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Google Search Replacement

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    Official - Free Google Search Replacement

    Search feature on websites not just in forums is one of the most important features a website must have. Giving the website visitors the ability to easily find the information they are looking for is critically important especially in forums where there are tons of user-generated content to sift through.

    Having said that, I'm sure we can all agree that in general internal forum search is not as powerful as Google Search. Not surprising as Google knows everything (it can index)!

    For those of you who owns a vB5 forum and doesn't like the limited feature of vB5 keyword search, there's a way to power keyword searches within your forum with Google Search.

    Previously you could use Google Site Search to use Google to search your site with customizable design to match the look and feel of search results with your website. But unfortunately, Google has discontinued sale/renewal of the Google Site Search since April 1, 2017 and it will be completely shut down by April 1, 2018.

    But don't worry, there's still a way for you to use Google Search within your forum with this mod albeit without customizable design and other features Google Site Search offered.

    Advantages of using Google Search to power your keyword search in your forum:
    1. Better search algorithm than internal search.
      • Can include short and common words. vB5 strips these in the default vB Search.
    2. Vast Google Search tips and tricks will be available in your forum.
      • Use quotes to search for an exact phrase
        Yields only results with the same words in the same order as what's in the quotes. Very useful if you are searching for a specific phrase.
      • Use an asterisk within quotes to specify unknown or variable words
        For example, "* is thicker than water" may yield results such as "blood is thicker than water" and "love is thicker than water".
      • Use the minus sign to eliminate results containing certain words
        For example, jaguar -car will yield results containing the animal jaguar and not jaguar the car.
      • ...and many more!
    3. Users can do Images or Videos search by clicking Images or Videos tab in the Google search results.
    4. Offloads your server with keyword search requests.
    Disadvantages of using Google Search:
    1. Not useful for private forums as Google cannot index the private pages.
    2. Your site will lose branding to Google on search result pages. Users are taken out of your site and redirects to Google search results page.
    3. Google will only search indexed pages in your forum. Recent content from your forum may not be instantly available until Google indexes it.
    You have to weigh the pros and cons before using this mod.

    • This mod is only compatible with self-hosted version of vB5. If you want a vBCloud compatible version, please let us know.
    • This mod replaces the default Search box in the header in vB5. This does not replace the Advanced Search page. Using this mod will lose the link to the Advanced Search page anyway. That can only be reachable if you know the URL.
    • This is a FREE mod without branding. Any donation is welcome and appreciated.
    • This does not require editing existing vB5 templates but it requires uploading XML file to install this product. If you are not comfortable doing this, you could purchase product installation service from us by clicking the button below.

    Need help or not comfortable installing this mod? Purchase the installation service below:

    Product Installation Add-On: $20
    Purchase this product add-on to get professional installation of this mod from us.

    Buy Now Add to Cart View Cart

    Download the zip file below. Uncompress the file and then follow the installation instructions in the readme.txt file.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by glennrocksvb; 03-05-2018, 10:06 PM.

    Works great. The default search engine in Vbulletin was just about nonoperational in my forum. It would time out etc. I really didn't have a choice but to run this.

    Thanks Glenn the product installed easily and after clearing the site's cache it works.



      Is there a way to add a tag line under the search box?
      I'd like to put an image or text stating "powered by Google"
      It'd be cool if there was a tool tip on this text or image that I could customize.


        I'll check it out Mackey.


          Always creative
          Accept my greetings


            Originally posted by Mackey View Post
            Is there a way to add a tag line under the search box?
            I'd like to put an image or text stating "powered by Google"
            It'd be cool if there was a tool tip on this text or image that I could customize.
            Add this in css_additional template in AdminCP or in CSS Editor in Sitebuilder.
            .search-container .search-box:after,
            .l-small .js-search-item form:after {
                content: 'Search powered by Google';
                color: #888;
                font-size: 11px;
                margin-top: -3px;
                display: block;
            .l-small .js-search-item form:after {
                margin-top: 0;
            Last edited by glennrocksvb; 08-13-2018, 11:48 PM.