Feast upon the Word Blog

A blog focused on LDS scriptures and teaching

Better Searching at lds.org!

Posted by KS on May 28, 2013

For years I’ve had a hard time finding what I was looking for at lds.org. Typing in a few words from a talk I remembered, even from the title of a talk I remembered, hardly ever got me to the right place. I was concerned that serious improvement needed to be made with thousands of youth leaders looking to find up-to-date, relevant talks on lds.org. Well, it happened! The searching at lds.org has been improved! A lot of work has been put into it and the results are awesome.

For a comparison, here’s one example. Less than a year ago I was looking for Sis. Beck’s talk “Mothers Who Know” for a lesson in Young Women’s. I typed in “mothers who know” and “beck.” Her talk “Mothers Who Know” didn’t even come up on the first page of search results. I also tried just typing in Mothers Who Know. If did come up, but it was the ninth hit! Unfortunately, her talk was listed only after link after link of older, less relevant talks by men. That’s okay in some circumstances, but for a YW leader looking for a talk by a mother about motherhood, it was pretty discouraging.

Today, I searched for “mothers who know.” It was the first hit. It was in a group titled “Top Results,” which also included the same talk on the Mormon Channel and a talk by Sheri Dew. Following the first group of search results was one titled “General Conference.” First listed? Sis. Beck’s talk again. A third group of results was titled “Magazines,” which included a visiting teaching message that quoted Sis. Beck’s talk. The fourth group of results (see how thorough and organized this is?) was titled “Scriptures.” Then came “Manuals” and then “Broadcasts” and then “News and Events” and then “Images” and finally “Music.” Now that’s a great way to show any teacher what resources are available!

So if you, like me, had given up on using lds.org to search for what you needed, it’s time to try again!

5 Responses to “Better Searching at lds.org!”

  1. Antony said

    I tend to use Google, no matter what site I am on – this since Google Search tends to be better than most site specific search engines. Using your example I would type the following in the search box:
    site:lds.org mothers who know beck

    • Mary Ann said

      I second Antony’s use of Google search to dig things much more quickly out of the lds.org site (and most other sites as well). The secret is site:(the site you’re searching).

  2. BrianJ said

    It looks like the browser-based search engine at LDS.org is now simply matching the “LDS Tools” app for Android (and probably other mobile platforms).

  3. JohnS said

    Although I don’t disagree with using the site search feature of your preferred search engine, I still think the new search features of lds.org have a lot to offer. The “Top Results” section basically give you the same results that a site search would provide. However, there are eight(!) more sections in the search results, each representing another site search of its own, limited to certain content areas of the website: General Conference talks, Magazine articles, Scriptures, Manuals, Broadcast media transcripts, News and Events announcements, Images, and Music. That’s NINE different searches with one click. Yes, it might be powered by Google, but it’s certainly faster and easier than remembering and typing those different search filters yourself.

    • jsuddsjr said

      PS: Upon closer inspection, there are three additional sections: Topics, Sites, and People. Since there weren’t any results in those sections, they didn’t appear on the “All Results” page for my original search criteria. That makes for 12 different site searches at one time. Not bad at all.

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