I have a friend who is working with finance. When I hear him talk about his job it is all “boones” and “upstream”. Feeling lost? Every business has its buzzwords and the Enterprise search area is not an exception. The worst part is that the people who work with it constantly use them. In order to bring some shred of light, here comes an explanation of the some common search vocabulary:
Key Matches (sponsored links, best bets, and Editor’s pick)
These are all words for manually forcing the correct or best information to the top of the search result list. Typically this is used to follow up on the most frequently asked search terms (derived from search statistics). If many users for example search for ‘phone numbers’ it is wise to make the first hit in the result list be a page where phone numbers are searchable.
Key matches from an editor’s perspective include a view where they can edit page title, page description, keywords (that triggers the search) and the url to the page.
And from an end user perspective:
Is a solution that shows suggestions of words when the users starts to enter characters in the search box. The most qualitative solutions are made from editor’s lists (where the searches are predefined built on pages that are of good quality). Apart from this it can be solved by using words that exists in the search index or searches that other users previously made. In these cases it is necessary to make sure that people have been clicking on search results after they have made the search, otherwise users might get suggestions of words that returns zero or bad quality results.
Is similar to query completion, but instead of giving suggestions it completes you query with the word you are most likely to write. The functionality is mainly used to help people spell correctly and help people specify a good search word (such as writing singular instead of plural etc)
Facets (navigators, refinements)
Are all words used to describe filters that help the users to narrow down their searches.
If a user is searching for a term such as ‘music player’ it is most likely that he/she wants to see the whole range of available products and then narrow down to music players that costs less then x, are red and are of a specific brand.
The same applies for internal information, where the users most likely want to filter on metadata such as file types: (word, pdf, and ppt), dates etc; on categories such as services or products; from taxonomy (describing how the information is organized).
This is just what it sounds like: functionality where abbreviations such as BBC equals British Broadcasting Corporation. A search for either of the words will then return result for both. The list used for synonyms are often derived from search statistics, making sure it corresponds to the users vocabulary.
I’m sure there other search vocabulary that we tend to use in the search industry. Please post a comment if you have suggestions or questions.