This plugin hasn’t been tested with the latest 3 major releases of WordPress. It may no longer be maintained or supported and may have compatibility issues when used with more recent versions of WordPress.

Server-Side Google Search


This plugin adds Google Custom Search to your website, but unlike other plugins
operates on the server side, thus eliminating the need for JavaScript and
keeping the page size small.

The admin interface is based on that used by the [WP Google Search plugin]

The interface with the Google API is based on Digital Collection Search by Jason Clark for Montana
State University.

Available languages

  • English
  • Spanish (incomplete)

Follow this project on Github


This plugin uses wp-cli and PHPUnit for testing.
The tests require runkit for mocking functions.

  • Grab the latest source from github:

    $ git clone

  • Install wp-cli

  • Install PHPUnit
  • Set up runkit:

    $ git clone
    $ cd runkit
    $ phpize
    $ ./configure
    $ sudo make install

Add the following lines to /etc/php5/cli/php.ini:
  • Install the test WordPress environment:

    cd server-side-google-search
    bash bin/ test_db_name db_user ‘db_password’ db_host version

** test_db_name is the name for your temporary test WordPress database
** db_user is the database user name
** db_password is the password
** db_host is the database host (eg localhost)
** version is the version of WordPress (eg 4.2.2 or latest)

  • Run the tests


  1. Upload the plugin to the /wp-content/plugins/ directory.
  2. Activate it through the Plugins menu in WordPress.
  3. Register your Google Custom Search Engine and get your Google Search Engine ID and API key here:
  4. Enable the plugin and enter the Google Search Engine ID and API key (Settings -> Server-Side Google Search)
  5. If necessary, add the default search widget to the sidebar where you want to see it
  6. Put the Server-Side Google Search widget on the sidebar where you want to see the results
  7. Your theme will need to override the page that displays the “Nothing Found”
    message when the search results are displayed.

Example of how to add custom metadata to search results

In your header.php:

    <DataObject type="post_metadata">
        <Attribute name="modified_date" value="<?php the_modified_date( "M d, Y", '', '', true ); ?>" />

In your functions.php:

function add_modified_date( $metadata, $item_data ) {
    return $metadata . sprintf(
        'Last modified on: %s',

add_filter( 'ssgs-add-post-search-metadata',
            'add_modified_date', 10, 2 );


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Contributors & Developers

“Server-Side Google Search” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.




  • Removed deprecation warnings for WordPress 4.3
  • Fixed potential bug where sort argument wasn’t being preserved in links
  • Updated test infrastructure to use wp-cli
  • Documentation updates


  • Added filter to allow custom metadata in search results


  • Made display of URLs in search results optional (displayed by default)
  • Right aligned sort options in search results


  • First version