Home furnishings retailer, Dunelm, has increased its product catalogue by 20 per cent, partnering with Akeneo, the global leader in Product Information Management (PIM) and Product Experience Management (PXM) solutions.
Having experienced a surge in revenues in 2021, with demand for homeware rising during covid-19 lockdowns, Dunelm has seen demand continuing with sales jumping +10.6 per cent in H2 last year and online sales doubling in the same period.
Seeking to build upon the sustained levels of digital demand it was experiencing, Dunelm wanted to scale its eCommerce operations. This would require it to improve the speed and accuracy of getting its products online to make more of its catalogue available faster for customers, as well as improving user experience on-site by making products easier to search, find, browse and buy.
Dunelm already had a PIM solution in place, however, the legacy system was outdated and not capable of delivering the scale and agility needed by the homeware retailer as it looked to expand its digital capabilities. Following a competitive selection process, Dunelm chose to partner with Akeneo, due to the scale and flexibility the solution could afford the retailer, as well as its robust SaaS (Solution as a Service) offer, as Jon Tarrant, Principal Software Engineer at Dunelm, explained:
“We chose Akeneo primarily because it was a SaaS product, but also because it had a good friendly user interface, and the business rules and automation piece were really appealing to us in terms of how we wanted to scale the data infrastructure to support growth.”
Now, Akeneo helps Dunelm validate its product data, improving the accuracy of the product information, as well as providing a central, unified platform for data enrichment beyond just the Dunelm website alone. By centralising product information on one system, giving Dunelm a single source of truth when it comes to product data across the business – from its stores to its online offer to its forward accounts – the homeware retailer has been able to significantly improve operational effectiveness, allowing it to grow its omnichannel product catalogue, at pace and scale.
Ryan Drohan, Technical Lead at Dunelm, commented: “One of the big benefits we’ve seen is the validation of the product data. One of the issues we had before partnering with Akeneo were the downstream aspects – we would get products with missing fields and no way of telling which products were incomplete. Since using Akeneo, we’re seeing a lot less products that need downstream validation, which is improving speed and efficiency.”
Tarrant continued: “We’ve been able to use Akeneo Channels to not just power our products in our stores or on our website, but all the way down to our tills and our forward accounts. We really like the concept of completeness so we can bring products into the PIM fast, efficiently and accurately. With the help of Akeneo we’ve been able to increase our product catalogue by about 20 per cent in the last 6-8months.”