Ancestry.com Creates an Engaging Online Experience That Improves Customer Satisfaction
 
 

Ancestry.com Creates an Engaging Online Experience That Improves Customer Satisfaction

Ancestry.com is the world’s largest online resource for family history, with approximately 2 million subscribers worldwide. In the past 16 years, the company’s online collection has grown to include more than 11 billion historical records, 41 million family trees and more than 4 billion profiles. In addition to its flagship site, Ancestry.com offers several localized Websites around the globe.

As an internet company, Ancestry.com knows the importance of delivering a fresh and engaging online experience that converts site visitors into paying and loyal customers. However, the company relied on engineering resources to update its Web presence. As the company grew, this model became increasingly unsustainable. The company realized that when its marketing team came up with a new idea, it would take eight to twelve weeks before that idea ever became customer-facing via the Web presence.

With Oracle WebCenter Sites, Ancestry.com significantly reduced time-to-market for its online initiatives by empowering its marketing and product teams to manage many aspects of the Web experience themselves. Site changes, which previously required a long lead time can now be made almost instantly by marketers without IT help—enabling Ancestry.com to easily respond to trends and create a fresher and more engaging experience.

Ancestry.com also uses Oracle RightNow for its online self support and knowledge base, which includes 3,000 articles and averages 200,000 visitors per month. The company has also used the solution to respond to more than 1 million customer e-mail inquiries and to collect customer satisfaction ratings—ensuring that Ancestry.com maintains its excellent customer service levels.

 
 

 
 

Challenges

A word from Ancestry.com

  • "With Oracle WebCenter Sites, we have empowered our product and marketing teams to make site changes and launch campaigns much more quickly to meet customer needs, while enabling engineering resources to focus on other strategic activities.” – Blane Nelson, Chief Architect, Applications, Ancestry.com

  • Accelerate time to market for launching new site content and services
  • Enable product and marketing teams to easily manage, update, and schedule new Web content thereby reducing reliance on engineering resources
  • Provide a more engaging experience that enables the company to more easily and quickly connect with customers, through Web, mobile, and social channels
  • Implement a Web experience management solution that is highly scalable and flexible enough to integrate with a complex IT infrastructure and many legacy systems
  • Provide customers with tools, information, and support they need to get the most out of their investment in Ancestry.com

Solutions

  • Implemented Oracle WebCenter Sites to more easily and quickly update the Web presence, and launch new online initiatives
  • Minimized dependence on engineering resources and enabled business users to instantly make site changes without IT help—a process that previously took at least one month
  • Reduced significantly the time needed to launch a new online marketing campaign—from eight to twelve weeks to just a few days
  • Integrated Oracle WebCenter Sites into new areas of the Ancestry.com site on an ongoing basis, enabling the company to build on early successes and allow business users to refresh content, even within legacy areas of the site
  • Supported the growing international business with business-user-friendly tools for managing their Web presence in multiple languages across eight countries
  • Used Oracle RightNow to develop an online support and a knowledge base, including 3,000 articles and serving 200,000 visitors per month
  • Enabled the company to respond to approximately 300,000 customer queries each month and answer customer questions within 24 hours
  • Reduced customer calls by 38%, customer e-mails by 50%, and customer hold times by 18%
  • Provided a common environment for delivering knowledge across all communication channels—phone, e-mail, Web, and chat
  • Helped the company achieve 95.5% customer satisfaction scores, and improved retention rates, while saving millions each year through greater contact center efficiency

Why Oracle

Ancestry.com originally surveyed 40 Web experience management solutions, based on recommendations from product and marketing teams. The company narrowed the list down to five, then three, before holding a technology bake-off for the finalists.

“In our business, we need to constantly provide our customers with a fresh and engaging Web experience. We also have a huge amount of online content and a number of legacy systems with which we needed to integrate. We looked at the site-authoring experience, the features each system supported, and the technical specifications. Oracle WebCenter Sites was identified as the right fit for our current needs,” said Blane Nelson, chief architect, applications, Ancestry.com.

Implementation Process

Ancestry.com implemented Oracle WebCenter Sites three years ago. The company chose an initial project—an international Website launch—which took two-and-a-half months.

“After the initial project, we went through several other site areas. Projects are as large as updating all home pages or as small as updating a small area of legacy content, and Oracle WebCenter Sites provides the flexibility we need,” Nelson said.

Ancestry.com implemented Oracle RightNow in 2003 and upgraded to latest version in February 2012.