12 No Results Page Examples (+ 7 No Results Best Practices)

Did you know that approximately 15% of eCommerce searches result in users landing on a “no search results” page?

It’s like rounding a corner only to find that the street is closed for construction.

Not only is this frustrating and detrimental to the user experience, but it also means potentially losing a customer who may leave your website altogether.

So, what can you do to address this issue?

The key lies in providing users with an alternative path, a “detour” if you will, to guide them to their intended destination despite the closed street.

That’s precisely what we aim to teach you in this post: how to optimize your “no results” pages and transform them into valuable sales opportunities.

But before we dive into the solutions, it’s crucial to understand why these pages appear.

And no, it’s not always because the specific product is unavailable in your catalog or due to a lack of stock.

Let’s explore this further, shall we? 😉

👉 Why will your site search engine show a “no results” page if you carry the product?

If you have the product a user is looking for, we often assume that when they see the “no results” message, it’s because the product isn’t in your catalog.

While that can be true at times, there are many other cases where you actually do have the exact product they want. The issue lies in the search engine’s inability to understand the user.

  • This can happen when a person uses synonyms. For example, they may type “jump rope,” but you have it listed as “skipping rope.” Even though it’s the same item, the search engine can’t connect the two terms, leading to a “no results” page.
  • Spelling mistakes are another culprit. A user might unknowingly make a typo like typing “iPone” instead of “iPhone.” You already know what message they’ll see on their screen in that situation, right?

Regardless of the specific reason, the problem remains the same.

✅ What happens when the customer can’t find the product?

When it comes to the “no results” page, it’s important to avoid its appearance if possible. However, if it does show up, it’s crucial to optimize it for a better user experience.

  • Encountering a “no results” page can be frustrating for users, similar to finding a street closed due to road construction. It forces them to either conduct another search or navigate through your categories in hopes of finding the product they want, assuming they haven’t already left your store.
  • The risk here is losing the customer altogether. If users see a “no results” page, they might assume that you don’t carry the product they’re looking for and switch to a different eCommerce platform.

So, what can you do to redirect these users effectively?

Instead of simply displaying a “No search results” banner, it’s crucial to provide alternative options for them to continue browsing.

In the upcoming sections, we will discuss these strategies in detail.

Bonus: Towards the end of this post, we will also share tips on how to minimize the frequency of the “no results” page. 😉

👉 7 best practices to optimize your “no results” page

Let’s get the ball rolling.

Make sure you write this advice down to improve user experience.

✅ 1. Offer tips to “fine-tune” their search results

When faced with a simple “no search results” message, users can feel dismissed, just like receiving a cold response in a physical store. It’s natural for them to want to leave right away.

To avoid this, it’s crucial to establish a “dialogue” with the user and guide them towards alternative options.

Here are some suggestions that can be included on a “no results” page:

  1. “Please ensure that you have typed the search term correctly.”
  2. “Try using more general terms to broaden your search.”
  3. “Consider using synonyms or related terms to expand your search.”
  4. “Explore our popular categories to discover similar products.”
  5. “Check out our featured items for some great recommendations.”
  6. “Need assistance finding what you’re looking for? Contact our customer support for personalized help.”

An excellent example of a “no results” page that implements these suggestions can be found in Cotswold Outdoor’s eCommerce platform.

By offering these prompts and suggestions, you engage users in a conversation and provide them with alternative paths to explore.

This not only improves their experience but also increases the chances of them finding a suitable product and completing a purchase.

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It’s essential to convey empathy and apologize to the user when they encounter a “no search results” page, just as a salesperson would in a physical store.

This helps create a more natural and conversational tone in the text.

Another effective approach is exemplified by Living Proof’s store, where they not only provide helpful suggestions but also include a search box, encouraging users to try again.

However, it’s important to acknowledge that many users might not even take the time to read the message initially.

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To address this, we need to go one step further in capturing their attention and guiding them toward alternative options.

✅ 2. Show your online store’s categories

In real-life situations, when a street is closed due to road construction, detour signs are placed to guide traffic and keep it moving smoothly.

Similarly, in an online store, we can provide a “detour” for users by highlighting the main store categories.

This ensures that users know their way around and can continue browsing.

In addition to offering search advice, Cole-Parmer has implemented featured categories on their website.

This way, even if users don’t find the specific product they were looking for, they have convenient categories to explore.

This keeps them engaged and provides alternative options to discover relevant products within the store.

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Here’s another great approach implemented by Best Buy’s eCommerce platform.

By displaying not only featured categories but also every single category available in their store, they provide users with a comprehensive overview of their product offerings.

This allows users to easily navigate through various categories and find alternative options even if their initial search doesn’t yield the desired results.

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Having all the categories visible gives users a clear understanding of the breadth of products available and helps them explore different sections of the store that they might not have considered initially.

This strategy enhances the chances of users discovering relevant products and encourages them to continue browsing within Best Buy’s eCommerce site.

By showcasing all categories, Best Buy creates a user-friendly experience that empowers users to find suitable alternatives and keeps them engaged with a wide range of product options.

✅ 3. Offer alternatives on your “no results found” page

Providing alternative options or similar products to the ones users initially searched for is a fantastic way to emulate the helpfulness of a good salesperson in a physical store.

On an eCommerce platform, the “no results” page can be utilized to showcase these alternatives and guide users towards making a purchase, even if they couldn’t find the exact product they were looking for.

Some effective strategies for displaying alternative products on a “no results” page include:

  1. Different models or variations of the same product: Presenting users with similar products from different brands, styles, or specifications can offer them a range of options to choose from.
  2. Bestsellers: Showcasing popular and highly-rated products can guide users towards items that are frequently purchased and well-regarded by other customers.
  3. Sales or discounted items: Highlighting products that are currently on sale or have special offers can entice users to consider these options as alternatives.
  4. Products viewed by other users: Leveraging social proof, and displaying products that have been recently viewed or purchased by other users can influence the decision-making process and encourage users to explore those options.

Absolutely! Providing alternative options or similar products to the ones users initially searched for is a fantastic way to emulate the helpfulness of a good salesperson in a physical store.

On an eCommerce platform, the “no results” page can be utilized to showcase these alternatives and guide users towards making a purchase, even if they couldn’t find the exact product they were looking for.

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The Disney Store adopts a different strategy by showcasing favorite seasonal products on their “no results” page. 

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✅ 4. Customize product recommendations

Customizing product recommendations based on individual user behavior, such as previous searches and already-viewed products, can have a tremendous impact on improving the customer experience and increasing the conversion rate.

By tailoring recommendations to each user’s specific interests and preferences, you create a more personalized and relevant shopping experience.

Zooplus demonstrates this approach effectively.

After browsing their website and visiting several canned cat food product pages, when you subsequently perform a search that leads to a “no results” page, Zooplus takes the opportunity to display product recommendations that are directly related to the previously viewed product cards.

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✅ 5. “Did you mean…?”

It’s common for users to make typing mistakes, especially when using mobile devices or typing quickly.

In such cases, having a search engine that offers corrections can greatly improve the user experience and help users find what they’re looking for, even with typos or misspelled words.

Mr. Wonderful’s example of providing search corrections is a valuable feature.

When users enter a search query with errors or misspellings, the search engine suggests corrections or alternative search terms that are more likely to yield relevant results.

This feature saves users time and frustration by guiding them towards the correct or intended search terms.

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When you type “dud”, it tells you there are no matches for your search, but it shows similar words for which there are results (the way Google does when you misspell a word).

GAP also utilizes the concept of search corrections to enhance the user experience.

When users enter a search term that doesn’t yield any direct matches, GAP store’s search engine automatically provides a correction suggestion.

For example, if you type “sok,” the search engine corrects it to “soft” and informs you that there are results available for the corrected term.

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By skipping the step in between, it gets more user-friendly and it improves search experience.

As you can see, having a smart search engine comes in handy 😉

✅ 6. Microcopy for your no results page

Copywriting or persuasive writing plays a crucial role in encouraging users to take specific actions on a website, such as making a purchase.

When it comes to short, concise text elements like buy buttons or “no results” pages, we refer to it as microcopy.

The primary goal of microcopy is to engage and guide users, keeping them actively browsing and potentially making a purchase.

It’s an opportunity to inject personality and create a positive emotional connection with the user.

Disney Store provides an excellent example of using humorous microcopy to maintain a cheerful and optimistic tone.

By having one of Disney’s beloved characters tell users, “Don’t be sad! We can find it!”, they effectively convey a sense of empathy, reassurance, and a commitment to helping users find what they’re looking for.

This approach not only helps alleviate any potential disappointment from encountering a “no results” page but also creates a lighthearted and enjoyable user experience.

By infusing microcopy with Disney’s well-known charm and characters, they capture the attention and imagination of users, keeping them engaged and motivated to continue exploring the website.

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So now you know; be creative and give this website a personal touch.

✅ 7. Provide contact information

Indeed, some e-commerce websites opt to provide a contact form or a chat window as a means for customers to reach out with any queries or concerns they may have. Agricolors follows a similar approach and goes the extra mile by including a reassuring message: “We’re here for you.”

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Jimmy Choo takes a comprehensive approach to customer support by offering multiple channels for contact.

In addition to providing a search box to facilitate further exploration, they also provide a contact number and a customer service email address.

By offering these contact options, Jimmy Choo ensures that customers can reach out through their preferred communication method, whether it be phone or email.

This approach allows for direct interaction and personalized assistance, catering to different customer preferences.

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👉 Ideally, you should look for a smart site search engine to decrease no results 

We’ve explored some effective practices for optimizing a “no results” page, which is crucial for situations where it’s unavoidable, such as when a specific product is unavailable.

However, what if we told you that it’s possible to significantly reduce the number of searches that result in a “No results found” message to just 1.3%?

That’s a substantial difference compared to the initial 15% figure!

The key to achieving this lies in implementing a powerful search engine capable of handling synonyms and typos to provide users with relevant results.

Not all search engines possess this capability, but what you need is an advanced and intelligent search engine, often referred to as a “smart” search engine.

Doofinder is an example of such a smart site search. It utilizes Natural Language Processing (NLP) technology and artificial intelligence to understand synonyms and identify common typos made by your customers.

By harnessing these features, Doofinder significantly reduces the occurrence of no-results searches, often approaching zero.

Many stores that have implemented Doofinder have experienced a notable increase in sales, ranging from 10% to 20%.

If you’re interested in experiencing the benefits for yourself, you can click here to install Doofinder in your store and take advantage of their 30-day free trial.

👉 So what about your “no search results found” page?

Now that you have gained valuable insights on optimizing your store’s “no results” page, you are well-equipped to transform it into a pathway toward sales.

By putting this advice into practice, you can ensure that you don’t miss out on any potential customers.

Remember to focus on enhancing user experience by offering alternatives, providing search guidance, and utilizing effective microcopy.

Guide users with clear and helpful suggestions, showcase relevant product recommendations and consider implementing advanced search technology like Doofinder to minimize the occurrence of “no results” searches.

By implementing these strategies, you can create a seamless and engaging shopping experience for your customers, increasing the chances of them finding alternative products or continuing their exploration within your store.

This proactive approach will not only improve customer satisfaction but also contribute to higher conversion rates and increased sales.

So, take action and optimize your “no results” page to ensure that every customer interaction leads them closer to making a purchase.

With these techniques in place, you’ll be well-prepared to provide a smooth and enjoyable shopping journey for your visitors.

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