What are shoppers searching for on Walmart.com?

The answer to that question in a moment, but first some context:

Say the word "search" and most people think immediately of Google and its dominant market share. Despite this, one form of online searching remains largely out of Google’s ever-extending reach. While garnering much less attention (read: none) on-site search (what people search for once they arrive on a website) offers a revealing look into what matters most to site visitors.

Case in point: Walmart.com. The world’s largest retailer attracted 22M U.S. visitors to its website in October, over half of whom conducted at least one search on the site. The table below lists the top 40 terms Walmart.com visitors searched for in October.


Observations:

  • The top searched for term on Walmart.com in both September and October was "tires"! As in the lowly vulcanized rubber tubes we ride on each day. Over 1% of all searches on Walmart.com were for "tires" in October. While this came as a surprise to me, it certainly isn’t a secret to everyone, judging by the nearly 250,000 visitors that Walmart.com’s tire center attracts each month.
  • Seasonality has a significant affect on searches on Walmart.com. For example, Halloween related terms made up 3 of the top 13 searches in October.
  • Video gamers love Walmart. The "wii" was 2nd only to "tires" on the list of top search terms in October, while "xbox 360" was 12th on the list. The struggling PS3 ranked #54 in October, up from #97 in September, after a mid-month $100 price cut.
  • Consumer electronics related search terms accounted for half of the top 40 search terms in October.
About Matt Pace:
As VP of Retail and Consumer Products at Compete, Matt Pace is responsible for leading a team of client services professionals who deliver digital intelligence and insights to clients in the retail and consumer packaged good industries. Before Matt joined the Compete Team he was a CPA and senior auditor with Deloitte & Touche. Follow Matt on Twitter @mattpace.

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