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Search expansion
In this article
In this article

What search expansion is

Sometimes, we'll automatically include terms in your search when we think it will help you find what you're looking for. For example, if you search for "audiobook" we'll include items from the audiobook category, even if they don't have the word audiobook in the title. This is why, for certain searches, additional items appear in the search results even though not all the keywords you entered are in the title.

Note: This feature is available in the US, Canada, the U.K., and Germany.

While you can't turn off the search expansion feature, it will automatically turn off if you use any search operators (Boolean logic).

How search expansion works

There are 3 types of automatic search expansions that we use to give you the best results for your search queries.

Expansion type

What it Does


Keyword to keyword

Modifies your search to include items that have your keywords or a synonymous keyword from our dictionary.

Searches for red shoes will return items that have the words red and either shoe or shoes in the title.

Keyword to category

Modifies your search to include items that have certain keywords in the title or also are in a related category.

Searches for Harry Potter DVD will return items that have Harry Potter in the title and have either DVD in the title or are in the DVDs & Movies category.

Keyword to item specifics

Modifies your search to include items that have the keywords in the title or have certain item specifics.

A search for Nike Golf will return items that have golf in the title and either have Nike in the title, or have Brand=Nike specified in the item specifics section of the listing.

Note: We don't include all possible expansions, but we review our expansions often and might add or remove certain expansions at any time to help make search better.

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