236 posts Marketplace Developer
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madlep Envato team says

This is the grand unified forum thread for all things search related!

There are a bunch of search threads going on across various marketplace forums, and it’s hard to tie all the information together to make sure that we see, and act on all the feedback you folk are posting.

So, if you spot problems with search, post here! We’ll also use this thread for posting updates on progress looking at issues and improvements we’re making.

I’ll collect up up the issues I can see being discussed across the various other threads, and repost them here, and me or another search team member will respond. We might not necessarily see or respond to posts in other forum threads.

Some quick guidelines to keep it civil:

Try to keep it constructive and provide information we can act on.

BAD: “search results are awful! envato needs to fix search”

GOOD: “I searched for http://videohive.net/search?utf8=%E2%9C%93&term=foobar and I had to go to page 5 to see any relevant results. This started 3 days ago”.

Vague posts are NOT constructive, and really don’t help anyone. We do read everything, and more noise about issues doesn’t actually make us care more (we already care a lot :) ) or fix it faster. If we can figure out the issues, we can fix it, if there is lots of chatter, it takes longer. We look at issues discussed in all the posts. But more posts means less time for us to focus on fixing issues.

This isn’t a sales thread!

Low sales may be indicative of search problems, but not always necessarily. It’s definitely relevant information, so do post if you see a sudden drop! Ideally posting which items are seeing a slow down in sales.

However, it’s not general discussion of trends in sales etc.

Just remember we devs can see how many sales you actually have. So if you’re crying wolf, we know straight away (it’s like 2 clicks for us to see), and we’ll basically ignore you. Quite a few authors chiming in on the sales threads complaining about low sales are seeing consistently good sales, and some are WAY up.

Saying that though, there are definitely issues with sales for some authors, particularly on videohive, and we’re investigating them. But again: more noise means it’s harder for us to investigate.

this is about technology/functionality/bugs etc

We’re talking about how search works, how it should work, what it’s doing wrong etc. This isn’t the place to discuss community, or envato’s direction, or what you had for lunch, or other things not directly related to search. There are plenty of other places on the forums where you’re welcome to talk about those sort of issues :)

236 posts Marketplace Developer
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madlep Envato team says

Well… felt_tips, madlep told that the search now is more friendly with old items…. I will explain it shortly, just lets make a quick test…

Lets say we search for a ‘cinema title’: http://videohive.net/search?utf8=%E2%9C%93&term=cinema+title

And lets have a look at the results…. ohhhh we see a FILE AT THE TOP!!! IT MUST BE KILLER!!! a file from the 2010 which looks like crap from author who never came back again after posting this one single KILLER item which gained UP TO 7 SALES!!!!!!! It’s a shame that the author did not expect that file to be the most MATCHED FILE in ALLLL the “Cinema Titles” of video hive in 2014!!!!

SO MUCH WoW!. good job search team! Now the search is so much better.
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madlep Envato team says

  • Search
  • Video rollovers
  • Cart

Is all we need.

When I put myself into a buyers position i understand how important those things are….

I caught myself skipping all the items which was not showing all needed info on the image-preview… Cause there is so many of the items and I want to check all of them… Buyer simply cannot take time to actually preview all the wordpress demo live views… or all the given animations on VH,
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madlep Envato team says

In all seriousness though, yes, I have to agree that the results on videohive and audiojungle in particular need some work. They’re harder to index and search on as there is less text data to go on than with things like themes/plugins that are rich in text by their nature. There are a few things that we’re thinking about though.

An issue we’re seeing is that boosts on sales aren’t being applied as strongly on items in searches with lower relative sales. The boosts are currently applied globally based on items with very high sales (10,000s like you get on themeforest) – that doesn’t work so well in smaller niches where you have 10s-100s of sales. Hopefully we’ll be looking at that soon.

Items also need more of a boost for recency. Agreed that an item with recent sales from 2014 should get a boost over an item from 2010 with a few sales.
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madlep Envato team says

@madlep I was just trying out the search and I have a quick question: If I search for “loop” right now I’ll get some Valentine’s hearts items close to the top. Imagine I want to filter out the word “hearts” from this search with a handy google-style “loop -hearts”... is something like this possible in the future?
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madlep Envato team says

And would be nice if there would be a tutorial on how to use marketplaces and the search. New buyers are confused sometime. I did bring one of my friends here to look around and he was stunned by so many things and didnt know where to start looking. First question from him was : ” is there a tutorial video or some pop out notices on how to use marketplace ?” Well i thought what a great idea ! And said : “nope”
236 posts Marketplace Developer
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madlep Envato team says


I am user of computing and internet for about 15 years. And I dont know any of those commands which are for search filtering. So I think buyer should not be required to know them to find something. (...)

I agree, buyers shouldn’t be required to know this just because Google uses it… but if envato’s search supported this, then it would be a matter of making users aware that they could use the minus(-) to filter their searches. Having in mind I don’t know anything about coding, this seemed so simple I just had to ask the devs. But I realize it’s not a pretty solution.

Hey, it’s 3am so here’s a day dream:

The search input area up there becomes a button… when pressed it relocates users to a Search Central with a form/options relevant to the marketplace in question. Below the search form there are cool items of the marketplace being showcased. Among the many search options, one can see input fields for “Include Words” and “Exclude Words”. Everyone’s happy. :)
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madlep Envato team says

I didn´t like the new search engine. I was testing and now there are lots of files mixed up. For instance, there are some authors that put more than 3 or 4 words between commas, making these files appear in places where it shouldn´t be. Other awful point: there are projects that don´t have that specific tag and appear in a list messing the correct project tags. Wanna try? Put “race”, and you´ll see the mess. This can make the sales go down.
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madlep Envato team says


I didn´t like the new search engine. I was testing and now there are lots of files mixed up. For instance, there are some authors that put more than 3 or 4 words between commas, making these files appear in places where it shouldn´t be. Other awful point: there are projects that don´t have that specific tag and appear in a list messing the correct project tags. Wanna try? Put “race”, and you´ll see the mess. This can make the sales go down.

I’ll cross post here too! :-)

In that specific example, my file Light Bulb comes up 15th in the listings if I search on “race” and then order by sales. The file has nothing to do with racing. It does however have the phrase “the light bulb races towards the camera” in the description.

In this specific example, the problem is that there’s no way of cross-referencing good results for the tem “race” with sales. As soon as I sort by sales, any other relevance sorting goes out of the window. Then I have to scour through hundreds or thousands of results in a random manner (note: still with no video rollovers on Videohive, which after all these years never ceases to astonish me) Refining the search before sorting by sales helps of course, but without being able to decide where I search for my search terms – i.e. in keywords, descriptions or titles – it’s also of limited use.

This thing goes much deeper than the “Best Match” algorithm. It’s all about giving the user some control. The search can only be as clever as the categorisation system, the keywords, titles and descriptions. 15 keywords are a joke to describe all the visual complexity, mood and style of a piece of design.

Going forwards, the success of stock market places is going to be based on the user’s ability to find what they want quickly. I’m glad that so much thought is being put into it, and I understand that it’s a complex area, but as long as the automagic search is not very clever, I’d much rather see the user given some manual control at the expense of a little visual clutter.
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madlep Envato team says


Thank you Felt Tips! What went wrong with me: I have a project I´ve put on videohive in march 2013, and since then it sells 20~25 times per month. After the new search engine, no more sales. On Videohive, If you put “race” and sort by sales, the first project on the list doesn´t mention the word “race”.It´s awful, and like Felt Tips said: “At the end of the day, the livelihoods of thousands of people are dependent on these search algorithms”.

I feel your pain, Diego.

The file I uploaded 8 months ago had been selling well. On average 7 sales a week. The week before last, it was second to top of the popular items in its category with 13 sales IIRC. In November, it sold 32 times, in December it sold 20 times, in January, it sold 27 times. In the first 10 days of February, it sold 14 times, with a relatively even spread of sales. Since the 10th February it has sold …. twice.

The change to the search engine happened on 10th February, IIRC. The day before this thread was started.

2 sales in 10 days. A drop of 80% compared to the sales of the last three months, coinciding exactly with the changes to Search.

I would say that the numbers I’ve mentioned are statistically significant. Ancient and low-selling files of mine are suddenly experiencing an unprecedented boost in sales, while the file in question, which is a relatively recent, decently selling and much liked file has just died. This appears to match the other examples that posters in this thread have given of irrelevant, low-selling and old files are turning up very high in the Best Match rankings.

So – should I change the title from “22 Awesome Cartoon Text Presets”, just to “Cartoon Text” and stuff the description with keywords instead of putting useful information in there? Or perhaps copy the title, keywords and description from a similar file that appears to still be selling. Because that’s what Search is telling me to do loud and clear.
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