Case Study

Johnson Outdoors

Asset reference
95 %

increase in Old Town site revenue

48 %

increase in SCUBAPRO EU site revenue

39 %

increase in Jetboil site revenue



The company wanted to improve its seven brands' online shopping and checkout experiences, creating a seamless and consistent experience across all touchpoints.


Its previous CMS was nearing the end of its life, and it needed a flexible, scalable platform that could grow with the company into the future.

Our Solution

Drupal, Acquia Cloud Platform, Acquia DAM (Widen)

  • Increased SCUBAPRO EU site revenue by 48%
  • Increased Jetboil site revenue by 39%
  • Increased Old Town site revenue by 95%
  • Increased SCUBAPRO US sessions by 12%
  • Increased Minn Kota page views by 8%

The Client

Johnson Outdoors is a leading global innovator of outdoor recreation equipment and technologies that inspire more people to experience the awe of the great outdoors. The company designs, manufactures, and markets a portfolio of winning, consumer-preferred brands across four categories: watercraft recreation, fishing, diving, and camping. Johnson Outdoors' iconic brands include: Old Town canoes and kayaks; Carlisle paddles; Minn Kota trolling motors, shallow water anchors, and battery chargers; Cannon downriggers; Humminbird marine electronics and charts; SCUBAPRO dive equipment; Jetboil outdoor cooking systems; and Eureka! camping and hiking equipment.  

The Situation

Johnson Outdoors wanted to improve its online shopping and checkout experiences, streamlining the consumer purchase process. They also wanted to improve system performance by enhancing the speed and responsiveness of the website, which would lead to a better user experience and increased customer satisfaction. ​​The overall aim was to provide customers with a seamless and consistent shopping experience across all touchpoints, whether on the website, mobile app, or in physical stores. 

Specifically, the company wanted to:  

  • Make the system more scalable to accommodate growing user demands
  • Reduce error rates and implement a robust configuration management system
  • Optimize the product information management (PIM) importer to streamline the process of importing and managing product data
  • Replace the existing proprietary order management system, integrating it into Drupal
  • Centralize e-commerce operations

The Challenge

With Drupal 7 reaching the end of its life, Johnson Outdoors needed to migrate its seven outdoor brands to a current, supported version of Drupal that would ensure ongoing security, support, and compliance with evolving web standards — ensuring that it could remain digitally competitive. But it also needed a platform with enhanced scalability, able to sustainably grow with the company into the future and remain efficient as it expanded.​ 

But that wasn’t the only challenge Johnson Outdoors faced. Other challenges included:

  • PIM data structure and import:​ The company’s high volume of product information necessitated an optimized PIM data structure. It needed a solution to syndicate product data seamlessly across channels and platforms while maintaining consistency and accuracy.
  • Order splitting: Some orders needed to be split across multiple locations or warehouses, requiring sophisticated order-splitting algorithms to optimize shipping costs and fulfillment efficiency.​
  • OMS integration with payment gateway:​ Johnson Outdoors needed to integrate its OMS with the payment gateway, which presented complexities in handling financial transactions securely and reliably. ​
  • Multiple business units:​ The company comprises various business units, each with unique requirements and processes. Balancing the need for centralized solutions with the flexibility to cater to the specific needs of each unit was a constant challenge.​
  • White-label solution:​ To serve its diverse customer base, the company wanted a  white-label solution that could be customized and branded differently for each business unit.  
  • Reusable components:​ To maximize development efficiency, the company needed to strike a balance between customization for individual business units and the reuse of core components.​
  • Meeting marketing needs across business units: The platform would need to meet all business units’ marketing needs, accommodating various promotional strategies, advertising campaigns, and customer engagement initiatives while maintaining a unified customer experience.​
  • Testability:​ Johnson Outdoors needed a system that ensured reliability and performance, so comprehensive testing was imperative.

The Solution

Johnson Outdoors partnered with Wunderman Thompson, and the teams set out to future-proof the company's e-commerce capabilities by selecting a modern, scalable technology stack that could adapt to evolving market trends and customer demands over the long term.​

Achieving a seamless and consistent experience across all touchpoints required tight integration of all customer-facing channels. To simplify operations, the teams consolidated all e-commerce functions into one unified system, which included order management, inventory control, customer relationship management, and marketing automation.​

But, the new platform also needed to be easily replicated and rolled out to new markets and regions — something that was vital to support the company's growth strategy.​ Recognizing the importance of website performance, the team implemented a scalable architecture that could accommodate expansion into new markets without extensive redevelopment. Wunderman Thompson significantly improved page load times, reduced latency, and optimized the overall speed of the e-commerce platform.​ They ensured stability by performing rigorous testing and quality assurance as well as continuous monitoring to proactively identify and resolve potential issues.​ And to smoothly transition from the old system, Johnson Outdoors invested in training its teams to effectively manage and utilize the new platform.

The Results

This project represented a significant transformation of Johnson Outdoors’ e-commerce capabilities, driven by a commitment to providing an exceptional customer experience, streamlining operations, and ensuring the long-term viability of the digital commerce platform. The strategic steps taken have positioned Johnson Outdoors for success in an ever-evolving digital landscape.​

The outcomes of this project directly aligned with the its key objectives and have had a lasting impact on Johnson Outdoors. The increase in online revenue across the brands reveals the business impact:

  • Increased SCUBAPRO EU site revenue by 48%
  • Increased Jetboil site revenue by 39%
  • Increased Old Town site revenue by a 95%
  • Increased SCUBAPRO US sessions by 12%
  • Increased Minn Kota page views by 8%

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