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How to Add an Autocomplete Search Form to Your Website

Your website supports a large number of our own in-house search tools that exist outside of the standard WordPress framework. This FAQ will introduce the 'BM Website Basic Search' search facility onto your website with shortcode or with the Elementor widget.

Searching any website can be a nuisance, and the experience is one that can easily interrupt the flow of a user on your website. Our simple search seeks to mitigate the multi-page complexity by providing an easy-to-use single textbox that searches posts based on post text and immediately returns article options. The form can be used anywhere to search a single post type or multiple post types.

  Search Example

We'll look at basic usage with the shortcode of [bm_website_search_redirect]. We're going to modify the results returned via the post_type attribute as we want to exclude thousands of results that are arguably not entirely relevant. So, the shortcode used to return the form below is actually [bm_website_search_redirect post_types="post,faq"], meaning that we'll only be searching Blog Posts and FAQs. The result:

Keep in mind that our website doesn't provide the best platform for a full-featured example because we have so many posts that aren't accessible for 'standard' users. There are countless ways in which to rteurn results, and because XENA manages website statistics, we're able to return results by popularity or even the 'time spent' or 'most clicks' on page'. You'll have to keep referincing this FAQ or our social channels for various feature updates.

  The Problem with Multiple Post Types

Your website includes a large number of post types which are used to segregate data and provide high-level functionality. These consumer-facing post types include the following: post, page, faq, resources, education, finance, equipment, calculators, v (video), i (Social Mediq), download, business, testimonials, property, partners, employment, services, team, portfolio, bank, code, seo, and plugins (the last three types are typically ignored). Other post types deal with block content, conditional content, and transient content... and its these page types that serve to provide an exceptional experience for your users or provide for easy authentication privileges (for example, only logged in users can view partner pages outside of the entry archive page).

The massive functionality introduced to your website is the definition of bitter-sweet in the features are great, but we'll have to reference the post_types every now and again (unless you're sensibly using the Elementor widget).

  Used on Blog and FAQ Entry Pages

The two areas that will command the simple search facility more than any other are your blog and FAQ archive, and the two shortcodes you can use to return these filtered searches are as follows:

Blog: [bm_website_search_redirect post_types="post"]
FAQ: [bm_website_search_redirect post_types="faq"]

You should be able to review an example on our own FAQ archive page.

  Shortcode Attributes

The following shortcodes may be used to alter the presentation of the Search field. If you're comfortable with CSS, you may alter the 'search-address-wrapper' for the parent container.

placeholder

The default placeholder text is 'Search Website' You may alter with the shortcode of placeholder="Search FAQ Articles" or similar.

icon

The search icon is sourced from the Font Awesome library. The default icon of fas fa-search may be replaced with icon="fas fa-search".

style & dd_style

You may alter the parent style (style) or dropdown style (dd_style) with incline CSS applied as shortcode attributes.

post_types

The use of post_types was described above. The most common post types you'll search are post, page, faq, resources, education, finance, equipment, calculators, v (video), i (Social Mediq), download, business, testimonials, property, partners, employment, services, team, portfolio, bank.

sitehash

We'll search your own website by default. For those with more than one website, or when you're aggregating the articles from multiple independent brokers in a group, you may define additional websites to search. We use the term sitehash which is essentially your site_id, and you may include as many additional websites as required.

Default rendering with [bm_website_search_redirect] will search posts, faq pages, and resources.

  Elementor Widget

Shortcode introduces complexity that is often best avoided, and the Elementor drag-and-drop widget makes inclusion of the search form on any post or page a simple process. Search for 'BM Search', drag and drop the widget onto your page, select 'Website Search, select the post types that should be included in results, and save. The functional form with auto-populating results will immediately be returned. Easy.

Search Form in Elementor

  Pictured: Search for 'BM Search', drag and drop the widget onto your page, select 'Website Search, select the post types that should be included in results, and save. The functional form with auto-populating results will immediately be returned.

The same widget provides for a growing list or other search types.

  Pending Changes

A large number of changes are forthcoming. For starters, it's likely we'll alter the presentation to match the default Elementor search form . We'll also alter the way in which results are returned, the number of results, and possibly provide attributes such as 'reading time' in the results, or indicating if the page includes a video (the latter of whcih we've determined objectively increases page views). Please check back to this FAQ regularly or keep an eye on social channels for updates.

Sourced from Yabber: Results are retrieved from Yabber - not your website. This is done so we're able to group posts, selectively remove from search results, and perform other functions that'd simply be problematic within the WordPress environment.

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Note

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