This Documentation is for SearchWP Version 3


The primary purpose of the SearchWP settings screen is to allow modification of the weights used within SearchWP’s algorithm. Each search engine has its own settings. The Default engine replaces all WordPress native searches.

General Settings

Each Supplemental Engine has the same settings as the default engine, but also allows you to name it. A code-friendly version of your name is provided alongside the engine name, and that’s what you will use in your code.

Engines are primarily based on post types. You can add/exclude any available post type to any engine at any time. If a post type is listed in the configuration, it will be included in searches.

The main SearchWP settings screen

You can create as many supplemental engines as you’d like. Here’s a walkthrough on how to use a Supplemental Engine on your site:

All of the registered (and not excluded from search) post types are available for each SearchWP engine configuration. Media is somewhat unique, however.

Customizing Media within a SearchWP engine

Note that Document content and PDF metadata each have their own Weight fields which apply only to documents SearchWP was able to parse and index.

Transfer weight to parent

The parent attribution feature for Media in SearchWP can be very helpful. By default, SearchWP will return Media results just like any post type. The link will direct you to the Attachment page for that Media (which can be customized to link directly to the file if you’d like) but that’s not always desirable.

With Transfer weight to parent enabled, SearchWP will instead return the parent post for Media search results. For example, if you have a Page on your site, and you’ve uploaded a PDF to that Page while editing that Page (i.e. WordPress lists that PDF as Uploaded to that Page) searches for content within that PDF will return the parent Page as the result instead of the PDF itself.

Find out more about Transfer weight to parent in this KB article: Media: Post Parent Attribution

Use Keyword Stem

Keyword stemming is an active process based on the language of the term itself. Terms are checked for a suffix (e.g. “ing”, “ed”, etc.) and the base of the word is determined and used as a proper stem. For a detailed explanation of keyword stemming please see this Wikipedia article.

For example:

baseball does not have a stem of base (in fact it has no stem at all)

fishing does have a stem of fish

Tick this checkbox to enable this sort of behavior when performing searches.

Advanced Settings

The Advanced tab of the SearchWP settings screen allows you to take some common actions that may prove to be useful from time to time. Read more.

Screenshot of SearchWP Advanced settings

For more information please see the Advanced settings screen documentation.


You can use the Support tab of the SearchWP settings screen to open a support ticket. An active license is required to open a support ticket.

Please begin by using a few words to describe your issue, which will guide you through the SearchWP documentation search. If the documentation does not help, you’ll be able to create a ticket right there.

Screenshot of SearchWP's Support screen

Below that is your System Information, which includes some details about your server and WordPress install, along with your SearchWP engine settings. This can sometimes be useful when troubleshooting a support ticket, so please be prepared to provide a copy upon request from SearchWP support.