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When searching, best matches do not appear at the top of the search results
Answer ID 1355   |   Last Review Date 12/19/2018

When I search for incidents and answers on our site, why don't the best matches appear at the top of the list of results?


Phrase Searching, Customer Portal, Analytics
Oracle B2C Service, All versions


If your search results do not appear to have the strongest matches listed at the top, this indicates that the search results are not being sorted by the proper field as set by the report or view for that page.

In general, search results should first be ordered by the Weight value with a secondary sort defined on some other field. With answer searches, especially on the end-user Answers List page, the second sort is usually the Computed Score. This applies for searches on both the end-user pages and when creating reports and views for searching incidents and answers at the administration consoles.

When a search is performed, weights are calculated for each answer or incident as an indicator of how well the incident or answer matches the text that is searched on. Therefore, when displaying search results, you must sort the results first by the weight in a descending order.

If no text search is performed, then all weights are 0 and the items then are ordered by the second (and third) sorts as specified in the report or view.

Note:  When searching for answers, the fix at top feature is not taken into account when the weights are calculated.  As a result, when a text search is performed, answers that have a display position of fix at top may not be at the top of the search results -- depending on what the weight is for that specific search term. 

That is, if answer 5 is fixed at top, when you search for a word that is not in answer 5, that answer may not even be returned in the search results.

If you want an answer to always be returned at the top of the list when any search is performed, consider setting up a topic word for that answer. For more information, refer to Answer ID 2492: Configuring Search Priority Words and Recommended Documents.

For more information on the optimal sort order to allow for searching answers, refer to Answer ID 2379: Optimal sort order for published answers on the end-user page.

Reports are used to display records of interest and the report defines the sort order of the records.

When defining the sort columns, you can only use columns that are included as output columns of your report. The field can be configured to be a hidden column, but it must be included as an output column in the report.

Therefore, if you wish to sort the records by a specific field and the field of interest is not showing when you try to define the sort fields, close the sort window and then drag and drop the field as an output column. Then, right click on the column and select Hide Column. Now, you can add that field as a sort field.

To check the sort order of the report, use the steps below:

  1. From the navigation set, right click on the report name and select Edit Report Definition.  Or go to the Reports Explorer and navigate to the report and right click on the report and select Edit.
  2. From the Home tab, click the Sort button.
  3. Verify the first sort is by Weight and the remaining sorts are appropriate for your business needs.
  4. Click OK.  If you had to change the sort fields, save your report.