Content Search Web Part vs Search Results Web Part

Mikael Svenson

by Mikael Svenson on 6/18/2015

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Article Details

Date Revised:
6/29/2015

Applies to:
Content Search Web Part, CSWP, Search Result Web Part, SRWP


This is the bonus episode in my series, “SharePoint Search Queries Explained - The Series.” See the intro post for links to all episodes.

If you have an enterprise license for SharePoint 2013 on-premises or you are using SharePoint Online Plan 2 (Office 365 E3/E4) then you have both the Content Search Web Part (CSWP) and Search Result Web Part (SRWP) available. If you don’t have the E powers, you only have the Search Result Web Part, and this is what I will try to highlight. In what scenarios can you use the Search Result Web Part when you don’t have the license for CSWP?

The table below list functionality and differences between the web parts. I am omitting some of the search result query specific functionality like language dropdown, sorting and preferences, as they are more relevant to an interactive search page.

Functionality

CSWP

SRWP

Property mappings via web part settings

X

Start displaying results from specified result number

via web part settings or #s=
URL parameter

via the s= URL parameter

Don’t show anything if there are no results

X

via custom control template

Caching support

X

Support content routing, choosing result table

X

Support paging

Via “List with Paging”
control template

Via web part settings

Choose display template based on Result Type

X

Manually choose display template for all items

X

X

Refine/filter results

with query builder or URL parameter

with query builder or URL parameter

Support async/sync first load

X

X

Support include duplicates

X

X

Support query rules

X

X

Use catalog URL instead of real URL

X

X

Max # of results to show (without hack)

50

50

Show promoted results

via result table

via control / display template

In general, any URL parameter you can use with the Search Result web part you can also use with the CSWP.

As you see from the above table, the two web parts overlap on almost all parts of functionality. The CSWP has some more web property settings that make it easier to use without editing display templates directly. In addition, the CSWP supports caching, which is useful for publishing scenarios where many people have the same read access to the items displayed. Lastly, the CSWP allows content orchestration, which I wrote about in Search Orchestration – Page composition in rule major, allowing better workflows and page loading optimizations when constructing search driven pages.

Also see How to enable Content Search Web Part Display Templates for Search Result Web Part on how to reuse CSWP display templates with the Search Result web part.

 

You can find Mikael’s original blog here.


Topic: Search

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