In the high-speed world we live in today, customers expect to be able to access exactly what they want quickly.
More often than not, someone will arrive at your website with something specific in mind, like a certain product that they need.
And if a user has to wade through your website until they find the content they came for, they very well might turn around and look elsewhere. Which, of course, is something we want to avoid at all costs.
There are too many businesses that brush off internal search engines as unnecessary when in fact, there are several major benefits to investing in a high-quality internal search function.
They might consider that an adequately organized navigation function, such as drop-down menus, is enough for their users to get where they want to be. But businesses with that mindset are missing out on tremendous amounts of customer insight as well as potential conversions.
Let's talk about how a modern search experience can significantly improve your website.
Creating a fluid and easy-to-use interface is paramount when it comes to designing your webpage.
Your goal should be to present your content to incoming users in a convenient way, so that they not only stick around but come back to you when they have new needs.
Keeping in mind that customer benefits also benefit the business, here are some reasons why an internal search function will greatly increase your user satisfaction and successful conversions.
Customers Prefer Efficiency
According to recent studies, almost half of your online visitors go straight to the search bar on your website. Why? Because they know precisely what it is that they're looking for and they don't want to venture through the pages of your site sifting through content to get there.
Even if you have a wildly entertaining and well-designed site, users value their time above all else. An optimized internal search engine takes them straight to what they're looking for, saving time for them and increasing the rate of success for you.
In fact, adding internal site search can exponentially increase conversions; just by making your products or information easier to find.
While users that browse your inventory are of course still valuable, site-searchers are significantly more likely to have successful contact.
Imagine an online bookstore. While customers who visit the in-person store might search for what they're looking for and spend some time browsing as well, online users are likely to have a specific book in mind.
Instead of clicking through a navigation system of drop-down menus the consumer wants to find what they're looking for quickly and make the purchase. While you could still lure them in with algorithms that develop a "You Might Also Like…" type suggestion section, your user won't even get that far if they can't find what they initially came for.
Provide The Answers That You Want People To Find
A disorganized and open search bar can potentially be as detrimental to you and your business as not having a search bar at all.
If you have a simple search bar on your website that isn't personalized to your business's specific page index then, your user might end up with search results that include unrelated pages that simply share a few similar meta tags.
Or even worse, products and websites of competitors.
This is because simplistic business search bars use keyword search technology. The search engine is simply reaching for the words that the user typed.
But Yext has the answer. We've developed and implemented the next generation of search bar that doesn't simply find results based on keywords. We recognize phrases and tags in order to localize results to your specific business, returning the results that you want your users to see.
On top of that, our search engine uses in-depth parameters like the time of day and the user's location to return focused and useful information to them, increasing the rate of success and user satisfaction.
Limiting search results to a list of prioritized and intuitive responses simplifies the user experience, making customers feel confident in your website as a whole.
Having an internal search engine on your page has several major advantages to your users as we've discussed, but there are also notable benefits to your business.
Gain Access to Customer Insight
Having an internal search doesn't just add convenience to the customer experience, it also greatly benefits the business as well.
Having insight into what your customers are searching for and when is extremely valuable for marketing and strategy purposes. Beyond successful sales and typical marketing analysis, internal search gives you open access to what consumers are most interested in on your sight.
When you use Yext Answers, our easy-to-use internal search bar service, we catalog every search query your users input. This data shows you potential opportunities you may be missing and what content your customers value the most.
Be Able To Offer Relevant Recommendations
We mentioned that internal search bars create focused and limited search results that users appreciate because it streamlines their experience on your page.
But there is a balance, and taking advantage of the insights that an internal search can provide it becomes possible to offer your users products or content related to what they searched for.
Imagine you run a high-end soap business and you have a user coming to your site looking for a particular scent of soap.
With the data that an internal search bar provides, you can offer your user a curated collection of scents that other users that searched for the same product also purchased or were interested in.
So while an internal search bar offers a fast-paced experience to your user enabling them to successfully go in and out of your page to get what they want, it also allows you to offer user-educated options to them of your other, related products.
This is particularly important if the product your user is searching for isn't available. If your website has no backup suggestion, the customer will immediately be on their way instead of checking out other products that may be similar enough to what they were looking for.
What Companies Benefit From Internal Search
Any business that has an online portal for its content and products would benefit from an internal search function.
As we've mentioned, nearly two-thirds of all online visitors will not return to your site if it's not streamlined and easy to use. This makes it more important than ever to have a system in place to help get your users to exactly what they're looking for.
Not to mention the amount of consumer insight an internal search bar can provide to your business will benefit your marketing team, developers, and product design team. Knowing exactly what your audience is looking for and being able to provide for that demand is the key to a successful business.
Users enjoy websites that make finding what they're looking for as easy as possible, and that's exactly what an internal search bar sets out to be.
Especially when you work with Yext because our goal is to always be reaching into the future to develop the most cutting-edge search function to benefit your business and your clients.
Internal search bars have a ton of value to your customer and your business.
They provide an enhanced experience for your users and a new way for you to interact with them and personalize their time on your page.
And the insights they provide will strengthen the way you organize your products and market your content. Being able to catalog and analyze the content on your website that users are frequently searching for is invaluable to a business.