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Holly's Helpful Hints: How To Find Answers To Questions, Part 1

Community Manager Note: Even though Holly isn't part of the Community Team anymore, her helpful hints live on! Each week we'll spotlight one to help you get the most out of your community experience. Enjoy!

At least once a day I say: "I have so many questions." I like questions. I like learning. And I like being able to find answers.

Over the next couple of weeks, I'm going to focus on how the community can help you find answers to your questions.  Today I'm going to talk about our global search.

The global search bar for the Blackbaud Community is found on the home page. This search bar searches everything in the entire Blackbaud Community. Every product, every area, everything. So while there are times (that I'll talk about in a minute) where this is useful, be prepared to engage some filters on your search results.

Here's an example:
Let's say I am interested in learning more about peer-to-peer fundraising. I can type that into the search bar (hint: if you want that specific phrase, use quotation marks around the phrase, otherwise search will return any result that has any of those terms in it).
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Now you are on our search results page. My search returned 140 entries. The number of results may vary, based on your permissions in the community.
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In this case, 140 entries still feels like a lot of information. So I'm going to employ some filters.

First, I'm going to sort my results so I see the most relevant results first. Now you will see content with your search phrase in their titles at the top of the page. This is helpful as you assess what type(s) of content are available.
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But using the sort feature doesn't help whittle down the number of returned entries. That's what filters are for. I can tell the filters to only show me certain types of content (in this case, I asked for blogs and resources) and only content that has been posted in the past week.
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By using filters and sort, I'm able to narrow my initial 140 results to three (3), which is much more convenient and relevant.

Admittedly, I chose a simple search for today's example. If you type something much more generic, like "fundraising," into the search bar, the number of results would become overwhelming very quickly and you may want to be able to filter by product. This is another type of search and I'll cover it in next week's edition of "Holly's Helpful Hints."

In the meantime, take a minute to check out our global search tool on the home page and let us know what you think in the comments below.

And, as always, if you have ideas for future helpful hints, share them in the comments as well!
Posted by Holly Herbert on Mar 22, 2018 8:30 AM America/New_York

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Thank you Holly. I look always look forward to your Helpful Hints.
  • Posted Sat 04 Mar 2017 05:09 PM EST
Was looking for some information the other day and not having luck...but I remembered your posts and came back for some helpful tips!
Thanks...found some ideas!
  • Posted Tue 21 Mar 2017 10:45 AM EDT
That's great to hear, Joan!
  • Posted Tue 21 Mar 2017 10:48 AM EDT
Is there a way when searching not to have every comment made to a Question in a discussion appear in the results? I'd rather see that if someone asked a question about "proper case" and perhaps display the number of responses next to the question asked.
  • Posted Thu 17 Aug 2017 12:40 PM EDT
Thanks, Holly! I'm really looking forward to this series as I've never been super successful at finding community posts via search that are exactly what I'm looking for. Excited to try out your tips!
  • Posted Thu 17 Aug 2017 12:45 PM EDT
Hi Tom,

Currently we don't have the option of only showing the original question in the search results. I know this leads to a clunky experience sometimes. Would you mind posting this as an idea in our Community Feedback Forum: https://community.blackbaud.com/forums/viewcategory/187

Thank you so much!
  • Posted Thu 17 Aug 2017 01:36 PM EDT
Tom...YES!  So frustrating when you get 20 results and 18 of them are comments on 1 post.  When you post this in the Idea Bank, please share the link to that Idea so others (like me!) can vote for it.
  • Posted Thu 17 Aug 2017 03:55 PM EDT
There is no Global Search button or tab on my home page.  Do you mean the Chat with Support or Resource Centre buttons?
  • Posted Fri 18 Aug 2017 08:20 AM EDT
Thanks, Holly. I always learn something from your posts!
  • Posted Fri 18 Aug 2017 08:27 AM EDT
Pam Lindsay - Holly means the homepage of Blackbaud Community.  To get to that page, click on the big "Blackbaud Community" title on the top left of this page.  But anywhere you see the search bar that says inside it in gray, "Search the Blackbaud Community", you have found the search bar she is talking about. 
  • Posted Fri 18 Aug 2017 08:51 AM EDT
Thanks, Stephanie! And, Pam, you make a good point. What the Community team considers the home page may not be what others think of as home. Here's the link to the page I referenced in my post: https://community.blackbaud.com/home
  • Posted Fri 18 Aug 2017 09:42 AM EDT
Thank you!  There's so much info out here it can be overwhelming, so this is really helpful!
  • Posted Tue 03 Apr 2018 05:49 PM EDT
This is very helpful.  I have been a little confused with navigating the community.  The clarification by Stephanie also helped!  Thanks!
  • Posted Wed 18 Apr 2018 09:59 AM EDT
This is super helpful! Is there a way to search the Knowledgebase and Community simultaneously?  
  • Posted Mon 23 Apr 2018 01:43 PM EDT
Lindsay, thanks! Sadly, there is not currently a way to search both KB and Community at the same time.
  • Posted Mon 23 Apr 2018 01:44 PM EDT
So glad you are still passing along those Helpful Hints Holly!!!
  • Posted Mon 30 Apr 2018 01:14 PM EDT

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