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Conversions increase by 56% after implementing new search and merchandising technology

6th March 2012

Flagship fashion and lifestyle brand Nicole Farhi have this week released figures demonstrating the success of their new online search strategy, powered by innovative technology Locayta Freestyle Merchandising®.

The company has reported that in the first 6 months of running the new system they have experienced a rise in conversions of 56%, with transactions up by 30%. The result has been a revenue increase of 20% in online sales.

Freestyle Merchandising has allowed Nicole Farhi to enhance their user search experience by introducing intelligent faceted search, as Ecommerce Manager William North explains. “Our focus has been very much around building on earlier traffic and acquisition strategies by improving public trust and service fulfilment. Prior to implementing Freestyle Merchandising it was very difficult to freestyle merchandise our categories in our core CMS. Locayta enabled us to do that by introducing a more comprehensive faceted search system across our site.”

The statistics demonstrate that the new functionality is appreciated by site visitors. “Our bounce rates have reduced by 27%”, says North, “whilst our page visits and average on-site visit duration have both increased by 5%. I think that’s due not just to the improved search performance but also all the little details Locayta helped us to address. For example, when a customer searched on our site for something that isn’t a product – like delivery details or a store locator - no results were delivered. Locayta has introduced a sophisticated synonyms function to eliminate that problem. By addressing this issue we’ve ensured that a customer never sees zero results, which is important for a smooth user journey.”

Nicole Farhi are joined in their choice of search and merchandising suite by other flagship brands including Tesco Clothing, boohoo.com and Superdry – all of whom have reported noteworthy success in increasing conversions, average order values and revenue returns since adopting the system. North explains that his choice was based not just around cost and deliverability but also around Locayta’s client service ethic. “Locayta were already known to me when I began work on Nicole Farhi’s ecommerce strategy. have always found that the correspondence and visibility between their technical team and support managers is highly visible compared to others.”

Nicole Farhi are now looking to roll out the full Freestyle Merchandising platform, which features more than 20 tools that manage every aspect of online merchandising, including display advertising, brand adjacency, behavioural marketing and mobile site management. “I’d say we’re not yet fully optimising the system, but there’s lots of potential” says North. “Everyone at Nicole Farhi is excited about what lies ahead, and about Freestyle Merchandising’s potential to drive the online side of our business forward.”


About Locayta

Locayta is an industry leading provider of e-commerce solutions that enable retailers to define every aspect of their online search and merchandising strategy within a single system. The company was co-founded in 2002 by CEO André Brown, an expert in bringing new technologies to market, being one of the original team who introduced Adobe Acrobat to the UK.

Locayta has developed Freestyle Merchandising in response to the merchandising limitations imposed by many e-commerce systems. Freestyle Merchandising gives retailers fully configurable control over how products are prioritised, sequenced and promoted in conjunction with user preferences and behaviour.

Supporting hundreds of retailing clients internationally, Locayta's Software as a Service technology has been proven to improve online sales by an average of 19%. Clients including Tesco Clothing, Superdry, Boohoo and Prezzybox have reported a consistent correlation between the implementation of Locayta Freestyle Merchandising and an increase in conversions rates and sales revenue.


About Nicole Farhi

Fusing French chic and British cool, Nicole Farhi is an influential fashion & lifestyle brand offering luxe, laid back designs focused on ease and comfort at home and in the wardrobe.

Originally a sculptor, Farhi began her design career in the 1970s, working with her now husband Stephen Marks on his French Connection label. The Nicole Farhi label itself was launched in 1983, followed by Nicole Farhi for Men in 1989.

In 1994 the brand’s flagship Bond Street store opened, prior to the launch of the Nicole Farhi Home collection in 1998 and the opening of a second flagship store in New York in 1999.

In 2007 Farhi was awarded an honoury CBE, before receiving the Legion d'Honneur in her native France in September 2010.

In July 2010 Nicole Farhi was acquired by global private equity firm OpenGate Capital, allowing the brand to enter its next phase of expansion. In July 2011 Farhi announced the closure of her Bond Street store and moved premises to a five-floor flagship store on Conduit Street. This coincided with the brand taking a new direction for their autumn/winter 2011-12 campaign.


For more information contact:
Amy Hatton
07855 333 630

Published on: 10:46AM on 6th March 2013