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How To Add Google Search Box To Website

In September 2014, Google introduced a new sitelinks search box called – Google Search Box. This box allows visitors to search specific content on your site directly on your own site-search pages. How cool it is!

Today, we are going to summary some basic information about this amazing search box.

1. What is this Google Search box?

Visitors tend to look for something specific on a website when they reach for this company by name. With this new second search option, visitors now are automatically brought to your site and you can reduce the possibility of clicking on competitors’ ads by visitors. Obviously, that visitors are directed to your site will help you to increase the number of clicks and visits and better control the visitor experience as well.

On the top Google Search Results page, you can see this second search box easily:

apple google search box

However, as all we know, Google Algorithm is always a mystery and so is Google Search Box. There is a fact that not every website can implement this box. Your website must satisfy 2 requirements: markup is added and it is high-quality website with high volume of branded queries.

2. How to add Google Search Box?

Before going on steps by steps, you need to determine whether your site meets 2 above requirements. You should answer some following questions:

Is your site qualified enough? Your precise keywords send the website thousands of visits. Obviously, the more the volume of branded search traffic, the likelier the Google search box is to appear.

Do you receive message regarding sitelinks search box in Google Webmaster Tools? There will be notifications sent by Google to verified and eligible sites checked with Webmaster Tools.

Is the sitelinks search box already available for your site in Google Search results? You can try searching the most common branded and navigational search queries. If the sitelinks search box appears, you can take advantage of this box to direct your visitors to your own search results page.

If your answer is “Yes” for one of these questions, congratulations! You are now ready to continue steps below.

Step 1: Power internal search engine

Because sitelinks search queries send users to your own search results page, it is vital to power this feature by using a functioning search. Normally, internal search engines work perfectly fine. In case you have no search engine for your site, you can get started with Google Custom Search Engine.

Step 2: Add the schema.org markup on your homepage

You don’t need to put the markup on other pages of your site except Home page. There are 2 ways you can markup your site: Using Microdata or JSON-LD. To add Microdata markup, you can add following code to the source code of your home page:

<div itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/WebSite">
  <meta itemprop="url" content="https://www.example.com/"/>
  <form itemprop="potentialAction" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/SearchAction">
    <meta itemprop="target" content="https://query.example.com/search?q={search_term_string}"/>
    <input itemprop="query-input" type="text" name="search_term_string" required/>
    <input type="submit"/>

Alternatively, you can use JSON-LD data when you have an available form. Remember to enter ‘url’ and ‘target’ field which match your website information:

<script type="application/ld+json">
  "@context": "http://schema.org",
  "@type": "WebSite",
  "url": "https://www.example.com/",
  "potentialAction": {
    "@type": "SearchAction",
    "target": "https://query.example.com/search?q={search_term_string}",
    "query-input": "required name=search_term_string"

These 2 markups will help Google bots to determine the search box on your website and how to display the form in front end. It will be much easier for you when you are using WordPress because SEO by Yoast plugin will automatically add the JSON-LD markup data to your website. You don’t need to process this step.

Step 3: Wait for Google Search algorithms to identify your site as a candidate for the new Sitelinks Search box.

However, as I noticed above, not all websites can implement this box, although these sites are marked up. One of the reasons is that your backlinks which should be big sub-page links. I also strongly believe that accompanying with regularly updated content, if your site has certain credibility and is mentioned frequently in other websites, it is easy to enjoy Google special offers.

Have you already added this Google Search Box to your site or been ready for it? Let’s share your experience in comment box!


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