After many months in development, I am pleased to unveil the all new RapidSearch Live stack.
RapidSearch Live came about because there was a distinct demand for a new search stack similar to RapidSearch Pro, but without the complexities of MySQL and suchlike. Although the original RapidSearch stack gives novice users a pathway towards getting a basic search setup, its strong ties to Google certainly are not to everybody’s liking. And although the SimpleSearch stack works great, it is more tedious for larger websites. There was evidently a gap in the market for a new search stack that could balance the demands of being both simple to setup and powerful in what it can do.
I designed and coded RapidSearch Live entirely myself, exclusively for RapidWeaver. I needed it for a client project and it seemed logical to continue development of RapidSearch Live into a fully-fledged stack for others to have access to.
With this in mind, we have finished with an incredible website search stack that is agile, reliable and fast. Very fast! Part of the reason for calling it RapidSearch Live is because the search results get returned to your site users almost instantaneously.
Key features at a glance:
- No MySQL database or complicated configuration. RapidSearch Live constructs its own flat-file database in XML format.
- Simply give RapidSearch Live your sitemap.xml file, and it will intelligently ‘spider’ all your existing webpages.
- A simple (and client safe!) Admin Control Panel to access, for managing your website search.
- Add pictures to your search results, by providing Open Graph images in your RapidWeaver 8 social media settings.
- Various optimisations to improve search box accessibility and to help your website users with disabilities.
- Show search results ‘live’ as a user types in the box, or only show search results when the ‘search’ button is clicked (the latter is the default behaviour).
- Various style and colour settings for the search bar. Or use a search bar built with the free RapidSearch Helper stack on another webpage.
- Control what information is shown in your search results and add optional labels against items like keywords.
- Font styling and link colours get inherited from your RapidWeaver theme style settings, for greater design consistency and less setup work.
- An optional setting to automatically redirect the user to the target webpage, if only a single ‘positive’ result is returned when the search is executed.
- Support for 5 bespoke meta types, so you can create custom search criteria.
- Make the entire search result item a clickable link or restrict clicking to only the image / title and URL.
- Ability to test some aspects of RapidSearch Live locally in RapidWeaver Preview, prior to publishing your website online.
- No adverts, no privacy blackholes, no competitor content, no sponsored links, no API keys to deal with! RapidSearch Live is entirely your OWN search engine.
A quick summary of how it works:
You drag and drop the RapidSearch Live stack into your website and publish your new search page. Press and hold the search bar for 5 seconds to open the Admin Control Panel. Click the button to begin an index of your website. During this period, RapidSearch Live goes to your sitemap.xml file and visits each of the webpages listed in your sitemap. From your webpages, RapidSearch Live ‘spiders’ the page link, page title, meta data and open graph meta tags. With this information, RapidSearch Live generates its own XML datafile to store all the search results within. After returning back to your search page, all this harvested data forms the basis for your site search.
RapidSearch Live in edit mode:
RapidSearch Live search results:
RapidSearch Live Admin Control Panel:
I invite you to have a play around with the live demo site and also download your FREE trial version of RapidSearch Live, to install and test on your own website.
This is a new stack. There are bound to be further updates to include new features and any required bug fixes.