In today's incredibly competitive online marketplace, providing an exceptional search experience for customers is vital for the success of any e-commerce store. But how can yours stand above the rest?
With over 10 years of expertise in the e-commerce arena, we have refined the best strategies and practices to make this a reality. This blog is part of a four-part series on our products’ best practices, and we are starting with our Intelligent Search function.
In this article, we will explore the key components of a best-in-class search experience! These include the Instant Search dropdown, a dedicated Search Page with filters, and the invaluable insights provided by Clerk's Search Insights dashboard.
First up is the highly effective Instant Search Dropdown- in fact, it’s the first component of Clerk’s search function. With up to 60% of webpage visitors finding and purchasing products directly from this dropdown, it offers real-time recommendations based on predictive search.
What does this mean for your business? Well, it ensures that your customers find exactly what they’re searching for, with recommended results appearing even after two keystrokes. And, our AI structures the results by what it identifies as most likely to sell or be clicked on.
By presenting search results and product recommendations as users type, you can immediately capture their interest and improve your conversion rates.
Optimal visibility is achieved by allocating around 70% of the search dropdown to the actual products, 30% to categories and pages, and including a "see all results" button for further product exploration.
So, if a customer is in a rush to buy a helmet for their American football game, they can be rest assured knowing there are plenty of helmets available- and they can even educate themselves on sizing before buying.
Search Page and Filters
While the Instant Search dropdown is designed for quick results and overview, the Search Page nicely complements it by offering a more comprehensive browsing experience.
We recommend displaying 40-60 products at a time and incorporating a "Show More Results" button for subsequent pages, which optimizes loading speed and ensures user attention.
The real power of the Search Page, though, lies in its integration with filters or facets.
By enabling visitors to effortlessly mix and match product facets, such as price range and specific attributes, you empower them to find precisely what they want within seconds.
If we take the above example of a football helmet, a customer can decide upon a desired budget of 400 euros and a color of silver- in just two clicks, the products they want are right there.
And the best part is that our facets adapt entirely to the search. This means that if a customer is searching for shoes, displaying sizes is an appropriate and relevant quality, but not as necessary when displaying mouthguards.
You can use filters based on anything, such as categories, price, brands, colors, sizes, dimensions, and much more.
Design and Visual Appeal
Simplicity and visibility are crucial to an effective search experience. It might sound like a no-brainer but ensure your search field is prominently displayed at all times, preferably in the top menu, and takes up a significant portion of its width.
Many webshops tend to hide their search bar behind other buttons or menus, but this is counter-productive for customers and can lead to user frustration. Prominently placing the search bar will ensure they can always access the search feature and find it immediately. And this is vital not just for desktop but also tablet and mobile.
Including a concise placeholder text within the search bar, such as “search store here” and adopting a visually appealing design that aligns with your brand identity reinforces a cohesive and engaging user experience.
In both the dropdown and search page, make sure you incorporate high-resolution product images, names, prices, discounts, and compelling call-to-action buttons to captivate visitors and encourage further exploration.
With Clerk, there are several options for designing. This includes a no-code Design Editor to fully embedded HTML templates for those with coding know-how.
Analyzing and Optimizing
While Clerk's Intelligent Search automatically adapts to customer behavior, it's essential to continually learn and optimize so you can grow your business.
Our Search Insights dashboard offers invaluable insights into customer search behavior, scoping potential areas for improvement. By analyzing search queries, identifying missing products, and managing commonly used synonyms or typos, you can refine your search function and ensure customer satisfaction.
We recommend checking this dashboard regularly so you can continuously optimize.
Additionally, leveraging Clerk's Merchandising capabilities allows you to align your marketing goals by emphasizing higher-margin items and driving profitability. Our AI will still ensure the right products are presented to each customer but with added emphasis on these products.
Implementing Clerk.io's Intelligent Search in your e-commerce store can significantly enhance the search experience for your customers.
By combining the Instant Search dropdown and Search Page with filters, employing a visually appealing and prominent placement for your search bar, and leveraging the knowledge gained through Search Insights, you can attract, convert, and retain customers more effectively.
Don't wait any longer- integrate Clerk.io into your tech stack today!