Wonder how to fix WooCommerce product search not working?
It’s an absolute nightmare for any eCommerce WordPress website owner. The main problem is that there are several possible reasons that can cause it.
In this article, we’ll talk about the most popular issues with search in WooCommerce and how to solve them.
Since this is a comprehensive article, here is a table of contents to help you navigate:
- How to Fix WooCommerce Doesn’t Show Products in the Admin Panel
- How to Fix WordPress Doesn’t Display WooCommerce Products in a Site Search Results
- How to Fix WordPress Doesn’t Search by WooCommerce Product Attributes
3 Common Examples of Woocommerce Product Search Not Working
WooCommerce is one of the best and most powerful eCommerce WordPress plugins.
But, as with any other plugin, you may encounter errors when using it from time to time.
It’s especially frustrating when the errors are related to the product search. If the search on your website is broken, customers can’t find what they came for!
Unfortunately, there are plenty of reasons that can cause troubles with WooCommerce search.
Below we described the most common issues in WooCommerce product search and ways to solve them.
WooCommerce Product Search in Admin Isn’t Working
There is a fairly widespread problem when WooCoomerce shows products in the search results on a site but doesn’t display them in the admin panel.
Although this issue doesn’t affect customers, it causes considerable inconvenience to the site owner.
Can you imagine how it feels to manually search for the product you want to customize out of a thousand others?
To solve this problem, we first need to figure out what caused it.
Here is the list of the most likely reasons:
- Plugin conflict. Plugin incompatibility can sometimes lead to problems with WooCommerce search.
- Mass product import via CSV. When you upload thousands of products to your site at once, it can corrupt the product database.
- Memory limit. If your hosting has strict memory limitations, it may cause problems with the WooCommerce search.
All of these causes are pretty easy to tackle, and we’ll show you how to fix them later in this article.
Or you can skip ahead to the solution and learn how to fix WooCommerce doesn’t show products in the admin panel right now.
WooCommerce Products Don’t Display in Site Search Results
If products don’t show up in the search results on the site itself, that’s a much bigger problem.
Customers are very likely to leave your store as soon as they use a search on your site and figure that it’s broken. To prevent that, it’s important to quickly understand what caused the problem and fix it.
The main reason why WooCommerce products don’t show up in on-site search results is the WordPress search engine’s features.
The thing is, the native WordPress search engine only searches by posts and pages.
WooCommerce products are essentially custom post types. That’s why WordPress simply doesn’t consider them performing a search.
To solve the problem, you need to add the “Products” custom post type as a source in the search engine settings.
If you’ve already done that, but the problem still persists, it may be caused by the following reasons:
- Customized product visibility. If a particular product doesn’t show up in the search results, there’s a good chance you changed its default visibility.
- Cached search results page. If you’ve added products and haven’t cleared the cache afterward, it’s possible that an outdated version of your site is being displayed.
- Plugin compatibility issues. As in the case of a broken search in the admin panel, products may not appear in on-site search results due to plugin compatibility issues.
We’ll show you how to fix all of the above issues and make WordPress search by WooCommerce products further in this article.
If you want to skip ahead, feel free to follow the how to fix WordPress doesn’t display WooCommerce products in a site search results link.
WordPress Doesn’t Search by WooCommerce Product Attributes
As we just found out, WordPress doesn’t index and show in search results WooCommerce products as they’re custom post types.
Things are getting even more complicated when it comes to product attributes as WooCommerce stores them as custom fields.
It means that to make them searchable, you first need to get WordPress to consider custom post types and then the custom fields they contain.
We’ll show you how to do that further in this article.
Or you can follow this link to skip ahead and learn how to fix WordPress doesn’t search by WooCommerce product attributes.
How to Fix WooCommerce Product Search Not Working
Once we learned the most common search issues related to WooCommerce, let’s take a look at possible ways to solve them.
How to Fix WooCommerce Doesn’t Show Products in the Admin Panel
Plugin Compatibility Issues
Installed any new plugins shortly before WooCommerce stopped displaying products in search results?
Disabling every plugin apart from WooCommerce will help to figure out if it’s the reason.
To do so, navigate to the Plugins tab in your WordPress dashboard.
Check the box at the top left to select all installed plugins at once.
Ensure you uncheck the WooCommerce plugin, select Deactivate from the Bulk actions drop-down menu, and press Apply.
That’s it. You deactivated all the plugins you’ve installed except for WooCommerce.
Did the problem with the search disappear after these actions? Then gradually activate the plugins one by one until you find which one is causing the problem.
If WooCommerce still doesn’t display products in search results in the admin panel, you can also try the following solutions below.
Mass Product Import via CSV
Have you recently imported a large number of products into WooCommerce? Then issues with search in the admin panel may be caused by database corruption.
To regenerate the database, navigate to WooCommerce » Status » Tools in your WordPress dashboard.
Once there, press the Regenerate button at the Product lookup tables section.
Then scroll the page to the very bottom and press the Update Database button at the appropriate section.
Note that these operations may take some time to complete depending on the number of products in your store.
If that doesn’t solve the problem, try the following way.
Navigate to Products » All Products in your WordPress dashboard.
Tick the topmost checkbox to highlight all products.
Then, select the Edit option from the Bulk actions drop-down menu and click Apply.
Then simply click Update to update all your products at once.
These actions make WooCommerce reindex all products and begin displaying them in the search results in the admin panel as it’s supposed to be.
Server Memory Limit
Just launched your first WordPress site? Or moved your site to new hosting?
That could be a possible reason for issues with the WooCommerce search, especially if you have a lot of products.
The thing is that the server that hosts your site may not have enough power to handle a large number of WooCommerce products at once.
Or, the server may have software restrictions that limit the amount of available memory.
As you’re not allowed to configure the server yourself, the best possible solution is to reach out to your hosting provider’s customer support.
They’ll help you figure out if the issue with WooCommerce search is related to a server and solve it if it’s the case.
How to Fix WordPress Doesn’t Display WooCommerce Products in a Site Search Results
The best way to include WooCommerce products in your WordPress site search results is to use a plugin like SearchWP.
Beyond making WooCommerce products searchable, this plugin has many other valuable features.
Over 30,000 site owners use this best WordPress search plugin because of its features, such as:
- Automatic theme integration. You don’t need to be a tech-savvy user or edit any code to start using SearchWP. After installing, the plugin automatically integrates with all existing search forms on your site.
- Search activity tracking. Do you wonder what products your visitors search for on your site? SearchWP allows you to start tracking searches and get valuable insights into your audience’s interest.
- Search results in live mode. By default, WordPress shows search results by opening a new separate page. With SearchWP, you can display search results in live mode, providing your customers with a better user experience.
Now, let’s take a look at how to make WordPress display WooCommerce products in search results using SearchWP.
Step 1: Install and Activate SearchWP
The first step is to grab your copy of SearchWP here.
Once done, go over to the Downloads section.
Then, press the Download SearchWP button and save the plugin to your computer.
Copy your license key as you will need it further to activate the plugin.
Once the download is completed, upload the SearchWP ZIP file to your WordPress site.
If you need a refresher on how to do that, feel free to check out this how to install a WordPress plugin step-by-step tutorial.
The next step after the installation and activation of SearchWP is to enter the license key.
To do that, click the SearchWP button at the top panel of the WordPress dashboard.
Once you get to the SearchWP settings, go over to the License tab.
Then simply put your license key into the appropriate field and press Activate.
That’s it. You’ve successfully activated your copy of SearchWP.
Step 2: Install and Activate the WooCommerce Integration Extension
The next step is to download the WooCommerce Integration extension and install it on your site.
This extension ensures seamless integration of SearchWP and WooCommerce. You can grab it on the WooCommerce Integration download page.
Once you’ve navigated to the page, click the Download Extension button to save it to your computer.
After the download is complete, simply install and activate the extension the same way as SearchWP.
Once done, you’re ready to proceed to customize the default WordPress search engine.
Step 3: Add WooCommerce Products as a Search Source
To get started, go over to the Engines tab.
Here you’ll find the list of search engines you currently have.
By customizing the default search engine, you can edit how the search works across the entire site. And if you want to add additional search engines and link them to specific search boxes, SearchWP allows you to do so, too.
The default search engine has only 3 sources: posts, pages, and media. It means that currently, WordPress does searches exclusively among these 3.
To make WooCommerce products searchable, we need to add them as a search source.
To get started, first, click the Sources & Settings button.
Check the box next to the Products source, and then click Done at the bottom right.
After you’ve finished, press the Save Engines button at the top right to save the changes.
That’s it. Now WooCommerce products appear in search results on your website.
Step 4: Test Your New Search
Let’s make sure that we can now find products through search.
To do so, click Visit Site under your site’s name in the WordPress dashboard.
Enter the name of any product you have in your store into the search box and click Search.
As you can see, WooCommerce products now appear in search results on our test site.
If WooCommerce products don’t appear in search results even after you added them as a search source, there might be some other reasons for that.
Let’s sort them out.
Customized Product Visibility
Added or edited a product, but it doesn’t appear in on-site search results? There’s a good chance that you’ve accidentally changed its default visibility settings.
To figure that out, navigate to Products in your WordPress dashboard and click on the product whose visibility you’d like to change.
Then, make sure that the product’s catalog visibility option is set to Shop and search results.
If it’s not the case, you’ve just found the reason why your product doesn’t appear in the search results.
To fix this, simply press Edit next to the Catalog visibility option. Then, change this parameter to Shop and search results or Search results only, depending on your needs.
Once done, press OK, and don’t forget to save the changes by clicking the Update button.
Cached Search Results Page
Do you use any caching plugins on your WordPress website? Your search results page may have simply been cached.
This problem can be solved in a couple of clicks by clearing your site’s cache. The exact steps depend on which plugin you’re using.
We’ll show you how to clear the cache with an example of one of the most popular WordPress caching plugins called WP Super Cache.
Navigate to WP Super Cache under Settings in your WordPress dashboard.
Then, press the Delete Cache button to display updated versions of pages on your site.
Plugin Compatibility Issues
A plugin conflict can cause problems with displaying products in search results not only in the admin panel but also on the site itself.
Earlier in this article, we’ve already provided a step-by-step guide on how to find out if it’s your case.
Feel free to check out the plugin compatibility issues section for more information on that topic.
How to Fix WordPress Doesn’t Search by WooCommerce Product Attributes
As we’ve figured out how to make WordPress search by WooCommerce products, you may also want to make it consider product attributes.
Step 1: Install and Activate SearchWP and the WooCommerce Extension
The first step is to install SearchWP and the WooCommerce integration extension.
Haven’t done it yet? Kindly follow these guides on how to install and activate SearchWP and install and activate the WooCommerce integration extension.
Step 2: Add WooCommerce Products as a Search Source
The next step is to make WordPress consider WooCommerce products as a search source.
Above, we’ve already provided a step-by-step tutorial on how to add WooCommerce products as a search source so check it out if you need help with that.
Step 3: Customize Your Search Engine
The next step is to indicate which specific attributes you want WordPress to consider while performing a search.
To do so, go to the SearchWP settings by clicking the SearchWP button at the top panel of the WordPress dashboard.
Then, on the Engines tab, click the Add/Remove Attributes button within the Products section.
WooCommerce stores product attributes in custom fields, so enter the attribute you want to be indexed in the Custom Fields field.
If you want WordPress to consider any product attributes, click on the Any Meta Key shortcut in the dropdown menu.
Once you’re finished, press Done.
You can move the slider next to each attribute to adjust its relevance weight. The bigger the weight, the more WordPress will prioritize the attribute while searching.
As you can see, our newly added Any Meta Key attribute currently has the lower possible weight.
To make the default WordPress search engine consider it on an equal footing with the post title, slug and excerpt, move the slider all the way right.
Here is how it should look:
When you’re finished, press Save Engines at the top right.
Then, press the Rebuild Index button so that WordPress can re-index all search sources and their attributes.
That’s it. Now the search on your WordPress site considers any WooCommerce product attributes.
Step 4: Test Your New Search
To test your new search, press the Visit Site button under your site’s name.
For this tutorial, we created a product called “Lightweight Full-Zip Hoodie” with the red color as an attribute.
Note that there is no “red” in the product title and description.
So, if this product shows up in search results, our WordPress test site now indexes and considers product attributes.
Let’s see what search results we get below.
As you can see, we found the “Lightweight Full-Zip Hoodie” product by its attribute.
In this article, you learned how to fix WooCommerce product search not working.
Using the tips in this post, you can easily solve almost any problem with search in your online store. Properly working search is essential to getting more sales and growing your business.
If you’re ready to make your WordPress site index WooCommerce products, you can grab your copy of SearchWP here.
Would you like to boost your WooCommerce store conversion? Check out this guide on how to add a WooCommerce search form to your shop page.
Do you think your store needs a search widget? Then you might be interested in this step-by-step how to add a custom WooCommerce search widget guide.