This post is part of a series focussing on the main changes and improvements made at WP Engine throughout 2015.
WP Engine launched on the 21st April 2015 a brand new search service that can help it customers upgrade the search capabilities of their websites. The new service is known as “WP Engine Search”.
When you provide a search service on you website, you need the service to be as fast and as accurate as possible. This keeps your visitors happy, and then they stay on your website for longer.
The new search is powered by Elasticsearch, and was originally a WP Engine Labs Alpha project. While WP Engine focuses on providing a WordPress service, Elasticsearch is built on the open source setup Apache Lucene and is all about delivering good search experiences.
The new offering in 2015, WP Engine Search, provides a full-text search engine with high availability; it is very fast, and give users real-time search results that have high accuracy, and are sorted by relevance.
The WP Engine Search is available as part of the WP Engine platform: they do the hard work of making sure the search is integrated into your account, and this makes sure you don’t have to contract with another vendor.
As well as being fast and accurate, and an improvement on the standard WordPress search service, WP Engine also reduces the load on your database server, as it does not perform a full-text scan on the database for each search operation carried out by the user.
WordPress Search still uses a simple MySQL query to find and generate results and sorts search results by the age of the post.
The main features of WP Engine Search are:
- Reduced Load on Database Server: Unlike standard WordPress search, which conducts a MySQL query to find keywords and sorts by date published, WP Engine Search offers real-time search functionality without requiring a full-text database scan for every search operation.
- Autosuggest Results and Fuzzymatching: WP Engine Search generates more effective search as well as autosuggestions for close queries, related content and matching for misspelled terms.
- Enhanced User Experience: The WordPress website maintains a high level of consumer performance by instantly matching website visitors to the buried content. The Elasticsearch capability engages users while potentially increasing traffic, page views and revenue streams through direct response engagement.
One feature that is fascinating is the “Related Posts” feature: this enables the placement of related and relevant content into the page that the visitor sees. When seeing this, the viewer is immediately more engaged with the website and receives a more personal experience.
In their press release, WP Engine said in a statement:
“WP Engine Search enables WordPress website owners to build powerful, customized search experiences that rival the capabilities of today’s leading search engines and to transform their users’ experiences,” said Jason Cohen, CTO, and Co-founder of WP Engine. “Coming off the heels of GeoIP and the HHVM Mercury Platform, WP Engine Search is a testament to the open source innovation conducted at WP Engine Labs, which is continually bringing to market new products and features applicable to the entire WordPress community.”
The WP Engine Search is another step for the company, as they continue to provide web hosting and WordPress services. Like their other service, this search engine is suitable for anyone – from those writing their own blog, to those running a business.