Boden, the UK-based international clothing retailer known for its bold patterns and bright colours, was founded in 1991 as a mail-order company with just eight menswear products. Boden began selling online in 1999 in the United Kingdom, and in the United States in 2002. Today the company is primarily an online and catalogue retailer, selling men’s, women’s, and children’s apparel in the UK, the United States, France, Germany, and Austria. Boden has one standalone shop in London, and also operates pop-up storefronts around the UK.
In 2006, Boden re-launched its UK website, and sought a temporary solution to power its site search while the site was being introduced. To fill its temporary needs, the Boden team chose SLI Learning Search from SLI Systems simply as a stopgap measure until they could engineer their own solution. However, the team soon realised the power of Learning Search to deliver more accurate and relevant results for customers by “learning” from past site search activity and tracking visitors’ search queries and clickthroughs. Knutton recognised the solution would be a better option than trying to design the search on their own—which would have been a complex and time-intensive task.