Just a quick ‘plug’ today for a handy plugin I’ve stumbled across recently.
Users like to search, so when creating a WordPress managed website, one of the first things I consider is the placement, design, and functionality of the search.
By default, WordPress includes a handy template tag that will produce a simple but useful looking search input.
However, there’s one problem… WordPress searching isn’t very good. In fact, it’s actually really bad.
The default system in place doesn’t find the most relevant posts or pages first. Instead, it displays/orders them by the date they were uploaded (most recent first). For example, you may have a full page dedicated to the topic of the Xbox 360. However, a search query for “Xbox 360″ could print back multiple results of PS3 article posts first, as long they were uploaded more recently, and have at least 1 mention of the Xbox 360 hidden somewhere in the post. Not user friendly in the slightest.
So, how do you go about fixing this?
After looking into the matter, I found a real gem of a plugin. Introducing…
This can very easily be installed to a new WordPress build, or an existing site that’s already packed with posts and pages. Basically, I’m recommending everyone and anyone to use it.
- Search results are ordered by relevance, not just date.
- Search terms can be highlighted in the results, letting the user know if the page/post is exactly what they’re after.
- Custom post types, comments, taxonomies, etc, are now all searchable.
- “Did you mean” suggestions can be added.
- Search results can be cached for better peformance.
…the list goes on and on. Check out the plugin’s features and benefits page.
There is also a premium version for those who need extension more functionality.
Hopefully this fantastic plugin can help some of you out. If you have any queries feel free to ask.