May 17, 2007, 12:00 AM

With a new system, site search use soars at Edwin Watts Golf

Since Edwin Watts Golf replaced its home-grown site search with Learning Search from vendor SLI Systems, 25% of online orders at the retail golf site come in through site search. The number of daily searches, meanwhile, has risen to 7,000 from 500.

Since Edwin Watts Golf replaced its original home-grown site search solution with Learning Search from vendor SLI Systems Inc., the number of searches on the retail golf site has risen to 7,000 a day from about 500. Some 25% of online orders now come through site search, a result of the new search solution as well as other site improvements, Edwin Watts Internet director David Patterson says.

The former site search function had been designed to accommodate shoppers searching with catalog item numbers. Few site visitors actually used the site search function, and when a test search for a popular new product turned up zero results, the retailer looked to SLI Systems for help after also interviewing other site search vendors.

The new search function went up with the June 2006 re-launch of the site, which had launched originally in 1999. The site search solution makes life easier for Edwin’s call center, reports the retailer, as call center agents can easily find anything a customer wants by using natural search terms on the site as well as by typing in a catalog number.

According to Patterson, working with SLI has helped him provide a high level of service to his online customers by making it simple and fast for them to find what they’re looking for. “Without a powerful site search solution, customers can easily get lost in a sea of text navigation menus,” he notes.

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