Have you ever come across a popular WordPress blog that still uses the standard WordPress search widget? If you have, then you have no doubt been frustrated by the results.
For those of you who don’t know, the standard search widget in WordPress returns any post that features your keyword, in reverse chronological order. It also displays the first 55 words in the post, as opposed to an excerpt highlighting the term you are searching for.
If you are trying to find something specific that was published a year ago, you may have to trawl through pages of results before you find what you want – despite it being the most relevant result. And if you are simply entering a search term in the hope that you will be presented with the most relevant content, you’re out of luck.
Google To The Rescue
Luckily, there is a very simple way of getting around this – our old friend Google.
Simply head over to everyone’s favorite search engine and type the following into the search box:
inurl:http://www.theblog.com/ + search term
Let me give you an example of this in action. I am a big fan of the Smart Passive Income blog, and the fact that such a popular blog still uses the standard WordPress search widget is a bit gob-smacking. Seriously – consider my gob well and truly smacked.
Pat (the owner of the blog) published an extremely popular post about a year ago: THE Backlinking Strategy That Works. If all were good in the world, a search on the term “backlinking” in his blog would return that post near to or at the top of the results. Let’s see:
Not in the top 3 results. Not on the first page actually. I eventually found it half way down page 4. Not only that, the top three results have very little to teach you about backlinking. In terms of increasing engagement by returning relevant search results, this blog is failing in a big way.
Now let’s use our clever little search query in Google to see what we get.
inurl:http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/ + backlinking
Ta da! What I would consider the most relevant result is second in Google’s rankings.
This method is obviously also great if a blog doesn’t have a search box at all (I’m looking at you, Social Triggers).
What About YOUR Blog’s Search?
Are you still using the dreaded standard WordPress search? It’s time for a change! Stay tuned for an in-depth guide on your best options.
Creative commons image courtesy of dullhunk
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