How Enterprise Search Helps Spread Holiday Cheer
It's hard to believe, but the holiday shopping season is winding down. While previously this may have meant braving the crowds and lines at the mall starting on Black Friday, more consumers are embracing the comfort and ease of online shopping. During the 2013 holiday shopping season (November and December), U.S. e-commerce sales reached $46.55 billion, accounting for 23.5 percent of total sales. This year figures to be no different. Consumers are increasingly shopping online for sales instead of rushing out to stores. In fact, online prices were forecast to hit rock bottom on Thanksgiving Day, with an average discount of 24 percent. Cyber Monday is expected to rake in $1,735 million, with the average shopper spending $124.82.
While these numbers may seem daunting to retailers, there's an unexpected way online holiday shopping traffic can be managed and optimized to help boost customer satisfaction — enterprise search.
Why Search Must Keep Up With the Increase in Shoppers
The search bar is commonly overlooked by website designers, retailers and marketers. This is troubling considering that it's often the first thing that visitors go to, especially if they have a specific item in mind. Therefore, it's extremely important that your search function makes a good first impression.
To achieve this, make sure your search box is easy to find and functions properly to avoid a high bounce rate from visitors not being able to find what they're looking for. To that end, use the search bar to suggest products to shoppers — especially ones that are related to the product they initially searched for. Employing an advanced search function is also good for this, as it will introduce additional options.
Lastly, make sure that your search box can handle the influx of traffic during the peak holiday shopping season. The last thing you want is for shoppers to walk away empty-handed because of search results coming up too slowly or, worse, not at all. Just like on any website, end-user function must be top of mind. A good user experience will translate into more customers won.