I just realized in testing, it appears worpress search is not matching my search term "php" with any post's tagged with "php" or in a category of "php" unless php is in the title or body, is that all the search searches for?

1 Answer 1


yes, WordPress search only searches title or post content. There are a few plugins that extend search to taxonomies, Relevanssi is one.

EDIT - The query WordPress produces for default search:

FROM wp_posts  WHERE 1=1
AND (((wp_posts.post_title LIKE '%test%')
OR (wp_posts.post_content LIKE '%test%')))
AND wp_posts.post_type IN ('post', 'page', 'attachment')
AND (wp_posts.post_status = 'publish'
OR wp_posts.post_author = 1
AND wp_posts.post_status = 'private')
ORDER BY wp_posts.post_date DESC
LIMIT 0, 10
  • thanks, ill just have to remember to include the tags/category term somewhere in the content
    – JasonDavis
    Oct 10, 2011 at 17:18
  • I think what @Milo says is not correct. Default search can search taxonomies and custom fields. Check this analysis here: gist.github.com/2023628
    – p.a.
    Sep 21, 2012 at 7:36
  • @p.a. - you can obviously query taxonomies and custom fields but the actual query WordPress performs when you do a search does not include those things. see edit above for SQL WordPress produces when you perform a search.
    – Milo
    Sep 21, 2012 at 14:18
  • @Milo I lost you; can Wordpress search for custom taxonomies and custom fields via Wp-Query or not? This is important for my dev plans. Thanks
    – p.a.
    Sep 21, 2012 at 19:09
  • @p.a. - you can't do a full pattern match search of everything simultaneously without directly modifying the query via filters like posts_join and posts_where
    – Milo
    Sep 21, 2012 at 19:50

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