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Site Search in 2014: Buying the Experience

Written by: Lane Fries

Article // February 11, 2014

What influences consumers the most to make purchases online? Price, service, brands, convenience, environment? There are so many different variables driving ecommerce purchases, each for individual reasons. Today, shoppers all have personalized compulsions that cause them to buy.

How will merchants keep up with the individual demands of each customer?


Sell the Experience

According to Experian, out of the six types of shoppers available and the five most popular variables  – environment is the top-ranked variable for driving increased sales. Yes, environment, not price. The largest segment of ‘deal seekers’, the ‘deal indifferent’ group represents 34% of the population. This group ranks environment second, only behind brand. Price for this group, is second to last, just barely beating service as a decision to purchase.

Importance of ecommerce in 2014

Experian ranks price as one of the lowest motivators of online purchases.


Spend Less on Price

Spending mass amounts time reflecting on your product pricing isn’t useless, but it only activates a sub-sect of your customers to increase purchases. The majority of shoppers are making purchasing decisions around factors like environment, brands offered, and convenience of the experience. Of all the variables calculated, the environment of the experience is at a minimum importance of 95% of the vote – averaging 97.5% total importance across all customer segments. Clearly showing, price is not as imperative in contrast to user experience.


Focus on the Customer(s), not the Product(s)

The largest segment of the study, the ‘Deal Indifferents’ picked brand and environment as their top two drivers for purchasing decisions. Also stating that 60% of them only go shopping when there’s a specific need! Meaning, 6 out of 10 ‘average’ shoppers are looking for brand quality and a quality shopping experience to boot. The overall experience is ‘quality’ focused. We also know that the most interested shoppers use site search to find their products.

mobile shopping how customers interact with top retailers

Of the consumers polled, price as a whole averaged an importance of 73.5% across all segments. Only beating service as a decision-making variable, standing  at 71.2%. In a survey about customer interaction with top retailers, the data suggests that visiting the company brick-and-mortar store and the company’s website are the top two touch points for consumers.

Looking at the data provided, there are clear indications of shoppers looking for the best place to buy products, not the best price point. Consumers want the ‘worry-free’ over the ‘cheapest available’.  Price is obviously not the sole driver of online sales in today’s online marketplace.


Learn and Adapt to Shopping Habits

Customers are always changing. Styles, colors, brands, materials, trends, and events all change the buying behavior of consumers. It’s up to the e-tailers to read these changes in spending and allocate accordingly. As technology advances, the archival of customer data is common place. But leveraging that data effectively can be challenging. This is where Searchspring can help. Use site search to reach the customers with a direct focus or have a difficult time browsing navigation.

Learn and adapt with Searchspring

Searchspring offers an automated and intelligent SaaS platform to help merchants sell more products. Our site search not only improves sales, but elevates the customer experience as well, using previous customer behavior and analytics to customize the purchase process. Integrating with Searchspring is an ideal way to improve selling your website experience … and your products.

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