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June 18, 2008

Search Quality: You Can't Improve What You Don't Measure

In our latest survey of new newsletter subscribers we found that 29% had no formal metrics for measuring quality of search results.  Search metrics allow you to keep search on the right track and can be a powerful tool for managing your systems.  They are a wonderful source for insights and trends.  We thought we would share a couple that we think work well. Many of these are covered in greater depth in Interpreting Your Search Activity Reports in the Enterprise Search newsletter.

  • Count the number of people who use search  
  • Count the total number of searches  
  • Count the number of zero search results  
  • User feedback on top 100 searches  
  • Track email complaints about search  
  • Measure number of clicks on navigators (navigation menu items)  
  • Business Goals  
  •    
    • Reduce call volume (normallized for growth in customer base) by enabling self-service from search: results are good enough to reduce calls.
    • Reduce e-mail volume (again adjusted for growth in customer base) by enabling self-service from search: results are good enough to reduce e-mails. 
    • Revenue       
    • Add-on revenue       

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Comments

One key item is missing from the list.
Number of searches that resulted in a document opened.

Andreas
==

Absolutely!!! Except remember just the fact that a document was viewed does not mean it's a good doc - it could have a great, promising summary but no follow through! Thanks!! miles

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