The Art and Science of Improving Site Search Results

May 03, 2016

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Why are shoppers who search so valuable and why is site search so important? Let's take a look at some data:
  • Over 40% of visitors immediately go to the search box 
  • Over 40% of users who purchase from a website used site search (they are 2-3 times more likely to convert than browsers)
  • 80% of visitors will abandon a site after a poor search experience
  • 95% of searchers stay on the first page of search results (just like on Google)
Google and Amazon have shaped consumer behavior and expectations; today's consumer is tech savvy and has little patience for a poor website experience. Luckily, we have a lot of experience when it comes to helping businesses improve their site search experience and increase sales so we're happy to share some of the top tips we've learned along the way.

Tips for Improving Site Search (and Increasing Sales)

  1. Customized Landing Pages  Create custom landing pages related to specific search queries and target the content to the query. Customized landing pages are also a great way to increase the relevancy of results for visitors arriving on your site from a paid ad or email campaign.
  2. Type Less, Buy More — Implement auto-complete with images and category or brand suggestions to streamline the search experience, thus giving shoppers one-click access to the products they want to view and buy.
  3. Use Smart Redirects — Redirects can be used to land visitors on an individual product page rather than a search results page with a single result. Customized landing pages and redirects are an effective method of merchandising search results that have a too many SKUs for a shopper to easily navigate.
  4. Target, Target, Target — If you sell product in multiple regions, there's a good chance your shoppers aren't looking for the same things during the same time of the year. Shoppers in Chicago are most likely in the market for winter coats when October hits, but shoppers in Florida are still buying shorts. Use demographic information to tailor your merchandising and the search results for an individual shopper.
  5. Personalized Product Recommendations — Use real-time and past data points to breathe life into your content by exposing what is relevant for visitors based on their behavior and purchase history.
Implementing these five tips to improve the on-site search experience can help drive a significant improvement in sales and conversion rates for visitors who love to search.

Learn more about site search solutions and what to look for by reading our Guide to Evaluating Search Solutions. Then, leave your thoughts in the COMMENTS section below. We'd love to hear some of your top tips for site search.

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