Troubleshoot Unexpected Search Results

This topic applies to

Applies to

SuiteCommerce Web Stores

Search results are driven by the items in your item catalog, data in your item record, configurations in your search settings, and the search query that is provided. Based on these factors, you might get any of the following in your search results:

  • Relevant items are returned at the top

  • Irrelevant items are returned before relevant items

  • Irrelevant items are returned intermittently

  • Relevant items are not returned

  • No items are returned

Relevant items at the top implies that you have configured the right fields in your search settings for the items published in your web store. Therefore, no action is required at this point in time.

However, if Google Analytics is enabled in your account, you can analyze the search terms used by your shoppers to refine your Search Settings as described in Improve Relevance of your Search Results.

Irrelevant items might be returned before relevant items because of your Search Settings. Modify you Search Settings to see if you can get better search results.

Also, the search query specified by the shopper might have been repetitively used in the item description of a completely irrelevant product causing the irrelevant item to appear in the search results. Consider rewording such item descriptions to resolve this issue.

Irrelevant items might be returned intermittently because of stemming, which can be sub-optimal in some situations. Stemming is a process of reducing words to their root form, and words are stemmed at both index and query time. Consequently, when two or more words have the same stem, and when the type of match for the search field is set to Keyword, irrelevant items might be returned intermittently in the Search Results along with relevant items.

For example, generator, generic, and general are all stemmed and stored as gener in the Search Index, and all these items are returned in the search results when you search for generator.

If relevant items are not returned even though the items being searched are published in your web store, you might have added a different field under Search Fields or you might not have assigned the right type of match for the selected Search Field.

For items to be searchable:

  • The field on the item record and the field in our search fields sublist should be the same. For example, the Web Store Display Name field on the Item Record is represented as Online Name in the Search Fields dropdown. Therefore, to ensure that you have selected the intended field, always verify the Field ID of a field using the FieldSetsList.xls spreadsheet.

  • Item fields that you add under Search Fields should have values assigned to them in the item record.

  • The type of match that you assigned for the selected Search Field should be appropriate for the data in your item record and the search query provided.

If no items are returned in the search results even though you have configured the right fields in your search settings, and the item being searched is published in your web store, it could be because the Item Search API is not returning items. To troubleshoot this issue, rebuild the search index manually as described in Rebuild the Search Index Manually.