TAGS: AI CX Merchandising Online Shopping Retail
Learn the key metrics to look out for when tackling your search analytics.
By Charles Barsley — Senior Digital Analytics & Optimisation Manager at Selfridges
I’ve used Attraqt Fredhopper now for over three years, in two different companies. Perhaps uniquely, my roles have covered being both the Fredhopper “Subject Matter Expert”, and my company’s Digital Analytics Manager. Fredhopper asked me to discuss how I have brought these two roles together. My aim is to promote the use of analytics for the optimisation of onsite search with Fredhopper.
In this first blog, I’ll discuss the specific things you should look for in your analytics. In blog 2, we’ll explore advanced onsite search tagging.
Search can be the most important area of an eCommerce site, but in my experience, it is also the last area companies invest time in. It was with this in mind that I share the below tips for what you can review in search. Whether you just have 15 minutes at the end of a Friday, or you are looking to take your search analysis to the next level, hopefully you’ll find some useful insights here.
First: what do I mean when I say that search can be the most important area of an eCommerce site? Search is often the only area in which your customers get to tell you what they want! There’s a lot to be gained by reviewing what users search for. Firstly, a customer who searches has a purpose. They’re not just browsing. In fact, on average, shoppers who use search in an online fashion shop convert at least twice as much as those who don’t search. So a well-optimised search will be more likely to result in a sale. Secondly, search can help you stay ahead of changing trends and user demands.
There are a lot of different ways to optimise search, and you likely won’t have time to tackle them all at once. If you can only do one thing each week, review the list of your top searched terms, and search them yourself. Look at your site through your users’ eyes. Are the results what you would expect to see? Some of these keywords probably have enough searches to put them into the top 100 pages on your website. So they are important pages on your website which may be overlooked. Often, by viewing these pages yourself, you’ll find quick wins to improve the experience.
You may discover inaccuracy in the use of synonyms, a lack of prioritisation in sort order, or there may be a better place to redirect the search. Try to keep a record of which search terms you have checked, so that the following week you check a different set of terms. But since search results change over time, start from fresh every so often.
Once you’ve got this right, examine your highest revenue searches. There’s a lot to understand from these, but the golden question is: “Why are these searches generating the highest revenue?” For many, they may just have the highest search volume. But others will have a surprising conversion or Average Order Value. For these, it’s beneficial to understand why they are working. Is the category / non-search journey working as strongly? If not, why not? Could you take action on this finding, for example by targeting the area with Marketing Support to drive even more traffic to these terms?
Exploring the points above should give you great insight into your customer and what is working for them on your site. However, as Fredhopper have shown there is a long tail of searches that you will still be missing. There are several ways that you can filter the search report to reveal gems that you might be missing by only focussing on the highest volume and value searches.
Fredhopper makes it easy to analyse and improve your search. But it still requires your insight and action to make it work. As one of the most important areas of your site, it shouldn’t be one that gets the least amount of your attention.
Ready to take the next step? Read my blog about how Fredhopper can help with advanced tagging.