What to do if your shop’s search shows zero results

What to do if your shop’s search shows zero results

Imagine walking into a highstreet shop on the hunt for a pair of super cool noise cancelling wireless headphones your friends told you about. You walk in, browse around for a bit, but can’t seem to find the exact pair. What do you do? 

In this situation, most people leave and move on to the next shop. In the online world, showing zero results in your search is the same as not finding what you’re looking for on the shelves. And when that happens online, most people will move on to the next online store.

But while zero results give your shoppers the impression that you don’t stock the product, your search could be showing zero results for one of two reasons:

  1. You have the product, but your shoppers can’t find it 
  2. You don’t have the product, but your customers are looking for it

So, what can you do as a shop owner to navigate both of these situations?

You have the product, but your shoppers can’t find it

If you do in fact stock the products your customers are getting zero results for when they search, there are some tricks to make sure your shoppers can find them.

Let’s take the above scenario of the highstreet shop and add a shop assistant into the equation. They can use their knowledge of the shop to let you know that they do in fact have those cool wireless headphones you came in for. They guide you to the shelf and you decide to go for it and make the purchase. Your online search can do the same if you spend a few minutes helping it get to know your store using the following tricks.

Use a gud spel checkr

Have you ever written something like white.wirwless.headpines and clicked search? If the answer is yes, then you’ve probably been searching on your mobile phone.

Mobile is expected to make up 73% of eCommerce sales in 2022, but mobile users often misspell on their tiny keyboards. With such a high percentage of shoppers on mobile devices, a good spell check is key to delivering results every time.

Spelling mistakes can also happen when a shopper types too fast or when they just don’t know the correct spelling. Your shopper might have heard about the brand from their friends and not know the spelling, which can happen with certain products more than others. The tech manufacturer Xiaomi is a good example of a brand that is often misspelt.  

In Motive Commerce Search, if a search does not return results, a spellcheck is tested to see if there are other similar search terms that do return results, and those results are shown helping your customer find the product they’re looking for.

Saving the day with synonyms

Shoppers can often look for the same products using different names. They might be looking for a t-shirt or tee-shirt. Or maybe there’s a cultural difference in the vocabulary being used. While someone from the UK might be searching for a pair of flip-flops, an Australian customer looking for the same product would search for a pair of thongs

When a product is known by a number of different names, adding synonyms is a great way to make sure that those Aussies searching on your site don’t get a shock when they search for rubber thongs!

If you have something that people are looking for but not finding, you can analyse your top results and add these searches as synonyms.

You can also nudge a user towards a certain search by using suggestions. Suggestions appear when a user types a query and are given a search that might match what they’re looking for. Suggestions can reduce spelling errors and get users to the results they want sooner. 

You don’t have the product, but your customers are looking for it

So, to the other side of the zero results coin. What do you do if you don’t have the products that your customers are looking for? Zero results can be seen as a bad user experience, but as a shop owner, you can also see them as an opportunity. 

Zero results as an opportunity

As a shop owner, zero results give you a chance to get to know your customers and see if there are certain products that they’re looking for that you don’t stock, but could.  

In Motive Commerce Search, you can use the analytics on the Playboard to see the searches that returned results and the searches that didn’t. By looking at the searches that don’t return results, you can identify products you can add to your store to increase sales. 

By looking at the analytics in your Playboard, you can see what the trend is for certain products and whether you want to invest in them or not. If you see a trend of people searching for the same product, it might be a great opportunity to stock it. 

Features that are easy to use. Pricing that’s easy to understand

If you’re looking for a search tool that’s focused on creating a unique shopping experience that respects your customers’ privacy, then look no further than Motive Commerce Search. 

Our no-code plugin is easy to install and manage, meaning you can easily implement great features like synonyms, spell checks and suggestions, as well as understand your shop's analytics. 

Our pricing that’s based on searches (not requests) is transparent and easy to understand, and no matter what you pay, every feature and update in Motive Commerce Search is included, no matter what your budget. 

Find out more about Motive Commerce Search and enjoy your 30 day free trial now.