Vable article searches form the basis for all the content in your Topics and Newsletters. Your end-users will be relying on you to get the searching right so it is important to spend time thinking about what you - or they - want. 

The Vable platform has powerful search functionality and regardless of your search experience, with a little practice and experimentation you can produce excellent results. Applying relevant filters will effortlessly reduce the number of search hits in a simple search. Or take full control with sophisticated search strings using Boolean, wildcard and proximity operators, grouping and field parameters. 

This brief introduction will get you started, show you how to sort your results, and enable you to save your search. We have produced separate in-depth guides if you want to delve deeper. As with all specialist databases, there are variations in how we employ the various search operators.

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Get Searching Immediately

To get started, click on the Articles tab at the top of the page. By default you will search across every article in the Vable platform created in the previous 7 days. 

The Load Previous Search option can be useful. If you click yes, it will automatically remember the last search you did on this page. This can save you time when you are creating multiple or related searches for a Topic. Alternatively start typing in the search box for a new search.

As you update a filter, add or remove search terms, or change the time period, your results will be amended. It is sometimes helpful to set the time period to All or Last Month so you can see a wider set of results for quality and relevancy. However in most cases 7 days is sufficiently broad. 

You can sort your results by Title or Date Created, and if you click on the descending arrow icon on the far right, it will reverse the results. 

Keep it Simple

Given that you can add a number of searches to a Topic, you can keep the individual search concepts relatively simple. You can also reuse and repurpose searches by cloning the Topic and amending it, as required. 

These are the most common and helpful search operators, and must be capitalized in searches to act as operators rather than search terms:  

  • Vable assumes AND if you type search strings with no operators. But for clarity you can add it, e.g. apples AND pears
  • Broaden your term with OR e.g. GDPR OR "data protection regulation*” 
  • Exclude terms using the AND NOT or minus e.g. "housing act" AND NOT construction or "housing act" -construction
  • Put phrases in straight speech marks, e.g. "intellectual property". Be careful not to include curly speech marks if you’ve cut and paste from another location such as a Word document
  • Put an asterisk (*) at the end of a stem to search alternative endings, e.g. employ* will find employ, employment, employer  
  • Vable will ignore capitalisation in a search unless you use the Exact Match icon to the left of the search box. This will aid in finding proper names or other terms which require specific capitalization or punctuation. By default this option is turned off (it will show as grey text with a white background), and when it is set as on it will appear as white text with grey background:

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The Importance of Filters

In some cases you might not even need a search string to create a relevant set of results. As you start to build searches you will appreciate the importance of well thought out filters. At a click you can include or exclude entire sets of information. 

For instance, you might want to limit your results to your organisation’s Account Library. Perhaps you’re only interested in a precise set of publishers or a single company. You might also want to exclude a certain industry, publisher location, or foreign language. All this is possible with filters.   

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Reviewing and Saving Your Search

Once you are satisfied with your search and its results, you can select Save Vable Search

This will take you to the Topics page where you have a choice of adding your search to an existing Topic or creating a new one. As a reminder, you can create a number of searches under one Topic. 

If you select an existing Topic, you will be prompted to name your search and add an optional description. 

Once done, click on the teal check mark to save your changes. If you’re creating a new Topic for your search, you will also name and set the description for the Topic during this step.

Click on Yes to activate the search - articles will not populate a Newsletter unless they have been activated in the Topic.  

Modify existing searches

To modify a saved search that is used in a General Topic, open the Topic’s detail view and click Configure Topic. Click on the cog icon next to the search to be taken to the Articles page where you can update your search string and filters. Once finished, click Save in the top right portion of the teal banner to finalize your changes. 

For Alert Topics, those created for a single Newsletter, open the detail view of the corresponding Newsletter. Then click on Configure Newsletter to view the associated Topics. Click on the cog icon next to the search to be taken to the Articles page where you can update your search string and filters. Once finished, click Save in the top right portion of the teal banner to finalize your changes.

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