our site you already get visual product suggestions that other customers searched for.”
If they know what they’re looking for, visitors can skip past irrelevant results on the search page and head straight to the product page. If they’re less sure of their search, they will be shown highly relevant products on a search results page, based off of previous user behavior.
Is Search Profitable? Let the Numbers Decide
Monica knows what she’s talking about when she says, “If you show customers what they’re looking for, they’ll purchase.” And the numbers speak for themselves: in the first six months of implementing Bloomreach Search, Annie Selke saw a 40% increase in revenue generated from search.
Aside from search, “We’ve been asking our analytics team from day one - I want to see which products are selling from which category - and we’ve had zero to limited luck,” admits Monica.
“Before Bloomreach, we all did some sort of manual reporting to try to figure out how to merchandise the categories. We have over 400 categories - it was literally impossible to merchandise all of them manually in a timely manner.”
What made the merchandising process particularly challenging were products overlapping different categories.
Smarter, Efficient Merchandising
To combat this problem, Monica opted for Bloomreach Merchandising and Insights. “With the Bloomreach algorithm it’s done automatically,’ she explains. “When the merchants log in, they have all the relevant data right there to make changes themselves.”
The Annie Selke companies combines Bloomreach technology with their merchandisers’ expertise for the best results. For some categories the team use only the Bloomreach algorithm. And for others, merchandisers make changes themselves according to the Bloomreach data, which is tracked in the ‘Activities’ section.
The result? Since the Bloomreach implementation, Monica has noticed 34% revenue lift from all the merchandising activities they’ve completed in the first six months.
A Rewarding Customer Experience
Monica’s strategy to show each customer the right product at the right time in the place that they’re looking for it proved successful. Not only by the financial returns, but also by staying true to the Annie Selke brand and making sure every little detail throughout the buying process is seamless for their customers.