Are you killing conversions with obsolete search – a 12 point checklist

Are you aligned with how shoppers search?

Your visitors search in different stages of the customer journey – when they know what they are looking for, when they are not sure and need guidance, or they want to solve a problem, but don’t know how.

1. Exact search terms, e.g. model # in electronics, or complex searches such as ‘red midi dress in size 12 sleeveless’.

2. Search with abbreviations e.g. 16”/ 16 in/ 16 inches OR oz/ ounce.

3. Search with spelling errors, or spelling variations? E.g. hair drier instead of hair dryer, or a typo such as Avacado.

4. Alternative words, such as flip flops instead of house slippers or thongs (yes, you – from Australia), or dress shirt instead of a formal shirt, bed sheet or bed linen.

5. Use plural word forms (tomato/ tomatoes), or use slang, shades instead of sunglasses.

6. Problem based search terms, e.g. ‘dry skin’ instead of ‘moisturizer, or ‘turmeric marks’ instead of ‘stain remover’ or ‘headache’ instead of ‘pills’.

Can you catch important intent signals?

There is a wealth of insights in shopper searches, that can be used for showing relevant results for the individual, and for improving overall results, and reducing zero hits.

7. Some terms are more critical than others – can you recognize a 11” sleeve (11” is important), or organic kale (organic is key).

8. Your shoppers’ collective searches can help you form associations between search terms and products/ categories, without changing product data. Self-learning algorithms can improve results without having to create rules, or working on data attributes.

9. This drives your differentiation – A shopper’s affinity for brands, products, categories or custom attributes such as concern type, color, price become known from their current session as well as history. If you can personalize their search experience using their profile (even if they are anonymous), you will be rewarded with higher engagement, conversions and loyalty.

Are you helping them explore your catalog?

Shoppers are often multi-tasking – they could be distracted or just need assistance with creating a shortlist. This is where search nuances come in.

10. As shoppers type, they may need inspiration. With predictive auto-complete similar to  what Google has trained the world on, you can make sure they don’t feel lost.

11. When products need multiple dimensions for selection, contextual facets and filters can help them narrow down their choices.

12. More than 50% traffic is now from mobile, and the limited screen real estate necessitates personalization. Finding the right result on the first page,what RichRelevance calls Findability, is negatively affected, since the user has to scroll more, use filters, and their journey is longer.

The personalized search box promises simplicity to the user, but is a powerful and sophisticated tool that can help marketers and merchandisers boost conversions, while retaining business controls and commitments around private labels, over-stock situations and trade promotions.

How do you score on these 12 points?

Do people really brush their teeth with an Electric Whisk?


Many households during the last few months have seen an increase in the amount of home baking going on and ours has been no different. The shouts of “Can I do some baking?” have been coming regularly from my kids, and thankfully a local bakery has been able to keep us well supplied with flour, and a local pub has supplied us with yeast.
The fresh bread and cakes have been a welcome addition to the tea breaks, but a recent broken electric whisk has limited some of the recipes unfortunately, and my search for a new one has in in turn led me to write this piece….

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“Make it all about me” is what we expect as consumers. No wonder then that personalization was voted marketing word of the year in 2019. It’s gratifying to note that personalization leaders are driving tangible revenue growth and more efficient marketing spend. However, only 15 percent of CMOs believe that their company is on the right track with personalization.

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These Days, Every Day is a Black Friday

Doubling of online grocery sales. 33% increase in ecommerce. As much as quadrupling of online sales in home entertainment, from streaming services to wine, beer and liquor.

Over the past 8 weeks, RichRelevance has witnessed a spike in traffic that mirrors the holiday shopping week around Thanksgiving. Said another way, it seems that now every day is Black Friday.

But can your real-time personalization provider handle this?

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2020: The Year Online Shopping Became a Viral Hit

Given the limitations that Covid-19 is imposing on nearly everyone’s lives, who’d have imagined not being able to do our grocery, consumer goods, electronics, entertainment (including restaurant food) shopping from a retail location?

What’s more, there is evidence to suggest that buying habits, once changed, are likely to become permanent. It’s estimated 25% of that buying will now happen online for the foreseeable future.

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Top Search: Hand Sanitizer at a Fashion Retailer?!

When reviewing the most searched terms for one of our clients, we noticed that the top most-searched term was: hand sanitizer.

No big deal if we were talking about a drugstore or supermarket, but no, we are talking about a FASHION retailer! Talk about a sign of the times we live in… people are desperately looking to overcome the shortage in their local stores with trusted online brands.

They say when life gives you lemons, make some lemonade.  So, what do we do when these lemons (searches) are dropped in our lap?  We turn them into money-making lemonade!

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How to become a CXO with Omnichannel Personalization

So you are a personalization expert – congratulations! You are now on the fast track to become a Chief-X-Officer.

That X can be Marketing (CMO), Merchandising (CM’O), Customer (CCO), Experience (CE’O) or Digital (CDO), and ultimately, become the Executive (CEO).

Here’s why personalization is putting all these titles on a convergent path, and you can choose any path as long as it has personalization in it.

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Experience Designer for Digital Marketers

Content creation is a heavy lift for most digital marketing orgs. Creating multiple variants is a huge challenge in itself. But how can you curate the content variety in a data-driven manner and target explicitly for a commerce audience?  With Experience Designer, you can jumpstart your content personalization. 

In the last post,  we learnt about the Experience Browser, the industry’s first solution for transparency in AI decisioning. Experience Designer plugs into the XB, leverages the Xen AI engine to determine the right targets automagically, and leverages your existing content to create campaigns. 

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