The world of online search is developing at such a rate that it may soon be unrecognisable from how we knew it a mere ten years ago. Visual search, inputting images rather than words in a search request, has been steadily growing in line with our ever-growing obsession with taking photos. Voice search has even greater potential, often being touted as the future of search as we know it, with 50% of search requests expected to be made via voice by 2020.
Currently, however, these two tools are largely only used on search engines or very large eCommerce sites: Google, Bing and eBay Collective both offer visual search, whilst the likes of Siri, Google Now and Cortana provide voice search capabilities. Site search, on the other hand, is not restricted to these types of sites – it has become a staple, yet highly under-appreciated, element of billions of websites throughout sector and size.
So why is it so important to provide site search on your site?
1. If a visitor to your site can’t find the product they want, they can’t buy the product from your site. This poor findability leads not only to site abandonment, but also to lost sales, making site search crucial to aiding your users find what they are looking for and purchase.
2. By providing your visitor with a helpful search bar, you are improving user experience through simplifying the customer journey to purchase, boosting customer satisfaction.
3. As a result of positive customer satisfaction on your site, brand image is improved, in the process fostering customer retention and loyalty - and so boosting your sales.
4. Those who use site search are more likely to make a purchase, because its use indicates they know what they are looking for and what to buy, and so are shopping with intent.
5. Knowing what your visitors are searching for on your site can provide you with customer insights, understanding how users like to search and what for. And even if the search presents a zero results page, this can still help to inform your stocking.
6. Using Ve’s onsite engagement solution, Digital Assistant, you can offer your visitors site search that indexes your whole product catalogue without the need for a developer to set up an API.
Digital Assistant is a revolutionary alternative to onsite engagement. Consisting of several engagement features, including a search bar, Digital Assistant improves user experience by helping your visitors to find what they are looking for first time and guiding them to purchase.