How to improve your shopping funnel with personalized search
As an ecommerce professional, you may struggle with meeting your conversion and revenue goals. You know you would benefit from a robust personalization strategy but the lack of resources or tools is stressing you out.
So, let’s start with a small calming exercise. Sit back, close your eyes for a minute, and visualize what website personalization means to you. Go on!
Hopefully you’ve now opened your eyes and continued reading.
If your mind was filled with images of recommendation carousels promoting most viewed and trending products, or product recommendations displayed on a category page, you’re definitely not wrong. But you might have forgotten an important, still often overlooked, aspect of personalization: product discovery through search.
Read on to find out why personalized search is such a crucial part of your personalization strategy and how Frosmo can help you make your product discovery dreams come true. For example, for a customer in consumer electronics ecommerce, implementing Frosmo Search increased purchases by more than 300% and revenue by more than 40% during a three-week period.
What is product discovery?
Product discovery, simply put, is the process of ensuring that your visitors find relevant products easily and smoothly in order to convert to paying customers. This includes both serving them with products they came looking for and introducing them to new, relevant products they might like. The more your site has different brands, categories, and products, the more important it is to excel at product discovery to avoid choice overload.
Online, product discovery starts with search engine optimization and continues all the way to the emails you send to your customers. It includes multiple aspects, such as:
- Search engine optimization
- Landing page optimization
- Product search
- Product finders
- Personalized recommendations at different touchpoints
- Product taxonomies
In this article, we’ll focus on the aspects of product discovery that can be improved with personalization, especially search.
We’d like to add a disclaimer here. You may argue that product discovery and search are, in fact, different beasts. According to a common definition, search is an active pursuit for something you know you want. Discovery, on the other hand, may happen passively while you’re just browsing a category or, indeed, searching for something else.
However, personalized search blurs this line. Using an AI-driven, smart search means that while you’re actively searching for a specific brand or product, you’ll get suggestions for search terms, brands, categories, and products based not only on your search queries but your affinity and recent interactions on the site.
Benefits of personalized search
Consumers expect sites to remember their preferences and history. In fact, already in 2018, 91% of consumers said they are more likely to shop with brands who recognize, remember, and provide relevant offers and recommendations. In a Google study from 2021, 84 % of consumers said they will purchase from a brand that provides helpful information when they’re exploring options.
More numbers, you say?
Search is the first, and often the most important, touchpoint between consumers and ecommerce sites. Visitors who search are, depending on the source, at least 1.8 more likely to convert and when they do, they create more revenue than those who only navigate. On the other hand, up to 68% of visitors abandon a site after a poor search experience.
So, in short, you need personalized search because:
- Consumers expect a search experience to make it easier for them to find and choose relevant products.
- Consumers are way more likely to convert when they use a search that provides them with relevant products.
The anatomy of personalized search
While recommendation engines use an algorithm to retrieve and display products based on past interactions on the site, such as product views and purchases, search engines retrieve products and information based on search queries users enter to the search field. Personalized search combines both, adding a merchandizing layer on top of the search.
A robust search solution includes:
- Autosuggest: Search results after each keystroke.
- Synonym suggestions/typo tolerance: Search results based on similar search queries.
- Boosting and ranking: Ranking search results based on which ones have the best conversion rate. Boosting brands and products.
Frosmo Search harnesses the power of AI
At Frosmo, we know the positive impact a suitable personalization strategy makes in each part of the customer journey and how important it is to continually optimize the strategies. The Frosmo Platform provides solutions for every aspect of personalization with automatics affinity tracking and self-optimizing recommendation algorithms.
Frosmo Search is an AI-powered solution designed to improve the customer experience regardless of your current search engine setup. For example:
- If you have no search set up on your site, Frosmo Search gives you one.
- You can improve your existing basic or traditional site search with a more advanced and robust search solution.
- Using Instant Search, you can connect visitors with relevant items already in the search field without the need to go to the search results page, which reduces the interaction cost of searching.
For a customer in consumer electronics ecommerce, we A/B tested Frosmo Instant Search against their previous search solution, and the results were impressive. During a three-week period:
- There were 596 purchases through Frosmo Search (191 purchases through the old search solution)
- Revenue created from these purchases was 127,300€ through Frosmo Search (52,400€ through the old search solution)
About the writer:
Katri Metsävuo works as Senior Documentation Specialist and Technical Copywriter at Frosmo.