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Service Portal search

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Service Portal search

Service Portal displays search data within a widget on the search page. To make data searchable from Service Portal, create a search source that fetches data from a single table within your ServiceNow instance, from multiple ServiceNow tables, or from an external site. Add facets to the search source to enable end users to filter search results.

Search sources

A search source is a record that describes the behavior and source of searchable data. A search source defines:
  • Where search data is retrieved from.
  • Whether search suggestions can populate the search field based on user input.
  • How a search entry displays in the search result page.

Search sources have simple and advanced configurations.

Define a table within your ServiceNow instance as a source of searchable data. To learn more, see Define a search source.

Define a data fetch script to return data. A data fetch script executes on the server and returns a result array to the search widget. This method is more complex, but offers complete power over how a search is executed. You are not limited to querying single tables within ServiceNow and can define a script that fetches data from multiple tables, or from anywhere on the web. To learn more, review the Tutorial: set up an external knowledge base search source.

Note: Search facets may not behave as expected if integrated into an advanced search source that queries data from a non-ServiceNow site.

Typeahead settings

Typeahead returns search results as a user types in the search field. You can configure typeahead settings, or disable the feature entirely, within the search source record.

Define an icon to display beside typeahead results and the target page to display typeahead selections.
Define a template for the typeahead result. See Create an advanced typeahead template.

Search facets

Enable your end users to filter search results for a more meaningful result set. Facets can return results based on:

  • Fields in a table such as Active or Author.
  • Query conditions such as [Updated][After][Last week].
Note: Only set search facets for indexed fields. Fields that are not indexed may take longer to return results and are not optimized for a fast search experience. Learn more: Enable text indexing for a table.

Search facets render in the Faceted Search widget on the sp_search page. In new instances, search facets are enabled by default. If upgrading from a previous release, enable search facets by activating a record in the Page Route Maps [sp_page_route_map] table. See Enable search facets.

Enable end users to refine search results for a simple search source. You can create facets for a table search source that return results based on field values or query conditions. See Add facets to a simple search source.

Define facets for advanced search sources using the Facet generation script on the search source record. Use facet APIs to create facets and assign ServiceNow facet items or mapped queries to the facet.

SPScriptedFacetService - Scoped Creates a single or multi choice facet.
SPScriptedFacet - Scoped Defines facet items, filters, or mapped queries for the facet.

Search configurations

When a simple search source is defined, Service Portal uses the search engine settings configured on your instance. To learn more, see Search administration.

Performance recommendations

To avoid performance degradation and to ensure a fast search experience for end users, follow these recommendations.

  • Limit search sources when possible to perform only the necessary query. For example, if a search only needs to return active incidents, add a condition to the search source set to [Active] [is] [true]. A search that queries only active incidents is faster than a search that queries all records in the incident table.
  • Create facet items and mapped queries with no more than 30 filter items. To verify, test each search source with a variety of keywords as a user with low permissions.
Note: Search results in service portal are displayed as text only. HTML tags, images, and formatting do not display in search results.