Magento is the most used open-source platform used by merchants and brands alike. This is a CMS software that powers over 250,000 websites. Magento has won the hearts of millions with its great flexibility. There are over 150,000 trained professionals all over the world who are using Magento right now. They have developed a robust library of Magento extensions that can extend the functionalities of a primary website.
Between March 2016 and February 2017, Magento users have increased by over 48,000. As of 2017, it powers at least 28% of the sites and 16% among the top 1 million websites around the world. Magento is leading the e-commerce CMS and platform race. It is ahead of Prestashop, Shopify, and BigCommerce. More people are choosing Magento simply because it is easy to use and customize.
Since it is an open-source CMS platform, every day new add-ons and extensions are coming up that can make your original website highly functional. Small additions like instant site search options make navigation and product search a lot easier for your customers. Optimized UI and navigation is an integral part of a good website design. If you want your site to stick to the top ranks of any SRL, you should make sure; it offers something more than the average Magento website to your customers/visitors.
What are the defining qualities of a good instant search extension?
Millions of extensions can enhance your user’s Magento experience. The quick search options work to both organize your site better and increase the optimization. A few of the features that is common among all real instant search extensions are:
- It should offer your visitors and buyers lightning fast search results. It should take a few hundred milliseconds to search site-wide and present the relevant results to your customers.
- It should be secure. A 100% cloud hosted, backed up CDN backed extension is what you should be looking for.
- Grid view, list view and advanced filter options are a must with any site search option on Magento. This improves the UI of your website, especially for the mobile users.
- It should offer you advanced search technology. We are partial to Ajax for obvious reasons. You should look for an Ajax-based site search option beyond Lucene and Solr.
- It should be able to offer you customized product boosting options in the search results. Additionally, it should be able to correct all spellings in search results and predict the closest matching results.
- It should support multi-language searches for your worldwide user-base. It should be able to understand even if your users use verbs and adjectives to describe a product.
- It should integrate advanced data to boost all conversions. It should also be SEO optimized.
- Any search extension should also be lightweight and should not weigh down the functionalities of your website.
- It should offer a rich milieu of auto complete options. It should be able to provide suggestions that are both relevant and insightful from the first character of the user’s search.
- A self-learning search is what you should be looking for. This should learn how your shoppers would interact with your website while using the search. There should be no manual work to update the user database.
- The extension should also be fully customizable. It should provide the admin with full control and flexibility of the website. The search results should include customization options as per product promotions, discounts, and availability.
- The extension should have incredible error tolerance. More shoppers like to see relevant results irrespective of the mistakes they incorporate in the search terms. Integrating a “Did you mean…” option shows great results for all e-commerce websites.
- Dynamic filters should provide users to narrow down the search fields. It should be category-oriented, and it should cover the site content too.
- The search option should also be responsive. We are hoping your website is already responsive. You need to pair your site with a responsive search option, so it matches with the resolution of your user’s device.
- Your search extension should be able to serve anything from images to text. Your customer wants to see what they are clicking on, so accompanying your search result with images is a big pro.
Why should you go for one extension that has it all?
You can add a simple search option that provides your users the option to search the website for specific products and services. Then add other extensions that offer filtering options and auto complete options. However, that will only increase the load on your site. This will make your site load more slowly.
You should rather look for a wholesome extension for site-wide searches that includes all the 15 features mentioned above. Your extension should be compatible with your Magento version. Currently, there are two versions of Magento in the market, and Magento 2 is the latest.
Check the reviews, ratings, and updates for the extension you are about to attach to your website. Make sure it provides all the services you are looking for. Magento offers a milieu of free extensions, but the best ones are paid. So you should check for all features and specifications thoroughly before investing in any of the add-ons.
A great search tool will boost the UX and conversions on your check out pages. The main aim of this add-on should be to smoothen out the path between the top of the sales funnel and the bottom of the tube. Your users should be able to find what they are looking for to purchase them. A site search option enables your users to locate a product inside your online store within a fraction of a second.
The take-home message
If you want to improve your UX, you should get an instant search option for your Magento website. Just building a beautiful website is not enough. The slew of Magento add-ons in the open source repository is an excellent example of that.