Site Search Features for eCommerce: 17 Improvements

If your site search has the features discussed here, you will reduce the abandonment rate of your online store, increase your eCommerce conversion rate, and increase the time spent on your web page. 

When most users reach an online store where they can make a purchase, the first thing they do is look for the search engine to find the product or category of products that they want to buy. 

And if the search engine cannot find it in less than 3 seconds … They will leave your store. 

In this post, we will tell you of the 17 best site search features and key characteristics that you should consider for your eCommerce.

We will begin with what we just mentioned …

1. Visibility of your internal site search

We are sure that at some time you have tried to find the search engine of an online store, and it was difficult to find the magnifying glass or search box.

The location of an eCommerce search engine must be a priority on your Home Page. On all other pages as well, but especially on the home page. 

Look at Amazon, in its computer and mobile formats. Its site search extends the entire width of the page, centered and at the top. 

site search feature eCommerce

2. Benefits of site search suggestions

As with the Google or the Amazon search engines, users write and the site search immediately shows a list of suggestions. And in the best case what you were searching for is almost always on this list. 

In Google’s case, these suggestions are based on the latest relevant searches made for the term written.

suggestions site search

Your eCommerce should be the same

For example, on the Cecotec web page, you can see how this function is implemented when you write any term in the search box. For example, when you write Cecotec, below you will see the search suggestions in gray:

site search cecotec

This may happen for two reasons:

  • Because they are the terms most sought when the user begins to write Cecotec or because it was strategically decided that these are the products that they want to show and increase sales, so this has been manually and deliberately implemented. 
  • Thanks to the search suggestions function, you can guide your potential clients to purchase the products that you are most interested in selling and also facilitate the purchase process, making it easier with a smooth, natural process with fewer steps.

3. No results page management

On average, 15% of online store searches end in a “no results” page. 

This 15% of searches which have no results are because:

👉 You do not have the product sought

If you do not have the product, surely you have other products that can substitute it.

If there is a search for “Nike” and you have no Nike products, but you do have “Adidas” products, why not show those? You can also add a banner at the top of the site search, advising that you do not have those products by Nike, but you do have them from Adidas. 

This is, for example, what one of our clients, Mysweetstep, does. In this case, they do not have Adidas products, so they show a banner informing that they do not have that brand, but they do have other similar products from Converse.

"no results" site search example

👉 Spelling error in the search

Typing errors are common when writing on the Internet, either on a keyboard or on a mobile. It is important that your site search understand this, so if the search is for a “mobile” but the term written is “mobil”, your search engine returns the same results. 

This also happens in the Vodafone web; if you write “Samsung mobil” in your search engine, you will receive that fearful message “sorry no results found”: 

No synonyms feature has been activated in your search engine

Most search engines do not understand that “slipper”, “shoe” or “sandal” have exactly the same meaning, so that the same results should appear for each search.

This video shows a clear example of the problem when you do not show any results to a search in your eCommerce:

4. Personalized search results for your eCommerce

Can you control the order in which the search results appear? 

The first results receive the most clicks. For example, let’s say your leading product is “coats”.

  • Do you first show coats that are most beneficial for your sales?

Do you show the coats with the most frequent sales? 

  • Or do you not know how these searches appear?

The first thing that you must know in order to personalize your search results … is the next point.

Statistics

Did you know that on average 15% of an eCommerce searches do not have any results? Do you know what that percentage is in your shop online? 

Do you know what product is the object of the most searches in your eCommerce? The one with most clicks? The one most sold through the site search? The conversion rate through the search engine?

This information is absolutely essential for you to be able to set an effective digital strategy for your eCommerce.

 With Doofinder, you can have all of this information, visually grouped for your review whenever you want 🙂 

5. Detail and specifications of the search results

Like Google, you always show a “preview” of the content before you click on the result. Whether a text describing the result, a picture … etc. 

You should do the same in your eCommerce:

👉 “Add to cart” button

Offer the option of adding a product to the shopping cart with just one click, without having to leave the search process. This will encourage the purchase of various products.

👉 Discounts and product evaluations

The next example shows the product evaluation (with stars), a discount coupon and the discount applied to the final price.

Discounts and  product evaluation

👉 Good quality pictures

Show good quality pictures; do not use pixelated images or, even worse … broken images!

6. Site search design for mobile devices

Web pages are constantly more adapted to mobile devices, but very few adapt their search functionality for these devices. 

Having options such as product filters (by size, color, etc.), rapid load of products while the user types, adapting the design of the search layer, search by image and by voice, search suggestions … 

There are many factors to take into account when offering a good search in your eCommerce. 

>>>EXTRA SUGGESTION: “With Doofinder, with just one clic the mobile version of your site search will be featuring with practically no extra configuration needed to have all functions mentioned above. And you have 30 days free”

7. Image Search

This is a new way of searching the Internet through Google or through online store search engines. 

An image search consists of uploading an image in your eCommerce search engine that returns results that are visually similar to the image uploaded.

In the video shared below you will see a real example from an online store that uses the Doofinder image search engine: 

8. Voice Search

Every day more people have home assistants like Alexa or Google Home. And every day these voice assistants are asked questions or asked for information, and even to buy products online. 

In recent years much have changed in society’s purchasing habits, and purchasing by voice Internet search is one of those changes

👉 Voice searches on mobile devices

In online stores is constantly more common, and in a few years will be a regular habit. Prepare your online store, product descriptions and characteristics, so that these can be found both in writing and by voice. Create contents that satisfy the expectations of both searches, creating a useful and structured content.

✅ 9. Sales Banners, a good feature for your eCommerce

How do you maximize certain brands or products? Discounts? Black Friday? 

Insert sales banners in your site search to maximize the sale of determined products, increase the visibility of certain brands or as a publicity and sponsorship tool.  

10. Artificial Intelligence

Your search engine by default speaks various languages, knows synonyms and knows that when you write “tshtir” you mean “t-shirt”.

You should have a smart site search that is almost self-taught to know what products to drive, what suggestions to make and what related products to offer. 

👉 Technology NLP

We are talking about Natural Language Processing, which is able to under what a user is searching for through synonyms and suggests the best  results thanks to its self-taught knowledge.

Site search featuring Artificial intelligence

✅ 11. Faceted navigation feature

Faceted Search, also known as “navigation by facets”, allows your users to use different filters or facets to quickly and easily find the product that they are looking for. 

👉 Groups of facets

Characteristics

Brand, color, size, materials …

Ranges

Numeric intervals that can be personalized, such as minimum and maximum price.

✅ 12. Types of search layers

There are different types of search layers. Some are centered on images of the products that you offer, such as fullscreen designs (typical in fashion webs), layers such as the Doofinder Live-Layer” (typical of online stores with a large product catalog, such as electronics stores or perfumes and cosmetics sites) and others that are more compact that do not show images, when the text is more important to find a product (such as in the case of bookstores, for example).

If you want to know more about types of search layers, visit our list of search layers.

✅ 13. Geolocation

Do you know the where your eCommerce searches are coming from? 

Both Analytics and the control panel of a search engine like Doofinder can tell you the sites where the clients launch a search of your store, including the countries, cities or regions with better or lower conversion rate.

14. Product recommendation

There are various ways to take advantage of product recommendations to trigger the conversion of your eCommerce in your own site search.

👉 Social Proof

How many people read a book just because it is a bestseller? There’s no way to avoid it, nothing generates more confidence knowing that “if people are buying it, it’s for a reason”.

👉 Complementary or related products

By “upselling” (recommending a better product to the user than the one he had though of buying) or “cross-selling” or cross sale (if buying a computer, offer a keyboard and mouse). 

✅ 15. Design according to the web

The design of your site search must respect the identity of your web page. It must respect the corporate image of your trademark, colors and essence … So the search engine does not conflict with the look and feel of your web page. 

Adjust the CSS styles of your search engine, use your colors and font of your trademark. Your site search should not clash with the design of your online store.

✅ 16. Synonyms an important site search feature

The search engine in your online store must be able to understand synonyms. And if this is not natural, then you must have the option of identifying these synonyms that occur in searches of your eCommerce, so that you can configure them in order to prevent the dreaded … “Im sorry, no results”, and the resulting exit from your page. 

We recommend that you look at the searches made of your online store to identify the terms that are not giving the results expected by your users.

✅ 17. Out of Stock Products

You must decide how products will appear when they are no longer in stock, that is if you want them to continue appearing in your site search. 

No user wants to click on a product expecting to buy it, and find that it is out of stock. You can either indicate this directly in the site search results, or you can exclude out of stock products so they do not appear in the results. This second option has a risk: your client may think that you do not have the product, while he may not mind waiting a few days for you to replenish your stock. 

The ideal option is for the site search results to show that the product is out of stock and indicate when it will be available, and even offer the possibility of reserving the product for shipment when it is available, or sending a notice.


All of the features and characteristics mentioned above are available in Doofinder.

If you wish, you can try all of these features (and more) for 30 days, completely free of charge. 

BEGIN YOU  FREE 30 DAY TRIAL

FREE EBOOKS