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How to Fix WooCommerce Product Search Not Working

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Is the WooCommerce product search not working in your online store?

If your WooCommerce search isn’t working correctly, then users won’t be able to find the products they are looking for. This can result in a poor user experience, abandoned carts, and fewer sales.

In this article, we will show you what to do when the WooCommerce product search is not working. We will also explain how to improve the search feature.

Fixing the WooCommerce product search not working issue

The Importance of WooCommerce Product Search

Without a functional search tool, users won’t be able to browse through your product catalog and make purchases in your WooCommerce store.

WooCommerce search not working

This can result in frustrated customers leaving your site, skyrocketing bounce rates, and decreasing profits.

In turn, it can also damage your store’s reputation. If many people struggle to use your online store, then they may go to your competitors instead.

The error may also cause your website SEO to suffer because search engines use the search functionality to rank websites.

If your site has lower rankings in the search results, then fewer customers will be able to find and purchase your products online.

By fixing the WooCommerce search feature, you can improve the customer experience, making it easier for shoppers to find what they are looking for and make more sales.

That being said, you can follow the steps in our troubleshooting guide and learn what to do when the WooCommerce product search is not working:

Step 1: Check With Your Hosting Provider

The most common reason the search feature isn’t working is because of your WordPress hosting.

The server hosting your site may not have enough resources to handle a large number of WooCommerce products at once.

This server may also have some software restrictions that limit the amount of available memory and prevent the search feature from working correctly.

If this is the case, then you can try contacting your hosting provider’s customer support, as this problem cannot be solved from your end. They can help you figure out if the WooCommerce search isn’t working due to the server and help you fix the issue.

However, if the issue is not with your hosting, then you will need to move on to the next step.

Step 2: Deactivate Plugins

The WooCommerce product search may not be working because of an outdated or new plugin on your WordPress website that is causing some errors.

This can happen if a plugin has bugs in its software or isn’t compatible with other plugins on your website.

You can easily fix this issue by deactivating every plugin apart from WooCoomerce on your site.

First, you must visit the Plugins » Installed Plugins page from the WordPress admin sidebar. Once you are there, just select all the activated plugins except WooCommerce from the list.

Next, simply choose the ‘Deactivate’ option from the ‘Bulk actions’ dropdown menu and click on the ‘Apply’ button to deactivate all the plugins on your site.

Deactivate all the plugin except WooCommerce

Now, you can visit your website to check if this has fixed the issue.

If it has, then simply activate the plugins one by one until you can find the one causing the error. You will then need to look for an alternative plugin or contact the developers for support.

If deactivating plugins didn’t fix the issue, then keep reading to solve the problem.

Step 3: Update the WooCommerce Database

A corrupted database can be another reason that the WooCommerce search is not working.

For instance, you may have imported a large number of products as a CSV file, which is causing a problem with the database.

To fix this issue, you will need to update the WooCommerce database. Make sure to create a complete backup of your website before updating its database.

First, head over to the WooCommerce » Status page from the WordPress sidebar.

Once you are there, simply switch to the ‘Tools’ tab and click the ‘Regenerate’ button next to the ‘Product lookup tables’ option.

Click Regenerate next to the Product Lookup Table option

After that, scroll down to the ‘Update database’ option and just click the button next to it.

This will update the WooCommerce plugin’s database to the latest version.

Update the WooCommerce database

Next, simply visit your online store to check if the issue has been resolved.

Step 4: Check Catalog Visibility Settings

Another reason for this problem can be that you have set the catalog visibility of your products to ‘Shop only’ or ‘Hidden’.

With these settings, the products won’t show up in the search results in your online store.

To check this, visit the Products » All Products page from the WordPress admin sidebar and click on the ‘Edit’ link under a product name.

Click the Edit link under the product name

Once you are on the product page, simply click the ‘Edit’ link under the ‘Catalog visibility’ option in the ‘Publish’ section on the right.

This will open up a list of visibility choices.

From here, you need to make sure that the catalog visibility is set to ‘Shop and search results’.

Choose the Shop and Search Results option from the Catalog Visibility section

After that, click the ‘OK’ button to save your changes. Then, simply click the ‘Update’ button.

Now, visit your website to check if the WooCommerce search is working. If it isn’t, then you will need to keep reading our tutorial.

Step 5: Reindex WooCommerce Products

You may not have indexed your Woocommerce products properly, making the search feature inaccessible.

To reindex the products, head to the Products » All Products page from the WordPress dashboard. From here, check the box at the top of the list to select all the products.

After that, select the ‘Edit’ option from the ‘Bulk actions’ dropdown menu and click the ‘Apply’ button.

Edit all the WooCommerce products

This will open up the ‘Bulk Edit’ tab on the page.

From here, simply click the ‘Update’ button to reindex all the WooCommerce products.

Click the Update button to reindex products

Once you have done that, you need to visit your website to test the search results.

Improve WooCommerce Product Search With SearchWP

If you have tried all the steps above and they haven’t fixed the product search problem, then it’s time for you to switch to a search plugin.

This is where SearchWP comes in.

It is the best WordPress search plugin on the market that can help you improve WooCommerce product search by automatically replacing the default WordPress search with a more powerful search feature.

It puts you in complete control of the WordPress search algorithm and builds an index that matches search keywords in content, titles, categories, tags, shortcodes, documents, products, and more.


First, you will need to install and activate the SearchWP plugin. For more detailed instructions, see our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, head over to the SearchWP » Settings page from the admin sidebar and switch to the ‘General tab.

Here, you have to copy and paste the license key into the ‘License Key’ field. You can get your key from the ‘SearchWP Accounts’ page on the SearchWP website.

After that, simply click the ‘Activate’ button.

Enter your SearchWP license key

Next, you have to visit the SearchWP » Extensions page from the admin sidebar.

From here, click the ‘Install’ button under the ‘WooCommerce Integration’ extension. Upon installation, the extension will be activated automatically.

Install WooCommerce integration extension

Next, head over to the SearchWP » Algorithm page from the WordPress dashboard and click the ‘Source and Settings’ button.

This will open a popup where you must check the ‘Products’ option to add WooCommerce products as a search source.

After that, click the ‘Done’ button to continue.

Add Products as search source

Now, if you scroll down, you will see a new ‘Products’ section added to the list of search sources.

By default, SearchWP will look at the product title, content (description), slug, and excerpt (short description) for search matches. You can add relevance (importance) to these search attributes by moving the sliders next to them.

For more detailed instructions, you may want to see our tutorial on how to make a smart WooCommerce product search.

Depending on how your site is set up, you may also be able to search for other content by clicking on the ‘Add/Remove Attributes’ button.

Add weight to search attributes

This will open up a popup from where you can add custom fields and taxonomies to the attributes as well.

Improve WooCommerce Product Search With Categories, Tags, SKUs, and Other Attributes

To make your WooCommerce product search more accurate, we recommend adding categories, tags, and SKUs as search sources using SearchWP.

Once the ‘Add/Remove Attributes’ popup appears, simply start by typing ‘SKU’ into the ‘Custom Fields’ box. For more information, we recommend reading our guide on how to enable search by product SKU in WooCommerce.

After that, select the ‘Product categories’, ‘Product tags’, and other product attributes from the ‘Taxonomies’ dropdown menu.

Add SKU, tag, categories, and attributes as custom fields and taxonomies

Once you have done that, click the ‘Done’ button to save the changes.

Now that tags, SKUs, and categories have been added as search sources, move the slider next to these options to assign weight to these attributes.

Assign weight to the added fields

Note: If you don’t know how to create tags, categories, and attributes for your products, please see our tutorial on how to add product tags, attributes, and categories to WooCommerce.

After you have finished configuring settings for SearchWP, simply click the ‘Save’ button at the top.

Now, the default search box on your WooCommerce store will be automatically replaced by SearchWP.

Click Save to store your changes

Finally, you can visit your website to check out the new and improved WooCommerce product search box.

This is what it looked like on our demo site.

Improved WooCommerce product search

Bonus: Add GTIN, ISBN & MPN Schema in WooCommerce to Improve Search Visibility

Apart from fixing and improving your website search, you can also add the GTIN, ISBN, and MPN schema to your WooCommerce products to provide detailed information to search engines.

This can help increase your product visibility, meaning that when users search for a specific ISBN, GTIN, or MPN, your products will show at the top of the search results.

You can easily add the GTIN, ISBN, and MPN schema to your WooCommerce products using All In One SEO. It is the best WordPress SEO plugin on the market that comes with a schema markup feature.

Is All in One SEO (AIOSEO) the best WordPress SEO plugin?

Upon activation, all you have to do is open a product page and scroll down to the ‘AIOSEO Settings’ section.

Here, switch to the ‘Schema’ tab and click the ‘Edit Schema’ button.

Click the Edit Schema button

This will open a prompt on the screen where you can scroll down to the ‘Identifiers’ section and then add the ISBN, GTIN, or MPN details for the product. After that, click the ‘Save Changes’ button to store your settings.

For detailed instructions, see our tutorial on how to add GTIN, ISBN, & MPN schema in WordPress.

Add the ISBN, GTIN, or MPN and click Update Schema button

Additionally, All in One SEO comes with other features that can help your WooCommerce store rank higher, including a link assistant, headline analyzer, XML sitemaps, and more.

For more information, you can see our complete AIOSEO review.

We hope this article helped you learn what to do when the WooCommerce product search is not working. You may also want to see our article on how to fix WordPress search not working and check out our expert picks for the best WooCommerce plugins to grow your online store.

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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

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3 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

    Hey WPBeginner readers,
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  2. Ralph says

    I had no idea why one of my e-books was not showing up in the search results, but it was in the shop. I was so confused. It turns out it was “shop only” for some reason. Maybe I even clicked it by accident. This guide really helped me.

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