Improving your website’s internal search function not only enhances user experience, but also helps your business make more sales. Many e-commerce
and B2B companies, however, overlook their internal search in their digital marketing
strategy, resulting in missed conversions. See why internal search is essential for any business and ways to turn it into a sales generator.
Why Internal Search is Important
Few things are more frustrating for users than a website’s internal search that doesn’t work. A key element of keeping visitors on your website longer
is providing a good experience. If you don’t, then your bounce rate will go up which means lost sales opportunities.
Check out these eye-opening stats
on internal search and sales:
- At least 50% of shoppers prefer to use an internal search function to find products
- Prospects that use internal search convert at least 4x more than those who don’t
- The average order value (AOV) increases as more internal searches are performed
By not optimizing your internal search, you could be leaving money on the table. Avoid that by updating your internal search function to be more intuitive.
How to Improve Internal Search Function
There are several ways to enhance your internal search function to better serve users and increase the chances of making a sale. You’ll need a web developer
to make these updates, but it’s well worth the investment to convert more prospects into buyers.
Make the Search Bar Noticeable
Have your search bar in a prominent position — like in the header, above or beside the navigation, or as a separate element right below the navigation — so it’s easy for visitors to find it. Also, make sure that the search bar is clear on what it does. A simple way to do this is with a search icon (i.e. magnifying glass) and copy that says “Search.”
Use Autocomplete in the Search Bar
Save your prospects' time by providing autocomplete suggestions as they type in the search bar. You can even take it a step further by including product photos and pricing in the autocomplete suggestions so they can go right to the item they’re looking for.
Show Relevant Results
One of the best ways to improve your internal search is to show relevant results to users. Random results will confuse prospects and a blank “No Results” page is essentially a dead-end. Both give visitors a bad experience, which will push them to leave the website.
Provide Suggestions When “No Results”
Although you can’t completely avoid “No Results” from happening, that doesn’t mean the page should be blank. Instead, have your “No Results” page provide suggested categories, best sellers, special offers, or helpful content
to give the user an alternative path to explore.
Have Filtering Options
Improve your results page with filtering options to help users sort and narrow down the results. You can have filtering options to refine the search results by popularity, category, size, color, price, sale/clearance, and more.
Include Breadcrumbs on Results Page
Another way to optimize your results page is by including breadcrumbs, which are a way for users to visualize where they are on the website for easier navigation. A breadcrumb trail allows visitors to filter and change search parameters without clearing their search entirely.
Turn Your Website Into a Sales Machine
A crucial element of user experience is the internal search function. It’s not enough to drive prospects to your website — it must also provide a seamless user experience in order to make sales. By optimizing the search bar and results page, your website’s internal search will help generate sales instead of losing prospects.