Google Sitelinks Search Box: What it Means for You

Lennox Google Search  Vizion Interactive Reading Time: 2 minutes

In the past we have seen Sitelink Search Boxes for power sites such as Wikipedia, YouTube, etc., but what about for us regular folks? Google announced on Sept. 5th, the ability for your site to feature a search box for deeper site: content on your site. Since then, webmasters are seeing that these search box queries are now delivering users directly into respective site internal search results.  Additional features also include an autocomplete function that provides ideal search result queries akin to your site’s content.

Why is this cool?

  1. Another entry point to your site from search engines is always a plus.
  2. Your attention to preferred markup has now allowed you to have something other non-compliant sites do not have.
  3. Someone may know your brand but may not necessarily know what products you have.
  4. Eliminate a brand search to homepage click and send them closer to their desired content.


I’m convinced, how can I get this?

  1. Have Internal Search on your site, or Google Custom Search.
  2. Place a canonical tag on your homepage and any known duplicated pages of your homepage (You shouldn’t have these anyway) to reference the ideal/absolute homepage URL location.
  3. Prevent your internal search result pages from getting crawled via a command in your robots.txt file, ex. “Disallow: /*search?=”.
  4. Implement the needed markup on your homepage using the preferred markup of JSON-LD or you can use Schema markup. I like Schema, let’s use that. We have to tell Google our location, which is our homepage URL. We also have to tell them what our target for an internal search is. You can see below an example of this.

<div itemscope itemtype=””>
<meta itemprop=”url” content=””/>
<form itemprop=”potentialAction” itemscope itemtype=””>
<meta itemprop=”target” content=”http:// /search?q={search_term}”/>
<input itemprop=”query-input” type=”text” name=”search_term” required/>
<input type=”submit”/>

  1. Think you did it wrong? No worries, head over to the Rich Snippet Testing Tool and see how you did before you implement this on your site. Simply paste your code into the HTML editor and preview.
  2. Enjoy.


For a long time I have told clients that internal search and the analytical tracking of this is important. This helps you to understand the content users expect you to have, the content you do have but are not evidently linking to and the content you need to have. From here, take hold of all of the above and enjoy that Google is rewarding you with a little more search engine result flair!

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