Google Custom Search Gets Better Sort And Filter Results

    May 9, 2012
    Zach Walton
    Comments are off for this post.

If you own a Web site, you might use Google’s Custom Search Engine to help visitors find stuff on your site. I’ve always found it to be pretty accurate, but Google is adding more improvements to custom search in the form of better sort and filter results.

The Custom Search Engine now has support for UI-based results sorting. You can enable this option in the Basics tab under the Custom Search control panel. This will add a “sort by” button to the top of the results page.

Google Custom Search Better Sort Filter Results

The sorting feature by default goes by date and relevance. You can change this by going to the control panel and specifying additional “sort by” keys. There are a lot of ways you can use this to your advantage especially when it comes to getting the right content into the hands of the user. Google uses the example of marking up pages for product rich snippets so that you can enable search based on price.

Google Custom Search Better Sort Filter Results

The second change is the introduction of compact queries for filtering by attribute. The current query for showing pages with a product-description attribute that contains both the words “search” and “engine” looks like this:

[more:pagemap:product-description:search more:pagemap:product-description:engine].

Whereas with compact search queries, you can reduce that mess down to this simple line:


It’s worth noting that the comments on this particular blog post point out that the save button under the Basic tab to turn on these new features isn’t working properly. The last comment verifying that the button wasn’t working was made this morning at 6:15. Perhaps you will have better luck getting it to work, but I’m sure Google is already fixing whatever the issue is.

  • http://dudleyantoine.wordpress.com Dudley Antoine

    I think this is a pretty interesting feature. I always wanted to enable the Google Search feature on my site. These new features might sway me…

  • http://codapt.com Jeff

    Thank you, This was exactly what I was looking for. I just did a search on “Better search engine” after being irritated one too many times about the lack of mechanisms to customize my search results in Google, and hoping for the off-chance that I might find something.

    I have to say, I’m glad Google’s making an effort in this direction. It was really looking like they were becoming less so all the time. For me, the ability to modify settings to exactly how I want them is the most important aspect of pretty much anything that I use.

  • Tareck117

    >>You can enable this option in the Basics tab under the Custom Search control panel.

    This information is now deprecated. This section on the configuration has now moved to : Edit Search engine > **[Name of the search engine]** > Search Features > Advanced Tab > Result sorting