Given the explosion in ecommerce over the last decade, it is more important than ever before for online store owners to provide a seamless experience to their customers. One of the main ways they can do so is by ensuring more relevant results in response to customers’ search queries. It is to handle this critical task that several ecommerce site search engines have cropped up. The search capabilities provided by such engines help your customers find the products they are interested in.
Equipping your online store with a high-quality ecommerce site search solution can minimize the friction your customers will experience in their purchasing journey. This translates into more satisfied customers, which in turn will lead to a higher average order value and more revenue for you.
Now that we’ve seen why ecommerce search engines are important, let’s take a closer look at them.
What are ecommerce site search engines?
Typical search engines like Google or Bing are web search engines. What that means is that when a user types in a query, they try to provide relevant results from all over the Internet with the help of SEO. In contrast, a site search engine is typically embedded within a website, and only returns results from that same website.
In a nutshell, an ecommerce site search engine takes the words from a visitor’s search query on an online store and tries to find the most relevant results within that store. At a basic level, it does so by comparing these words with the titles, descriptions and tags associated with the products in the store’s database.
Typically, site search engines also use certain algorithms and criteria to sort search results. These criteria might include past click-through rates, ratings, etc.
To sum up, an ecommerce site search engine is a lot like a guide inside a vast museum with an overwhelming number of books, artifacts and exhibits: when you tell this guide what section you’re most interested in, it’ll know just where to direct you to.
Key features of ecommerce site search engines
Let’s take a quick look at some features that are usually offered by high-performance ecommerce site search engines:
1. Personalization: Predicting the needs of your customers can go a long way towards giving them a smooth shopping experience. The best ecommerce search solutions might sort their results and provide product recommendations based on the past history of the customer.
2. Digital analytics: Many ecommerce site search engines can gather search data and analyze them on the basis of various parameters, thus providing useful insights. Such analytics can help you keep track of the queries searched for, queries that produced no results, and so on. Analytics suites also enable you to generate reports based on the search data gathered.
3. Propensity to resist typos and syntax errors: Most modern site search engines incorporate some kind of spell-check layer that allows useful and relevant results to be found even if the search query has some typos in it.
4. Quick indexing: Indexing refers to the process wherein a search engine goes through and organizes the information that will be searched through by users, so that it can respond to search queries in the future. Modern ecommerce site search engines allow store owners to easily and quickly index and re-index their product databases, so that they can keep expanding their catalog without their store’s site search falling behind.
Benefits of ecommerce site search engines
High-quality ecommerce site search engines offer a host of benefits for online store owners as well as online shoppers. Here are some of those most important benefits:
1. Higher conversion rates: It has been that around 40% to 80% of an online store’s revenue comes from online search users. Thus, having a clear and streamlined search function on your online store is key to improving your conversion rates and revenue.
2. Better customer experience: Site search engines with the features mentioned here in above use personalisation and the words in a search query to direct customers towards products that they are likely to want. Site search engines that use machine learning and artificial intelligence can minimize the disappointment that customers might feel from not getting accurate results. Such a smooth experience can help you win the loyalty of your customers.
3. Data-driven decision-making: As discussed above, several site search engines are capable of gathering and analyzing search data. The insights produced by such analytics can help online store owners better understand their customers, and can help optimize inventory and enhance their catalog to improve the store’s search experience.
E-commerce site search engines: a vital tool for online store owners
In conclusion, ecommerce site search engines are an indispensable tool for online stores today because they make your customer's shopping journey easier, and also because they provide store owners with useful information about what their customers are looking for. The more features an ecommerce site search engine has, the more value it will add to customers as well as store owners. If you would like to offer a better and smarter search function to your online store’s customers, please contact us at Zevi to learn more about how we can help you.