Five Must-Have Site Search Tools for 2016

May 31, 2016

site search

It doesn’t matter if you are focused on B2B or B2C consumers, a powerful e-commerce site search engine is one of the easiest and most effective ways to gain a competitive advantage.

Five Reasons E-Commerce Site Search Matters

  1. Site search accounts for over 30% of all website activity.
  2. Over 40% of users who purchase anything on an e-commerce site use site search.
  3. 80% of customers will abandon a site after a poor site search experience.
  4. 95% of users will never go past the first page of site search results.
  5. Visitors who utilize the auto-complete search feature with thumbnails are six times more likely to convert from a visitor into a buyer.

Your on-site search should never be an afterthought and it's important to understand whether or not the search experience on your website is delighting or disappointing shoppers.

It's a given that the search results need to be relevant to the searcher's query, however it's not enough to just generate a one-size-fits-all product listing page. Top internet retailers have set the bar high and in order to be competitive, you'll want to make sure that your site search feature has these five features.

Must-Have Site Search Tools

  1. Site-wide Dynamic Faceted Navigation — Visitors want to find products as quickly as possible and they don't want to figure out navigation differences between search and browse. Faceted navigation gives shoppers the ability to drill down into search results by product attributes such as brand, color, and price. Intelligent or dynamic facet sorting automatically adjusts the order and display of the facets based on pre-defined conditions.
  2. Predictive Recommendations — Leverage relevant details about customer purchase history to recommend products and brands that a shopper has an affinity for. 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.
  3. Smart Autocomplete — 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.
  4. URL 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 too many SKUs for a shopper to easily navigate.
  5. Dynamic Landing Pages — Are you making the most of your landing pages?  Dynamic merchandising tools give your merchandising team the ability to create highly targeted landing pages based on search terms and/or marketing campaigns.

In addition, make sure that your site search solution works well on mobile and has basic thesaurus and spelling correction features.

Businesses that implement feature-rich search solutions not only improve the customer experience, they also see higher average order values, increased conversions, and improved customer retention.

Does your site search engine measure up?