Site search is a critical part of website success. It’s an integral part of the customer journey but is still sometimes overlooked by eCommerce websites. Shoppers are searching more and the way they search is also changing. What can your site do to keep up?
The short answer is natural language search. The truth is that today’s search queries are more likely to look more like natural language than very exact search strings. Conversational search occurs more often than typing specific keywords.
A big part of the reason why is down to mobile phones and virtual assistants such as Siri and Alexa. People tend to shop on mobile much more and often use voice commands to look for information. According to research, revenue from voice commerce could reach $80 billion a year by next year. Your eCommerce site should position itself so that it can enjoy a part of this increased revenue pie. With natural language search, that’s easier thing to do.
But let’s look at the reasons why this is the case.
What do shoppers expect when searching?
The above is to say that natural language search support can help your eCommerce site a great deal. When a customer visits your website and uses the site search, they expect to:
- Be understood
- Not have to worry about spelling or grammar rules
- Find relevant results, even if they don’t quite know the exact thing they are after
- Be able to use natural, conversational words
Your customers don’t want to have to figure out how your site search works. It simply has to work. If a customer types in a search query and finds no relevant results, they are more likely to leave and abandon their search. On Google, visitors might start looking for different ways to search. But on an eCommerce site, a customer is more likely to simply go look from another website altogether. Customer attention span can be fickle on eCommerce sites. That’s why you need to ensure customers find the products and information they want as soon as possible.
How does natural language search work?
Natural Language Understanding (NLU) is a big thing for your site search. The term refers to the ability of software to understand and make sense of human languages. It requires the software to specifically understand how we humans form sentences. Thanks to AI, NLU is becoming a common thing for software to implement.
For example, a search engine that doesn’t support NLU might have a hard time providing relevant results to a query like “I want a healthy drink that supports bones”. But with natural language search, your eCommerce site can respond with relevant products and not just a list of random items. If your site search doesn’t have natural language support, results can end up listing irrelevant items that match the query for ‘healthy’ even when they aren’t a drink, for example!
Natural language search can improve your site by enhancing its semantic search. This is a search that interprets the meaning behind the query and allows it to match related concepts with relevant results. With semantic search and natural language, you can identify search intent and not just focus on the exact search terms. Just like in the above example, you ensure the search result isn’t narrowed down by being exact but understood as a broader concept.
AI-enhanced natural language search also makes it easy to use filtering techniques. You could create filters based on the use of natural language. You can monitor your site search better and adjust as you learn how, when and why your customers use specific search terms.
3 benefits of adding natural language search on your site
Natural language search can provide your eCommerce site with multiple benefits, not least with conversion rates. You can drive your conversion due to natural language search’s ability to:
- Improve search results. It’s simple and obvious but a natural language search boosts your search results. Customers can find what they need easier and without hassle. Irrelevant search results are among the major frustration points to customers so enhancing this can boost conversion rates.
- Give more personalised results. Your results are not just more accurate but often much more personalised. Different customers can want different things. AI-powered natural language search learns and adapts to specific customer queries.
- Make customers come back for more. If you can provide accurate and personalised search results, chances are the customer finds what they want and makes a shopping decision. The smooth journey from coming to the site, making a search and buying a product can help you give the customer a positive experience that leads to them wanting to shop with you again.
Overall, these three big benefits give you higher conversion rates to competing websites. Your customers can find what they want quicker. You recommend and show them products they are actually interested to see, and you make the journey from browsing to buying easier.
How to add natural language search on your site
Getting your site search working well can make or break your business. One of the most important features to include is natural language search. At Expertrec, we want to ensure your customers find what they are looking for as fast as possible. Our software uses natural language processing and AI learning. You can make customers find the desired products with simple search functionality and personalised results.
Adding a natural language search on your site shouldn’t be complicated. That’s why you can enjoy a fast installation and benefit from our customer support. You can provide better customer service to your customers, and grow your eCommerce business. The software makes it easy to customise your site search accordingly. You can use the functionalities you want – whether it is including different language support or allowing voice search on different devices.
Contact us for more information and we’ll answer any questions you might have!