As Dan discussed yesterday in a post about the big picture of search development, we are now investing in improvements to search at Wikia. Search is more than just a way to navigate to a specific page -- it’s also a way to discover new content, browse related articles, and explore a wiki.
Our goal with improving search over the next couple of months is to bring Wikia’s search not only up to industry standards, but also to a place where our communities get the most benefit out of it on both a local and global scale. Today’s update is still part of the early stages, and we have more in the works coming soon.
Here’s what’s new right now:
Wikia Global SearchEdit
We now have a global search with grouped results. Previously, if you searched for a wiki on the Wikia.com homepage, you were taken to results on Google showing all pages across all of Wikia. Now we’re grouping those page results by wiki, and showing the most active and popular wikis at the top of the results. The top page hits for that search term are grouped under the wiki title for quick navigation. Try it out at Wikia.com.
Design Updates to Local SearchEdit
We've updated the style of local wiki search to have prominent tabs at the top. Having the Multimedia, Advanced Search, and other options at the bottom of the search page wasn’t the easiest to find, so we’ve made them clear and useful at the top of the page (along with a few other design adjustments). You'll also notice that the Multimedia tab now displays images and videos! Try it out on your wiki.
Snippets are cleaner. Lately, we’ve been filtering out some of the distracting text that was appearing in the description for each search result, so they’re now more readable as you browse results. We’ll continue to improve these as we go.
No more “0 results” for common misspellings. In cases of common misspellings (did you accidentally type "Kermmit"?) that don't already have redirects in place, we now display the results for a recommended spelling instead.
There are more changes ahead as we continue to update our search tools, and we think these are a good start. Stay tuned as we continue to develop Wikia Search into an even more reliable and versatile tool -- one that allows visitors to find exactly what they’re looking for, as well as discover the other related content you know they will appreciate.