Make Your WordPress Search Powerful with Algolia and 9 others

A step-by-step guide to implementing powerful search platform
Algolia with WordPress. And some alternative
solution as well.

Default WordPress search is basic. If you are running a site
which requires significant search operation, then you need more
than basic.

Have you lately visited Product Hunt, Medium, Beta List,
Stripe, DigitalOcean , etc. and amazed while

They use Algolia

A SaaS (software-as-a-service) search engine for WordPress,
Java, Rails, React, Angular, Python, eCommerce, etc. Algolia
got WordPress plugin which makes the
integration easy and quick.

Let’s look at the features before implementing it.

  • Typo tolerance – typo happens to everyone so your users.
    But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t get the expected result.

As you can see above, I typed wrong spelling of
vulnerabilities, and still, I was able to get the result.

  • Synonyms – don’t worry about including all synonyms of
    targeted keywords. Detect plural, remove stop words,
  • Geo Search
  • Multi-language – more than 100 languages covered
  • Custom ranking – based on popularity, customer behavior
  • Powerful analytics – analyze everything like a number of
    queries, top searches, by countries, search performed by IP,

Algolia is enterprise-ready and got a FREE
plan as well. If you are owning a small site or want to see how
it works, signup for community edition.

And to see in action, check out this demo .

Once you are ready to implement, follow the below procedure.

Integrating Algolia with WordPress

  • At left navigation, go to Algolia Search >> Settings

Here you need to enter the API credential which you will get it
from Algolia dashboard >> API keys

  • Enter application ID, Search
    & Admin API key and save the

Next, we will configure how WordPress will perform search

By default, Algolia is disabled so got to turn them ON.

  • Go to Search Page under Algolia Search and choose one of
    the following.

Use in the backend – this means search will be
powered by Algolia, but search result page will still show the
default WordPress.

Instantsearch.js – power your search operation
and result page, both by Algolia.

And finally, enable autocomplete. You can
configure to allow for all posts. However, if you need to
search for custom post type then select that too.

Once all configuration is done, go to your WordPress site and
try searching for something. You should see it’s now powered by


Much better than default search. Isn’t it?

Algolia is probably one of the best search SaaS products but as
promised, here are some alternatives.

1. ElasticPress

ElasticPress  plugin enables
you to use hosted ElasticSearch in WordPress.

If you are or interested to use ElasticSearch SaaS from,, etc
. then this is a go-to plugin.

Read more about ElasticSearch here .

2. AWS CloudSearch

Search service by AWS is called CloudSearch . It’s managed and cost-effective
search solution for any websites.

It supports 34 languages and some of the advanced features as
the following.

  • Autocomplete
  • Highlighting
  • Field weighting
  • Free text search
  • Low latency

AWS CloudSearch is scalable and known for its high performance.
Pricing is based on the usage and pays as you go.

CloudSearch plugin by Andrea
Landonio makes it possible to use AWS search service with the

3. Ajax Search Pro

You don’t require any hosted search service to use Ajax Search Pro . I was
amazed at the features it provides out of the box at the lowest

It doesn’t slow down
the site and provide flexible configuration to change the
search to meet your branding.

Some features:

  • You can create multiple search instances. Each instance can
    have a different configuration.
  • More than 100+ ready-made design for you to get it started
    in minutes. Also, give you an option to customize the existing
    themes color, design, fonts, etc.
  • Autocomplete and suggestion
  • Responsive
  • Search filter by type like posts, category, tags, custom
    post types, dates, titles, etc.
  • Configure search results based on priority and order
  • Index table engine
  • Shortcodes so you can embed the search field anywhere
  • Built-in cache
  • Search analytics, so you know what your users are searching

Ajax Search Pro got beautiful backend panel to customize the
search the way you want.

4. Swiftype

Swiftype  is SaaS-based powerful search
solution, SOC2 compliant and enterprise ready.

Site search by Swiftype is perfect for a content-based online
business like a news site, eCommerce store , etc.

It allows a cross-domain search, got flexible integration,
intuitive search, high-accuracy result and developer

Swiftype integrates WordPress using their plugin .

5. WP AutoComplete Search

A FREE plugin for live search,
autocomplete (as you can guess by name) which support custom
post types, taxonomy.

It’s Ajax query based real-time search and provides flexible
configuration option. You can customize search behavior,
results from plugin control panel.

And yes, it’s fast.

6. Search Everything

Improve default WordPress search functionality with Search Everything FREE plugin. It’s
one of the famous search plugins with more than 90,000 active

Once installed, you can configure to search in page, tag,
category, custom taxonomy, comments, post, etc.

That’s right; this can search in comments as well.

7. Relevanssi

Relevanssi is available in FREE and
PRO, both.

Some of the advanced features available are:

  • Log user queries
  • Highlighting
  • Choose what to index
  • Order and weight
  • Stopwords and synonym

8. Search & Filter

Search & Filter let you remove
the entire search field and implement filtering system. Filters
can be shown as a drop-down, checkbox, multiple selections and
radio buttons.

It’s a free plugin and sounds perfect if you want to provide
filter options to your users.

It also got PRO version which is compatible with WooCommerce,
Easy Digital Downloads, WPML, Advanced Custom Fields, WP
eCommerce and many more.

9. SearchWP

A premium plugin lets you search everywhere for WordPress, and
it use existing search field and results in a template.

Some of the worth mentioning SearchWP features are:

  • Index text, PDF, office
  • You can create multiple search engine
  • Search insights
  • Algorithm customization for the way it shows the results
  • WooCommerce, bbPress, WP job manager, Easy digital
    downloads integration
  • Keyword Stemming

Search is essential for eCommerce and news site to show the
results your users are looking for. If you are using WordPress
and still with the default search, then it’s time to replace
for a better experience.

I hope above WP search solution helps you to create a perfect
search for your site.


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