Sometimes a new feature appears in Magento, and it almost passes you by. I was recently looking at the 'Marketing' menu of Magento 2 and notice a 'Search Synonyms' menu item. My curiosity pricked, I decided to take a closer look.
Synonyms have been part of Magento's search functionality for some time. It's an important way to direct your customers to the correct products within the store when they might misspell a product, search for a different but relevant product name/ type that is not named that was relevant but not how you named products on your store. In Magento 1 we had to deal with each one of these variations individually. This could be a lot of work.
Synonym groups are new. And they answer a question I am often asked about with synonyms - "Can we string them together?". The answer was no, but now we have synonym groups to address this.
Synonym groups allow you to add a list of related words together so if a result includes any of these words it will return the results for all of the keywords. Are you with me? Lets take a look at an example.
Our website sells T-Shirts. If you search for t-shirts, it will return several products. But what if you are searching for Tees or Tee Shirts or Tshirts? All of these phrases are obviously the same thing but return no products when we search.
Using the Search Synonym group will tie these phrases together ensuring that the same results appear in the search which ever phrase the customer uses.
So now when we search for 'Tees' it returns the relevant results. Simple.