The Importance of an Internal Site Search Campaign

Site search has often been a neglected component of SEO campaigns. If you didn’t think site search was important before, you might want to reconsider.

MediaSesh branded graphic. Dark blue text on a white and bright orange, bubbly background reads, "The importance of site search".

In this article, I will review how site search helps to:
Understand what visitors are looking for
Learn if visitors are finding what they need
Discover ways to improve click-throughs
Verify if site visitors are using the navigation

Internal site search, or onsite search, has often been a neglected component of search engine optimization (SEO) campaigns. It’s well known that traditional SEO practices are an effective means to getting visitors to your website, but what happens once someone clicks through from search engines? If you didn’t think site search was an important factor before, you might want to reconsider.

It’s surprisingly common for visitors to not find what they’re looking for after using a website’s search engine. Unfortunately, companies often overlook this functionality even though it has long-lasting benefits, such as

  • Reducing the cost for call center support
  • Increasing conversion rates
  • Increasing revenue by getting people where they need to go quickly and easily
  • Building customer retention
  • Building trust by providing relevant content

It’s also important to note that traditional SEO is different than that of internal site search: Traditional SEO allows visitors to browse the different website options for information they’re most likely searching for before clicking through; site search is when visitors know exactly what they want and they want to get the information as quickly as possible.

What’s great about internal site search is that it could assist in traditional SEO efforts. By analyzing site search keywords, you should be able to make better decisions as to what content should go on your website so that in the end your users will convert.

Understand what visitors are looking for

Discovering what visitors are looking for on your website will decide whether or not content needs to be created or modified. For example, let’s say you’re an insurance company and you noticed there’s been an unusual influx of searches revolving around hurricane insurance. Whether your company offers hurricane insurance or not, it might be a good idea to address this query on your website. This could help reduce the number of customers that contact your call center, possibly persuade you to add a new offering, or promote your other products and services.

Learn if visitors are finding what they need

It’s not enough to just have random pages populating search results, but rather pages that are promoting quality results in order to get users to convert. It’s possible to discover if visitors are finding what they’re looking for right away or if they need to constantly refine their searches. When this type of activity occurs, it could mean that people are not finding what they’re looking for and indicate a content gap.

Discover ways to improve click-throughs for better conversion rates

There are ways to discover if your visitors are clicking on any of the site search results. Low click-through rates could indicate content gaps and a demand for new content pages to be created in order to address popular search queries. This could also mean that all your page content is lacking valuable title tags or descriptions with the desired keywords included.

Verify if visitors are using site navigation more or less

If the number of site search queries is extremely high, it could mean visitors are not finding what they need with the navigation bar. Knowing what people type into site search could help with modifying taxonomy to offer another way of finding content faster and easily.

About the author

Christina is an SEO consultant and the founder of MediaSesh. She has been in the SEO industry since 2009 and has helped companies of all sizes to improve their visibility on search engines.