5 Searchandising Hacks to Increase Ecommerce Sales

To succeed in a rapidly developing ecommerce environment, a merchant needs to be one step ahead of his competitors. Here, at Searchanise, we share practical hacks and the latest trends with our clients to help them compete and grow steadily. Today we are going to cover merchandising in search and the opportunities it brings to ecommerce.

What is searchandising (search merchandising)?

Merchandising is a sales tactic used in both physical and ecommerce stores to achieve specific business goals, most commonly to increase sales. However, the means owners of offline and online stores use to achieve their goals are not always similar. In retail, merchandising involves displaying products on shelves in a specific way, while in ecommerce, merchandising deals with promoting products on a website, most frequently with the help of site search.

A special term has even been coined for search merchandising — searchandising. Searchanidisng can be defined as structuring and organizing search results to increase business metrics, be it driving sales, conversions, lifetime value, or anything else. By using searchandising ecommerce store owners can highlight certain products: high-margin, best-selling, or seasonal.

Why is online merchandising important?

Merchandising in search is a powerful tool to boost sales. It's a well-known fact that almost half of all users go directly to the search bar the moment they open an ecommerce website. As they are already at a late stage of their customer journey, these customers are 2-3 times more likely to convert than other site visitors.
By using search merchandising, you can draw the attention of сustomers who are one step away from making a purchase.
But search merchandising can do more than just promote products. You can choose the opposite strategy and bury some of the search results (like products out of stock), fix a "no results" page, and that's not all.

Best searchandising hacks to boost sales

In the next section, you'll find real-life examples worth including in your digital merchandising strategy.

Promote products in search

You can promote products in search by pinning them to the top of search results. For instance, you can choose to always display your best-selling product at the top, no matter what the search query is — the way Cochine does:
Cochine example
An example of search merchandising where best-sellers are always shown at the top of search results
You can also boost a certain product in search results. For example, a cosmetics store may want to recommend a "Body Lotion Gift Set" whenever the term "body lotion" appears in search.

Both options can be easily set up with the help of Searchanise product ranking rules. If you want to show a product always at the top of search results, like in the first case, use the Always ranking rule:
Face wash always top
Merchandising settings to always pin a product at the top
If you want to boost the product in search results, like in the second case, use the On match ranking rule:
Body lotion On Match
Merchandising settings to boost a product in search results

Promote seasonal products

Set up searchandising to make the most out of seasonal or limited-time offers. Let's say a new collection of Christmas clothing is now available for sale, and you want to make these products easier to discover. You can show Christmas sweaters at the top of search results for a query "sweater," Christmas socks at the top of search results for "socks," and so on so on for other types:
Sweater on top
Christmas sweaters appear at the top for the "sweater" query
To do so, you need to add a "Christmas" tag to all the seasonal products, then open the Searchanise control panel, go to Merchandising by Tags, add a new merchandising rule with ranking On Match and click the "Apply changes" button.
Christmas tag On Match
How to set up merchandising by tags

Fix the "no results" page

Searchandising is a great way to provide your customers a getaway from the "no results" page. You can display best-selling items or even offer customized products if your customers do not find what they are looking for. For example, a chocolate store may choose to show customized chocolate bars for queries with zero results:
No results choco bar
Displaying "Order Your Custom Chocolate Bar" instead of the "no results" page
Use the Always ranking rule for the product you want to appear on the zero results page:
Avoid no results page
Merchandising settings to avoid the "no results" page
It is worth investing time to fix the "no results" page because you will not only increase sales but also enhance shopping experience on your website. We went over the benefits of catering to your 'no results' page right here.

Bury search results

With merchandising, you can also move products to the bottom of search results. This feature is handy for out-of-stock or discounted items. For instance, on boydsphila.com, Women's and Men's products on sale are shown last, making customers first look at products without a discount:
Bury results
Products on sale are at the bottom of search results
To set it up, use categories merchandising and apply the Last ranking rule to the clearance products (i.e. products on sale):
Bury products in search
Merchandising settings to bury products

Use search analytics to build your merchandising strategy

To achieve the best results from your searchandising campaign, make sure to rely on customers' behavior data when planning it. And site search analytics is a great source of data.

You can use analytical reports of your search app to find out which products are most often bought straight from the search and make them stand out even more. Or, you may learn what search queries end with zero results and work on your "no results" page.
Using analytics
Site search analytics

Put best ecommerce merchandising hacks into practice

Theory without practice is empty (and useless if we speak about business). That's why we'd encourage you to put these searchandising hacks into practice, after making sure you adapt them to fit your e-store's needs.

To get access to all the search merchandising tools described in the article, install Searchanise. Apart from searchandising and analytics, Searchanise provides a lot of other useful features, such as filters, search personalization, upsell and cross-sell, redirects, and more.

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Anastasiya Kupriyanova - Content creator
Anastasiya Kupriyanova
Anastasiya is a content creator at Searchanise. Her professional areas of interest are SaaS solutions and ecommerce. Anastasiya believes that quality content must be valuable for readers and achieve business goals. When she is not busy writing, which does not happen often, she reads passionately, both fiction and non-fiction literature.

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