You don't have to be a rocket scientist to know that a website search can be a valuable sales tool for your online store. In fact, if you're operating any kind of e-commerce site on just about any platform, there's a good chance you have one on your pages now. It's also a good bet that you're not getting the most out of it. In this article, we'll explore three common mistakes made by site owners and how you can easily correct them.
1. You have no idea how much good it's doing.
Obviously, to know if your onsite search engine is living up to its full potential, you need to know what your visitors are doing with it, if anything. Sure, it's great to let your prospective customers search for the products they want, but are they actually doing that? If so, are they finding what they search for? Are they purchasing what they find?
Answering those questions is important if you want to maximize the impact of this feature on your sales. It's a tool, just like your ad campaigns and SEO work. Knowing how your tools are working is critical, so you can make adjustments and/or replace those that aren't doing their jobs. In the case of your site search tools, that means you should be able to review not only the input data, but what happened after each search.
That may sound like an awfully complex problem, but remember that the title says these fixes will be easy. I'm going to be telling you about one fix for all three of these problems: Site Search by Instant Search. This innovative application not only lets you see what your visitors searched for, it lets you track user progress through your site and much more.
2. You aren't offering what visitors are searching for.
The point of having an onsite search is to get people to the products they want quickly. That's not going to happen if you don't have those items.
It's important to realize that buying trends change and, if you're going to be among the top sellers of any product line, you need to keep up with those trends.
So, how's that going to happen? Well, you have the first half of the answer already. Your website search engine is where your customers tell you what they want. The missing half is the ability to listen to what they're saying. We've already talked about being able to review the data from the searches. Why not analyze that information so you can see what's trending, and then use that data to determine what to add to your inventory?
Site Search gives you a powerful dashboard, complete with analytics to determine what products on your site are popular, as well as what products your visitors are looking for that you don't offer. Among other things, it lets you stay on top of the buying trends and adjust your inventory and promotions accordingly.
3. Your site search engine just searches.
I know, some of you are asking, “Isn't that what it's supposed to do?” Yes and no. It's there to give your prospective buyers a quick way to find what they want – “quick” being the operative term. To be really effective in today's online market, it should do much more than just take input and deliver results.
If your onsite search doesn't deliver suggestions in response to what visitors type, it's crippled in comparison to those of your biggest competitors. What's more, those suggestions should be reflecting the trends we talked about in the previous section. Those hot items should be popping up after a few letters are typed, screaming, “Hey! I'm right here!” Better yet, how about showing a thumbnail picture of the suggested items instead of just a list?
While we're at it, why not give your visitors a way to filter their search results so that they can narrow down the choices they have to wade through? Show them the colors and sizes available. Men's or women's? Wouldn't it be great if there was a list of options tailored to the actual products in the results?
I think you're probably starting to get the picture. A smarter website search means people find the right products in less time, even if the right product wasn't what they initially had in mind. Site Search lets you deliver a user experience like no other, giving your visitors everything listed above, along with a whole host of other customizable options.
That's NOT All, Folks!
Now that we've covered the fixes for those three mistakes with one solution, it's time to let you know a little bit more about it. If you're operating an e-commerce store on any platform, Site Search has all the website search tools you need rolled into one smart package for your site. If you're using Volusion, Miva, BigCommerce, Yahoo! or any other non-standard framework, you need to take a serious look at this application.
It integrates easily and will increase your conversion rate almost immediately because it delivers the kind of responsive experience needed to encourage your customers to buy. At the same time, it provides you with an easy-to use suite of tools to help maintain that conversion rate by managing your inventory, promotions and the entire customer experience intelligently.
Last, but not least, the programmers at Fast Simon will customize your application to fit your specifications, requirements and e-commerce platform perfectly. They've delivered solutions to satisfied customers around the world and they can do the same for you!
Don't let your onsite search engine be a waste of effort for you and your potential customers. Turn it into a powerful sales tool, with the help of the experts at Instant Search Plus. Ordering your own custom solution has never been easier and it's one of the best investments you can make in your online store. Visit their website today to find out more about what Site Search can do to convert your shoppers into buyers.