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Use Search Analytics & Reporting to Boost Conversions

We all know that collecting data about how visitors search for and use content is crucial to success. While this task is easier said than done, it is possible if you properly leverage search analytics. So let’s talk about a few things you should always keep in mind when trying to increase conversions.

Track Visitor Activity

Make sure that your search solution enables you to easily collect, analyze, and report upon the essential search-related performance metrics. These metrics include:

  • Search volume: The number of queries performed on the website
  • Queries and keywords: The most popular query formulations, keywords, and queries that do not return results
  • Average click rank: The average rank of results being clicked to end a search session
  • Click-through rate: The rate at which people are clicking on results after performing a search query

Using these metrics as a window into your visitors’ behaviors and actions, you can easily determine the demand for certain gaps in content or changing market trends. Additionally, the integration of Coveo with Sitecore allows administrators to set particular goals or conversions for an even deeper and more complete view of the customer.

Map Search Activities to KPIs

Outcomes that measure site performance are what really matter. These outcomes could include conversions, asset downloads, likes, ticket submissions, shopping cart activity, form submission etc. Ensure your search solution can map search activity to “custom events” that are important for your site. With this additional data, you’ll be able to base your optimization decisions on the metrics that are critical to your business.

Slice-and-Dice by Attribute

By combining dimensions, metrics, and filters, you have a rich pool of data that can be used to visualize everything happening with search on your site. This data includes:

  • Keywords and documents clicked
  • Browser and OS used
  • Device and physical location
  • Visitor persona or profile
  • Explicit visitor identity

Activity-related metrics are essential for optimizing search and the overall performance of your website. However, you also need to ensure that your solution allows you to capture and “slice-and-dice” these metrics over the dimensions that are important to your business.

Track Every Search Experience

Chances are you use search to power multiple pages on your website: a global search page, multiple search-driven content pages, and possibly dedicated, more narrowly scoped search pages. Search behavior can be quite varied from one search UI to another. Therefore it’s best to monitor and optimize them independently. Make sure that your solution has the flexibility to track each search experience independently and also allows you to create reports that isolate search statistics per search interface.

Curate Your Content

Every query with low relevance is an indication that you need to improve your results, and therefore an opportunity to move your customer to conversion. There will always be some queries that are not relevant to your website content but make sure the most common keywords always link to relevant synonyms or content.
A simple and effective method is to look at all the queries that are not performing well (identified by low click through, high average click rank, or returning no results). From there, do one of the following:

  • Create thesaurus entries related to those keywords in your current taxonomy
  • Create content relevant to your poorly performing keywords
  • Tag existing content with those keywords

Ensure relevant and natural results by curating your content in this manner.

Curate Your Experience

Simple search interfaces are often the most efficient ones. And the right search analytics can provide you with valuable information which will help optimize your search interface.
Analyze visitor interactions with your search interface to find out what facet and sort options your visitors use most often. Remove the options that are not used to avoid unhelpful results. From there reorder features and controls based on their popularity, and try some new options with the new real estate you just created. Iteration is often a good way to find out the best UX your visitors will really use.
For more information on how to improve your user experience, download our guide,  Top Tips To Boost Conversions With Personalized Site Search.

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Jessica Karasek

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