Strength of Evidence:
Document Type: Guideline
Provide a search option in a standard place on each page of a content-rich website.
A search option should be provided on all pages where it may be useful–users should not have to return to the homepage to conduct a search. Search engines can be helpful on content-rich websites, but do not add value on other types of sites.
Designers should be careful not to rely too heavily on search engines. They are not a substitute for good content organization, and do not always improve users’ search performance. Designers should carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of including a search engine, and whether their website lends itself to automated searches.
Related Usability Guidelines: