Introducing Google Commerce Search: Hosted Search for Online Retail Sites

11/05/2009 09:22:00 AM


As retailers gear up for the holiday season, maximizing website conversion rates will be more important than ever. Evidence suggests high quality search can play a big factor; for instance, according to MarketingSherpa, 43% of visitors who land on a website go immediately to the site's search function. And customers who use the search box on e-commerce sites convert at nearly three times the rate of general browsers. We've taken these trends to heart, and we're now excited to announce a new search product specifically built for retail websites: Google Commerce Search.

Google Commerce Search was built with two principles in mind - speed and relevance. Both of these are critical to an end user's shopping experience. To optimize both, we decided that a hosted, cloud-based model would be best, leveraging the power of the Google platform. Typical search results are delivered in 0.25 seconds; in context, the average blink of an eye is around 0.1 seconds. Google Commerce Search will also leverage the relevant information from millions of product-related clicks on and in Google Product Search to bring the most relevant search results to shoppers using online stores. Another main benefit of being hosted is how easily the solution can be deployed - in days, as opposed to weeks or months for an on-premise e-commerce search tool. Retailers can also now use the same product feed for both Google Product Search and Google Commerce Search, which cuts down on time and tech costs.

To enhance the user experience, we also added numerous retail-centric features. Parametric search enables customers to view and sort search results by category, price, brand, or any other attribute. Spell check, stemming, and synonyms makes sure that users find the exact product they are looking for. Product Boost and Promotions enable retailers to promote certain products during sales or to cross-sell related products.

Birkenstock USA has implemented Google Commerce Search on one of their online properties and found it has already made an impact on their business. "Google Commerce Search is improving user satisfaction -- bounce rates have decreased and we're seeing more return customers,' said Jeff Kilmer, COO, Birkenstock USA. 'The search results are ultra-fast, so customers more easily find the specific products they're looking for. We deployed Google Commerce Search quickly and easily, and we've seen dramatic conversion improvement since implementation. It has also meant a better shopping experience for our customers, which is critical given the holiday season rush."

Read more about Google Commerce Search on our Enterprise Blog, or on our website.