The search engine — such a commonplace tool in today’s world and yet so difficult to execute correctly, like any e-commerce operator (in fact, the any website) can attest to this. There’s no doubt that Google is the industry standard for search, and now the tech giant is making its search engine technology available to retailers with the new Retail Search solution powered by Google Cloud.
“While we have come a long way from the days when search was largely based on keywords and Boolean rules, buyers still struggle to find what they are looking for,” said Srikanth Belwadi, Group Product Manager at Google Cloud in a blog post announcing the new tool. “Traditional search technologies don’t work in the modern age of online retail, where tens or even hundreds of thousands items are available on a single e-commerce site. Now, thanks to the power of Retail Search, when a shopper searches for a “long black dress with short sleeves and a comfortable fit” on an e-commerce site, they should immediately get results for precisely that, rather than narrowing down their searches multiple times, or worse, abandoning their shopping journey.
Some 94% of US consumers have abandoned a shopping session because they received irrelevant search results, according to a 2021 study investigation conducted by The Harris Poll and Google Cloud – a phenomenon known as “search abandonment”. Indeed, the survey finds that retailers are missing out on 300 billion dollars each year due to research dropout in the United States alone.
Early adopters of Google Cloud Retail Search include Lowe’s, Fnac-Darty in France and Pernambucanas houses in Brazil, and now the solution has been rolled out for general availability as part of the Google Cloud suite product discovery solutions for retail. The fully managed service is customizable for each customer, allowing organizations to create buyer-centric search experiences with:
- Advanced understanding of queries to produce better results from the broadest queries, including non-product related searches;
- Semantic search to effectively match product attributes with website content for quick and relevant product discovery;
- Optimized results that leverage user interaction and ranking models to achieve specific business goals; and
- Industry-leading security and privacy practices which ensure that retailer data is segregated with strong access controls and is only used to provide relevant search results on their own properties.
“With limited customer signals and no historical data, long-tail descriptive searches are among the most difficult queries to understand,” said Neelima Sharma, senior vice president of technology, e-commerce, marketing and merchandising. at Lowe’s in a press release. “We’ve partnered with Google Cloud to deliver relevant long-tail search results to our customers and have seen a increase in clicks and search conversion and a drop in our “no results found” rate since our launch.
In the competitive cloud computing industry, one of Google’s biggest differentiators is its broader technology, developed over decades. As Carrie Tharp, Vice President of Retail and Consumer Affairs at Google Cloud said. Retail Touch Points, Google “chooses” the best of its technology in ads, search, Maps, Shopping and more, then uses the cloud as its backbone to help retailers “innovate new experiences”. Building on its Maps technology, the company also recently launched a Last Mile Fleet solution to help organizations optimize delivery performance.