23 July 2015
Google Analyics have just produced a very entertaining video to show what Google Analytics is like in real life.
The video is aimed at e-commerce businesses but there is no reason why this video also contains a message for us marketers in the high-end interiors market. Can the specifiers who visit your website find what they want? What are they searching for when they hit your site?
The on-site search report in Google Analytics requires a bit of setting up before hand depending on how your site search functionality works. There's a very useful set-up page provided by Google here ( https://support.google.com/customsearch/answer/1321536?hl=en) for your web developer to apply. Some sites are powered by bespoke content management systems and some maybe powered by WordPress using POST-based search engine.
If you already have a Google Analytics account, you can configure Analytics Site Search reports from within Custom Search, this helpful page from google shows you how in 7 steps.
Below is a screenshot of where the site search report can be found in Google Analytics:
The Overview report shows you the top 10 searches entered in the ‘search box’ on your website. It also shows you other information such as ‘percentage of search exits’ which is how many people left the site after searching for something. This number should be kept low.
It also shows you ‘search refinements’ which tells you what percentage of people refined their search because they couldn’t find what they were looking for. Again this must be kept low – you want to deliver the right results, first time.
Usage report shows you how many visits used the search option and how many didn’t.
The Search terms report shows you the search terms used.
The Pages report is very useful. It shows you the pages on which users searched from. Particularly useful if you want to know what people are searching for once they hit a particular product.
However a little more will need to be undertaken by your web developer is you want to learn what your visitors 'tried to search for, but failed.'
When a visitor performs a search that yields zero results the search term will be placed in a category named ‘no_results’.
To find this data navigate to the Content>Site Search>Categories Report:
Next you can click on the no-results line in the data and see exactly which search terms yielded zero results.
This is super-actionable data. Now you know where you may be missing content or if your site search engine might be broken. You should be asking yourself, “Why are there no results for these terms? Is there missing content or is there a problem with my site search engine?”