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Get Shoppers to Buy More with Personalized Search

Search personalization improves your website's user experience, making customers feel that search results know what they like.

What is a personalized search?

A personalized search is when a site search customizes the search results based on a user’s geographic location, previous searches, user intent, and known preferences.

It refers to online search experiences that are tailored specifically to a user’s interests by incorporating information about them beyond the specific search query typed in the search bar.

Methods of personalization

Typically, there are two approaches to search personalization:

  • Modifying the user’s query to provide a more relevant set of search results
  • Re-ranking search results to rank the most relevant results higher

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Example of personalized search

Suppose a customer buys a smartphone on your e‑commerce website. When they search for accessories such as phone covers, the search algorithm shows products suitable to the model they purchased.

This way, the customer will not only find what they were looking for faster, but will also see results relevant to the model they chose.

The origin of search customization

All major search engines today use search personalization. However, Google first introduced the concept of personalized searches in 2004 to improve the user experience.

Google personalized search ties in a user’s search history, bookmarks, and Google services (such as Gmail, Google Maps, Google+, etc.) to deliver personalized search results.

Who uses search personalization

Today, many businesses use search personalization to facilitate the customer shopping experience by displaying relevant products. Here are a few top industries that excessively rely on personalized search strategies:

E‑commerce marketplaces

E‑commerce websites and marketplaces like eBay, Etsy, and Amazon use personalized search to help customers find relevant products as soon as they start typing in the search box. Some sites also take into account visit frequency and affinity for particular brands or product attributes.

Media and entertainment

Streaming sites like Netflix and Spotify leverage search personalization to show users different content based on their interests. Netflix uses customer viewing data, search history, rating data as well as time, date and the user’s device to predict what should be shown to them.

Food and beverage

Leading fast food chains like McDonald’s, KFC, and Starbucks personalize searches based on time of day, current location, the weather forecast, or trending menu items. For example, McDonald’s menu suggests hot tea when it’s raining and ice cream on sunny afternoons.

Social networks

Social media giants like Facebook and Instagram show different content to different people based on their preferences, interests, and behaviors that they opt to share online. For example, Instagram relies on machine learning based on your past behavior to create a unique feed for everyone.

Technology and SaaS

Many tech companies, such as software-as-a-service (SaaS) businesses, are using search personalization to give their customers quick access to relevant material so they can potentially resolve their own issues. For instance, HubSpot personalizes search on its site to help users find relevant content quickly.

Why should you personalize search in your e‑commerce store?

According to Epsilon, 80% of customers indicate they’re more likely to do business with a company if it offers personalized experiences and 90% indicate that they find personalization appealing.

Personalization matters more than ever, with COVID-19 and the surge in digital behaviors raising the bar. A McKinsey survey reveals that nearly 75% of consumers switched to a new store, product, or buying method during the pandemic.

Today, almost 71% of consumers expect companies to deliver personalized interactions, and 76% get frustrated when this doesn’t happen.

Search personalization helps grab the attention of customers and reduces the amount of browsing time and energy a customer expends while browsing your e‑commerce site.

Presenting a customer with quick search suggestions they’re likely to prefer helps increase the chance of actually increasing conversions. Companies that excel at personalization generate 40% more revenue than average players.

How does search personalization work?

Personalized search results aren't just based on traditional ranking factors (such as relevancy). They also consider additional data about the individual user, such as their language, current location, user profile, intent, or past searches.

Example: History-based personalization

Suppose you search “white shirt” on a clothing website and get results of woman shirts. Then you click on men’s category and browse some products. Now if your subsequent search is again “white shirt”, you will see the results for men without having to choose the men category.

Example: Re-ranking search results

When a product’s more popular sizes go out of stock, the search algorithm can automatically lower the ranking of a product and show other products that have more size options.

Benefits of personalized search

Increase average cart value

Increase average cart value

The search algorithm can show customers interesting products that they had no idea about, which will increase their likelihood of buying from you. As a result, your average order value increases.

Improve user experience

Improve user experience

Personalized searches show more precise and relevant results to every customer, helping them quickly find the content they want. Overall, the digital experience for the user is better.

Ensure better metrics

Ensure better metrics

By increasing the relevancy of results, you can improve your site's click-through rate (CTR) and conversion rate (CVR). Search personalization also increases the total session time, lowers bounce rates, and improves brand reputation.

Yield higher revenues

Yield higher revenues

According to McKinsey, personalization can increase revenues by up to 15%, while reducing customer acquisition costs by up to 50%. You can also increase the efficiency of marketing spend by 10% to 30%.

Improve customer relationships

Improve customer relationships

Around 98% of marketers surveyed by Evergage feel that personalization enhances customer relationships, whereas 59% of them think it also increases customer loyalty.

Find out how we can boost your business on a demo call with one of our experts.

How to implement personalized search

Search personalization can be difficult, but not anymore! With Luigi’s Box, you can get up and running in just a few simple steps:

  • Synchronize your product database with our search index.
  • Integrate Luigi's Box Search Analytics service to enable learning with your website.
  • Sit back and relax while our integration team launches your search.
  • Learn more here: https://www.luigisbox.com/implementation/

Personalize your internal search with Luigi's Box

With Luigi's Box Search, give your customers the freedom to explore your content through relevant search that:

Tolerates their typos and knows the synonyms related to your products

Improves their experience with personalization and voice search

Gives them powerful filtering mechanisms and AI-driven results

Shows them the right category, brand, or product from the first keystroke

See the results our clients get

+4.8x

assisted conversions

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+9,49%

search conversion rate

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+ 15%

increase revenue

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LB helped Mountfield to increase its autocomplete conversion rate by 67%.
+67%

autocomplete conversions

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Košík.cz increased its search conversions 10.5% after using LB.
+10,5%

search conversion rate

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+96%

search conversion rate

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+320%

average conversion rate

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LBX faceted search, among other functions, has helped NAY gain many benefits.
+600%

search conversion rate

Read Case Study

Frequently asked questions

What is personalized search?

Personalized search shows results that aren’t just based on the typical ranking factors (like the relevance of the content to the keyword), but also on the data that the search engine has about the individual at any given time, such as their geographical location, past searches, or intent.

Why is personalized search important for e‑commerce businesses?

Search personalization builds brand loyalty, boosts customer satisfaction, and makes people remember your business. Research reveals that 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase from a brand that offers personalized experiences.

By showing users that you consistently know what is expected of your brand and how to provide the experiences they want, they are more likely to show their loyalty and continue shopping with your brand versus the competition.

What is the difference between standard search and personalized search?

Standard search settings typically rely on semantic search, where the search engine looks for literal matches of the query words or variants of them, without understanding the overall meaning of the query. Generic search returns identical search results to all users for identical queries, regardless of varied user interests and information needs.

On the other hand, personalized search provides results tailored specifically to an individual’s interests by taking into account information about them beyond what they type in the search field. For any given query, a personalized search can show different search results to different individuals. Alternatively, it may rank search results differently for every individual based upon their preferences, interests, and information needs.

How is search personalized?

Search personalization uses several different factors to deliver personalized results. For example, Google personalized search uses a user’s browser history, bookmarks, location, and data across different Google services. Websites frequently visited by the user tend to rank higher on the Google search engine results page (SERP).

How long does it take for personalization to take effect?

Luigi’s Box Search feature will take effect immediately after turning on, as we consider the actual intent almost in real time. The quality of personalization gradually increases over time, as the user’s long-term history is gradually collected and considered.