March 14, 2011, 3:03 PM

Boot Barn wrangles higher conversions with a redesigned site

The western wear retailer has seen 25% higher conversion since relaunching.

Lead Photo

Western apparel and footwear retailer Boot Barn Inc. has kicked up its e-commerce efforts with the relaunch of its web site BootBarn.com. The redesigned site has registered up to 25% higher conversions since launching in September, the company says, but did not disclose sales figures.

The retailer says it redesigned the site and moved it to a new platform using technology from Demandware Inc. because its previous custom-built site grew outdated.

“The e-commerce business is considered strategic, and the old site technology didn’t provide the flexibility we needed for promotions,” says David Gusick, director of e-commerce, Boot Barn, No. 453 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. “Also, it didn’t permit quick site changeover or segmenting of customers and all the things that you do in an e-commerce business today.”

The customer segmentation function can be seen on the home page where promotions are tailored to a visitor’s  location such as a tax promotion that says “No sales tax in Illinois and 42 other states” for visitors located in Illinois.

The site features more detailed categories and product attributions making it easier for consumers to search products, says Gusick. For example, shoppers can search by boot style and filter results 13 ways, including by gender, size, width and brand.

As a result of the updated e-commerce site “session times are up and page views are down slightly because it’s a lot easier for people to shop on the site,” says Gusick.

After the new site launched, the company spent six to eight weeks smoothing out problems to prepare for the holiday season, Gusick says. Boot Barn was ready on the Monday after Thanksgiving, often called Cyber Monday, when sales were three times the previous record for a single day’s sales, Gusick says. The number of orders was so high that one manufacturer thought there was a mistake when Boot Barn passed on the orders, he adds.

The new technology also improved ways to connect promotions with e-mail or other marketing efforts. “It’s much easier to build promotional landing pages,” says Gusick. “In 2011, we will be more focused on nuances, like automated A/B testing.”

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