October 27, 2006 at 14:00 PM EDT
IBM Discovery Software Helps Johnny's Selected Seeds Grow Online Sales
Seed Producer Improves Customer Shopping Experience; Exceeds Previous Fiscal Year's Online Sales in Just Six Months

IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced Johnny's Selected Seeds is using IBM content discovery software to dynamically manage online customer search, navigation and website content, resulting in thousands of additional online orders while exceeding the previous fiscal year's online sales in only six months.

Johnny's Selected Seeds is a $12 million mail-order seed producer offering a wide variety of vegetable and flower seeds, plants and bulbs on their website, as well as specialty tools, equipment and gardening supplies. IBM's content discovery software is delivering greater insight and information availability to Johnny's customers, improving their online shopping experience and driving sales growth for the company.

Within just months of launching a new website powered by IBM OmniFind Discovery Edition Commerce Module, the company exceeded the previous fiscal year's online sales; experienced a nearly 32 percent increase in online sales overall and a 17 percent increase in average order value. They also fulfilled more than 4,300 additional online orders from both commercial growers and home gardeners.

Whether helping a home gardener select among 15 types of green beans, or guiding a commercial grower in purchasing the right variety of pretreated organic corn, by providing customers with the exact information they are looking for online and guiding website navigation, Johnny's Selected Seeds has seen its online sales thrive.

"IBM has delivered a solution that saves us a lot of time, and that lowers operational costs," said Alisa Keimel, marketing and PR manager; E-commerce coordinator, Johnny's Selected Seeds. "One of our competitive advantages is our expertise. We can deliver greater value by customizing the shopping experience and providing gardeners and commercial growers with easy access to information. This ultimately increases customer loyalty and translates into more sales."

IBM's content discovery software helps online retail and catalog companies convert shoppers into buyers by making it easy for people to find the products and services that best match their specific needs. It also provides intuitive tools that help retailers monitor and enhance the online shopping experience.

Using the software's reporting and analytic capabilities, staff can view what search terms shoppers use, what paths they take as they search for products, and how image location affects a product's sales. Managers can then adjust online marketing efforts to drive greater customer interest. It has also provided Johnny's Selected Seeds the ability to cross-sell and up-sell products during the online search process, resulting in an increased average order value of almost 17 percent. The company is also using it to provide greater insight into customers' shopping experience online and to optimize product promotions and placements.

IBM OmniFind Discovery Edition combines technology from IBM and iPhrase, one of the company's strategic software acquisitions in November 2005. The software features search, content integration, and contextual information delivery capabilities that provide the right information to the right people at the right time.

Johnny's Selected Seeds' future plans include delivering information based on customer zip code which will help buyers quickly locate products for their particular growing zones; and allow customers to narrow searches based on growing parameters, such as soil type, amount of sun, moisture level, maintenance requirements, which will help identify plants appropriate for a specific garden or farm.

For more information on Johnny's Selected Seeds, visit http://www.johnnyseeds.com

For more information on IBM OmniFind Discovery Edition, visit http://www-306.ibm.com/software/data/discovery/content/


CONTACT:
Holli Haswell
512-286-3265
hhaswell@us.ibm.com

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