How to get search box in Sitelinks of Google search results


Have you seen Google showing a search box in the sitelinks as part of the search results? Learn how to get a sitelink search box for your website and enable your visitors search for your content directly from the Google search.

Sometimes you will type the name of a website into the Google search box to find the website url. In such cases, you will expect Google to show the website domain in the search results, along with few other results from that website. You will click on the sitename in the results to go to the site and then search within the site using its internal site search feature.

You could save a few steps if Google allows you to type your actual query in Google search results itself and then send you to the search results page of that particular website.

For example, assume you want to find out the options to make money from IndiaStudyChannel.com. Typically, you can type the url of the website (www.IndiaStudyChannel.com), go to the site and then use the site search feature there.

These days, most browsers support typing queries in the address bar itself. So, for convenience, most people just type the site name expecting Google to show a few results from that site.

In this case, you can type "IndiaStudyChannel" in the address bar instead of typing the full url. The Google search results would look like this:

Search box in sitelinks

You can see a search box as part of the sitelinks in the search results. If you type your query in this search box and press enter, it will take you directly to the search results page in IndiaStudyChannel, with the results pre populated for you. If your website has this Google sitelinks search box enabled, your readers could save a step of going to the site first to search for what they want. More than that, it is a privilege to have your site's search feature displayed in Google search results.

Different types of sitelinks search box


There are 2 different ways to get sitelinks search box:

1. You implement certain tags and code in your website to make Google show your site's internal search feature in Google search results.

2. Google automatically shows a sitelinks search box for popular sites. Flipkart is an example. If you search for "Flipkart" in Google, it will show a search box as part of the search results, which will allow you to search for results specifically from that site.

In case of IndiaStudyChannel, we have implemented the custom tags and code to make Google show our search box. However, in case of Flipkart, they haven't implemented any sitelinks search box tags. So, Google shows the search box automatically.

Now, you can see a big difference between those two cases:

1. In case of IndiaStudyChannel, when you type the query in the sitelinks search box, Google will take you directly to the search results page within that website and the results will be pre-populated, saving you a step.

2. In case of Flipkart, since they haven't implemented the custom tags, Google will simply filter the results in the same page to show the matching pages from that site, without taking you to the Flipkart's website. You will remain in Google search page itself. You will see Ads along with the search results and the revenue from those Ads goes to Google. Flipkart is advertising their products in those search results, causing them money. If they had implemented the sitelinks search box in their website, they could have saved this cost.

In case of IndiaStudyChannel, when someone click on sitelinks search box, user will be redirected to the search results within that site. All AdSense ads displayed in the search results page belongs to the site and the revenue goes to the site and not to Google.

How to make Google show sitelinks search box for your website in search results


If your website is not a popular website like Walmart or Flipkart, then you must implement the sitelinks search box tags in your website. Even if your website qualifies for a sitelinks search box due to the popularity, you may still consider implementing the tags for the benefits I stated above.

Step 1: First step is to have a working search feature in your website. You could use any custom search options like Google search, which allows people to search for content in your website. The only requirement is, you should be able to pass the search term as a query string to the search page in your site. When the query is passed as a parameter, the page should display the results.

In case of IndiaStudyChannel, you can pass any query to its internal search page. Some examples are shown below:

http://www.indiastudychannel.com/search/Index2.aspx?Search=admissions
http://www.indiastudychannel.com/search/Index2.aspx?Search=make%20money

Step 2: Add the schema.org markup to your home page.

Here is the live code from IndiaStudyChannel:

<script type="application/ld+json">
{
"@context": "http://schema.org",
"@type": "WebSite",
"url": "http://www.indiastudychannel.com",
"potentialAction": {
"@type": "SearchAction",
"target": "http://www.indiastudychannel.com/search/Index2.aspx?Search={search_term}",
"query-input": "required name=search_term"
}
}
</script>


In the above script, the "target" field indicates the url of the site's search results page. "Search" is the query that needs to be passed to the page to show the search results.

You can find more technical details at implementing sitelinks search box.

Once you implement the above steps, just wait for Google to crawl your markup and other relevant pages. Within a few days, your sitelinks search box will start appearing in Google search results, provided your site qualifies for it. Google uses it's own internal algorithms to determine whether to show the search box or not.

As of now, 2 of our websites (dotnetspider.com and IndiaStudyChannel.com) have successfully integrated this feature. Search for "dotnetspider" or "IndiaStudyChannel" in Google to see them in action.

How to disable the sitelinks search box

For some reason, if you do not like this cool feature to be enabled for your website, you can use the following meta tag in your home page to ask Google not to show it for your site:

<meta name="google" content="nositelinkssearchbox">]

Have you implemented this feature in your blogs? Share your feedback below.


Article by Tony John
Tony John is a professional blogger from India, who started his first Weblog in 1998 at Tripod.com. Tony switched to blogging as a passion blended business in the year 2000 and currently operates several popular web properties including IndiaStudyChannel.com, Techulator.com, dotnetspider.com and many more.

Follow Tony John or read 638 articles authored by Tony John

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Comments

Author: Gaurav Arora02 Dec 2014 Member Level: Silver   Points : 2

Awesome descriptions. I liked provided information and this is fine for websites. But what if someone wants to implement the same for blog? like I have my blog in Wordpress and how can I implement this?



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