Search Pattern Adoption:
are we making an impact?
Lyle Kantrovich
IA Summit 2014
San Diego
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VI...
Background
• About me…
• Why would I do this?
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
Summary
• Basic search patterns for on-site search
• Research on search pattern usage on large
corporate sites
– Fortune 5...
Nine Search Patterns
• Global search box in header
• Allow query revision on results page
• Show the number of results
• H...
Global search box in header
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
11% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Allow query revision on results page
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
28% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Show the number of results
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
26% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Highlight keywords in result titles
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
54% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Highlight keywords in result snippets
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
33% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Provide search tips when zero results
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
30% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Autosuggest
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
65% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
“Best bets” / recommended results
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
70% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Faceted or categorized results
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
59% of F50 fail to do this.
VIVID MOJO
Berkshire Hathaway – circa 1998
No Search
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
Berkshire Hathaway (F#5) – today
No Search
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
Berkshire Hathaway – News Releases
No Search
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
“Microcontent”
VIVID MOJO
Providing a Global Search Capability
• Some companies don’t provide on-site search
– Berkshire Hathaway (#5)
– Express Scr...
Usage Data
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
Usage Data - Adjusted
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
“Best Practice” Adoption
• Of the 45 sites with search in the F50, on
average, they use five of the nine search
patterns
•...
Reasons for status quo?
• Search is HARD…
• Search is BORING…(?)
• Pattern relevance is contextual…
• IT owns the search t...
Your mission, should you choose…
• Search is a critical part of the web
experience…right?
• IA’s need to push for better s...
Consider This
Fortune 50 revenue in 2013:
$5.7 Trillion USD
If each Fortune 50 company spent $1 million
annually on search...
How do we measure the impact of our industry?
Do we need metrics for our tribe’s effectiveness?
@LKANTROV | #searchia #ias...
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Search Pattern Adoption by Corporate Web Sites - IA Summit 2014

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This presentation outlines nine foundational search patterns, showing examples of each. It also presents the results of research on use of those search patterns or "best practices" on the corporate web sites of the largest U.S. companies. Many of these search patterns have been well known for many years. Why aren't companies using more of these "best practices"? Some ideas are discussed.

This was presented during the Information Architecture Summit 2014 in San Diego. This was a Flex Track presentation.

Please contact me if you have any questions about this presentation or the research presented.

Published in: Internet, Technology, Design
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Search Pattern Adoption by Corporate Web Sites - IA Summit 2014

  1. 1. Search Pattern Adoption: are we making an impact? Lyle Kantrovich IA Summit 2014 San Diego @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  2. 2. Background • About me… • Why would I do this? @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  3. 3. Summary • Basic search patterns for on-site search • Research on search pattern usage on large corporate sites – Fortune 50 – Fortune 451-500 • Why aren’t more sites using patterns? • What does this say about our effectiveness? @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  4. 4. Nine Search Patterns • Global search box in header • Allow query revision on results page • Show the number of results • Highlight keywords in result titles • Highlight keywords in result snippets • Provide search tips when zero results • Autosuggest • “Best bets” / recommended results • Faceted or categorized results @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  5. 5. Global search box in header @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 11% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  6. 6. Allow query revision on results page @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 28% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  7. 7. Show the number of results @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 26% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  8. 8. Highlight keywords in result titles @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 54% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  9. 9. Highlight keywords in result snippets @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 33% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  10. 10. Provide search tips when zero results @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 30% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  11. 11. Autosuggest @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 65% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  12. 12. “Best bets” / recommended results @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 70% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  13. 13. Faceted or categorized results @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 59% of F50 fail to do this. VIVID MOJO
  14. 14. Berkshire Hathaway – circa 1998 No Search @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  15. 15. Berkshire Hathaway (F#5) – today No Search @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  16. 16. Berkshire Hathaway – News Releases No Search @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 “Microcontent” VIVID MOJO
  17. 17. Providing a Global Search Capability • Some companies don’t provide on-site search – Berkshire Hathaway (#5) – Express Scripts (#24) • Some sites have multiple search silos or only provide search for limited content – Amazon (#49) – Facebook (#482) – Walgreens (#37) @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  18. 18. Usage Data @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  19. 19. Usage Data - Adjusted @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  20. 20. “Best Practice” Adoption • Of the 45 sites with search in the F50, on average, they use five of the nine search patterns • Within the F451-500, sites only used 4 patterns on average • Quality of results tended to be lower on sites that followed fewer of these patterns @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  21. 21. Reasons for status quo? • Search is HARD… • Search is BORING…(?) • Pattern relevance is contextual… • IT owns the search tools • No one is minding search, analytics, etc. • Vendor search tools are poor • Google is everyone’s default anyway • Agencies are gone when search gets implemented • Bad content / metadata • More??? @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  22. 22. Your mission, should you choose… • Search is a critical part of the web experience…right? • IA’s need to push for better search. • IA’s need to push for better tools/products from search vendors. • IA’s need to move beyond design to search analytics and search quality metrics @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  23. 23. Consider This Fortune 50 revenue in 2013: $5.7 Trillion USD If each Fortune 50 company spent $1 million annually on search it would hardly put dent in profits. (2013 profits were $400 Billion.) We need to stop selling “cars” and “new paint jobs” and start helping them be better drivers. @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14 VIVID MOJO
  24. 24. How do we measure the impact of our industry? Do we need metrics for our tribe’s effectiveness? @LKANTROV | #searchia #ias14
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