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Autocomplete suggests search phrases as a site visitor types characters into a search field.

Image: Autocomplete search field

The suggestion list becomes more precise as a user types more characters.

Optimizely Search & Navigation executes a query using that term if a site visitor selects a suggestion. Autocomplete speeds up the search experience when it correctly predicts words being typed.

The autocomplete functionality only works from the beginning of a phrase; the search term must begin with the first word in the autocomplete phrase.

Sources of autocomplete suggestions

Optimizely Search & Navigation provides two sources of autocomplete suggestions.

  • Manually entered search terms on the Optimizely Search & Navigation Optimization screen's Autocomplete tab.

    Image: Search & Navigation Optimization

  • Automatically generated search terms, based on previous searches, that resulted in at least one hit.

Manually-added suggestions take precedence over system-generated ones. For example, if a search for polic results in one user clicking a search result that uses police, Optimizely Search & Navigation makes police an autocomplete suggestion for polic. But, if you manually add policy as a suggestion, that term displays above police in the suggestion list.

Usage recommendations

  • Base autocomplete suggestions on search keywords for targeted content. For example, if your website sells bicycles, add the following suggestions to display when a site visitor types ro.

    Image: Autocomplete suggestions

  • For a new website, manually add autocomplete suggestions for important words. Even if no previous searches for them were made, the suggestions direct site visitors to appropriate pages.

Add, edit, and delete autocomplete phrases

You can define autocomplete suggestions for a specific language and a specific website. To create a suggestion, follow these steps.

  1. Select Search & Navigation > Manage > Optimization > Autocomplete from edit view.
  2. In the Phrase field, enter autocomplete suggestions (one at a time).
The Autocomplete screen displays only suggestions that were manually added on this screen—it does not display suggestions based on previous, successful searches.

Use context menu options to edit or delete an autocomplete suggestion.

After you enter autocomplete suggestions, your developer must update website pages that host search controls to implement Autocomplete.

Change the order of autocomplete phrases

The order of suggestions in the Autocomplete list determines their sequence in a search field's suggestion list.

Image: Changing the order of autocomplete phrases

To change the order of suggestions, follow these steps:

  1. Select the suggestion you want to move.
  2. Drag it to the new position.
  3. Release the mouse button when you see a blue line below the new position.

    Image: New order of suggestions