For innovation in science only sky is the limit, and sometimes such innovation is absolutely necessary. This was also the case for the Czech publishing house Academia attached to the Czech Academy of Sciences. The publishing house specializes in bringing out publications from all scientific disciplines. In addition, it runs its own brick-and-mortar shops and an online bookstore, which offers more than 60,000 titles from Academia as well as from other publishing houses. Gutenberg could not even dream of that.
The main impetus for the change was obsolete and non-user-friendly look of the e-shop and existence of the publishing house’s separate website. This caused duplicate information about books, unnecessary and complicated navigation from one web to the other, and users (although scientists) were getting lost.
We decided to achieve the set objective by taking the following steps:
Searching is not just an add-on, one of the ways to purchase, it is rather the customer’s primary step on the path to the book and its purchase. We have decided to put search to the fore. We created one that searches in authors, books, based on the EAN barcodes and the unique ISBN book identifier in real time.
Books are also among goods that customers choose with their eyes. In a brick-and-mortar store as well as in an e-shop, the cover is important for choosing the book. It is one of the main factors that decide whether the customer reaches out for the book. We put the visual experience of buying books to the fore. We have enlarged book previews...
Re-designing led to the increase of revenue by 37% in the first year after launch and by another 20% in the following year.
In the assortment of scientific publications, the content is naturally important. That is why we have improved the content management system. Now it lets you upload covers, covers for download, book previews for download and audio samples. The book management is also simplified in the “Just released”, “Coming soon” and “Best-selling titles” sections. We have made clearer the information about branches, uploading book annotations and editing news including calendar events.
Why should we unnecessarily confuse customers by two different domains? The website of the publishing house itself and the website of the online bookstore confused customers. At the same time, duplicate content on these domains caused problems with indexing pages in search engines. In the second phase, therefore, we focused on merging the e-shop and the publishing house’s website.
Previously, the customer could find a book on the publishing house’s website and learn more about it. But to buy the book, the customer had to go to the e-shop website and make the purchase there.
Thank to merging the websites, the customer can buy the book directly on the page, immediately after selecting and viewing it. There is no unnecessary departure from the page.
By merging the websites we have increased search engine traffic by 24% and revenue by another 20%.
When merging the websites we took into consideration what makes Academia exceptional. Academia is primarily a publishing house that publishes interesting scientific titles. That is why we promote and put emphasis on the publishing house’s titles that are coming soon as well as those that have just been published on the homepage of the new website.