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January 2024 Newsletter

New results page design implementation

Office hours: join us on January 31!

As announced in our December newsletter, we have been working on a major redesign for our hosted search results page (SERP), which is now available in beta, so you have a chance to test it on your search sites before it’s automatically implemented on March 31, 2024.

To request access to the beta now, email our helpdesk at, and let us know the site handle you want to test with. This should be a test or sandbox search site. If you do not have one, you can clone your production search site and use the new cloned site to test.

To know more about how to apply the new design to your results page, join us on January 31 at 1:30 - 2:30 pm ET during our office hours:

[Meeting details removed]

We have redesigned the look and feel of the page to leverage the U.S. Web Design System (USWDS), and ensure a good searcher experience in line with major commercial search engines. In addition to the user experience and aesthetic enhancements, this update will ensure we meet the requirements of the 21st Century IDEA. The new page is built using React, with an emphasis on speed and section 508 accessibility.

Who does this change apply to?

About one-third of federal domains use Of those, most choose to use our hosted results page, and this change applies to this group. If your agency uses our results API to power your search results page that you build and maintain on your website, no changes here will affect you.

User roles improvements focus groups

Thank you for your valuable feedback!

We currently offer one user role for managing search experiences through the Admin Center. However, there are many use cases for additional role types and permission sets.

For this reason, and as part of our overall service improvements roadmap, we’ll soon be working on creating a more robust roles and permissions structure to allow for read-only or reduced-access roles.

Because your feedback is very important to us, this month we hosted two virtual focus groups to learn your specific needs and listen to your ideas related to user roles.

First and foremost, we’d like to thank everyone who participated and shared such great and useful feedback. About 20 people participated across the two sessions. Both sessions were incredibly helpful to better understand what role structures would help the search site management experience be more secure, effective, and easier for all involved.

Highlights from the discussions:

  • It would be helpful to have multiple owners/admins for each site.
  • It would be helpful to have a read-only type of user.
  • It would be helpful to have different roles for managing content, display, analytics.
  • It would be helpful to have a defined tiering for user roles, so permissions can be applied as sets.
  • It would be helpful to be able to see in the Manage Users page the permissions or roles each user has.
  • It would be helpful to have a new page in the Admin Center that lists all the sites a user has access to.
  • User roles being considered:

    • Owner
    • Admin group - similar to the current user role
    • Content editors - apply permissions at the content type level, such as “Can edit Best Bets” or “Can edit Routed Queries”
    • Read-only

We’ll keep you all posted as we develop an improved user roles structure. As usual, if you have any questions, ideas, comments, or general feedback related to this topic, please contact us.

Release Notes

Want to learn about the latest features, fixes, and focuses of the Search team? We post monthly Release Noteson our website.

Read the latest notes

February 09, 2024