After selecting the proper environment and plugins, there are a few tricks to increase search performance.
These changes are recommended on most shared hosts and lower performance servers, as well as in cases with thousands of posts. These changes can improve the search performance significantly.
While it's a great feature, it requires a decent server to handle. Shared hosts tend to have an execution limit, which can be reached very quickly with constant ajax requests.
To disable this feature go to the
General Options -> Behavior panel. Also, make sure that either the magnifier or the return button action is set to 'Trigger live search' (see screenshot), otherwise the live results will not appear.
After this change the user will have to hit the Return key or click the magnifier icon to start the ajax search process (depending on your configuration).
Using front-end filters can be a major blow for the overall search performance, especially when combining a lot of filters on a large set of results.
Make sure to minimize the number of front-end filters
Remove the less important filters if possible
Use them in combination with the search cache
The exclusion/inclusion documentation can be found here.
Minimize the number of items excluded/included - instead of excluding/including by multiple child categories, exclude the parent category only etc..
Do not use the inclusions and exclusions at the same time. In that case using an inclusion should be sufficient, as everything else is excluded.
Autocomplete is triggered on every keystroke, so just like the previous option - unless only google is selected as the source. In that case your server is not invoked in the process.
If your main results are Posts, Pages, Products or other custom post types, you should definitely consider using the Index Table engine.
Using the index table engine is highly recommended if:
there are over 1000 posts or the post contents are lengthy
searching by categories (or tags or any other term) is neccessary
searching by custom fields
searching in media files
By default this feature is disabled, but in case you decided to use it, it can cause a decent performance slowdown.
To turn it off, go the the
General Options -> Behavior panel and set the "Secondary logic" option:
There is a built-in, optional file and database based search cache. To enable it, go to the Cache Settings submenu.
There is either a File or Database caching method. We recommend trying both to find out which one works in your case faster.
These changes can have a relateively big impact on the overall performance.
As discussed in the previous section, the ajax performance is unfortunately affected by every single plugin you have installed.
However there is an implemented custom ajax handler, which can try to bypass unneccessary plugin loading, making this process faster.
To enable the custom ajax handler, click the
Compatibility Settings submenu.
Cropping images to thumbnails can cause a definite slowdown, mostly in cases where the source images are too big. Image cropping can be disabled on the
Caching options page: