Managing the thesaurus database for your onsite search is highly recommended to optimize searches on your website. Why so? Because you want to help your visitors reach the exact page or product info they are looking for – no matter what spelling errors they might commit while entering the search term.
A search box, you will agree, is essential to any website or webstore that has hundreds of individual pages. How else will your visitor access the content that he requires? If, for example the page ‘iPhone Application Development’ on your site is different from the one for ‘iPhone Development Packages’, you need to have the search box to enable relevant searches for both.
You also need to figure out all those various ways in which your visitors could misspell words and include those misspelt words in your thesaurus.
How do you figure out the misspellings? Using the site search logs as well as keyword research tools, customer reviews, competitors’ meta tags and descriptions, and other tools available online. Your search tool should be configured to recognize misspellings, synonyms, and even the names of those similar sounding products your site does not sell.
And it has to be done manually. So you require someone with experience of search boxes and the misspellings people commit while searching. Your content writer should be able to help out, but it requires top skills plus intuition for successfully configuring your search tool.
Other words to include in your database would be as follows:
- Double Rs and Ls where not required and single ones where double are required
- Apostrophes where none required, missing where required
- Compound words broken with a hyphen and separate
You can start out with the most important, signature, or best-selling products, best-selling seasonal products, and top misspelled words.
A powerful search tool on your business site is also a powerful business tool. Where visitors are able to quickly look up content on the terms they enter, you have a site that is ‘stickier’ than one without. A creative approach to enriching your database will surely help.
Think again, when you read or hear “What’s in a name?” the next time.