Why Investing in On-Site Search in 2022 is the Smartest Decision You’ll Ever Make

Discover the connection between SEO, SEM and on-site search to receive more out of your investments.

We now use content as our major tool for engaging with prospects and cultivating online client relationships. To capture their attention and engage them in a conversation, the information must be relevant, valuable, and engaging. The best way to do marketing is with content.

By investigating the relationship between SEO, SEM and on-site search, you can begin to enhance the feeling your prospects get when they arrive at your site. 

6 Ways to Optimizing On-Site Search

Internal site search should quickly get visitors to products or content they want. To assist visitors in their conversion journey, make your on-site search a seamless and painless procedure.

1. Put your search bar in a visible area

If you don’t build it [correctly], they won’t come. If visitors to your site can’t see it, then it doesn’t exist.

Your search bar should be placed in a prominent location. Following web conventions that place the search option in a highly visible section of the website header or sidebar will allow people to locate it effortlessly.

Build.com, is a great example that uses the text within the input field to prompt users what to type.

2. Enhance the results for frequent searches

Examine the results of common and popular searches to ensure that your website’s search algorithm returns the most relevant results.

Check your on-site search history on a frequent basis. This is simple to set up in Google Analytics, and it will allow you to track on-site search patterns and troubleshoot any issues that arise.

3. Make it simple for users to find what they’re looking for

Don’t assume that your visitors will be adept at using your on-site search option – use predictive search.

Predictive search shows popular or suggested search terms depending on the words entered into the search field.

A good example is from Kohls.com. It presents a drop-down list of regularly searched categories and top products even before the user finishes typing.

4. Semantic search improves relevance.

According to Inbenta founder and CEO Jordi Torras, 60 percent of users use 3 words or more in on-site search. This indicates that people’s query patterns during searches are more akin to natural language or ordinary speech.

For example, Old Navy’s e-commerce site contains activewear but when “tops for gym” is searched it returns only one item.

The example above shows how on-site search devoid of natural language processing treats search queries as unconnected terms and retrieves results based on keywords. Semantic search, on the other hand, uses the user’s purpose and context to give more relevant results.

5. Improve results for search failures

If you’ve ever had zero search results returned to you on a site search, then you know it’s a frustrating experience.

To web users, it’s a dead end. Some will assume you don’t have what they’re looking for and leave right after seeing “no results.”

Even the cuteness of this dog on Sakroots’s “no results” page doesn’t make it better.

Providing visitors with a navigation path forward is a better method to manage search failure. Google’s Matt Cutts recommends showing users items that are related to their search query, for instance, instead of the cringe-worthy “no results” page.

6. Constantly find out where you’re falling short

Website optimization initiatives are a work in progress. It’s no different when it comes to perfecting your on-site search.

You can gain accurate metrics if you monitor your analytics data for on-site search performance and areas for improvement. Two behaviors you must monitor are search refinements and exits because they might suggest how well your on-site search is doing.

•  A high percentage of search refinements might mean that users are not finding what they want on the first attempt.
• A high percentage of search exits could be a sign that your on-site search has critical issues. Users could be receiving irrelevant results and give up on the search due to the awful experience.

Once you are aware of how your on-site search is behaving, you can make the required corrections to the configuration and see if your search metrics improve.