Freedom Furniture Trials New Ecatalogue Technology
We've been helping Freedom produce sales-boosting, award-winning catalogues and content for over 30 years. While it is probably way too early to pronounce the demise of the printed catalogue per se*, online catalogues have certainly become an increasingly significant part of the catalogue landscape.

The problem

At Cumming Agency + Studios (CAS) we'd discovered some problems with e-catalogues. Some, shall we say, "limitations" of the page-turn pdf  "flip books".

For the past two years CAS has helped a number of our clients migrate their traditional print material online. And in doing so, we'd become familiar with all the latest technology available. 

Our aim was for the electronic versions of our catalogues to really take advantage of the opportunities that being online had to offer. We wanted more engagement; more flexibility to change products ; more rich content and in particular, more meaningful, trackable analytics that we and our clients could use to refine and improve both the product offering and the marketing presentation.

The solution - a new e-catalogue format

What we wanted wasn't available. We had to create it - our own proprietary software, CASzine.

Instead of the restrictions of the pdf we could: 

- design a Freedom catalogue in which the user could navigate from one page to any other page we chose, not just in the set page sequence of a flip book; 

- emulate tablet functionality on the desktop;

- update and change products and copy at will (unlike a native Apple or Android app);

- incorporate rich content such as video, pop-ups and sliding pages, plus links to other Freedom website pages outside the catalogue;

- allow the customer to interact with the online shopping cart.

And we could acquire more usable data on visitors - emulating the engagement statistics available through Google but at an individual webapp page level.

The Freedom Summer Collection was a 29 page digital publication featuring recently created photographic content divided into 3 separate, creatively themed chapters. It also included a playable version of the then current TV ad which we were able to easily remove when the promotional period expired. 

We weren't overextending the functionality offered by Caszine technology, but we certainly had a catalogue that was different and that we could get some interesting data from.

The results

Just from a design point of view, we knew this new Freedom Summer Collection catalogue was good and that our new CASzine technology certainly made it a richer, more engaging user experience. But the results were even better than our rather high expectations. 

In the 3 months the catalogue was live**, our CASzine technology recorded some valuable insights and statistics regarding viewer behaviour and engagement...

- on average, a unique visitor spent 2 minutes looking through the catalogue. Visitors didn't just check out a few pages, they happily viewed 88% of topline pages (66% of total pages).

- on average, 22% of unique visitors clicked a link that took them from the catalogue to individual products or categories on the Freedom website.

- 61% of unique visitors re-engaged (they returned to the catalogue for an additional session).

Summary

"Engagement plus insight" are what we are about. The Freedom Summer Collection was one of the first CASzine catalogues we created that we now have both figures and permission to publish select results. 

Since then we have used Caszine technology for other clients who were looking for the opportunity to engage customers with more rich content in their catalogues and other online publications. We'll bring you more results/case histories as they come to hand.


* See our previous article "Online Retailers Discover Power Of Catalogs"

**The particular CASzine catalogue referred to is no longer "live" but if you contact us we can show you an archived edition on our site.

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