How to Add Authors in WordPress Search Results (5 Steps)

Are you wondering how to add authors in WordPress search results?

It’ll help your visitors find more content from their favorite authors and allow you to get more pageviews.

In this step-by-step guide, we’ll show you how to include authors in search results on your site, no coding needed.

Why Add Authors in WordPress Search Results

By default, WordPress ignores any data about post authors when performing a search. It makes finding posts from specific authors a real hassle for your site visitors.

The only option they have in this case is to check the authors’ archive. That’s not convenient, not to mention that not every site has such an archive.

By making authors’ data searchable, you can resolve this issue and help your visitors find the right content faster.

It also boosts your content discoverability and allows your authors to increase their online presence.

Now that you know why adding authors to search results can be beneficial, let’s see how you can do that.

How to Add Authors to Search Results on Your WordPress Site

The easiest way to include authors in search results on your site is to use the SearchWP plugin.

SearchWP logo

That’s the most powerful WordPress search plugin which you can use to make anything searchable on your site.

It not only allows you to make WordPress index authors’ data, but also custom fields, tags, categories, and other helpful information.

Beyond that, you can use this plugin to completely customize how search works on your site.

For example, you can customize your search results page, exclude a specific post category from search, and much more.

But that’s not all the features this plugin comes with. You can also use SearchWP to:

  • Create custom search fields. Do you want to have a search field with a unique set of settings? With SearchWP, you can create a search form, customize it to meet your needs, and place it anywhere on your site.
  • Change the order of search results. SearchWP allows you to change your search results order with just a few clicks, no coding needed.
  • Track the most popular searches. Do you want to know what users are looking for most often on your site? SearchWP gathers data on all search activity on your site, allowing you to understand your audience’s needs better.
  • Limit search to specific post types. Using SearchWP, you can limit search on your site to specific post types, categories, or anything else.

There are over 30,000 website owners who already use SearchWP to deliver the most relevant search results to their visitors.

Are you ready to become one of them and add authors in search results on your WordPress site?

If so, follow the step-by-step guide below.

Step 1: Install and Activate the SearchWP Plugin

First, you’ll need to get your own copy of SearchWP.

The next step is to install the plugin on your site. To get started, log in to your SearchWP account and click on the Downloads tab.

go to the Downloads tab

To download the plugin, click on the Download SearchWP button. This will save a zipped file of the SearchWP plugin to your computer.

click Downloads SearchWP

Then, copy your license key on the same page. You’ll need it on one of the following steps to activate your plugin copy.

copy your license key

The next step is to upload the downloaded ZIP file to your site and install SearchWP. You can follow this guide on installing a WordPress plugin if you need help.

After the plugin installation, you’ll need to activate your license.

First, hover your mouse over the SearchWP button at the top of your WordPress dashboard.

Then select the Activate License option from the drop-down menu.

click Activate License

This will take you to the License tab. Paste your license key into the License box and click Activate.

press Activate

After activating your copy of SearchWP, you’re ready to move on to the next step and install the Co-Authors Plus plugin.

Step 2: Install the Co-Authors Plus Plugin

This plugin allows you to define multiple authors for your content, specify additional author data, add guest authors, and more.

add multiple authors

Plus, it has seamless integration with SearchWP. Due to that, you can add your authors to search with a couple of clicks.

You can download the Co-Authors Plus Plugin from its official page. Once you’ve finished downloading, install the plugin the same way as SearchWP.

Step 3: Install the SearchWP Co-Authors Plus Integration Extension

After installing the Co-Authors Plus plugin, you’ll also need to install its SearchWP integration extension.

To get started, navigate to the Extensions tab within the SearchWP section on the left panel of your WordPress dashboard.

click Extensions

Then, use the search field at the top right to search for Co-Authors Plus Integration.

search for the extension

Once you’ve found the extension, click Install.

install the Co-Authors plugin integration

After installing the extension, you’re ready to move on to the next step and customize your search engine.

Step 4: Customize Your Search Engine

To get started, click SearchWP on the left panel of your WordPress dashboard.

click SearchWP

It’ll take you to the Engines tab, where you can manage your search engines created with SearchWP.

your search engines

Right now, there is only the Default search engine. SearchWP automatically creates it after installation and uses it to manage how search works on your entire site.

You can edit its settings to customize where WordPress looks for matches, what attributes it considers, and many more.

Currently, it has 3 search sources: Posts, Pages, and Media.

search sources

To include authors in search results on your site, you’ll need to add them as an attribute in the Posts search source.

To get started, click the Rebuild Index button. It’ll make WordPress reindex all your posts and authors so that they become visible to the search engine.

click Rebuild Index

Then, click on the Posts search source to expand its settings.

click on the posts search source

Next, click Add/Remove Attributes.

click Add Remove attributes

The Co-Authors Plus plugin stores authors’ data in custom fields. So, to add an author search to your site, you need to add these custom fields as an attribute.

To do that, enter “Co-Authors” into the Custom fields field.

search for Co-Authors custom fields

Then, select the Co-Authors Plus: coauthosplus_any option from the dropdown menu.

By adding this custom field, you make searchable any authors’ data, including their names, nicknames, and so on.

add co-authors custom field

When you’re finished, click Done.

click Done when your're finished adding post attributes

The last step is to save the changes you’ve made to the Default search engine.

To do that, click the Save Engines button at the top right corner.

press Save Engines

Then, press the Rebuild Index button once more so that WordPress learns the changes we’ve made.

click Rebuild Index

That’s it. Now your visitors can search for posts written by specific authors.

Let’s make sure and try out your new search.

Step 5: Test Your New Search by Authors

To do that, click the Visit Site button under your site’s name in the upper left corner.

press Visit Site

Then enter the author’s name whose posts you want to find into the search bar on your site.

For example, we have an author named Henry Turner on our test site. Let’s try to find posts written by him.

how to add authors in WordPress search results

As you can see, we successfully found the posts written by Henry Turner.

we found posts written by the first author

Let’s also try looking for posts by another author, Sophie Holmes.

click Find Results

We found a post written by this author as well.

we found a post written by the second author

It means that now search by author works on our site.

In this step-by-step tutorial, you learned how to add authors in WordPress search results.

It’ll help your visitors find posts from specific authors faster and increase the number of pageviews you get.

Are you ready to include authors in search on your site and start delivering more relevant search results to your visitors? You can grab your copy of SearchWP here.

Want to bring specific pages to the top of search results on your site? Check out this how to prioritize specific search results in WordPress guide.

You may also want to read our next post on how to add fuzzy search to your WordPress site to make WordPress search for partial matches.

Want to make your search awesome right now?

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You can utilize all of the content that’s gone unrecognized by native WordPress keyword search instantly with SearchWP.

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See what SearchWP customers have to say

  • “SearchWP have been a lifesaver when clients have hi demands on how search results should be weightet. An essential plugin for all modern WP sites.”

  • “SearchWP is the best of multiple search plugins I’ve tried. Running a complex content site, being able to rank types of content differently, or even have a separate search engine with its own index for a more specific part of the site, is invaluable.”

  • “With SearchWP you can tweak your search results so you can better target the needs of your site visitors. You have the power to expand your search into custom fields, target specific areas of your site such as taxonomies, post types, and on and on.”