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Improving Search Results

Getting too few results or too many results on a particular search phrase? Or maybe getting the right one but in the wrong order. No matter the issue there is tool for fixing this in Ecommerce Search. This guide will go through some of the most common issues and where to look for a solution.

Too few or too many results on a search query

Whenever products are missing from a search query or appearing in a search result, they are not expected to appear in, the first step should always be to go to the diagnostic tool.

This tool will give detailed insight into what happens behind the scenes. Simply type in the phrase to get a detailed analysis of how the search engine interprets the phrase.

  • If the missing products uses a different word for the same concept than the search phrase, you should consider adding either a synonym or a hypernym.
  • If the missing products contain the right word but in a different conjunction that does not seem to be matched this should be remedied with either an irregular word or stemming override.
  • The reason for the mismatch can also be a spelling error. If the spelling error is in the phrase and common enough, this can be handled using misspellings. If the misspelling on the other hand is on the product data, it should be fixed by correcting the data in the PIM system.
  • If the products contain the right words but still don’t appear, be sure the right fields are searchable
  • If the products simply lack information, this should be fixed by improving the data in the PIM

Sometimes unexpected products show up in a search result for a given phrase, and the result set needs to be narrowed down. Common reasons for having too many search results are:

  • Too much data is searched. Sometimes less is more and reducing the number of fields to search can improve the accuracy of the search results. For instance, searching in long descriptions of the products may lead to false positives.
  • The search engine may be stemming incorrectly, leading to two different words being seen as the same. For instance, both ‘universe’ and ‘university’ may be stemmed to ´univers´. This will lead to false positives when searching for either term. These kind of issues can be remedied by using the stemming override feature. This kind of issue is more common in some languages than others and quite prevalent in Danish.
  • Another common reason for unexpected results is poor quality product data, this should always be fixed by going to the data source in the PIM and fixing it there.

Getting the right search results in the wrong order

The order of the results can be adjusted be editing the context used for the search. Both the relevancy of each searched field and the commercial sorting of the products can be adjusted.