CASE STUDY: Garden Express

How we designed a new eCommerce experience for older gardeners that increased sales by 62%

Garden Express Design

  • eCommerce Strategy
  • UX Design
  • Social Strategy
  • Responsive Design
  • Development
Built with


Garden Express is a 40 year old family-business and Australia’s biggest garden supplier. We worked with Garden Express on their eCommerce strategy and positioning the business for a changing demographic while making it easier to shop for their existing customer base. We re-platformed them from an underperforming X-Cart store to the powerful WooCommerce eCommerce engine and set the following lofty goals:

  • Increase online sales
  • Position store for mobile commerce growth
  • High usability for elderly shoppers and younger shoppers
  • Increase product range (1k to 2k)
  • Increase site-speed
  • Integrate with MYOB Exo
  • Improve search-ability
  • Allow for greater post-sale communication and order tracking

How we crafted an enticing online experience for a wide demographic

Product Search

Smart Search

For a category as diverse as gardening, the ability for customers to find what they want quickly is paramount. It starts with search. Most eCommerce search just responds to product name.

Garden Express customers can search by SKU (they list it in their catalogues), product name or product category. If they mistype particular plants name, the search results will show them results for similar spellings instead of just returning ‘no results found’.

On the backend, Garden Express can analyze what customers are searching and use that advanced search analytics to make more informed sales and site usability decisions.

Visual Category Navigation

We designed a site layout with a visual product category navigation at its core.

With so many product categories, the icon set allows you to find what you’re after, quickly.

Category Navigation

Streamlined Path to Purchase

The cart and checkout subtly adjusts the design to remove distraction and maximise conversions.

Important information and calls to action are above the fold and easily accessible from any device. User expectation is guided throughout the whole process so the user has expectation of how much effort checkout will be and how close they are to completion.

Unnecessary fields were removed. Javascript was written to simplify functions and animations were designed to maximise the checkout experience.



Product pages that tell the customer exactly what they want to know

The standard product description and image of their old site wasn’t going to cut it. Garden Express had originally been a mail-order business and had a big legacy of mailed catalogues.

Over time they built up a set of icons that represented certain characteristics around the product. We customised products with the ability to visually indicate product traits and key statistics.

Doing so puts Garden Express lightyears ahead of competitors in online shopping experience and increases trust in what the customer is buying.

Tailored Categories

With hundreds of products in a single product category, navigating around and finding what you want can become really tricky. Where to start? Which of the dozens of pages will I find something I like? Half of the things I’m seeing are out of stock.

Large product categories need a whole new level of UX design and testing to make sure that the shopping experience is pain-free.

We built a way of tailoring how products are ordered within categories. Rather than just showing the newest products like most platforms do out of the box, we have the product categories changing the order of products automatically according to stock levels, what’s selling best and whats on sale.

It means a better experience for the customer and more sales for Garden Express.

Product Sorting


Conversion Rate
more pages per visit
more per order

Final Thoughts

Mike Halligan

Mike Halligan

Creative Director

There you have it – a powerful online store with enticing design for ultimate usability.

We’re proud of the Garden Express eCommerce site. It will add seven figures to their revenue, has reduced time needed to administer online sales and transitioned them for the next generation of gardening shoppers.

In many ways, our task was easy. They had the best range with very competitively priced products and all of their product content ready. They had their online store for years and had the experience to work out where it let them down and put together a strong brief. They’d done what they could in house but ultimately knew they needed to put their trust in specialists to translate their offline success to online.

Building the site is only the first half of the job. There is no set and leave it in successful ecommerce businesses. We work with Garden Express month to month, analyzing their ecommerce data and continually optimising the shopping experience so keep an eye on this brand in the coming years.


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