Search Live

search-liveSearch Live supplies integrated live search facilities and advanced search features.

Instant Search Results

This tool provides instant live search results where matches are found for one or multiple search keywords in titles, excerpts or content, allows to enhance the standard search form with this functionality, provides a flexible shortcode [search_live] that can be placed anywhere to provide an interactive search form and a widget for use in sidebars.

  • Instant search results replace the standard WordPress search form. This is enabled by default but you can turn it off.
  • You can use the shortcode [search_live] to place a search form anywhere.
  • You can use the Search Live widget in your sidebars.
  • Search Live automatically supports Custom Post Types, for example products or events. Any plugin that supplies its own public post type will be supported instantly.

Search Live can show instant search results including thumbnails and short descriptions or manual excerpts. Among other useful options, you can determine the number of results shown and whether to search in any combination of titles, excerpts or contents. These can be determined individually for each instance of Search Live’s shortcode or widget.

Search Live supplies results from posts, pages and other public post types. We’re working on an extended version that provides enhanced features and support for taxonomies.


You can install the plugin directly from your WordPress Dashboard or go to the Search Live plugin page on where you can download it.


72 Responses to Search Live

  1. Dibya Gogoi May 29, 2023 at 8:19 pm #

    Hey sir, I am having a problem using your this tool, I want to make searches from only titles but I am not able to see as your given screen shots showing, is there anyway to implement this with your plugin by editing php file, if yes please provide the code here please, I would really love to give it a try.

    • Kento May 31, 2023 at 11:11 am #


      You can use the shortcode with the appropriate parameter for this: [search_live excerpt="no" content="no"]. You can use that also in a block.

      See the Shortcodes section of the documentation for more details on it. If you’re using classic widgets, the widget provided by the plugin has appropriate settings.


  2. Marc Lehmann April 22, 2021 at 11:43 am #

    Hi, the search plugin is great. Thanks for it! I will use it in a real estate portal. One question: If I understand the documentation well, it is possible to select the post types for search with a filter in PHP mode. Is this possible with a shortcode too? Unfortunately I am not a developer and my knowledge of PHP is very limited.

    • Kento April 23, 2021 at 11:12 am #

      Hi Marc, thanks for the nice comment on the plugin!

      Currently, the shortcode doesn’t support it directly but you can easily use the filter search_live_post_types (linked to the documentation page).

      One easy way to implement it is to add it to your child theme’s functions.php …

      add_filter( 'search_live_post_types', 'immolistmallorca_search_live_post_types' );

      function immolistmallorca_search_live_post_types( $post_types ) {
      return array( 'post', 'page', 'listing' );

      In the example, search would be limited to the basic post types and an assumed ‘listing’ custom post type.


      Search Live API
      Child Themes


      • Marc April 23, 2021 at 12:53 pm #

        Dear Kento, thank you so much! I do not see a button where I can buy a coffee for you. If I could I ordered at least five. Have a great weekend. Cheers, Marc

        • Kento May 6, 2021 at 1:43 pm #

          Hi Marc,

          Thank you very much 🙂

          Please just keep us in mind if you ever need a tool related to our work, maybe you’ll find it in our Shop.


  3. Aleks February 16, 2021 at 3:43 pm #

    Hi, I am new to Search Live. I have embedded shortcode in my WordPress template and added attributes and the plugin works. But I want to add inline styles. They don’t seem to be doing anything. This is the code I wrote in the inline styles field in my WordPress dashboard and then saved the changes (after I unchecked the standard stylesheet). Can anybody help? Thank you.

    Edited, see for code

    • Kento February 19, 2021 at 10:45 pm #

      Hi Aleks, if the CSS rule is not picked up it might just be that you need to clear the cache on your site.

  4. Rasha Yehya December 1, 2020 at 11:11 am #


    Thanks for the plugin. Can I add a search loop icon next to the textbox as a submit button?



    • Kento December 5, 2020 at 4:01 pm #

      Hi Rasha,

      You can do that by applying the right CSS rules to the button. You could add the rules in your child theme’s stylesheet, or use the Appearance section to add them. To have the button appear, you should check the box for the Widget or use the submit_button option for the shortcode or API function.


  5. Steve November 25, 2020 at 11:35 am #

    The plugin has not been updated for 8 months and it is compatible up to 5.4.4 (instead of 5.5.3). Do you plan to update the plugin? If yes, when?

    • Kento November 30, 2020 at 5:11 pm #

      Hi Steve, we will be issuing an update shortly. In any case, there are no particular issues that I would know of even with the latest version of WordPress.

      • Steve December 2, 2020 at 8:07 pm #

        Hi Kento,

        Thank you for the update.

        Can you please be a bit more specific on the “shortly” comment e.g. 3rd of December or 4th of December?

        Thanks in advance.

        • Kento December 5, 2020 at 4:03 pm #

          Hi Steve, thanks for asking but I can’t give you an exact ETA for it at the moment.

          • Kento December 16, 2020 at 6:11 pm #

            FYI new release is out

  6. Tom November 13, 2020 at 2:42 pm #

    Is the plugin Compatible with Divi Theme?

    • Kento November 14, 2020 at 1:32 pm #

      Hi Tom,

      Yes, I would recommend to have a look at the Shortcodes and API sections of the documentation if you need to integrate it more specifically within Divi modules via shortcodes or templates.


  7. Serii December 17, 2019 at 7:29 am #

    I love your plugin.
    But, he work when i saw the site like as admin.
    In incognito or firefox plugin doesn’t work.
    Can you help me?

    • Kento December 17, 2019 at 7:52 am #

      Hi Serii,

      Thanks for your kind comment on the plugin! If you get different results when viewing with Firefox in incognito mode, it could be because your posts are protected and you are not logged in? Or if you refer to the live search functionality, it could be that you have Javascript disabled.


  8. Maria Aznar Palenzuela September 16, 2019 at 1:57 pm #


    My problem is when I test Search Live plugin (search icon menu in my web) and put for example “santo” and click enter there are 2 problems: 1. doesn’t appers the diferents options and 2. always the result page is the home page.

    The theme is own theme, I tried take off all other plugins for possible conflics (that doesn’t work).

    Any idea where is the problem?

    • Kento September 16, 2019 at 9:36 pm #

      Hi Maria,

      I have tried to access your site to have a look but it seems that your server is timing out. This could be related to issues with your setup – the error I got when trying to access your site is: “Error 403: no se encuentra una página index en el directorio” – I assume that what you have experienced with the plugin might be related to it. Please have a look and when you’ve got the server back working let us know so we can have another look.


  9. Fabio August 19, 2019 at 8:59 am #

    Hi Hans,

    I notice that the plugin doesn’t find any results if there are some words before the keyword.
    Just to be clear if i want to find the keyword “wordpress” and I just insert “wordpress” all works fine…
    If I insert instead some strings before … “I like wordpress” the plugin shows no results…
    It’s possibile to solve this scenario?
    It seems to me pretty important…


    • Kento August 19, 2019 at 9:08 pm #

      Hi Fabio,

      When you input several search terms, it will produce matches that contain all of the terms. For example, searching for “gold” will provide matches that contain the term, will searching for “gold silver” will only produce matches that contain *both* “gold” and “silver”.


  10. saad June 15, 2019 at 1:14 am #

    هل يمكن اخفاء نتيجة البحث ما لم تكن متوافقة مع الادخال؟

    • Kento June 19, 2019 at 9:53 am #

      Hi saad!

      Looks like you are asking “Can I hide a search result unless it is compatible with the input?”, correct? The search results that the tool provides would correspond to matching posts (and other post types). It will look in all public post types to provide results but if you want to restrict the post types to only particular ones, then you can use the search_live_post_types filter which is described on the API documentation page.


  11. Luk June 8, 2018 at 9:19 pm #

    Thanks for that awesome plugin!

    I’m looking for the possibility to output the content of another widget-shortcode, that is placed in the excerpt of a woocommerce product.
    The shortcode itself is being shown in the results, but not the content of these shortcode.

    Where and how to hook in, so i can see the content instead of just “raw” shortcode?

    I*m not a programmer, so I’m thankful for clear advices. 🙂

    • Kento June 13, 2018 at 2:55 pm #

      Hi Luk,

      Thanks for your kind comment! Let me check this and issue an update as this is not supposed to happen.


      • Luk June 13, 2018 at 7:53 pm #

        Hey Kento,

        thanks for the answer.
        Is there a possibility to send you the url to the website, where the problem exists? I don’t want to post the site here.

        Greetings, Luk

        • Kento June 17, 2018 at 5:20 pm #

          Hi Luk,

          Thanks I’ve already checked it, it’s not particular to your site but seems to happen in general. I’ll need to review the plugin and fix it so it doesn’t show the shortcodes in the content but rather the rendered content.


          • Luk June 17, 2018 at 8:15 pm #

            Hello Kento,

            I’ll check for updates in future.


  12. Mark March 15, 2018 at 11:55 pm #

    I just wanted to say I added your plugin to my site and it works great! I do have one question I am trying to keep the standard styling but change the background to a light grey. When I try to use the inline styling it doesn’t change the output. So I was wonder if you could help me with the inline styling.

    • Kento April 2, 2018 at 7:31 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      Sure, could you please share what CSS rules you have added?


  13. Marco January 3, 2018 at 3:52 pm #

    Hi, great job making this plugin, we’re using it because it works perfectly with the Groups plugin.
    I’m wondering if it’s possible to use this plugin to search through custom post meta fields? I didn’t find a shortcode that does that

    • antonio January 4, 2018 at 8:20 am #

      Hi Marco,
      Sorry, right now the plugin doesn’t support custom post meta.
      It seems a good idea, we will review it for future updates.
      Thank you very much for the contribution.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

      • Marco January 4, 2018 at 3:33 pm #

        Thanks for the reply, Antonio.
        Let me give you an example of what I said (that, by the way, is the current situation of our website).
        For an e-commerce website is fundamental to let people search for product codes (like SKUs or EANs) through the searchbar.
        We, for example save those codes as custom post metas.
        In our website, I installed the Groups plugin (another amazing plugin) and this search plugin is the only compatible with it, so I absolutely have to use this plugin.
        Right now, I solved the issue by adding to each product description (post_content) the SKU code, so that by writing the code into the search bar, the product would show up.

        • antonio January 9, 2018 at 3:38 pm #

          Thanks Marco,
          Remember that you are using Woocommerce and its SKU product fields, you have available the Woocommerce Product Search plugin.
          Kind Regards,
          Antonio B.

  14. ingosch September 11, 2017 at 1:56 pm #

    Hi, great plugin. Thanks!

    wondering if it is possible to search for tags as well?

    Would be very very useful to add this feature.


    • Kento September 13, 2017 at 2:07 pm #


      Many thanks for your kind comment. Currently the plugin doesn’t allow you to search based on tags but I’m working on several enhancements and this (searching also in tags and more generically terms) feature is part of it. I can’t promise on an ETA yet but there will be quite a few welcome surprises 😉


  15. tj July 24, 2017 at 4:40 am #

    Hi, first of all thank you for the plugin – great work.
    Second, I have a little problem: when it doesn;t find any post it displays all the posts from the wp. It should say that no post was found… Where I can change this? Thank you

    • Kento July 30, 2017 at 9:19 pm #

      Hi tj,

      You’re right, I’ll include a fix for this in the next update. Thank you very much for your feedback and for reporting the issue.


  16. Ondrej June 28, 2017 at 9:01 am #

    Hi, great plugin and I am very happy to use it. Thing is – it stopped working suddenly. (Nothing has changed, no updates, no nothing). It shows results after submitting, but it stopped showing live results.

    please advise


    • antonio June 28, 2017 at 10:09 am #

      Hi Ondrej,
      I can see that you have javascript errors.
      Please check if your plugin folder is ‘search-live’.
      If this is ok, then check if another plugin related with performance or security is changing the javascript load process (you can try to disable them).
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  17. Tim June 8, 2017 at 5:15 pm #

    Hi, just installed your plugin and put this on my site: [search_live title=”yes” content=”no” excerpt=”no” placeholder=”Suchen…”]
    Works well so far but i dont get any instant results shown under the search bar itself. I think im just too stupid to setup correctly ^^. I added a new Pages with a Title (e.g. “Dog”) and then i type “dog” in search form and i dont get instant result but when i press enter i get a link to this page called “Dog”. So that works well!
    I do not use any other search plugins so there cannot be a mess (i think).
    Can anyone help me maybe?
    Thanks !!

    • antonio June 9, 2017 at 8:00 am #

      Hi Tim,
      Please give me an url to test it.
      Sometimes users get confused with the widget and use the normal wordpress search widget, maybe is this the problem?
      If you are using the normal search widget, you need to have activated the ‘Replace the standard WordPress search form’ option (from Serach Live->Search Live)
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

      • Tim June 9, 2017 at 11:36 am #

        Hi, thanks for response. Okay so my test URL ist so if u search for “marder” and press enter then it will show a correct search result (a link to the page “marder”) but not an instant result^^
        I did checkbox “replace the standard WordPress search form” and i deleted all search widgets. I only work with the shortcode for your plugin (now its [search_live placeholder=Suchen…]) But i can understand if you cannot help me via this chat. maybe i need to ask a friend who knows a bit more about wordpress at all so he maybe can check my backend.

        Regards, Tim

        • antonio June 12, 2017 at 7:40 am #

          Thanks Tim,
          I have tried this code:
          echo do_shortcode( '[search_live placeholder=Suchen…]' );
          and it seems to work correctly.
          Maybe is a cache problem? If you are using a cache plugin, please try to disable or clear cache.
          Kind Regards,
          Antonio B.

  18. ian February 6, 2017 at 10:02 am #

    hi, just want to ask, can i use this to replace wordpress’ default search bar on the top menu? or it cal only be used as a shortcode or in the sidebar?


    • antonio February 6, 2017 at 5:54 pm #

      Hi ian,
      You can add the search form in your themes. Please have a look at the API page.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  19. Nick January 28, 2017 at 7:32 pm #

    This is a nice plugin. But i have a question. Can i change in the setting that you must fill in the whole title and than will you see one search result. Is that possible?

    • antonio January 30, 2017 at 7:21 am #

      Hi Nick,
      Really if the user need to write the whole title, he doesn’t need the search. You could play with the ‘Characters’ param in the Search Live widget, so the user need to set a minimum number of characters to start the search.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  20. Henrique January 6, 2017 at 1:28 pm #

    Hello! I have translated the plugin’s strings to Portuguese (Brazil). Is there any way I can send you the files, so they can be included in a future update?

    I would also suggest you guys consider moving to WP’s online translation platform –

    Cheers and thanks for the great plugin!

    • antonio January 7, 2017 at 6:46 am #

      Hi Henrique,
      Sure, you can send us the translation to itthinx[at]itthinx[dot]com
      Thank you very much for the contribution.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  21. Focke October 21, 2016 at 12:12 pm #

    Hello, installed your Search Live plugin and it fits perfect for my use!

    Just one question: How can I change the title (Search…) in the search field? I would like to replace this by a (german) phrase.
    Thank you in advance!
    Kind Regards,

    • Kento October 23, 2016 at 12:58 pm #


      If you’re using the widget, you will see there is a field “Placeholder” where you can change it – please see for details. Does that help?

      Thanks for using the plugin and great to hear you like it! It would be great if you could give it a 5 star rating, a review will take you only a minute – and of course if there is anything that would keep you from giving it 5 stars, please make sure to let me know so we can improve it.


      • Focke Deparade October 24, 2016 at 8:50 am #

        thanks for your fast reply! I’m using the plugin with a shortcocode within a page. But it’s solved, I added the placeholder phrase the shortcode.
        Kind Regards,

  22. ruben October 7, 2016 at 4:35 pm #

    Hello, Thanks for the excellent plugin. I have a question. How can it work faster? I am typing some terms in the search form and it takes like 2 mins to show the results

    • antonio October 15, 2016 at 8:38 am #

      Hi Ruben,
      It should not take so long, you may have a conflict with another plugin.
      You could try to disable unnecessary plugins and activating them one by one to find the possible problem.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

    • Webmaster October 23, 2016 at 9:47 pm #

      I’ve noticed this to be a problem amongst many instant search or typeahead related search plugins. I’ve had best of luck with itthinx plugin, no doubt but take antonio advice. here are three things to try:

      • activate debug in wp-config
      • disable than reactive one at a time
      • upgrade your hosting environment
      • change theme that is using slop code

      • antonio October 24, 2016 at 7:49 am #

        thanks for the contribution matt.
        Kind Regards,
        Antonio B.

  23. Webmaster August 22, 2016 at 4:20 am #

    Hey buddy, great plugin!

    Here is current shortcode: [search_live placeholder=”Search “]

    How do I get placeholder to display PHP? I just want placeholder to match current page title.

    Thanks in advance!

    • antonio August 22, 2016 at 7:07 am #

      Hi Webmaster,
      We’re using this code apply_filters( 'search_live_placeholder', $placeholder );, so you can use this filter to create your own custom solution.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  24. Alley June 21, 2016 at 10:43 am #

    I need to search only in specific category or post type . How can i customize this plugin

    • antonio June 22, 2016 at 4:29 am #

      Hi Alley,
      right now this option is not available. The post_type used on the search is set in search-live/core/class-search-live-service.php, line 270 (if you need to customize your solution, but remember that modify the code is not the best solution).
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  25. Pascal June 20, 2016 at 7:13 pm #

    Hi, many thanks for your really nice plugin. But there is one big think I’m missing in the plugin! For my search results I had installed the plugin “Search Exclude” which is function to exclude a page or post when this one is selected. The standard search results of WP was using this but your plugin is not looking to it any more. This results that all posts and pages are shown even when I don’t want to have them at the results. Will it be possible to add this to the search results?

    Further it would be really nice if you would have the settings to say which results you would like to include or exclude. For example exclude all pages, or some categories, etc.

    Many thanks.

    • antonio June 22, 2016 at 4:33 am #

      Hi Pascal,
      That’s true, this feature is not available, and it could be useful. We will consider it for future updates.
      Thanks for the suggestion,
      Antonio B.

      • Pascal September 4, 2016 at 9:17 am #

        Many thanks, would be really great if it does. Is there a way to change it by my self in the plugin?

        • antonio September 5, 2016 at 1:57 pm #

          Hi Pascal,
          You will need a developer to create your custom solution.
          Please understand that small hacks, modifications, low or under-budgeted projects are not accepted.
          Maybe in you can found a developer.
          Kind regards,
          Antonio B.

        • Kento September 6, 2016 at 8:29 am #

          Hi Pascal,

          Many thanks for your suggestions. We’re in fact working on an extended version which will provide more detailed control over the post types that can be included. Also the idea with allowing to exclude certain pages is interesting and I think we should certainly take it into account. Regarding your question, please have a look from line 270 in search-live/core/class-search-live-service.php – I don’t normally recommend to hack plugin code itself, but meanwhile you can set the $post_types variable to those post types you want to include only.

          I hope that helps, please let us know if you need more help.


        • antonio September 6, 2016 at 8:52 am #

          Hi Pascal,
          if you go to work at it, let me know if I can help you.
          Kind Regards,
          Antonio B.

  26. Hans June 10, 2016 at 10:53 am #

    Sorry, the post is missing something: “and pressing on my keyboard” must be “and pressing ENTER on my keyboard” and “Can I disable the -key?” must be Can I disable the ENTER-key?

  27. Hans June 10, 2016 at 10:50 am #


    Installed your Search Live plugin and it is perfect, thanks for sharing! I have one question… When entering the search term and pressing on my keyboard the ugly WP/Theme search results page is shown. Can I disable the -key?

    Best regards, Hans.

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