Do you have a search engine on your site? If so, do you know how it performs? If you look beyond the basics, such as the number of pages indexed, you can collect a great deal of valuable information that can help measure overall site effectiveness.
Having an on-site search function can affect visitor behavior and desired visitor behavior. Search is often a default behavior, the first thing people do when they come to a site. In many cases, visitors don't even explore the navigation, but go straight to the search box. No matter what percentage of visitors rely on search as a first or second option, maximizing the effectiveness and value of your on-site search is imperative.
We work with a number of on-site search tools, each with different levels of sophistication and reporting capabilities. There are also a number of metrics for understanding on-site search's effect. Here are a few to consider:
This is another example of how to use Web analytics to understand site performance. They aren't generic or prepackaged reports you'll find in WebTrends, Omniture, HBX, or the other tools out there, but all can provide data points you need to understand performance. Think about the issues you want to solve rather than focus on standard, prepackaged reports.
Once you understand these behaviors, you can tune your on-site search or site navigation based on what people search for or what you want them to find. On-site search behavior is often only reviewed at a high level, but the information that can be gleaned from it can help greatly improve user experience, and often, improve your key conversion metrics.
As the Chief Performance Marketing Officer for POSSIBLE, Jason supports the agency's global Marketing Sciences and Media Services programs.
His primary role is to help POSSIBLE teams and clients use data to craft digital strategies that attract, convert, and retain customers - maximizing ongoing ROI across paid, earned, and owned channels. He believes that brands can better serve their customers by understanding audience behavior, and that messaging should be targeted to individual customers through the use of testing, behavioral targeting, and CRM initiatives.
Jason has written extensively about digital analytics, optimization and digital strategy, including an ongoing column at ClickZ.com. He is the co-author of "Actionable Web Analytics: Using Data to Make Smart Business Decisions," which is one of the leading texts in the field of digital analytics. His client roster includes Microsoft, Nike, Nokia, Dell, Ford, Sony, PayPal/eBay, P&G, Alcoa, Expedia, Mazda, Intel, and Motorola, and more. Jason is a frequent speaker at conferences and seminars around the world ranging from the Cannes Lions, Adobe Omniture Summits, eMetrics, SES, ad:tech, BazaarVoice, and many other WPP events.
Follow him on Twitter @JasonBurby.
May 22, 2013
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June 5, 2013
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