Start Your Engines

Kohler Engines recently relaunched its Web site to provide better navigation and more information to its users. The decision to update the site was made after the company overhauled its brochures and its sell sheets.

“We're believers in integrated communication: using one voice in all our different communication vehicles. When we designed our new literature, we purposely gave it a look that would translate to the Web rather easily,” said Tom Dent, manager — power systems communications.

Prior to beginning the site overhaul, Kohler surveyed its site visitors to find out who they were, what information they were looking for and if they were successful at finding that information. According to the results, two of every three visitors were consumers looking for service information for a Kohler-powered product they already owned.

“The objective of the site redesign was to communicate service and sales information for both the consumer and trade audiences via a well-branded, database driven, interactive Web site.”

Interactive cutaways that point out specific features of Kohler's engines are a new feature of the site. Each component highlighted is associated with a benefit the company's customers expressed as important to them, such as dependable starts; reliability and long-life design; extended run times; peak power and torque; quiet, smooth operation; and user-friendly maintenance. By clicking on the feature, users will bring up a bubble that tells what it does and locates its position in the engine.

To determine which sections to use the cutaways for, the company began with its most technologically advanced engines because they have so many distinctive features and innovations. The company plans to add more interactive cutaways to the site as new engine families are added.

The company also added owners manuals for consumers to download free, which often allow site users to easily replace destroyed or misplaced manuals. Service manuals have also been added, which can be purchased for a nominal fee. Other Kohler merchandise is also available online.

“Within a week of launch, traffic to the Kohler Engines site grew by 20 percent while purchases by visitors through the online store more than doubled,” said Dent.

The company now includes engine performance data and dimensions to the site to allow trade professionals to access it easily. Improved navigation makes it easier to find information, and it's easier to find where to buy Kohler engines and genuine parts because the dealer locator is now linked to every page.

If you have a Web site you would like to see featured in RER, please contact Brandey Smith at [email protected].

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