Search is the entry point for Mintel’s subscribers to navigate the company’s vast library of research and analysis. Users quickly need detailed answers presented with big-picture context, but search returned incomplete results with low relevancy.
Lucidworks indexed and ingested all of their data, making it searchable and accessible to subscribers. Focus was put on a friendly user experience to help new users get familiar with the application so they can get the most out of it.
The new search application reduced query response time by 90%. Signal processing was implemented to boost relevancy and give each user a personalized experience. With happy customers finding the reports they need and more, customer retention is high.
With so much information and insight available to Mintel’s customers, search is a key entry point for users researching their next product or marketing initiative. Customers are in a hurry and don’t have time to parse through loads of documents. Full scale search engines ensure the customer finds the data and documents they are looking for with the necessary surrounding context to understand the information in the big picture. Engagement with content is a key metric at renewal time, and search is the primary way of getting clients to the right content. Customers that have used Mintel’s products are more likely to renew if they feel they’re getting the best value.
Previously, the search functionality at Mintel was spread over several different applications and data repositories. The end user would enter a search and the query would be sent out to the various different repositories, stitched together, and then returned to the user. Relevancy and ranking were a real challenge as making comparison across separate indexes was very difficult, and there wasn’t anything in the way of personalization or recommendations. The team at Mintel knew that search was becoming increasingly important to their customers and that customer expectations were that they’d have a search experience similar to Google.
Mintel was working on a new product built around their expertise in the beauty and personal care sector. With so much information available, they knew a responsive relevant search would be imperative. Mintel decided to go with Fusion, knowing that it included many of the enterprise capabilities that the team would need out-of-the-box, all built on the rock-solid open source search technology Apache Solr. Fusion also included connectors to get data into the index, a recommendation engine for personalization, and pipelines that could enrich or transform data at index or query time. Key parts of the new search app would be balancing a friendly first-time user experience for new customers along with the depth and breadth of search that experienced power users would need so both groups could get to the data they need immediately.
Fusion’s connectors and data sources were very important to Mintel’s search app. Using Fusion’s connector framework, the team was able to index both standard and proprietary data sources, as well as repositories and legacy systems so everything was indexed into one large Solr index. This gave the app one place to query to serve up an end user’s request. This resulted in much faster query response times and more relevant results. “This improved relevance and slashed the time it took to serve results by up to 90%.”, said Steve Nuttall, Head of Product Development (EMEA) at Mintel. “The search became so fast that we actually had a user interface challenge: clients didn’t notice that the results had updated!”
Signal processing was implemented to boost the relevancy of results for each individual user. This yielded personalized results that were weighted based on the preferences of each individual user.
The team intends to put the platform they built with Fusion at the center of Mintel’s content delivery strategy over the coming years. That means more content delivered via the platform, and more customers using Fusion to quickly find and engage with that content.
“Search is a primary entry point to our customers to quickly find what they need. Fusion had all the capabilities we needed to create a rich, compelling, personalized search experience for every customer so they get the most value out of our research and products—all built on a reliable, rock-solid open core.”— Steve Nuttall, Head of Product Development, EMEA , Mintel