I had no idea there were so many items sail­boat own­ers might need to max­i­mize their sail­ing expe­ri­ence and keep their invest­ment ship-shape (I guess I’d bet­ter get pre­pared for the day I’m liv­ing my dream on my 30-footer!).

I recently learned about our cus­tomer Sail­rite — a second-generation busi­ness orig­i­nally focused on sail-making — that now sells a full range of sail­ing prod­ucts from foul weather gear, to sail repair, to rig­ging. Sail­rite still spe­cial­izes in prod­ucts for the do-it-yourself racer types, boat builders and sailors “own­ing good old boats”, and now even has its own line of high-end sewing machines.

Today Sailrite’s eCom­merce site accounts for nearly 50% of sales. With such a huge por­tion of rev­enue com­ing through their online chan­nel, Sail­rite knows it’s crit­i­cal that the site eas­ily con­nects shop­pers with the right prod­ucts. Given they offer over 900 dif­fer­ent fab­ric choices and thou­sands of other prod­ucts — plus how-to con­tent and video resources — it’s pretty essen­tial that they give shop­pers the right tools to search and eas­ily refine their selections.

Sail­rite has obvi­ously given a lot of thought to the unique ways their shop­pers are likely to want to nar­row their choices. For exam­ple, when I search on “sail repair” I get some very use­ful refine­ment options: ‘color’ (help­ful when nar­row­ing the repair tape choices I see at the top of my results); ‘type’ (offers me choices around dif­fer­ent types of nee­dles I might need); ‘mate­r­ial’ (which kind of mate­r­ial do I need to repair my sail?); and so on. Or if the shop­per really doesn’t have a clue what to buy for his repair, he could con­sider a book or video pur­chase related to sail repair, or click on a related con­tent link.

Matt Grant, Sailrite’s VP, says that if they show their cus­tomers the right prod­uct in as few clicks as pos­si­ble, it usu­ally results in a pur­chase. In fact, improv­ing the abil­ity to do this on Sail​rite​.com has helped fuel some pretty dra­matic online growth.

I encour­age you to down­load our Sail­rite case study, and be sure to stay tuned for upcom­ing sto­ries on how retail­ers with unique mer­chan­dis­ing chal­lenges are using site search and active nav­i­ga­tion to con­nect shop­pers with the right products.

Happy sail­ing!


Yes, this seems to be a good idea. Shall download the Sailrite case study and know more on the recent and upcoming stories on the event.