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Driving Value with SharePoint Search

Over on CMSWire, Christian Buckley posted an article about SharePoint Search.  Buckley’s post talks about a presentation given by Michal Pisarek at the recent Australian SharePoint Conference.

The post and the presentation focused on the business value of search and hoe you should organize your content in SharePoint to create better search results. Pisarek argues that enterprise search is not equivalent to consumer search.  By that he means that there are different rules, different security needs, and possibly different expectations for performance and context.

Pisarek suggests that consumers are willing to get results that are close to what they want and don’t expect to find exactly what they are looking for.  Enterprise customers, on the other hand, want to find the exact content item in which they are interested.  They want a 100% match and in the correct context.  These users have little to no tolerance for bad search results.

We’ve seen this at Perficient too.  Search may be the number one complaint we hear about most.  When looking to improve their intranet, or portal or content system, most companies place improved search results near the top of their wish lists.

Pisarek offers some guidelines on tweaks you can do in SharePoint to make search better:

  • Be selective on what you index – you don’t have to index everything.  He says index the high value items and federate low value items
  • Make people search a core part of the plan – searching profiles is now mandatory
  • Identify your best bets and make sure those queries accurate and fast
  • Use search scopes to target results for specific users and needs
  • Use SharePoint 2010 search reporting tools to verify search success and identify candidates for tuning

Many of these tips can be employed on most search platforms whether or not you use SharePoint.

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Related Slideshow from Perficient: Find Information Faster Using SharePoint 2010 Search

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