Higher Logic Vanilla's (Vanilla) latest search experience, Elastic Search, features a Members search feature.
- In this article, we'll focus on this aspect of your community search so you can learn how to easily find other members.
Before we begin...
Vanilla's Elastic Search was implemented in Spring 2021; it improves the quality and speed of search. Keep in mind that some aspects of Elastic Search are available only if you're using our latest search user interface (UI).
- If you're using the Foundation Theme Editor, you're already using our latest search UI and all the features of Elastic Search are available to you.
- If you're using a legacy theme, see the article below to learn how to enable our latest search UI.
Access Member search
Your Vanilla community has a search bar, generally in the header of every page.
- After performing a search (e.g., John), click the Members button to access Member search.
- Click the X to remove your search query and display your community's full member list.
- Use the filters and sort by options to further fine-tune your member results (more on this below).
Member search provides two types of filtering: default filters and custom profile field filters.
You can apply the following default filters to narrow your search results:
- Email (this filter is permission-gated to members who are able to view personal info)
- Registration date
📝 NOTE: When adding or removing these filters, you must click the Filter button to apply them.
Custom profile field filters
User profiles feature a default set of profile fields (e.g., username and email address). If needed, your organization can expand these default fields with one or more custom profile fields, giving your members more ways to express themselves with information suitable to the goals and theme of your Vanilla community.
To learn how to access and manage your custom profile fields, check out the article below.
The other benefit to custom profile fields is they can be used to filter the Member search. Because a community's custom profile fields are meaningful and unique to its members, this provides a powerful filtering capability.
- To access your custom profile field filters, click the More Filters button on the right side of the page. A few default filters are available at the top of the dialog, while your custom profile fields are listed below.
📝 NOTE: Applying these filters is a two-step process: click Filter to close the dialog and add these custom filters to the Filter Results area; then, click the Filter button at the bottom of this area to apply them (and any default filters you've added).
Check out the article below to learn how to create and manage custom profile fields, including how to configure them to appear as filters for the Member search.
Custom profile field filters and privacy
The Visibility setting for each custom profile field determines whether users can use it as a filter (e.g., regular users can't use a custom profile field as a filter if its Visibility is set to Private).
Custom profile fields set to:
- Public are visible to all users with the
Garden > Profiles > View permission.
- Private are only visible to users with the
Garden > Personal Info > View permission.
- Internal are only visible to users with the
Garden > Internal Info > View permission.
Along with the filters discussed above, you can also fine-tune the members shown via the following Sort By options:
- Recently Active - Sorts the list by most recently active members.
- Name - Sorts the list alphabetically, from A to Z.
- Oldest Members - Sorts the list by account age, from oldest to newest.
- Newest Members - Sorts the list by account age, from newest to oldest.
- Posts - Sorts the list by post total, from members with the most to fewest posts.