Super Search greatly improves search functionality, allowing for powerful and flexible searching on channel entries in ExpressionEngine. It can be used both as a search engine and as a replacement for the Channel:Entries tag.

The architecture of the add-on borrows from Google's model of constructing search queries. Anything you might want to search for... keywords, channels, categories, statuses, authors, custom fields, date ranges, custom field numeric ranges, etc, can be loaded into a single URI segment with the Super Search syntax. This makes pages highly shareable, flexible and versatile. Searches can be performed in a variety and/or combination of a few different ways:

  • Through a POST or GET search form (Super Search automatically redirects the POST as a human-readable query in the URI).
  • Visiting a Results template with a search query in the URI, whether it be linked from another page, or a bookmarked URL, etc.
  • Hard-coding values for any type of search, including keywords, channels, categories, custom fields, etc.

Super Search supports relevance-based searching, which allows you to create simple or advanced algorithms to control ranking of entries in search results. This is done by using the relevance-related parameters in the Super_Search:Results tag.

Super Search also supports Fuzzy Searching, which basically means that searches can be set to ignore plurals, match up similar words, and suggest other words based on spelling in search terms.

And finally, Super Search includes a Search Curation feature, which is designed to allow manual selection of entry results for keyword searches. This would typically be used as supplimental search results to normal search results, similar to how Google displays sponsored results at the top or side of search results pages.


The feature chart below is available to assist you in comparing Super Search to other alternatives to help you determine the right solution for your site.

Super Search EE Search Low Search
Cost & Support
Cost (USD) $99.95 Included $79.00
Refund policy 30 days 30 days
Support methods Free private help desk Paid private support Free public help desk
Intuitive, modifiable, user-friendly search query strings in URI
Ability to save search queries, and parse those into search form
Highlight keywords searched on within results
Smart excerpts (start the excerpt snippet at term match)
Fuzzy Searching (plurals, spelling, phonetics)
Keyword suggestions (spelling, phonetics)
Accent-insensitive (diacritics)
Ignore searching within HTML code
Wildcard searching on keywords (ex: cat*, t*st)
Sample templates for quick start
Demo site to try before you buy
Search log
Ignore words list
Search cloud/list to display popular or all search terms
Predefine collections of filtered entries results to perform searches on
Search Curation (manual selection of entry results for keywords)
Relevance weighting on custom fields
Create advanced Relevance algorithms and weighting
Searching with SQL parameters
Caching of search results
Search through POST
Search through GET or URI
Extensive support for EE Channel:Entries features
Search Support
Keyword searching
Advanced keyword searches (quoted, AND, OR, NOT)
Search for ANY, ALL, or EXACT keywords match
Search without keywords (just custom fields)
Keyword searches on Author names
Keyword searches on Category names
Search on words within words (ex: search for “cat” displays “catalog”)
Set certain fields to be Required
Search directly into Titles
Search into EE Comments
Multiple site search
Search on categories
Advanced searching on categories
Search on authors
Search on member groups
Search on relationship fields
Custom field numeric range (from/to) searching
Custom Date field range (from/to) searching
Distance searching (based on latitude and longitude fields)
Entry/expiry date range searching
Search specifically for empty/not empty fields
Advanced search:field parameter searching
Advanced ordering of results (multiple orderby’s, custom arbitrary ordering)
3rd Party Support
Search Index API that allows 3rd party developers to tie into for custom fieldtypes
Display 3rd party field type data
Advanced Searching on Solspace Tag add-on tags
Advanced Searching on Playa relationship fields
Advanced Searching on Matrix & Grid fields
Searching on Calendar events dates
Searching on Exp-resso Store filters


The latest version of Super Search is 3.1.5. The chart below shows the current technical requirements and compatibility for the latest version of Super Search.

  Compatibility Chart

Super Search currently only supports the latest version of ExpressionEngine plus 1 point version back. The red, vertical dashed line represents the cut-off for EE versions we support. EE versions to the right of that line are no longer supported by us with our add-ons. The icon represents an update specifically for compatibility with that EE version. Please upgrade to this add-on version before upgrading to that version of ExpressionEngine.

Date formats below are: M/D/YYYY. As always, we recommend that you always use the latest versions of our add-ons. However, this chart may answer some of your questions about upgrading the Solspace Super Search add-on and ExpressionEngine, and reduce the risk of incompatibility. This chart also serves as a guide to see when support for the latest version of ExpressionEngine becomes available.

EE 3.4.x EE 3.3.x EE 3.2.x EE 3.1.x EE 3.0.x EE 2.11.x EE 2.10.x EE 2.9.x EE 2.8.x EE 2.7.x EE 2.6.x EE 2.5.x
3.1.5+ 6/22/2016
3.1.3+ 4/19/2016
3.1.2 3/24/2016 3.1.2 3/24/2016 3.0.0 10/31/2015
2.2.4+ 3/24/2016
2.2.4 3/24/2016 2.1.4 4/8/2014 2.1.4 4/8/2014 2.1.3 9/5/2013 2.0.8 5/7/2013 2.0.5 9/19/2012

  What People Are Saying

Using just a couple of templates and this module, I easily created dynamic product pages, which saved me from having to create those pages separately or in other ways.


Very solid add-on. We find it easy to install and set up, particularly since the documentation is clear. We like that we can tune the search results.

Hendrik-Jan Francke

Great add-on. Works as advertised. Being able to display search results and changing the layout based on those results was really handy.


I'm excited to roll out site upgrade, using @solspace Super Search! Huge improvement from a basic search. #eecms

@solspace Super Search making things trivial that were once really tricky. Again. #eecms


For updating instructions, please visit the documentation.


3.1.5 (June 22, 2016) #

  • Updated for compatibility with ExpressionEngine 3.4.
  • Fixed a bug where searches could sometimes error when using Multiple Site Manager (MSM) and searching across multiple sites.
  • Fixed a bug where search results would sometimes be incorrect when exact searching on relationship fields and non-relationship fields.

3.1.4 (April 29, 2016) #

  • Added support for PHP7.
  • Added Levenshtein function utility for sites that have issues installing it.

3.1.3 (April 19, 2016) #

  • Updated Super Search for compatibility with ExpressionEngine 3.3's new icon set in the control panel.
  • Fixed a bug where Fuzzy Searching distance was not correctly being initialized.

3.1.2 (March 24, 2016) #

  • Updated and improved Super Search demo templates.
  • Fixed an XSS security risk that was possible in certain scenarios.
  • Fixed a bug where a search form would not work when placed on Results page before Super_Search:Results tag.
  • Fixed a bug where keywords searches with the 'search_in' feature would automatically include titles.
  • Fixed a bug where keywords searches with the 'search_in' feature would not be correctly recognized if passed through an array of fields like checkboxes, etc.

3.1.1 (March 4, 2016) #

  • Fixed a bug where submitting the Preferences page could show 'site_id' errors in the control panel.

3.1.0 (February 11, 2016) #

  • Added range searching functionality for custom date fields.
  • Added ability to search entry, expiry, and custom date fields beyond 1970.
  • Fixed a bug where single quotes would be stripped from keyword searches in paginated URL's.
  • Fixed a bug where searching fields for '0' could show errors.
  • Fixed a bug where author searching sometimes would not work.
  • Fixed a bug where sort order would sometimes be incorrect when using caching.
  • Fixed a bug where Super Search would not install on Windows based machines.

3.0.0 (October 31, 2015) #

  • Updated Super Search to be compatible with ExpressionEngine 3+ (only). Super Search 2.x is required for ExpressionEngine 2.x.
  • Added Search Curation feature so you can customize the results returned for a given keyword.
  • Added new Super_Search:Form tag, used in place of Super_Search:Search tag and generates full HTML form tags.
  • Updated searches to ignore HTML tags in custom fields.
  • Updated wildcard searching to no longer be on by default, and require manual field selection for performance reasons.
  • Fixed a bug where a 'save_search_form' form element would sometimes appear inside the 'if super_search_no_results' conditional.
  • Fixed a bug where PHP errors would possibly display if the 'highlight_keywords' parameter was used with a keyword containing multiple words.
  • Fixed a bug where Super_Search:Search (now Super_Search:Form) tag shows a fatal MySQL error if the value for the search_id="" parameter is not a number.
  • Removed Field modifier utility, as ExpressionEngine fieldtypes have become smarter in the past, allowing for numeric/decimal/integer types, etc.
  • Deprecated Super_Search:Search tag in favor of new complete Super_Search:Form search form tag.

2.2.4 (March 24, 2016) #

  • Fixed an XSS security risk that was possible in certain scenarios.
  • Fixed a bug where a 'save_search_form' form element would sometimes appear inside the 'if super_search_no_results' conditional.
  • Fixed a bug where PHP errors would possibly display if the 'highlight_keywords' parameter was used with a keyword containing multiple words.

2.2.3 (March 4, 2015) #

  • Fixed a bug where keyword searches and highlight_keywords parameter were not properly respected the Ignored Keywords list.
  • Fixed a bug where the inclusive_keywords="no" parameter was not working correctly.
  • Fixed a bug where some keyword searches would trigger a "prep_keywords" error.

2.2.2 (January 6, 2015) #

  • Updated for compatibility (deprecation errors) with ExpressionEngine 2.8+.
  • Made some minor adjustments and improvements to the Demo Templates.

2.2.1 (October 1, 2014) #

  • Fixed a bug where Grid support was expecting a Matrix query to check for results.
  • Fixed a bug where Matrix install-checking was giving false positives if Matrix was in the 'third_party' folder but not installed.

2.2.0 (September 22, 2014) #

  • Added support for searching on native Grid fieldtype and P&T Matrix fieldtype fields.
  • Updated and refreshed demo templates.
  • Fixed a bug where a MySQL error would show when using the 'keyword_search_category_name' and 'relevance' parameters without a keyword search.
  • Fixed a bug where searching on Matrix fields would sometimes trigger a database error.

2.1.4 (April 8, 2014) #

  • Updated for compatibility with ExpressionEngine 2.8.

2.1.3 (September 5, 2013) #

  • Added 'max_limit' parameter to Results tag to prevent users from overriding results limit beyond the value provided.
  • Updated front end forms for compatibility with ExpressionEngine 2.7+.
  • Fixed a bug where conjoined MSM searches on duplicate field names (across MSM sites) would not work correctly.
  • Fixed a bug where the 'limit' parameter was not being overwritten by a URI param value.

2.1.2 (July 26, 2013) #

  • Fixed a bug where searching with statuses and the status parameter was not always working correctly.
  • Fixed a bug where wildcard searching would not work when searching across fields with duplicate names across MSM sites.
  • Fixed a bug where Tag searching did not work.

2.1.1 (July 3, 2013) #

  • Fixed a bug where if you supplied the 'channel' template parameter, but did not pass 'channel' into the URL, the 'channel' template parameter was ignored.
  • Fixed a bug where the module CP's Utility and Permissions tabs showed a PHP error when using EE 2.5.x and under.
  • Fixed a bug where errors could display on the front end when using EE 2.5.x and under.

2.1.0 (June 21, 2013) #

  • Added {Super_Search_keywords_url} variable to Results page and Super_Search:Results tag to parse a websafe version of keywords search term(s) for creating URI-friendly links.
  • Added support for native ExpressionEngine Relationship fieldtype for EE 2.6+. Previous relationship fieldtype no longer supported.
  • Added support for parsing value arrays on regular custom fields in the Super_Search:Variables tag (ex: Super_Search_body_pickles).
  • Added searching directly into 'url_title', and included in keyword searching and relevance.
  • Added searching directly into 'screen_name'
  • Added ability to order results by Rating module ratings.
  • Added 'fuzzy_distance' parameter, which helps you indicate how close a fuzzy spelling or plural test needs to be to be considered valid.
  • Fixed a bug with date range searching on custom date fields.
  • Fixed a bug with exact field searching on phrases.
  • Fixed a bug where the 'inclusive_categories' parameter was being ignored.
  • Fixed a bug where fuzzy searching on words was case sensitive.
  • Fixed a bug where searches on words containing an ampersand with no spaces next to it would yield 0 results.

2.0.8 (May 7, 2013) #

  • Updated for compatibility with ExpressionEngine 2.6.
  • Fixed a bug where PHP errors would occur in the control panel on PHP 5.2.x.
  • Fixed a bug where native JSON features were not being used if present.

2.0.7 (March 12, 2013) #

  • Added internal Demo Templates tab in control panel (replaces older "code pack" approach).
  • Updates are now automatic and no longer require a manual update screen.

2.0.6 (February 4, 2013) #

  • Added offline documentation files to download package.

2.0.5 (September 19, 2012) #

  • Modified {Super_Search_keywords} variable to also parse inside of Super_Search:Results tag.
  • Fixed a bug where PHP errors could show on sites using ExpressionEngine 2.5.3+ and PHP 5.3+.
  • Fixed a bug where the {total_results} variable was always just parsing as "1" inside the Super_Search:Results tag.
  • Fixed a bug where date range searching would trigger SQL errors if an incorrect date range value was searched upon.

2.0.4 (June 12, 2012) #

  • Added extra cookie security to prevent theoretically potential cross-site script attacks.
  • Updated search log to capture only the essentials of a given search.

2.0.3 (May 2, 2012) #

  • Fixed a bug where the {count} variable did not parse correctly in Results tag.

2.0.2 (April 27, 2012) #

  • Added ability to require certain fields to be searched on. If a required field is missed, {if super_search_missing_required_fields} conditional will display its contents.
  • Fixed a bug where the Super Search 1.4.x to 2.x upgrade missed adding the "terms" table.
  • Fixed a bug where the Super Search extension label was missing a language variable.
  • Fixed a bug where the "disable" parameter did not work in the Results tag.

2.0.1 (April 13, 2012) #

  • Updated the Save_Search_Form to now show up even when there is no results for a search query.
  • Fixed a bug where EE pagination would strip apostrophes, quotes and other characters from search terms in the URI.
  • Fixed a bug where the Save_Search_Form tag was not behaving correctly on the Results page.
  • Fixed a bug where the {Super_Search_results} variable in History tag would parse as "1" when a saved search with 0 results was saved.
  • Fixed a bug where "offset=0" would sometimes appear in the URI of a search query with pagination.
  • Fixed a bug where ordering by "channel" would not work.
  • Fixed a bug where a PHP error would display under specific circumstances when ordering by relevance.

2.0.0 (April 10, 2012) #

  • Removed support for ExpressionEngine 1.x (Super Search is now EE2 only).
  • Added the ability to order results by 'channel', 'channel_title', and 'channel_name'.
  • Added the ability to specify 'inclusive_categories', for inclusive category searching.
  • Added an Ignore List preference in the control panel to define a list of words to ignore in searches.
  • Added the ability search on expiration date ranges, via 'expiry_date-from' and 'expiry_date-to'.
  • Added {count} and {total_results} variables to the Super_Search:History loop.
  • Added the ability to test for dynamically passed values in search arrays with the 'if Super_Search_FIELDNAME_array_contains' conditional.
  • Added support for extra MSM variables for Results loops: {entry_site_name}, {entry_site_label}, {entry_site_description}, {entry_site_short_name}, {entry_site_url}.
  • Added a native search log to the SuperSearch control panel.
  • Added the Super_Search:Cloud tag, which displays a cloud or list of popular search terms.
  • Added support for MySQL strict mode.
  • Added smart excerpts for excerpts that snip around the search terms within the {excerpt} if possible.
  • Added "fuzzy searching" functionality for plurals, phonetics and spelling.
  • Added 'search_in' form field / URI param to allow users to select which fields they which to search within.
  • Added 'where' form field / URI param to allow the user to specify how they want their keyword search to be performed, with options for 'all', 'and', 'exact' and 'word'.
  • Added 'partial_author' parameter to Results tag for partial author searching.
  • Added support for {super_search_category_array} conditional pairs for passed category searches.
  • Added 'relevance_multiplier' parameter to Results tag, which allows for dynamic weighting adjustments in ordering.
  • Added 'relevance_proximity' option to take keyword relative proximity into account when calculating relevance.
  • Added wildcard searching, controlled by 'wildcard_fields' and 'wildcard_character' parameters.
  • Added 'keyword_search_author_name' parameter to Results tag to allow keyword searches within author screen names.
  • Added 'keyword_search_category_name' parameter to Results tag to allow keyword searches within category names.
  • Added {super_search_current_title_letter} and {super_search_previous_title_letter} variables to Results tag to allow support for displaying alphabet headers between results.
  • Added Super_Search:Variables tag, which allows you to parse previously searched on array data within the Super_Search:Search tag, when trying to evaluate data generated by another EE tag (such as Channel:Categories).
  • Modified the default value for 'inclusive_keywords' param to be 'yes'.
  • Modified the 'redirect_post' parameter to default to 'yes'.
  • Modified searching on ampersands in search terms to now work, as they are converted to %26 in the URI.
  • Modified the Results tag behavior to behave like Channel:Entries tag and show ALL entries if no parameters or search terms are provided (whereas before it would show no results).
  • Modified the Search tag to correctly parse previously searched on data when placed on results page BEFORE the Results tag.
  • Updated pagination to use a better parsing function in order to more easily support future upgrades of the EE pagination library.
  • Updated the {Super_Search_keywords} variable to returns the keywords searched upon exactly as they were passed (instead of reordered alphabetically).
  • Renamed exact field searching to use fieldname-exact' syntax instead of 'exact-fieldname' syntax.
  • Renamed entry date range searching to use 'entry_date-from' and 'entry_date-to' syntax instead of 'date-from' and 'date-to' syntax.
  • Renamed search words within words parameter to 'search_words_within_words' instead of 'search-words-within-words' for naming consistency.
  • Refreshed the Super Search control panel.
  • Deprecated "num", "order", and "start" parameters in favor of "limit", "orderby", and "offset" respectively.
  • Deprecated ignore_tags_in_keywords= parameter in Results tag, as Solspace Tag searching is already natively supported.
  • Deprecated the "super_search_field_name_array" variable pair. The usage of variables and conditionals within in remain supported.
  • Fixed a bug where orderby on native EE date fields wasn't always correct.
  • Fixed a bug where using custom relevance weights on fields with capitalization in the names did not work.
  • Fixed a bug where a trailing '|' on some parameters would throw an error.
  • Fixed a bug where certain inclusive category search syntax would cause the following parameter to be ignored.
  • Fixed a bug where secondary ordering of results with orderby="" parameter would not work when ordering results by relevance.


Updating Instructions #

If you're upgrading from Super Search 2.x on ExpressionEngine 2.x, it's recommended that you upload the new Super Search files to your new ExpressionEngine 3.x site directory just before running the EE2 -> EE3 upgrade. Proceed with the following instructions...

  1. Within your sites ./system/user/addons/ directory, delete the super_search folder and upload the new one from the /system/user/addons/ directory in your download package.
  2. Within your sites ./themes/user/ directory, delete the super_search folder and upload the new one from the /themes/user/ directory in your download package.
  3. Go to the Add-On Manager area in the ExpressionEngine control panel, scroll to down to the Third Party Add-Ons section, and find Super Search in the list, and click Update.

  Pro Services

Need help with an implementation of Super Search? Need Super Search to do more? We're available for hire!

If you're interested in any of the above services, or have questions about them, fill out the form below to begin our conversation!

  EE Aftercare

Ongoing repairs, additions, and adjustments are a normal part of the life cycle of a web site. With EE Aftercare, you have someone on your team who you can trust to take care of your web site. Solspace brings years of experience in developing, refurbishing, and supporting EE web sites. With EE Aftercare, you have a high-end developer on your team, working with you to have the best and most effective possible web presence.

Learn more about EE Aftercare