Yesterday, I had the opportunity to co-present with Dave McDuff, IBM’s leader for IBM.com Search and Discovery at the Marketing Analytic Summit. Our talk was about On-site search for IBM.com, including What we track, What we find, What we do, and Why!
I have observed in this business that certain individuals and teams truly look to leverage data to gain insight into their digital products, Dave and his team clearly fit in this category. They meet informally every morning, first thing over coffee, to see where the data may lead them.
While the focus is on a limited number of core metrics, including clicks and terms, the real analysis is done by breaking out those core metrics in many dimensions. These dimensions include: net promoter score, page performance, geography, language, results position, filters, pagination, time on page, etc. The highly customized dimensional analysis is combined with the ability to pull up and do session analysis on any user session. This creates the ability to visualize and contextualize user behavior, enabling the team to gain a common understanding of UX issues.
Based on their analysis, the team can address UX or UI issues that they uncover. They quickly identify and quantify queries with no results, including new topics. They can even tackle issues around single word searches, where the user has provided very few clues on their real interests.
The team is then able to quickly update UX issues as they surface and tune the search engine based on search terms and results. They are also able to proactively listen and respond to their customers. This might include a recent product launch, product update or it might be a surge in searches based on current events, such as the current Covid 19 pandemic.
Search is one of the most important capabilities on IBM.com. This data driven culture created by Dave and his team, has enabled them to focus on customer service, cost reduction, and revenue generation opportunities. Across most digital properties, On-site search has become an increasingly critical tool for site navigation. Often it fails to receive the analytical focus it deserves.
Pereion Solutions has been thrilled to be able to partner with the IBM team and leverage our expertise in Acoustic Experience Analytics (aka Tealeaf) to provide the tools and insights IBM needs to drive this process. If you would like to explore how you can drive better insights and improvements to your On-site search capabilities, please click here to request a consultation with Pereion.