Deliver Faster Search on a Configurable Search Client with Imperium

The frontend components of a search client are available in two flavors: Legacy and Imperium. Legacy allows users to customize the search client page, search box, and the “no results found” message. You can read about it in Custom Design Your Search Client

Imperium, introduced with Mamba ‘21, has the ability to extend customization possibilities immensely. The number of customizable components shoots from 3 to more than 25. You can change almost every visible part of your search client, including search box, page rating widget, facets, content source tabs, scroll, featured snippets, and bookmarks. Such customization in Imperium can help in improving the user experience design to a noticeable extent.

Not only is Imperium more customizable, but it’s also significantly faster. The performance difference is especially perceptible when you have more than 5 content sources linked to a search client. With up to 35% more optimized code, the number of calls is reduced, ensuring a richer search experience.

This article covers how you can:

  • Activate Imperium flavor on a search client
  • Find Imperium in search client settings, discover editable components, use the in-built JSX and CSS editor, preview results
  • Restore default settings if something goes awry
  • View change logs

Prerequisites

  • Familiarity with JSX or CSS
  • Search client other than Salesforce Console, Salesforce Communities, Salesforce Internal, and Zendesk Console.

Activate Imperium

Imperium cannot be activated on existing search clients. To activate it, select ‘Imperium’ experience when you are creating a new search client.

  • In Search Clients, go to Add new search client.

  • Choose the search client you wish to add. Then, after filling in the required details, select the Imperium option in Search Experience.

  • Press Save.

Customize Imperium

Just as was the case with Legacy, you can find Imperium in Search Clients > Edit > Designer.

  1. From the Search Clients list, find your search client and click on the option.

  2. Go to the Designer (1) tab. The component that opens by default is search-box. You can click Preview (2) to see how the search box looks right now. Next, you can either make changes in the search-box code or, if search-box looks great the way it is, proceed to find another component from the Search Component (3) dropdown. The white part is the JSX editor (4), where the changes in the code can be made.

  3. After editing each component, click Save. Once you have made all the changes and saved them, use Preview again to see what your changes will look like on production or sandbox.
  4. Once you have made all the changes, press Save (1). Pressing Save doesn’t push the edited code to sandbox or production. To push code, select Rebuild (2).

  5. On clicking Rebuild, you get two options: (1) Select whether the changes should reflect in the search box or the search client. (2) Select whether the changes are to be pushed to the production or sandbox instance. The first point is crucial. To learn the difference between a search box and a search page, check out the KB article on: What is the difference between a search box and a search page?

  6. Once your changes are made, a letter will appear against the components that you modify.

Redirection URL

A Redirection URL field is available under Search Client > Edit > Configurations tab, which is only for Imperium search clients.

Here, you can enter the URL where a user from the search box will be directed to. It is the URL of the search page. However, the search client works without an issue even if you leave it blank.

Undoing Changes

It is easy to edit the code in a hurry only to find out that the changes aren’t what you wanted. In such scenarios, clicking Reset to Defaultfollowed by Rebuild restores the vanilla code.

NOTE. Reset to Default + Rebuild undoes all the changes in all the components. Right now there is no way to restore the code in only one component.

View Change History

When you make any changes in the code and click Rebuild, the code compiles on the server. With View Logs, you can view the latest (last) build logs. It’s useful when you want to see if the previous build was successful.

Result

Here is a search client with the Imperium experience.

Last updatedTuesday, January 19, 2021

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