Desiging Search Checklist

*** Originally posted on the Adaptive Path Blog ***

Recently on projects I've found myself designing a number of search results pages. While each project has its own set of requirements and nuances, I think there are a handful of elements that should be included in most all result page interfaces. If you start out with this list, and then tweak as your situation requires, I think you'll end up with a pretty good page.

Here are the items on my checklist, in no particular order:

  • Highlight the query term in the results.

  • Restate the query on the results page.

  • Show the number of results that were found.

  • Include next and previous buttons, as well as links to additional pages, to move through results. These should be smartly linked; no link on previous if you are on the first page and so on.

  • Include a query box so the user can search again.

  • Don't show the URLs of the result pages, unless your audience is techy enough to derive meaning from the URL.

  • Have meaningful page titles and descriptions for each result.

  • The page title should be the link to the result.

  • Allow sorting and refinement tools if appropriate for your users and content.

  • Indicate if a result is not a regular page (e.g., a PDF file).

What items do you have on your checklist?

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Chiara published on July 14, 2008 4:43 PM.

What User Experience Means To Me was the previous entry in this blog.

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