Lab announces Marketplace search beta

On Wednesday, November 11th, the Lab announced the trial of a new Marketplace search. In particular, the Lab states they’ve been working on infrastructure changes to improve the relevance of search results and have made changes for search to scale better as more content and categories are added to the Marketplace.

Search has always been one of the large issues with the Marketplace over the years, as likely most who have used it will be able to attest. There have been attempts to improve / tweak / amend search over the years, but none have really seemed to hit the nail on the head in terms of generating appreciable improvements, which has potentially been the biggest annoyance faced by anyone using the Marketplace.; so it will be interesting to see how the new updates fare.

The updates can be tested using a special beta search Marketplace  – note they are not yet a part of the main Marketplace, so don’t expect to see changes there just yet -, with the Lab noting that further work is still in hand for boolean searches (or at least, excluding keywords from searches).

When testing the updated search capabilities, make sure your using the beta search marketplace, not the "main" marketplace
When testing the updated search capabilities, make sure your using the beta search Marketplace, not the “main” marketplace

Users are invited to use the beta Marketplace “to perform all your regular Marketplace activities”, and to report and specific issues via a JIRA bug report with the SLM Beta Search component.

In addition, there is a forum thread available for general discussion on the new search capabilities, which currently offers some mixed feedback, with ChinRey in particular (at the time of writing) offering considered feedback on some of the pluses and minuses she has observed / can see. There is also an interesting note from Grumpity Linden on why the beta search might appear to be a lot slower than the “main” MP, which is worth keeping in mind when trying it, because it is currently very slow in responding.

Again, if you do give the search beta a good try, and want to leave feedback,  make sure you use the Lab’s forum thread to do so. Comments left here aren’t likely to be read by the relevant staff at the Lab.

4 thoughts on “Lab announces Marketplace search beta

  1. The few searches i tried came up with irrelevant items. Its slow too. Sure I expect its in development, but you’d expect it to be cool. I tried Boolean searches and that didn’t work at all. So what does it do thats different to the current one?


    1. As noted in the article, the Lab indicate that boolean functions (or at least the ability to exclude keywords) has yet to be added, and that the beta will be slow until more terms are indexed. The main update which should be noticeable is more relevant search results, but people seem to be having very mixed experiences with it in that regard! I found my own brief tests to be mixed, but haven’t had the time to really push at it.


  2. According to Merchants and others who have tried it out things went from bad to worse. Or as one Merchant politely put it in the SL Forum thread, “And stop $#@%ing with my business, LL.”

    Perhaps during the new “Lab Chat” you can ask Ebbe exactly what it was they were trying to fix. So far no one has been able to figure it out.


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