Reddit adds comment search to improve search results

Today, Reddit is updating its search feature to index comments. For the first time, users will have the ability to extract results from comments on posts, making it less of a hassle to find something specific outside of mainstream Reddit posts, communities, and people. The rollout is Reddit’s latest change to help users find content outside of their usual subreddits following the addition of a discovery tab to the mobile app in January.

Reddit says that in a user survey last year, the ability to search for comments was one of the top results. During “limited initial testing,” Reddit claimed 26,000 users started using the feature against five billion comments. Right now, the new capability is available globally to users who search on Reddit’s desktop website, but not through the apps (which might be another reason to disable that app install popup).

a reddit page with four search options posts comments to communities and people with a mouse click on comments

Comments search allows you to find what you’re looking for without having to constantly scroll.
Image: Reddit

a reddit page that searches for comments with the keywords best backpacking trips

Image: Reddit

In addition to searching for comments, Reddit also updates its search experience to help users find more relevant search results written by real people. For example, when you search for something, instead of search results with that exact wording, related results appear to make the search less restrictive.

Right now, when you search on Reddit, search results are populated based on relevance. With the new search, results are based on post interactions within the site. Now Reddit’s search results take into account how popular a particular result is on the platform. Interactions with a particular search result will help determine which of these results will rank highest.

This new method also allows users to see newer or trending results that are prioritized by the platform when many people search for information about the same thing. So, if Reddit is your go-to for outage testimonials or to look up the latest news, you’re more likely to see recent results with Reddit’s new desktop update.

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