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How Jomashop improved customer experience with shift to Magento 2 PWA and Algolia

Because we’re highly customized, we use Algolia like a SaaS (software as a service) that we build on, but with that said Algolia is so important to our tech stack and our performance metrics. We’ve seen conversion lift from Personalization and Search and Recommend, as well as reduced bounce rates from Recommend.

Isaac Montaine

Vice-President, Product and SEO @ Jomashop.com
Jomashop
Use case

B2C Ecommerce

Headquarters

Brooklyn, NY

Customer since

since 2019

Feature usage

Search API, Dynamic Synonyms, Recommend, Click & Conversions, Rules, Personalization, Query Suggestions, A/B Testing

Key results
  • Fast to implementation

  • Ease of use by all teams, across sites and products

  • Freed up developer/engineering time

Key numbers
  • Conversion lift of 4-5% from Personalization

  • 7% lift in conversions from Search

  • Reduced bounce rate by 15-18% with Algolia Recommend

The challenges

  • 1.

    Need for Magento integration

  • 2.

    Small in-house development team

  • 3.

    75,000 SKUs of product

  • 4.

    Personalization for a better user experience

The solution

  • 1.

    Integrated with Magento with plug-in support

  • 2.

    Able to build on for highly customized search experience

  • 3.

    Consistent experience across the tech stack

  • 4.

    SaaS-based solution for the development team

The result

  • 1.

    Dramatically improved customer experience

  • 2.

    4-5% Conversion lift from Personalization

  • 3.

    7% Conversion lift from Algolia Search

  • 4.

    Reduced bounce rate by 15-18% with Algolia Recommend

Improving transparency and user experiences

In 2019, the company migrated from its e-commerce platform Magento 1 to Magento 2 PWA and required a search solution that integrated with the platform and provided a great user experience. They were using Hawksearch at the time but wanted more transparency into the search process. 

“What we wanted to do was create a better search experience than what we had at that time. We knew we’d be moving to Magento 2, and if we were going to change platforms, we needed a partner that was compatible with the platform.” - Isaac Montaine, Vice-President, Product and SEO, Jomashop.com 

Jomashop ran A/B testing to test the experience using Algolia with its new e-commerce platform and found it met their need for integration and transparency. “The results spoke for themselves,” Montaine says. 

“The most important part of providing a good search experience is making sure the product is working and when it’s not working finding out why. And that’s what led us to Algolia.” 

Almost immediately, the company could determine how and why items were ranking as they were in search, and so were able to easily make improvements to better serve their customers.

Located in Brooklyn, New York City, Jomashop.com is a leading fashion retailer with more than 75,000 products. It offers watches, handbags, sunglasses, jewelry, beauty, fine writing instruments, apparel, shoes, fragrances, and gift items from over 650 leading international brands at a discount. 

The company’s creed is that everyone should be able to wear what they love and to do so with savings in mind. As such, its goal for more than 25 years has been to deliver the best prices, the most varied selection, and the finest service — earning the trust of its customers by combining discounts, great service, and a state-of-the-art fulfillment facility. 

According to Isaac Montaine, Vice-President, Product and SEO at Jomashop.com says this is predicated on shoppers being able to find what they want quickly and easily. 

And Montaine should know, he’s been with Jomashop for 12 years, originally starting with a smaller set of responsibilities such as working on its eBay marketplace. Now as vice-president of product, Montaine sets Jomashop’s roadmap for the next six months. 

While based out of the unique Brooklyn Army Terminal (BAT) warehouse complex in Sunset Park, today Jomashop fulfills orders to every corner of the world.

“We implemented Algolia for recommendations on all our product pages, so whether the product is in stock or not, we have created sections called ‘more choices’ and ‘you may also like.’ Those are all powered by Algolia Recommend.” 

Search history lets returning customers pick up from previous searches, and trending uses the Algolia API to give customers a view of the top searches. When a customer enters a search, Jomashop provides the first six results for the product, as well as the top 10 related keywords. That way, if the customer doesn’t find what they are looking for, they can explore based on the related searches. 

The company recently added Algolia to its home page to display trending items in the watch category.

Jomashop also needed a custom implementation of Algolia, modifying some of the Magento modules in the solution. While it took a week to deploy Algolia, creating the custom search solution Jomashop desired took the company’s system integrator, Corra, approximately six weeks while simultaneously rebuilding the Jomashop website on the Magento 2 PWA platform. 

Since then, it’s deployed more features from the Algolia stack. Today it’s taking advantage of Algolia Search, Instant Search, and Personalization. The company also recently deployed Recommend (having switched from Nosto to create a consistent experience and for improved results). It has implemented Algolia in its test environment, on its website’s search bar, as well in in-house built tools embedded into the search bar: search history and trending searches.

Jomashop image 1

Benefits abound from Algolia

Being able to pull the data from Algolia for trending searches is not only of value to Jomashop.com customers but can provide insights for the product team. In addition, Jomashop can provide its buyers with insights into what the store needs to carry based on search results (especially “no results”), letting them know what’s in demand. 

“In 2021 there was a watch brand, and we were able to see it right there in the “no search results” category, and I was able to feed that right to the buying team,” he says. 

Using Algolia and Magento, Jomashop has been able to improve the overall user experience, create a cohesive experience across their site and provide personalized results and recommendations for their customers. 

In addition to Agolia’s easy integration and partnership with Magento, Jomashop’s conversion rate climbed by 7 percent with Algolia over its previous search solution. He says Algolia’s Magento plug-in acted as a kick-starter to development, making it easy for developers to build on and uniquely customize to further enhance user experiences.

The adoption of Algolia Recommend has improved the search results for customers. By using the same stack for search, personalization, and recommendations, Jomashop has been able to make better use of the data from Personalization to influence Recommend. “There’s no reason to have that data start from scratch from another location when it can all be under one roof,” Montaine says. “The customer profile that gets built up can be reused on the product page, home page, and, in turn, results in more sales.” 

The impact of Algolia on Jomashop’s business is clear, Montaine suggests. A/B Testing confirmed that the conversion lift from implementing Personalization through Algolia was between 4 and 5 percent; meanwhile, Recommend has lowered the bounce rate by between 15 and 18 percent. 

Of course, at the end of the day, it’s all about serving up results to the customer, which using the full suite of Algolia solutions has had. 

The result

“By far Algolia Instant Search has been the most beneficial to us. The ability for customers to get a preview of the items so they’re able to shop while typing in the search, plus being able to see recommendations (from Recommend), just leads to a better experience for the customer. They can get to the product much faster.”

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