Search results don't show a preview of each search term unless the terms all happen fortuitously to be in the question title or, apparently, close to each other.

For example, if I search for search preview, I see the image below. Notice how the fifth result only shows the context for one of the search terms.

The problem is most noticeable if search results are sorted by something other than relevance. If, on the same search, I switch to vote precedence, most of the top 50 results don't highlight either of the search terms, and none of them highlight both.

Is there a reason for this behavior? It would be more useful if, for each result, I could see a snippet showing the context in which my search terms were matched.

enter image description here

1 Answer 1


When you search for search preview you get results for both search and preview that is

Try searching for "search preview" and you might get what you want (which is nothing)

  • 1
    No, that's not what I'm searching for. When I search for search preview without quotes, I want results that have the words preview and search in any order. As far as I can tell, all of the results contain both words somewhere. But the result view doesn't show me where they contain these words. It only occasionally shows the context for one or both.
    – user142148
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 18:34
  • @Kyralessa All of those page have the other search term in them (in the answers). That is included in the search parameters.
    – Naftali
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 18:39
  • You are correct, and I pointed that out in my previous comment. My point is that I can't see that in the search results view. My request is about seeing the context in which each search term matches, rather than the context for just one of the search terms, or even no context for any of them.
    – user142148
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 18:45
  • @Kyralessa There is always context, just not in the the shown image, but in the post at large, both of your words are there.
    – Naftali
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 18:53
  • 2
    I'm not sure how much simpler I can make this, but let's give it one more shot. If the question has "My name is Bob" and one (of many) answers has "I work in a button factory", then if I search for bob button, I'd want to see that question in the results, and in the description below the question, something like this: "My name is Bob....work in a button factory." That would tell me what context both words occurred in, to help me figure out whether their use in that question and answer are relevant to my search or not.
    – user142148
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 19:19
  • 1
    Actually now that search does return one result.... this very question. :D Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 20:22

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