The roScripts website has a new tutorial that anyone just starting out to create a search engine with PHP and MySQL should get their hands...er eyes on. It steps through the creation of a simple PHP-based search engine, showing multiple methods to achieve the goal.
The right search engine on your website won't bring you more traffic but it will help your visitors to better locate things so it will keep them on your pages. A good search engine implemented can increase your hits with almost 30% and this is tested. I'm not talking just to have a tutorial.
The different methods the show how to implement include:
- using a straight LIKE on each word entered
- paring down those results using ORs on other columns too
- implementing the Porter Stemmer algorithm
- finding matches that contain the term but not only one part of it
- Full-text searches
It's a good overview of some of the basic steps to getting your own search up and running, but some of them, when applied to sites with larger amounts of data behind them, wouldn't be useful at all (slowness mainly).