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How to Set Up a Google Search Box on Your Website

As you build a website, look at a search box as an element in enabling site accessibility and navigation. The role of a navigation system is not simply to anticipate and respond to what a user might be looking for: It is to "lead" visitors through your site.

In that context, a search box provides an alternative way for people to find things at your site. Search boxes are a more flexible, open way to provide access to your site content. But that doesn't mean you have no freedom, or responsibility, to guide visitors, even as they look for content through your search box.

Embed a Google Search Box

Google packages its free Google Custom Search tools in various ways, but code to create a free Google search box for your site is available from Google Web Elements.

The code provided is:

<!-- Google Custom Search Element -->
<div id="cse" style="width:100%;">Loading</div>
<script src="http://www.google.com/jsapi" type="text/javascript"></script>
<script type="text/javascript">google.load('search', '1');
google.setOnLoadCallback(function(){var cse = new google.search.CustomSearchControl();cse.draw('cse');}, true);

You paste this code anywhere in the <body> element of a web page to place the search box.

Essentially, this tool is a JavaScript file loaded and run from Google's site. The search box, embedded in your site with the preceding code, will look something like the one shown. You can apply your own CSS styles to the page that holds the Google search element. And, of course, you can add your own HTML to the page.

To test the Google Web Elements search, you must then upload your page to the web. You can't test it just saved to your own computer.

The results, when people use the search box, are heavily weighted with external links to Google-advertised products.

This is an excerpt from:

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Plan, build, and maintain a site that does exactly what you need, with Building Websites All-in-One For Dummies.

More Web Design Coding Issues:
• Update Your Entire Website Instantly Using Server Side Includes (SSI)
• Don't Let doors.txt Take Control of Your Email Server
• Web Design Troubleshooting Guide
• How to Set Up a Google Search Box on Your Website
• Six Ways to Center an Element on a Webpage
• How to Redirect a Web Page Using a 301 Redirect
• What is AJAX?
• Set Up a Freefind Search Box on Your Website
• Various Types of Website Hacking
• Web Designer's Reference

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