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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : October 21, 2011

Report: On-site search pushing clicks

High search query results - numbers one through twenty, typically - get the most attention from people using engines like Google or Yahoo. But, similar results are now being found with on-site retail searches, too. According to the Searchandise report about 66% of clicks happen within the top twenty results from retail site searches.

by Kristina Knight

The top three returned results account for 33% of clicks on retail websites according to Searchandise.

"Retail sites have emerged as strong media vehicles giving advertisers access to the ultimate in true behavioral targeting. After all, who is more important to influence than the consumer researching TVs on a retail site?" said John Federman, president and CEO, Searchandise Commerce. "Further, this research identifies the payback for retailers who have invested deeply to make their sites relied upon resources for consumers. The fact that the clicks are distributed more evenly than on paid search engines makes sense - retailers are delivering search results that are relevant with product selections and shopper intent."

As for how off-site search engines are pushing traffic, Google remains a dominant force, accounting for 66% of queries according to Experian/Hitwise. Longer search queries are gaining momentum, however, with Experian's data findings queries of eight or more words increasing by about 3% (August to September).

What this means for retail sites is that on-site search is as important if not moreso than SEM campaigns placed with engines like Google, Bing or Yahoo. Online merchants need to optimize the content on their sites - from product specifications and images to sales information - so that consumers who land on-site get the search results they need while in the store.

Tags: Experian Hitwise, on-site search, retail search, search marketing, Searchandise, SEM

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