This article gives an overview of how to use Site Search to develop a search app and embeddable search modules.

Information follows below about the basic workflow and a detailed overview of steps for creating a Site Search app and embeddable modules.

Basic workflow using embeddable modules

This is how you develop Site Search apps and embeddable modules:

  1. Open a Site Search app – In Lucidworks Cloud, one Site Search app is created for you. You are an administrator of that app.

  2. Add data sources and index your data – Create data sources for the website, CSV file, JSON file, and/or pushed JSON files that you want to index.

  3. Configure modules in the Admin UI – Configure modules to specify details such as whether there are breadcrumbs and the number of results per page.

  4. Embed Site Search modules in your websites. The embedded Site Search modules connect to the back end of your Site Search app, which is hosted in Lucidworks Cloud.

    At present, embeddable modules include ones for search boxes, facets, search results, more like this results, and topic tabs.

    Users can now access Site Search functionality directly from your websites.

  5. Tune search results – Before embedding modules (by working in the Admin UI) or after embedding modules, you can tune search results so they meet users' needs.

Detailed overview of steps using embedded modules

Search app development is point-and-click and drag-and-drop. It is no-code development. The embedded modules are code, but all you do is copy them from the Site Search app and paste them into your website. Optionally, you can use CSS (cascading style sheets) to customize the appearance of embedded modules.

How to use Site Search to develop a search app
  1. Sign in to Lucidworks Cloud – Log in as a user with the Admin or Owner role.

  2. Open a Site Search app – From the Lucidworks Cloud dashboard, click Open for the search app you want to open. Alternatively, open the app’s URL in a browser.

    When you first open an app, you are in the Page Builder and the Site Search menu is present. To open the Site Search menu at other times, click Edit in the upper left corner of Site Search.

  3. Add and configure one or more data sources from which to index data – Each search app can search multiple data sources of the same or different types.

  4. Exclude documents – Excluding documents lets you omit them from the index.

  5. Design the Search page and configure modules – Brand your app and design the contents and appearance of result lists.

    1. Edit result templates – Result templates control the content (which fields are present) and appearance of the result lists.

    2. Lay out the Search page – Page settings control the column layout of the Search page.

    3. Brand your Admin UI with a logo – Page settings let you brand your Admin UI with your own logo.

    4. Add modules – Modules are the UI components that let users search, that display search results, and that let users interact with search results (for example, by using facets).

    5. Configure modules – Configuration settings differ by module. For example, in a Facet module, you can specify the facet field or fields, display names, and advanced options.

  6. Embed modules – Embed Site Search modules in your websites.

  7. Style modules – Use cascading style sheets (CSS) to style modules.

  8. Tune searches – Tune the search results that users get to improve their relevance.

    1. Manage topics – Topics are strings that you can associate with data sources. Users can browse topics within search results. You can restrict search results to specific topics.

    2. Manage synonyms – Synonyms are alternative search terms. For example, by making vacation and holiday interchangeable synonyms, then a search for one will find documents that match the other.

    3. Block documents – Blocking documents omits them from search results for all search queries.

    4. Promote documents – Promote documents for specific search queries so that they appear at the top of search results.

  9. Use language features – Site Search supports multiple languages. To develop a search app in a language other than English, use Site Search’s language features, including language detection, lemmatization and stemming, language-based boosting, and localization of the UI language of modules.

  10. Close the Site Search menu – When you have finished app-development tasks, close the Site Search menu. If a configuration panel is present, click Close Close. Then click Close Close.

API development workflow

If you use Site Search APIs to develop a search app, the basic workflow is similar to the workflow when using embedded modules to develop an app, but instead of embedding modules you will write code that calls Site Search APIs.

Some tuning of search results in the Admin UI affects the results that users obtain through the Site Search APIs; specifically topics, synonyms, blocked documents, and promoted documents.