In the past I’ve written about and presented on the
importance of planning your search strategy.
SharePoint makes search so easy to just turn on, but without the proper
planning and understanding of how the search engine works, users will often
complain that “search sucks!” In
SharePoint Server 2010 there’s a ton of return on investment (ROI) that can be
realized through an effective search strategy.
If you think about the potential value that could be seen by enabling
everyone in your organization to find the content they are looking for within
seconds, versus having to go through a much more manual effort, it doesn’t take
too long to see the massive potential.
Planning your search strategy is more important than ever
– at least that’s what the title of this article says. Why would I make this claim? Aside from the large amount of ROI you can
realize today through a well-designed search strategy, the other thing to
consider is that search is going to be more pervasive in SharePoint Server
2013. Not only will there be great new
features available in search, but it will also be one of the primary ways to do
Let me back up for a moment. Traditionally in SharePoint the way a user
would use search would be to type in a query and hit the search button, then
get results back. This process is
referred to as “keyword searching.” With
SharePoint Server 2013 this will still be possible, but search can also be used
to drive content to the page even if a user doesn’t run a query. This concept sounds a little confusing at
first, but chances are you’ve already seen this in action across the Internet. Have you ever been to a site where you’ve
done some online shopping and then the next time you go to the homepage there
are items being suggested to you based on items you’ve recently viewed or
purchased? That approach is called
“search driven content.”
There’s a long list of reasons as to why this is a very
good thing but I’ll try to list a few of the main reasons:
Content can now be rolled up across site
collections. This was always a limiting
factor with the Content Query Web Part or Data View Web Part.
Search performs much better as a way to roll up
content than previous web parts.
If you can get content into your search index,
you’ll be able to surface it. This opens
up new possibilities for content management scenarios – perhaps you were
indexing content that came from SQL as well as other line-of-business
applications. You’ll now have new ways
in which you can surface that content to your users.
This is all really scratching the surface of what will be
possible. The key takeaway here is that
even if your company isn’t planning to migrate to SharePoint Server 2013 right
away, all of those search strategy planning techniques that provide tons of ROI
in SharePoint 2010 will provide even more in the next version. If you haven’t spent much time on search
strategy planning, now is the perfect time to learn!
John Ross is a SharePoint
MVP and Senior Consultant with SharePoint911, a Rackspace company. John is
co-author of the books, “Professional SharePoint 2010 Branding and User
Interface Design” and the upcoming “Real World SharePoint 2010: Indispensable
Experiences from 23 SharePoint MVPs.” Visit his blog at http://johnrossjr.wordpress.com or on twitter at
Related Search Term(s): SharePoint, search, SharePoint 2013
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