How to Use the Search Function 🔎

The forum here at Spells8 is a wealth of knowledge, information, and questions. Sometimes one topic is covered many times and in different ways. Other times a topic has never been brought up before! Have you ever wanted to search the forum and see if someone has asked your question? Or maybe you are looking for altar or wand inspiration. Today, I want to show you how to use the search function, both basic search and the advanced filters!

Note: The filters and search function work the same on the desktop site and the mobile app. I will only be showing examples and screenshots from the desktop site.

Why use the search function?

Sometimes we may have a question that’s very basic or very common. Rather than make an entirely new post about it, we can use the search function to see the answers from before. You can also use the search function to find specific words. Maybe you are looking for personal experiences with roses. Type that into the search bar and you will find related posts!

Basic Search Functions

When using the search tool from the forum homepage, your first option is to just type a word or phrase into the search bar and press enter.

This will bring up recent and relevant posts related to your search term. Clicking in the “More…” link at the bottom of the search box will bring you to a full page of search results.

If you are using the search tool from inside a post, you get another option! You get the option to search within the post you are reading or the entire forum.

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Advanced Search Functions

The forum also has some advanced search functions. These are different filters that can narrow down your search term or search results. To get to these functions, click the three bars on the right of the search bar. If you are on the mobile app, you can get to advanced functions by opening up the search bar and tapping "Advanced filters.

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The advanced search features will return a webpage with many options. You can see them in the below image but I will also go over each of them briefly.

Search Bar

This is where you place your search term.

Topics/Posts Dropdown

This dropdown allows you to change the area of your search. You can search through topics and posts in the forum, categories and tags in the forum, or users in the forum.

Categorized

Selecting a category from this dropdown menu will search through only the selected category. For example, if you wanted to search for incense recommendations you might select the #recommendations category for your search parameter.

Where topics

This option lets you select the status of the topic. Your options are…

  • are open: posts that are still open for comment
  • are closed: posts that are closed for comment
  • are public: posts that everyone can see
  • are archived: posts that are removed from the main forum feed but not deleted or unlisted
  • have zero replies: posts that no one has replied to
  • contain a single user: posts that either have no replies or all replies from the same user
  • are solved: posts that have been given a solution when a question is asked
  • are unsolved: posts that have no solution when a question is asked

Selecting one of these options will only return posts of that status.

Tagged

Choosing one or more of these tags will only search posts that are attached to those specific tags. This is a more complex way of using the tags rather than finding them through our tag list.

Posted By

This option lets you search for any post by a member of the forum. If you remember who wrote a post but you can’t find it anywhere, this would be a way to search the forum for your answer!

Only return topics/posts

Selecting one of these options will only show topics that you have interacted with in one way or another, as the selection suggests. Your options are…

  • matching in title only: will only search titles for your search phrase
  • I liked: will only search in your liked posts and replies
  • in my messages: will only search in your messages
  • I read: will only search posts and replies you have read

There is a further drop down list that contains more options. The standard option chosen before customization is “any”. The rest of the options in the list are…

  • I’ve not read: will only search posts and replies you haven’t read
  • I posted in: will only search posts you have replied to
  • I created: will only search posts you have created
  • I’m watching: will only search posts you are watching
  • I’m tracking: will only search posts you are tracking
  • I bookmarked: will only search posts you have bookmarked
  • are the very first post: will only search posts that have the phrase in the first post
  • are pinned: will only search through pinned posts
  • are wiki: will only search through posts that are wikis
  • include image(s): will only search through posts that have an image

Posted

This selection lets you choose a date range. You can select before or after and a custom date. Choosing before a certain date will only show posts from before the date you have chosen. Choosing after a certain date will only show posts from after the date you have chosen.

Filter by post count and view

This option lets you set the minimum and maximum number of posts and views for the posts in your search. Setting these will return a limited number of posts in your search depending on the minimum and maximum you have chosen.


I was also messing around with some boolean search options that you can use on larger search engines. I only found one option that works here and that is quotation marks.

Searching for an Exact Phrase

If you are looking for a very specific phrase or word, you can put it in quotations when you search. The search tool will look for all instances of that exact phrase! For example, if you are looking for the title of a book, put the title in quotations and the search tool will show you if there are any posts here where that book has been discussed. Here I have done a search for an author, Morgan Daimler.

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I know personally that I have discussed their books many times before and, lo and behold, I got plenty of search results with their name! In the image, you can see that their name is in bold, showing that it was my exact search phrase.


There are so many great options when it comes to search, and I’m sure there are even more that I’m not aware of! Sometimes searching the forum before you make a post can save you time (and patience if you are like me and just can’t wait for an answer) if your question has already been asked and answered, likely more than once!

I hope this little guide was helpful! Please let me know if you have any questions about the search function :heart:

7 Likes

This guide is SUPER helpful, Megan- thank you so much for taking the time to put it together! :heart:

The Search Tool is a really great feature that allows everyone to quickly find exactly what they are looking for. It unlocks a whole new way to use the resources of the forum and find answers to questions! :sparkles:

I love everything about this guide, Megan- thanks again for sharing it! :blush:

4 Likes

This is great @MeganB! You must have spent oodles of time on it. Well done!

4 Likes

@TheTravelWitch_Bry thank you! I’m happy to have made it :blush: it’s one of my favorite tools to use lol

@Amethyst Thank you Amethyst! It did take a bit of time but it’s worth it!

4 Likes

I love using this when I am suggesting topics or trying to find one that I can’t remember the actual title but there’s other stuff I do remember. :heavy_heart_exclamation:

I actually use it in the morning every day for the Brigid & Oracle posts. Then for the to link my rune posts together. Another go-to function for me.

The new emoji update is amazing! I really like to use emojis, but sometimes I forget or I am doing too many things at once. :laughing:

4 Likes