Supercharging Search for a Billion-Dollar Home Goods Chain Using Algolia

Supercharging Search for a Billion-Dollar Home Goods Chain Using Algolia

September 13th, 2022

A well-known home goods chain with locations all around the US and Canada needed a faster, more accurate search solution. Our team integrated Algolia and solved all of their problems.

Sunrise Integration
  by Sunrise Integration

Popular Home Goods Store Needs a Better Search Solution


When a popular home goods store reached out to Sunrise Integration about fixing their search woes, our ecommerce team immediately knew they needed an enterprise solution that could handle millions of requests and provide quick, relevant results across thousands of products. It wasn't an easy task but when you're an Algolia Development Partner, you already have the tools in your back pocket to handle even the toughest challenges.


Algolia Search to the Rescue


One of the biggest hurdles for this project was the sheer amount of data and products that come with a store the size of this client. They were looking for more advanced search features like autocomplete, search suggestions, collection integration and of course, lightning-fast results. They wanted more enterprise search capabilities versus their current out-of-the-box Shopify search. We knew it would take a powerful search tool to provide all of those features in one solution. Our Algolia development team was ready for the challenge.


The first step was connecting their Shopify store to Algolia using the Algolia App. With the app in place, our team was able to direct Shopify data into the Algolia platform and utilize the administration tools to create a customized solution.


Then, our UI/UX design team focused on the front-end design to build the ideal search experience. It was important for the search results to include Shopify collections and products to encourage deep searching. By utilizing the Algolia widgets, our UX team was able to customize the JavaScript to create a solution that matched the client's vision.


Integrating Algolia with a huge home store



As users type into the search box, the backend system will utilize autocomplete features to immediately look through the product and collection indexes to provide relevant results. Using autocomplete we were able to provide our client with an enhanced search experience with real-time contextual search. The backend system was configured with multiple indexes to facilitate this real-time multi-data search. For example, when a user searches on their website for "bed", the system will automatically return results from both the collections and products that match "bed".


Autocomplete is a ubiquitous part of most search experiences.



Capturing Search Data for Personalization AI


Once the core Algolia integration was completed, our development team could focus on the cool features like AI-powered personalization and event-based results. The personalization features incorporate a user’s past search queries when determining the most relevant results. With this feature implemented, the client can engage customers with more targeted results based on their direct interests. By providing better relevance, it encourages users to stay on the site and search more. When users start seeing more relevant results, they'll be more likely to make purchases.


Personalization provides a specific ranking based on a user's past behavior. Our team was able to integrate the search queries into Algolia and use the user's data to create an "affinity score" that Algolia uses to calculate the best results. Search events are logged and tracked to create the relevant rankings for each user, thus creating personalized results:


Setup events and personalization in Algolia



Each time a user engages with the website's search, we send that event to Algolia to build that user’s affinity profile. Our integration team worked directly with the client to determine which events best suited their desired profiles. We then used the API to capture these events and build the anonymous profiles. Utilizing the personalization features helped strengthen the client's search and increase users' time on the website.


Leveraging Search Data and Analytics


What your customers are searching for is powerful data for any company. With this information, you can see which products are most popular, whether products are properly represented, whether the correct products show up in search results and so much more. With Algolia, this data collection happens transparently and is logged within the administration pages. The client was very interested in this customer data so our data team utilized the API connections to capture the data from Shopify. With this integration in place, we were able to improve the search algorithm by configuring the searchable attributes, customizing the ranking to prioritize top-selling items and removing duplicates with deduplication.



Need to Superpower Your Search?


Algolia is such a powerful ecommerce search solution that we've only touched the surface of what it can do. If you want to improve your ecommerce, mobile or app search, our Algolia Development team is ready to build a powerful enterprise solution for your business.


Tags:   algolia   search   shopify