The attention span of the average users continues to drop. Today, most users have an attention span of 7 to 8 seconds; that’s very short, so you have to make the right first impression to capture their attention further.
We instinctively use a site’s search function to get to the information we’re looking for. In an e-commerce site, having an intuitive search function is a must. Here are the three ways you can improve your site’s search experience and make the search feature work to your advantage.
Advanced Search on the Catalogue Page
A common way to improve your site search feature is by adding more parameters to the search box itself. Instead of doing an actual search for a product, users can now filter the list of products they already see in the Catalogue or on Shop page.
This is actually a very effective way of using the search function. Users can quickly filter the products they want, do a quick comparison between the available options, and get to the purchase decisions faster than those who browse through the catalog manually.
Some parameters that you need to add to the search box are the price range, product categories, and brands. You can also add additional parameters such as colors and sizes, depending on the products you sell. Put yourself in users’ shoes and you’ll be able to determine the right parameters to add to the advanced search box.
A Smarter Search
The basic search function of most e-commerce sites relies on keywords to find the right pages that the users are looking for. Today, however, the technology behind site search has greatly improved. You no longer have to be confined by keywords. The search can also take into account variations of the word, users’ preferences, and many other parameters.
More importantly, these extra parameters can be added without additional user input. Smart site search helps users discover the products they’re actually looking for, even when they don’t use the right keywords (i.e. product name or SKU) to find them. In return, you’ll see better conversions and more sales.
Better Search UX
While taking a closer look at the search feature is important, you can’t neglect the user experience either. The entire experience of doing a product or information search on your site needs to be pleasant enough for the feature to be effective.
Simple details matter. Adding AJAX-based suggestions or autocomplete to the search box is a good start. The simple addition helps users complete the search in a more fluid, faster way. A field that looks good and a button with a tactile feel to it also helps make the search experience better.
These may be small details, but they are details that transform a user’s experience when using your site. Keeping them happy with the e-commerce site is the first step towards converting users into customers. You can also implement the same approach to other parts of the site once you realize that UX is very important. You’ll see an immediate boost in sales.