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Affecting the weight used with search results
Answer ID 1771   |   Last Review Date 12/16/2018

How can I affect the weighting used with search results?


Answer phrase searching
Oracle B2C Service, All versions


When an answer is saved, words contained in the answer and words contained in indexed files attached to the answer are written to the ans_phrases table.  In the process, each word is given a “weight”.  Any word appearing in the exclude_answers.txt file will not be added as a search word.  The exclude_answers.txt file contains very common words.

The weight will be increased the more times a word or phrase appears in an answer.  Multiple-word phrases (up to 3 words in length) are also added to ans_phrases.  These receive higher weights than single words.  

Weighting affects phrases searching for answers on the end-user pages and when searching for answers on the administration pages. Weighting affects incidents when phrase searching is done on the administration pages and at the My Account > Questions page.

Seven configuration settings allow you to customize how heavily words in each field are weighted when end-users search for answers on your site. Higher numerical values indicate increased weighting for words and phrases in that field.

These weights are also used when the system determines suggested solutions to assistance requests submitted via the Ask a Question page as well as when an agent clicks the Suggestion button when editing an incident.

Words are weighted more heavily depending on their location within the answer.  

By default the fields are weighted in the order below, from the highest to the lowest weights:
Configuration Setting Field Affected Default Value
SRCH_PROD_WEIGHT Product field set for published answers 50
SRCH_CAT_WEIGHT Category field set for published answers 50
SRCH_KEY_WEIGHT Keywords field in published answers 50
SRCH_SUBJ_WEIGHT Summary field in answers and Subject field of incidents 45
SRCH_DESC_WEIGHT Question field in published answers 30
SRCH_BODY_WEIGHT Answer field in published answers and the thread entries of incidents  4
SRCH_ATTACH_WEIGHT Words used in files attached to published answers 4

Path to setting(s): Select Configuration from the navigation area > Site Configuration > Configuration Settings > and search by Key.

For more information on accessing the Configuration Editor and editing settings, refer to Answer ID 1960: Editing Configuration Settings.

These settings give a way of adjusting the relative importance of different parts of an Answer in the ranking of search results. The numbers allowed for the weights must be in the range 0-9999. Only the relative weights matter; doubling each weight will not affect the result ranking. The keywordindexer utility does not need to be run if these are changed.

The actual number returned as the match weight seen by users (if specified in the report) is normalized to give 100 as the best possible match.