Seventy-eight percent of UK e-commerce website search engines don’t work, leaving high-intent consumers empty-handed

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Seventy-eight percent of UK e-commerce websites are unable to convert buyers due to their inability to “understand” natural language and therefore buyer intent, according to new report comparative analysis of Klevu. Klevu, the technology solution based on artificial intelligence and natural language, found that more than three quarters of the 50 retailers studied provided null or irrelevant results when presented with conversational queries. Only 20% of retailers have the functionality to understand natural language and respond with perfectly matched products. Additionally, a quarter were unable to handle misspellings from shoppers, with 75% missing out on additional sales through relevant product recommendations on category listing pages – a strategy which doubled click-through rates for Finnish homewares retailer, Eurokangas.

Grenson Shoes received the highest score for best product discovery experience across all benchmarking criteria. The heritage shoe brand makes it easy for consumers to navigate using multiple clauses, natural language, and even misspellings. It makes relevant product recommendations and allows consumers to quickly identify the exact product they are looking for.

Complicated search queries are on the rise today as more consumers rely on voice search on mobile, which means e-commerce retailers need to be able to understand natural language and intent. buyers if they want to satisfy consumers. For example, searches for “best affordable price” have increased by 60% globally according to Google. Understanding shopper intent is essential for e-commerce retailers to remain competitive today, as the spending landscape becomes more complex due to inflationary pressures and consumers use more complicated search queries to try to find what they are looking for. they search online. However, most e-commerce sites aren’t equipped to understand buyer intent, resulting in customers leaving websites unhappy and empty-handed. When sites understand the intent of online shoppers, the same way a human seller does, online retailers’ conversion rates have been shown to be four to six times higher.

“It’s clear that large retailers need to work harder to ensure their e-commerce experience meets consumer expectations,” said Nilay Oza, CEO and co-founder of Klevu. “As the UK e-commerce market continues to become more competitive and inflation drives consumers to cut back on spending, e-commerce sites able to quickly offer shoppers exactly what they are looking for and goods which, depending on the margin, will be the only ones to continue to gain market share.

In other findings, forty-six percent of retailers surveyed offered no product recommendations on their homepages. Using the right tools to make relevant product recommendations on the homepage leads to significant improvements in a retailer’s bottom line. Amazon said purchases made through its recommendations increased revenue by 35%.

Forty-six percent of retailers did not feature recently viewed products on any page, causing retailers to miss remarketing opportunities to consumers who have already shown interest in a specific product. Additionally, only 5% of websites displayed recently viewed products on all pages.

Halfords, Made and Paul Smith were named in the survey as the other top performing e-commerce sites.

  • Halfords focuses on natural language searches that allow complex multi-clause search strings and misspellings. The retailer, which offers numerous automotive and bicycle-related products and services, helps consumers find the product they want, even when they don’t know how to search for it. Product recommendations on category pages help shoppers discover similar items that may interest them.

  • Made, a high-growth DTC brand, outperformed in areas focused on product discovery and recommendation. Made’s search allows consumers to shop so specifically and provides precise, accurate results. Try “grey sofa with wooden legs under 500”. Directing shoppers to the most popular items in the search overlay provides the confidence of social proof of their choices.

  • Paul Smith is driving revenue growth by using natural language processing in its search functionality and avoiding misspellings, helping its customers find a faster path to purchase. This brand helps customers with additional recommendations as well as products that other people like them search, click and buy.

The Klevu team will be performing free benchmarking research-based sight website audits live at Shoptalk Europe from June 6-8 at Excel London (book here). These audits will analyze any site’s ability to understand a wide variety of synonyms, manage misspellings, and present products that are better suited to consumer needs. Additionally, retailers can request a free audit on the Klevu website.


The Klevu eCommerce Product Discovery Index includes criteria on search, product discovery, and website usability. In the search criteria, the location of the search box was considered as well as whether it contained clear instructions on the scope of the search and discovery. The search included the content displayed on different pages, whether the search engine crawls and displays the content as well as search results, the ability to manually search by SKU, misspellings, and successfully handle various types of queries in natural language containing brands, attributes, prices and Suite. Klevu looked at the zero-result experience, studied website usability, relevance of marketing messages, and product recommendations.


Millions of shoppers use Klevu to discover products on their favorite e-commerce sites. Klevu’s proprietary technology increases conversion, reduces bounce rates and builds loyalty with over 3,000 top global brands including Puma, Fred Perry, Paul Smith, Avon, Stussy and Made. Klevu is an AI search and discovery platform that leverages AI, natural language processing, and user behavior analytics to improve the search experience and automatically redistribute listing pages categories and product recommendations. Retailers who use Klevu’s comprehensive product discovery platform deliver an unparalleled customer experience and earn 37% more revenue per web session than those who don’t.

Founded in Finland in 2013, Klevu has offices located in the UK, USA, India, Finland, Australia and Sweden. The end-to-end discovery and search solution is easy to configure, optimize and maintain, and can be integrated with leading e-commerce platforms in just hours. For full creative control and headless e-commerce technologies, robust APIs and SDKs are available. For more information, please visit

Rosemary S. Bishop