As an e-commerce retailer (or really, an entrepreneur with any online business), not only are you looking to increase sales, sales amounts, sales frequency and number of buyers, but you’re also looking to minimize losses.
And in this case, I mean the losses that may come from what’s called “search abandonment.” (If that reminds you of “shopping cart abandonment,” that’s because it’s similar to that, except that search abandonment happens during the search phase rather than the shopping cart phase.)
You probably guessed what that means: a searcher (in this case, at your site) types in a search query, they don’t see what they want, and they leave.
That’s too bad.
You know what sometimes makes it worse?
You had what they were searching for. It’s just that, maybe, your site’s search function wasn’t extensive enough to present them with what they were looking for.
Or, maybe it wasn’t as powerful as Google’s search engine.
And that brings us to our news item: About 2 days ago, Google announced that Google Cloud Retail Search (which is basically the ability to have your search function powered by Google) would be generally available (although currently, you have to apply).
The big advantage to having Google Cloud Retail Search on your site is that it can minimize something mentioned earlier: search abandonment. Google has a stat: $300 billion/year in the US. That’s how much search abandonment costs retailers.
The aim here is clear: provide more accurate, relevant search results to retail searchers, and search abandonment will be greatly reduced.
You might be convinced that the search function on your site is fine. And, it might be, if it’s just a simple text-based search function.
But, I bet most of your competitors have search functions that are the same as that.
Don’t you want to stand out from them, and perhaps offer something better–more personalized–to your searchers?
Recommendations AI: Your Key to Providing Personalized Customer Experiences
You’ve seen from your own search experience that Google’s machine learning and tracking allows it to provide personal results. Also, Google can understand user intent and context, and these capabilities can be put to use on your site.
In the same vein, don’t forget to update your GDPR policy accordingly.
Can Google Cloud Retail Search Help With SEO?
That’s one question I’ve been wondering about. It’s too early to say for certain, and I don’t have a site in the Cloud Retail program, so I don’t have first-hand experience.
That said, my inclination is to say, “Yes,” if only because having Google Cloud Retail Search might help your site be better indexed.
For those retailers who get accepted into the Google Cloud Retail Search program, and eventually have it enabled on their sites, the future looks bright.