How Site Search Helps Drive Site-Wide Sales

What does site search have to do with sales? To answer this question, consider the following example.

Do you remember how, back in the day, you would go shopping at the local mall? Once there, if you didn’t know where a specific store was located, you had to ASK someone where it could be found? Today, you would just use Google to find out what floor the store is located on, as well as its opening hours, and other useful information.

So, the person you approached told you which floor/section of the mall you need. Upon getting into the store, you had to make your way past throngs of shoppers who, much like yourself, were in an endless search for a product they noticed was on sale, thanks to an ad in the local newspaper. Eventually, you managed to find an assistant and ask them where the product was located, and off you went to find it.

An example of a shopping mall

Today’s kids are under the impression that Malls are mythological places.

In today’s world, malls, and to a certain extent, physical retail, are not as important to consumers as they once were – neither are newspapers. You know this because you get your news from social media, and do a large amount of your shopping from a PC or smartphone. For all the modern convenience available, we can’t always find exactly what we want to buy with a quick Google search. If Amazon ever builds its own search engine, that will probably change, until then, what is Joe consumer to do when searching for a new polo shirt?

Site Search Will Make You Money

When first-time visitors come to a website, one of the things they typically look for is an embedded “Search Bar” which can be used to look for products. This tool functions as a personal “Google” for an eCommerce site. When users use the search bar, they are performing a site search to find products. It is especially helpful for new visitors, and frequent shoppers will take advantage of it as well.

The key reason site search is important has less to do with convenience, and more to do with revenue. Visitors who use the tool have what is referred to as “Intent to purchase”. This means, that they are genuinely ready to add an item to their cart and proceed to checkout. The visitor knows (or has a pretty solid idea) as to what they are looking for, and wants to cut to the chase. This is particularly true for guest shoppers who are not logged in during their search. In fact, research conducted by Celebros has proven that the CVR from site search is as high as 20% on average!

Now the question is, how can you maximize the usefulness of your site search toolbar to increase conversions? Let’s start with the basics.

Location and Design:

The placement of your search toolbar makes all the difference in the world, and the design of it is important as well. Optimal placement is towards the top left-hand side of the webpage, although the top right-hand side is fine too. As for the design, make sure it’s noticeable. Use colors that contrast well with the background of the webpage. Make sure the design and placement remain consistent across all web pages on your site. This way, when shoppers enter a search term, they aren’t left feeling as though they jumped to a different website.

A few examples of site search tool bars

A few examples of well-placed, well-designed, site search toolbars found a number of popular websites.

Awareness:

Just because you have a site search, doesn’t mean your visitors will consider using it. A good call to action to get them using it, for example, would be a banner somewhere on the page that says: “Can’t find what you are looking for? Try searching here” Which in turn directs the shopper’s attention to the search bar.

Ease of Use:

Configure site search to accept terms – even when they are misspelled! Shoppers are prone to making spelling mistakes – especially while in a rush of excitement to make a purchase – nothing kills that excitement more than the following message: “Sorry, the item you are looking for is not available.”

When NLP barely works.

What do you mean there are no matches for “eyephone 10?” I purchased my first 20 eyephones here!”

For example,  if the shopper types in “Blu Suid Shoos”, when they meant to type “Blue Suede Shoes”. If your site search is configured properly, they will still see the closest match available.

When NLP goes right

Sometimes site search get’s the job done even when human error is a factor.

Autofill / Recommendations:

This can be used to help mitigate the chances of your shoppers making a spelling mistake while searching. With autofill, as they begin to type in a term, the closest match will appear in the search bar. It’s a feature that works really well on Google, and a growing number of online shoppers have come to expect it from eCommerce websites.

Autofill in action.

Autofill in action.

Now that you are familiar with how to optimize your site search, what can you do with the data that it generates? What about the guest shoppers who abandon after finishing a search, can anything be gained from their visit?

Site Search Data and Abandonments:

Well, this is where search abandonment becomes a factor. Search abandonment is what happens when visitors use site search to look up a specific item, and then… do nothing at all. Which begs the question: What can we do about this?

If the Datacrushers Revenue Discovery Platform succeeded in collecting a visitor’s email address prior to their search abandonment, we don’t need to do anything about this at all. The Datacrushers platform has all the tools to capture your site’s visitor data – even those visitors who are not logged in at the time of their search, and smartly retarget them via a triggered email in response to their search abandonment. This way, they will get an email displaying the product they looked for but didn’t add to their cart.

Datacrushers 14-day free trial

Datacrushers

Founded in 2015, Datacrushers uses Machine Learning and A.I. along with NLP to identify and recover revenue loss, cart abandonment and discover new revenue sources across any site.  The revenue discovery platform completes the deep ongoing analysis of eCommerce websites by monitoring the three main focal points of any site: The User, Site, and Product.

Unlike traditional “cart abandonment platforms,” Datacrushers does not require shoppers and customers to be logged-in to conduct both on and offsite campaigns. We use a wide range of data-driven and analytics based conversion tools to target the shopper at the right time with the most accurate and effective campaign to drive the sale.

Datacrushers is platform, language, and currency agnostic and requires only a few lines of code to get started therefore delivering an ultra-fast go-to-market with minimal set-up time and tech intervention.

Based out of Jerusalem, Israel, Datacrushers has clients worldwide including,  The US, China, Russia, UK, Germany, and more.

By | 2018-03-27T17:38:34+00:00 February 21st, 2018|Guide, Site Search|Comments Off on How Site Search Helps Drive Site-Wide Sales