Selecting and implementing a content management system is a big undertaking. A CMS is the bedrock of your website and overall content ecosystem, allowing your business to present its best self to both employees and customers. If you've recently accomplished this — congratulations!
But don't file away that checklist just yet.
As comprehensive as a CMS can be, your website needs more. A CMS allows your team to construct an intuitive hierarchy of information, enabling visitors to peruse at their own convenience, navigating tabs and collections to eventually find what they're looking for.
Here's the issue, though: according to Forrester Research, 43% of customers immediately go to a website's search bar when they visit. As sensible as your content layout may be, customers these days want to be served. Your website needs to come alive, acting like a personal assistant for curious shoppers, rather than passively expecting them to traverse a menu structure.
Put another way: only having a well-organized CMS and website is like having an attractive, enticing, and well-designed brick-and-mortar clothing store. Everything is in a logical and aesthetically pleasing order, from sizes to colors to style collections. For many customers, this'll do just fine — they want to shop on their own. And so curating this experience is a must-do.
But many customers are looking for something specific — and expect to find it quickly — and that's when a store representative asking "how can I help you?" is welcomed and appreciated.
Your website can do that with better search.
Supercharging your website
Whether you use Adobe, WordPress, Drupal, Acquia, or another CMS provider, choose one that plays nicely with other platforms. An open ecosystem is key to utilizing premium offerings in key areas.
Our area, of course, is search.
With Yext's many integrations with CMS partners (namely with the above platforms!) businesses can easily integrate modern, AI-powered search into their website. By quickly syncing all existing CMS-based content into a Yext Knowledge Graph, the duo of a content-rich foundation and search platform that understands natural language provides a more helpful and intuitive site experience. Yext's Marketing Answers platform has been shown to lead to a 37% reduction in bounce rate and 2.6x higher time on site.
And those results are from an expected four weeks of implementation, at costs typically 8.7 times less expensive than building in-house from scratch.
Matching your customers' intent
Why do we see results like these? Because the modern customer wants direct answers to complex questions. Going back to our in-person clothing shopping experience: on an anecdotal level (and maybe more so pre-pandemic), people went into stores explicitly to browse. To see the latest trends, and maybe grab a cinnabon at the mall. Sometimes they had intent, but many times that intent is limited, but they were looking for something to do. Here's where a well-structured site (only) plays well. Cool-looking store; had fun.
Things are a little different online. Yes, people do online shop without intent as well — browsing has a double meaning here. But do people really just visit specific brand websites, regularly, as a form of entertainment? Usually, something brings them there: an ad, a sale, or — more often than not — a question. Consumers visit websites for specific reasons. By only giving them a usable interface with tabs (and really, who wants more tabs), but without a modern search experience, businesses aren't matching their customers' level of intent. They're saying, "here's what we generally offer — go find it."
Meanwhile, a helpful search experience says, "how can I help?"
To learn more about how our search platform integrates with CMS partners, visit here.