Case Study: Improved Site Search Helps Thompson & Morgan Grow Sales
PROBLEM: Thompson & Morgan (T&M), one of the largest seed and plant retailers in the U.K., was unhappy with its site search upon migrating to a new e-commerce platform.
SOLUTION: Returned to its previous site search provider.
RESULTS: Since going back to its previous site search solution in March 2011, T&M visitors who use site search convert at a rate of 8 percent, which is 74 percent higher than the site average; they have an average order value 30 percent higher than the site average; they’ve accounted for a 45 percent decrease in bounce rate; and they’re responsible for 47 percent of T&M’s online revenues.
For 159-year-old Thompson & Morgan (T&M), a seed and plant retailer in the U.K., a shift in customer behavior towards purchasing more online, and less so from wholesale partners and T&M’s catalogs, meant an e-commerce platform upgrade was necessary.
Upon migrating to its new platform, however, T&M realized that it wasn’t able to provide the same high-quality site search functionality that the company enjoyed previously with SLI Systems. The new platform’s built-in site search lacked the flexibility that T&M required in areas such as synonyms, merchandising of search and, to a degree, the accuracy to which search results were returned to users. In short, the platform’s site search didn’t enable visitors to find products easily.
Happy with its previous site search product from SLI Systems (Learning Search), T&M decided to go back to it. In March 2011, just six weeks after T&M supplied SLI Systems with its data feed, Learning Search was ready to go live. What was so great about SLI’s Learning Search that T&M went back to using it?
“The ability to merchandise search results [and to use] landing page redirects,” says Clare Dixey, group e-commerce manager, Thompson & Morgan. “For example, if a user enters specific terms that may relate to service or general information, then we’re able to define the URL that the search term is taken to.”