It's no secret that search has revolutionized the way we access information - you only have to look at Google to understand the importance it has to publishers and consumers. In fact, search is everywhere. Publishers websites use search to allow visitors to quickly sort through endless archives of articles and commerce website use search to help visitors sort through products. So what about a search feature in your digital edition?
If you have a digital replica, the addition of a search feature can help you meet the expectations of your digital savvy, mobile first users. Here are 3 ways employing search in your digital edition can improve user experience:
Promotes research & discovery
By including a search feature in your digital edition you can help readers access specific information or content they are looking for. For example, instead of flipping through each page to find an article about a specific event or person, a user can use a specific search term to find articles of interest. Or, what if you have a cooking magazine? A search feature can help your readers discover all the recipes that call for a specific ingredient - saving them time and helping meet their needs.
While search can help magazine readers discover articles they want to read, it can also help people who are researching specific topics. A search feature, as well as a handy text highlighting tool, can be especially helpful for digital journals or scientific periodicals, where readers need to quickly reference specific publications, findings or reports!
Increases usage & engagement
How many times do you pick up a magazine and read it from end to end? Odds are you flip back and forth between favorite columns, taking breaks between articles and referencing the table of contents to find your place again. With a search feature, you can enhance the real life experience by making these interactions immediate. For example, users can search for a specific column, author, or search for an article they were previously reading but hadn't finished. When readers can find what they are looking for, they are much more likely to spend time engaging with content and much less likely to close your app.
Catalogues are a marketing staple for many brands including department store and home furnishing brands. While print versions don't seem to be going anywhere, many brands also offer complimentary digital editions to meet the needs of consumers on the go. By enabling search in these digital edition, consumers can quickly scan for products and even tap on links to bring them to the brand's eCommerce site.
While search is an obvious requirement for brands publishing product catalogues, what about consumer magazine publishers? Many consumer magazines today are employing shoppable links to leverage partnerships with eCommerce brands and increase revenues with affiliate schemes. By activating search magazine publishers can quickly bring readers to shoppable content and facilitate purchases.
Bonus: Data, data, data
Including search in your digital edition will obviously improve the user experience, but there is also a benefit to including it - for the data! Collecting search data can help you understand reader behaviour and interests, which can all be used to create more targeted content in the future!