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Boden aims to make it easier for international and mobile customers to find

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Boden has introduced new search facilities across its international and mobile websites, with the aim to make it faster and easier for shoppers to find the items they are looking for. It has installed SLI Systems’ Rich Auto Complete feature, already used on its UK site, across its other ecommerce sites as well.

The feature suggests search terms, products, images and features deduced as customers type in the first letters of the item they’re looking for into the search box on its French, German, Austrian and US sites. As a result, says SLI, conversion rates are higher. Further improvements will see user ratings and review integrated into the Boden search, with demographic data added in such a way that shoppers can find reviews that are relevant to their own personal profiles.

Paul Knutton, online project manager for Boden, said: “The fashion retail industry continues to outpace other retail sectors when it comes to online shopping and spending growth, which makes our ecommerce sites an important component of our overall business.

“Our aim has always been to deliver a superior shopping experience on our websites and we’re now replicating the same experience for customers shopping on mobile devices.

“Working with SLI has been a key part of our multichannel strategy and the consistent look and feel we offer has resulted in more customers staying loyal to our brand, which ultimately helps grow our bottom line.”

The upgrade comes at a time when online fashion sales are growing fast – IMRG research showed 2,000% growth in the category since 2001. It also comes as more people not only research but also buy over mobile devices.

“Our mobile site is seeing more and more traffic and the search box is used heavily by people with smartphones and handheld devices,” said Knutton. “We’ve determined that people who search stay on the mobile site longer, view more items and also convert at a higher rate. Because of SLI’s knowledge of best practices in both online and mobile site usability our ecommerce and mobile commerce sites are benefiting tremendously.”

Boden is also using dynamic merchandising banners from SLI Systems which show the most popular site search results for keywords used in natural search. Thus keywords used by visitors in search engines link to a Boden product page that has a dynamic banner on it. That dynamic banner shows the top five items clicked on when site visitors make the same search on Boden’s site.

Shaun Ryan, chief executive of SLI Systems, said: “Today’s online shoppers are much more sophisticated than they were just a year or two ago and they’re also much more pressed for time. The more we can work with clients to streamline the experience they offer their customers and get them to the items they seek in as few steps as possible, the better – particularly when that experience is consistent across multiple channels. The Boden implementation is a great example of the innovative aspects of Learning Search and how customizable it is for different types of online businesses.”

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