How Users Look Up Garden Center Products & Services

It’s spring, and garden centers everywhere are getting ready to service the needs of home gardeners and small landscaping services. Garden center search traffic is similar to Christmas retail search traffic in that the majority of the searches occur during three or four months of the year, peaking in June and falling off dramatically for the rest of the year.

With such a short window of opportunity, what is the best way to exploit this traffic? The answer: understand how consumers search for your products and services.

Almost everybody gardens in one way or another. They may simply be buying houseplants, and caring for them. Or they may be buying exotic plants, shrubs and trees for a more formal backyard presentation. Regardless, consumers do exhibit a very defined set of search behaviors when looking for a garden center.

There are about 31 million global monthly searches (800 unique queries) associated with the Garden Center dataset. About half of these (15.8M) are considered local. When you classify user intent, you find 21 distinct categories of behavior. In the following table, you can see which categories interest consumers the most.

High Level Categories Of The Plant Family

One of the more interesting observations about this data is how few informational searches there are. Generally, informational searches generate the most traffic, and are usually the top category of behavior.

A second observation is that consumer behavior is far more focused which provides many great opportunities for developing custom landing pages. This data has important implications for your website’s information architecture. Let’s name two.

  • Less than 1 percent of consumer searches are for a business brand name – their focus is on products and services, not on your specific business.
  • The top three categories have consumers searching for products, plants by name and plants by type. This should be the focus for your website information architecture.

Sub-Categories In Garden & Landscape Searches

Often, high-level categories will have important sub-categories worth noting for architectural purposes. The next table shows that five of the high-level categories have interesting sub-groupings that provide options for experimenting with micro-sites.

Garden Center Sub Categories

Green Thumb Search Behavior Model Hierarchy

The following graph orders the search behavior categories from top to bottom by search volume. You will notice that the first category has the most traffic, but the Products category has the most complexity.

Garden Center behavior model

Garden Centers In More Detail

Let’s take a look at the categories in a little more detail.

To finish reading this article go to Search Engine Land where I first published this analysis.

Find Out More

If you are interested in finding out more about Search Behavior Models send me (Mark Sprague) an email at: Mark@MSprague.com, or call me now at: 781-862-3126

Lexington eBusiness Consulting

About Lexington eBusiness Consulting

Mark Sprague’s 25 years of product development experience, which includes expertise in Search Engines, Information Products, SEO platforms and Social Networking applications provide in-depth expertise to help you refine products and services, and improve your websites performance by:

  • Developing a superior data-driven SEO strategy for your website.
  • Understanding your customers’ search behavior and normalizing it to your content strategy.
  • Understanding how search engine technology practically impacts SEO and content strategies.
  • Understanding how search technology impacts content in a social networking environment.
  • Developing a superior user experience based on sound information architecture, usability and coding standards.

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Mark Sprague,  CEO
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