Customers that are using your search function are already a better lead for your business; this is because they already know what they’re looking for. So it can be annoying when your search function doesn’t work well enough to accommodate for the way your customers search. It’s important to identify where you’re going wrong & what you can do to give your customer a simple user journey.
Search boxes VS regular navigation
Normal navigation is still an acceptable route to have; but only if you don’t have a lot of products. Regular navigation tabs can’t accommodate for a large store with a lot of deep rooted pages; that’s where you’ll need a search bar. This gives customers a fast way to reach the necessary product rather than clicking through page after page.
For example, if you’re a clothing store then you’ll have a lot of pages. If you sell hats in specific colours then it’s easier for your customers to search for specific products than it is to click through to Accessories > Hats > Colours.
Your search bar should be able to cope with any demand a customer may have. So you need to test it frequently to ensure it’s still functioning properly. You need to ask yourself…
Can your search bar…
Accommodate for misspellings or synonyms?
Ensuring that your site can handle misspellings is extremely important to user success when they search. If your search function turns out messages like ‘product not found’ just because a user searched for ‘couches’ instead of ‘sofas’, then they’re likely to leave your site pretty fast.
Handle any query?
Some queries can be tricky for your search bar to manage, but it’s still important that they get handled correctly. It may be that they have a query about your delivery policies, but can’t find any information on it. They’ll revert to the search bar and your search bar needs to be able to handle this query. You’ll have to check your site for the most relevant pages to display in your search results and ensure they come up on those key phrases.
Handle ‘Zero Results” queries?
The only thing worse than the wrong results is no results at all; at least you tried with the wrong results. Zero results showing for your query will only infuriate your users, making leave your website. Zero results show from keyword based searches, so you should look to upgrade your search function to be able to use natural language processing so that it can guess the next best results.
Having a search bar is crucial to increasing the accessibility of your products; which in turn will increase the success of your sales. Make sure your store has a fully functional, capable search bar installed to help your customers interact with your business.
If you want a search bar adding to your store, then get in touch with us at Ixis to have an innovative search bar on your store.